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Autofill

Sometimes, when you have to use repetitive data in Excel, you can use handy feature called Autofill. Autofill will help you with repetitive data such as months, days of a week and so on. In Excel you can customize your own lists that you want to use.


Autofill with Defined Lists

First, let's enter the name of the first month. After you finish typing "January", press Ctrl-Enter to stay in the same cell. Move you mouse cursor near the bottom right corner until your cursor changes its shape to a black cross-hair.


Now you can move your cursor horizontally or vertically. Until you release your button, Excel shows you which month will be the last one on the list.


When you release the mouse cursor, all names of the months will be inserted.


You don't have to insert first month or day to make Autofill work. You can choose anyone you want. Let's try "Friday".


As you can see, when it gets to the end of the series, it starts again from the beginning. You can also use abbreviated forms of months or weeks.



Autofill with Numbers

The numbers are slightly different with Autofill. When you enter a number and try to use Autofill you will notice that it gives you the whole bunch of the same numbers. This happens because there is no build in series.


If you want to make incremental list of numbers just press Ctrl and hold it down until you release mouse button.


You can also create custom lists by selecting multiple cells, for example: odd numbers, even numbers or numbers incremented by 10. To do this, select two cells and then drag your cursor.



Custom Lists

What if we need a list that is not defined in Excel. For example a list of our employees? You can create your custom pre-made series. In order to do that, click File Tab to select the Backstage View and choose Options. On the left side of Excel Options choose Advanced. Scroll down to the bottom. Inside General region choose "Edit Custom Lists..."


In the new window you can find two areas with data.

  • This is a place where you can find defined lists
  • Here you can enter data to create your own custom lists


Now when you type the name of one of the employees you can use Autofill to insert names of the rest of them.


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