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Excel question - cell references

DrezDrez Registered User regular
edited August 2012 in Help / Advice Forum
Is there a way to prevent Excel from updating absolute references when you delete columns/rows/whatever?

For example: I have data in columns CP, CQ, CR, CS.

In another column, I have a formula which references column CP: =IF($CP4=1, "Blah blah blah", "Bloo bloo bloo")

I want to make four copies of this worksheet and delete the other three columns that aren't pertinent to that data set. Meaning, I want to delete CP, have CQ become CP, and have my formula reference this new column.

I should note, I already solved to what I'm trying to do a different way, so this is just academic at this point - I can't seem to figure out if there's a way to prevent Excel from calculating new references based on delete/insert events. I thought there was, but I can't find the solution. I'm using 2007/2010.

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  • KafkaAUKafkaAU Western AustraliaRegistered User regular
    Pretty sure you can't turn off the auto-rereferencing. I just copy the formula and paste it back in after the event.

    Origin: KafkaAU B-Net: Kafka#1778
  • ecco the dolphinecco the dolphin Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    Try using INDIRECT.


    =IF( INDIRECT("CP4") = 1, "1", "Not 1" )


    This works by treating converting the string "CP4" into the cell reference. Because "CP4" is a considered a string, not a cell reference, inserting/deleting rows/columns do not affect it.

    You can also try

    INDIRECT( "CP" & ROW() ) to make the string change based on row.


    I suppose, for completeness, I should also mention the ADDRESS() function, which can be used to generate cell addresses easily.

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  • DrezDrez Registered User regular
    Eh, shit, INDIRECT - of course. Thank you!

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