Microsoft Excel spreadsheets automatically hide text and numerical data entries that exceed the standard width or height of table cells. Although this layout is useful if you just need to record and analyse raw data in your spreadsheet, the hidden data can cause problems if you want to display or print the spreadsheet in a format that others can understand easily. Excel's built-in AutoFit feature lets you modify the height of a row and width of a column to automatically wrap text contained in the spreadsheet's data cells.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Open the Microsoft Excel spreadsheet with the data that you want to configure with the AutoFit feature. Excel displays the spreadsheet in the main workspace window.
Highlight and select all spreadsheet data cells that you want to include in the AutoFit format. Excel displays the selected data area with a grey highlight inside a black border.
Click the "Home" tab on the top menu. Click the "Format" button with the grid icon in the Cells tools group on the right of the menu bar.
Select "AutoFit Row Height" in the Cell Size section of the pull-down pane. Click the "Format" button again, and then choose "AutoFit Column Width" in the pull-down menu. Excel will now change the data display to wrap text and auto-size columns and rows in the spreadsheet. Save the spreadsheet to store your changes.
Tips and warnings
- You can also select and apply the AutoFit format to blank cells that you haven't yet used so that text you enter in the future displays correctly.
- Click the "Select All" arrow button in the top left corner of the spreadsheet, and then double-click the boundary line between two column headings to automatically autofit the columns.
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