Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007 and 2010. 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: Enhanced Filling.

Enhanced Filling

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 18, 2016)

5

Excel allows you to quickly and easily fill a series of cells with a progression of values by simply using the fill handle. This is the small black dot that appears at the lower-right corner of a cell when it is selected. Just click on the fill handle and drag to select the cells you want filled. Using this feature allows Excel to make decisions about how the cells you select should be filled.

You can gain more control over the filling process if, instead of clicking on the fill handle, you right-click on it and then drag. When you release the mouse button a Context menu appears that allows you to select the type of fill you want to perform.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (12124) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007 and 2010. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Enhanced Filling.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Formatting Comments

Need to change the appearance of the text in your comments? It's easy to do using techniques you are already familiar with.

Discover More

Controlling Names of Backup Files

Want to control the name and location of your document backup? Here are some ideas that may help.

Discover More

Sequentially Numbered Labels

A common task in Word is to create labels. This tip presents two approaches you can use when you need to create labels that ...

Discover More

Save Time and Supercharge Excel! Automate virtually any routine task and save yourself hours, days, maybe even weeks. Then, learn how to make Excel do things you thought were simply impossible! Mastering advanced Excel macros has never been easier. Check out Excel 2010 VBA and Macros today!

MORE EXCELTIPS (RIBBON)

Moving and Selecting Rows

If you need to move down a row and then select that row, you may wonder if there is a shortcut to handle such a navigation ...

Discover More

Understanding AutoComplete

Entering data in a worksheet can be time consuming. One of the tools that Excel provides to make entry easier is ...

Discover More

Capitalizing Just a Surname

Changing the capitalization of text is, believe it or not, a common task in Excel. Common or not, it can be frustrating to ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments for this tip:

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 7 + 8?

2016-03-03 13:12:11

PhilP

@TomW: Just tried Evaun's tip and like you no go.
So experimented and found that if, for example 1,2,3,4,5 in cells A1,A2,etc. Then select whole column A, the black dot appears at top of selection.

Right-click the black dot and drag to column B. Release and hey presto entire column A filled with series.


2016-02-20 14:52:48

Alan Wilcox

I use this regularly twice a week on 6 columns of my reports. The column needs to be empty of any entries, otherwise when you double click on the black dot it will fill down to the 1st cell that already has an entry.


2016-02-18 16:12:31

MJenkins

TomW - it worked for me in Excel 2013 when I was replacing text I had already entered in a column. I typed the desired value or text in the top cell of the column and double clicked on the black dot. It seems Excel wanted to know how far to go with the copied text.


2016-02-18 09:44:09

TomW

Evaun: I just tried it in Excel 2013..."no go".
I'm missing a detail or two?


2016-02-18 07:53:06

Evaun

If you want the entire column filled with the contents of that cell (formula or text), double click on the 'black dot'- No need to drag the length.


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.

Links and Sharing
Share