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One of the more popular Office 365 programs is Excel, largely because it allows business users to carry out a wide variety of tasks. These tasks vary from basic finances all the way up to advanced data tracking. Because of this, Excel has a number of features to make entering data easier. One such feature is data validation.
Here is an overview of Excel’s data validation.
What is data validation?
This useful Excel feature allows users to set a limit as to the type of data that can be entered into a cell or cells. If you use this feature you can prevent users from entering invalid data types, warn them when invalid data is entered or give them a message as to the type of data you want entered.
You can find this function by clicking on the Data tab in Excel and looking under the Data Tools group. When you click on it, a window will open allowing you to configure and set a data validation.
How can it be used?
There are numerous uses for data validation, the most popular being when you will be sharing a spreadsheet with other users who will input data into an already designed spreadsheet. Other uses include:
How do I create a data validation?
You can create a validation by:
A window will open with three options: Settings, Input Message and Error Alert.
Under Settings pressing the arrow under Allow: will let you pick what type of data you want to be entered in that cell. For example, if you are going to limit the cells to only whole numbers select Whole Number from the drop-down list. The other options will change depending on the type of validation you pick.
Input Message will allow you to set a message that will pop-up when a user hovers their mouse over the cells. To attach a message, simply enter a title for the message in the Title box and the actual message in the Input message: box. Press Ok and the message should show up when you hover your mouse over the cells.
The Error Alert tab allows you to set and customize an alert that will show when a user enters an invalid form of data. You can select from a number of different styles and icons and even configure the error message that will be displayed.
Published on 24th October 2012 by Jeanne DeWitt.