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Weekly Computer Tip # 49
17 January 2004

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Quickly enter a series of weekdays (Microsoft Excel)

You've probably used Excel's fill handle (the small black square in the lower-right corner of a cell) to fill in a series of dates into adjacent cells, by entering the starting date and dragging the fill handle over the empty cells that you want to autofill. However,

Did you know ...

You can use the fill handle to specify whether a series of dates will increase by days, weekdays, months or years.

Here's how:

  1. Select the first cell in the range you want to fill, and then enter the starting value for the series (for instance, 19/1)
  2. Point to the fill handle (the small black square in the lower-right corner of the cell) of the cell containing the starting date. The mouse pointer will appear as a thin black cross when it is properly positioned.
  3. Press and hold down the right mouse button and drag the fill handle until it includes the entire range in which the series is to appear.
  4. Release the right mouse button, which will display a shortcut menu.
  5. Select the appropriate command from the shortcut menu. For example, if the starting value is the date 19/1, select "Fill Weekdays" for the series 19/1, 20/1, 21/1, 22/1, 23/1, 26/1, 27/1 and so on.

If you wish to indicate a value at which you want the series to end (for instance, 31/12) you can select the start date and choose the Edit, Fill command, followed by Series and enter a so-called stop value.

Until next week.

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January 2004