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How To Microsoft Excel Tips & Tricks

Excel: Automatically set width and height

If I’ve been there once, I’ve been there a thousand times; I’ve got a spreadsheet in excel with varying widths and heights that don’t fit the data. Now, sure, you could go in and correct it manually – but that’s not only boring, it’s a pain it the behind. Luckily, there are keyboard shortcuts to accomplish it. Here’s how:

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How To Microsoft Excel Tips & Tricks

Excel: Merge cells without losing data

If you’ve ever attempted to merge cells that hold data in Excel, you will almost certainly have encountered this warning:

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How To Microsoft Excel Microsoft Office

Calculating percentage change in Excel

If you do a lot of work in Excel, odds are you’ve needed to calculate a percentage change. Luckily, Excel does this for you quite readily if you simply apply a basic formula of (New Value - Old Value)/Old Value. There is, however, a pitfall that you’ll not get the values you expect if the cell where you’re entering the value is not set to percentage formatting. Hence, here’s a step to step way to make the calculation:

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How To Microsoft Outlook Microsoft Outlook Tech support

Set Outlook to only mark as read when you open an email

A while back, a customer complained that Outlook always marked emails as read when he clicked over to another email, and wanted to know if there was a setting that would change this behavior. As it turns out, there is. Here’s how you do it:

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How To Microsoft Outlook Microsoft Outlook Tips & Tricks

Outlook: Disable the send without location prompt

Like many others, my work days are – to some extent – made up of meetings with others. It’s not uncommon for these meetings not to have an assigned meeting room, and I find it annoying that Outlook asks me if I want to enter a meeting location:

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How To Microsoft Excel Microsoft Office Microsoft Outlook Microsoft Outlook Microsoft Word

Outlook: Mail merge

I have previously written about one of my many responsibilities; contacting users whose login credentials have shown up in breach lists. While the pertinent results of the breach files are delivered to me in a flat file, I use Excel’s Text to Columns feature to separate logins (usually email addresses) from the password. While this might take a little fiddling with the delimiters, it is worth it to ensure that you have a good basis on which to work.

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How To Microsoft Outlook Microsoft Outlook

Outlook: Offline Mode

From time to time, I need to run Outlook in Offline Mode. This is usually the case when I want to ensure that a mail merge has worked successfully. It is also a good option to reduce data usage when on mobile networks. Going to Offline Mode is straight forward. In Outlook, go to the Send/Receive tab, and then click “Work Offline”:

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How To Microsoft Excel Microsoft Office

Excel: Text to Columns

I work a lot with text files containing data which is, to some degree or another, structured. Whether a breach file from a published breach, or the result of a powershell query such as Get-ADUser, Get-ADComputer, or Get-ADDirectReports, I need to separate the data into columns so that I can work with it. This is where the Text to Columns feature in Excel comes in handy.

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How To Microsoft Office Tips & Tricks

MS Office: Pin items

Many companies, my employer included, uses spreadsheets on a more or less consistent basis in order to track such things as vacation planning and KPI reporting. For me, as an employee, keeping track of these spreadsheets can, from time to time, be a bit annoying. Much to my surprise, at some point in the past few years, Microsoft added a pin item feature to MS Office.

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OneNote Opinion

Farewell Bear, hello … OneNote?

In December of 2016, I discovered Bear Writer. At the time, I had been using a number of different solutions for note-taking and organisation, none of which had really done the trick for me. That all changed with Bear. Arriving to critical acclaim, Bear is certainly a very pretty app, and its iCloud sync feature has served me well enough. There has just been one issue; it is only available on Apple devices.

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How To Microsoft Outlook

Outlook: Not all folders are synced

Shared email boxes are a useful tool for departments needing to have a single point of contact, but whose needs do not extend so far as to need a CRM or ticket management tool. I’ve talked before about how to add them to Outlook, in which I noted that I usually uncheck the box for downloading shared folders to avoid downloading what tends to be a huge mail box, which will lock up Outlook. Another reason to do so, is that a locally cached mail box often does not display all mails and folders, a complaing I see from time to time. It has been my experience that most users leave the settings in their default state, so today, I thought I’d tell you how to disable that retroactively: