Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 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: Fast AutoFill.

Fast AutoFill

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 17, 2021)

1

The AutoFill feature in Excel is a great boon to certain types of editing. The basic use of the feature (clicking and dragging on the AutoFill handle) has been covered in other ExcelTips. There is another way you can use the AutoFill handle, however, that is a wonderful time-saving feature.

Suppose you have a column full of values in column A. For instance, you have values in the cells A3 through A417. Now, suppose you want to fill adjacent cells in column B with a sequential values, 1 through 415. Try this:

  1. In cell B3, place the value 1.
  2. In cell B4, place the value 2.
  3. Select the range B3:B4.
  4. Double-click on the AutoFill handle.

That's it! No dragging at all, and you now have cells B5:B417 filled with sequential values. Cool, huh?

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (10672) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Fast AutoFill.

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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What is two more than 3?

2021-04-19 09:17:47

Lisa

I tried this tip, the first time, it just copied the #2 all the way down, rather than sequentially. The 2nd time, I had to change the format from general to number then it worked. So perhaps add that to the instructions? Default cell format is General. How would this work if you wanted the cells to run a through z?


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