How to Freeze and Unfreeze Panes in Excel 2013

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Freezing and unfreezing panes

When you work with a large list, as in the data that we're seeing here on the freezing sheet, one of the problems you run into and particularly if you're not familiar with the data, is that as you scroll up and down the data, you lose sight of where the column indicator is. We're not seeing row 1 anymore. Similarly, sometimes we scroll rightward and we see some data and we wonder, well, who is that person? Which salary are we looking at here? We don't see the names out of column A. Sometimes we might want to see not only the name, but also perhaps the name and the building where the person works at or maybe some other information.

We're talking about the potential ability to freeze rows or columns, so that we can always see certain information on the screen. So, if we only want to freeze the top row, the active cell can be anywhere within our data and we go to the View tab, choose Freeze Panes and Freeze Top Row. It keeps the top row visible while scrolling through the rest of the worksheet. Click it, a slight visual change here, very slight. The row separated between rows, 1 and 2 is slightly darker than the others, but as we use the mouse wheel or the scroll bar or the trackpad to scroll up and down here, we always see row 1.

Now it's possible that in a different situation with different kinds of data, maybe we don't care about row 1, but we do care about always seeing column A, so let's disable this feature. Many of the features on the View tab, you cannot reverse with the Undo command. Let's go back to Freeze Panes and Unfreeze the panes. Now consider possibly freezing the first column, a slight visual difference there with a darker gray column separator. Now as we move rightward either with the arrow keys or we scroll in the lower right hand corner, we can move rightward and leftward, we're always seeing column A. Click again here.

Let's remove that feature, Freeze Panes, Unfreeze the panes. Now, if we'd like to see row 1 always and column A always, we'll position the active cell in B2 or if we always want to see columns A and B, no matter what as well as row 1, we'll Click in cell C2. Let's suppose it's just the top row and column. Click in B2, Freeze Panes and then simply Freeze Panes. Keep rows and columns visible while the rest of the worksheet scrolls based on current selection.

That's what we want. Now we've got a two-way freeze in effect. We can scroll up and down and always see row 1. We can scroll left and right and always see column A. So it's great feature for working with large lists of data when you definitely need to see specific information all the time.

Freezing and unfreezing panes
Video duration: 2m 39s 6h 32m Appropriate for all


Freezing and unfreezing panes provides you with in-depth training on Business. Taught by Dennis Taylor as part of the Excel 2013 Essential Training

Business Education + Elearning
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