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Excel Documentation

Document Excel Worksheets with Pictures that Include Row and Column Headings

When you document your Excel worksheets, give your readers complete information by including row and column headings in your figures.

by Charley Kyd, MBA
Microsoft Excel MVP, 2005-2014
The Father of Spreadsheet Dashboard Reports

The following illustration is a picture of a section of an Excel worksheet. Be sure to include pictures like this when you create your own documentation about Excel. Doing so makes your discussions about Excel formulas and formats much easier to read and understand.

Best of all, you can create a picture like this quickly and easily. Here's how...

First, you need to tell Excel to include the row and column headings when you copy a picture.

To do so, choose File, Page Setup. In the Sheet tab of the Page Setup dialog box, check the Row and Column Headings check box. Then choose OK.

Next, select the range you want to copy. Here, we selected the range B3:H12.

To copy the picture to your Clipboard, hold down your Shift key and then choose Edit, Copy Picture. (The Copy Picture menu item isn't visible unless you hold down the Shift key when you choose Edit.) In the Copy Picture dialog, choose the As shown when printed option button. Then choose OK.

Paste the picture as you always would. In Excel, or Word, or any other Windows program, select where you want your picture to be placed and then choose Edit Paste.

Finally, when you're done copying your pictures, be sure to return to File, Page Setup, and uncheck the Row and Column Headings checkbox. Otherwise, your printed Excel reports will include the row and column headings.

One final note...

When you copy the picture it won't include the print range, which is shown above as a dashed line. You've got to add that manually. To do so, you have two choices.

First, you can illustrate the print range using borders. To do so, choose Format, Cells. Select the Border tab. Choose a dashed line style. Then select the Outline button.

Second, you can illustrate the print range using the Rectangle object in the Drawing toolbar. To view the toolbar, choose Tools, Customize. Activate the Toolbars tab. Check the Drawing checkbox. Then Close the dialog.

Select the Rectangle object on the toolbar and then click and drag your mouse pointer to create the rectangle. By default, the rectangle has a solid border and obscures your contents behind the rectangle. To cure both these problems, first right-click on the rectangle and choose Format AutoShape. Then, in the Colors and Lines tab set the Fill Color to No Fill, and set the Dashed line to the style and thickness that you want.


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