Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: How Many Rows and Columns Have I Selected?.

How Many Rows and Columns Have I Selected?

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated July 3, 2023)
This tip applies to Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365


As I am typing along in Excel, I find it a bother to take my hands off the keyboard and fumble for the mouse. Thus, I will often use the keyboard to make selections. I simply hold down the Shift key and use the arrow keys to expand my selection. As I do so, Excel obliges me by reporting, in the Name box, the number of rows and columns I have selected.

The problem is, once I let go of the Shift key, the contents of the Name box return to normal, and I can no longer tell how many rows and columns I selected. To solve this, I find it very easy to again hold down the Shift key and press one of the arrow keys. This expands the selected range and again reports the selection size in the Name box. If I immediately press the opposite arrow key (while still holding down the Shift key), the selection returns to my original size and I can see the size of that selection in the Name box.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (8849) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: How Many Rows and Columns Have I Selected?.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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