Using (or Disabling) Excel 2007's AutoComplete Feature

The AutoComplete feature in Office Excel 2007 anticipates what you might want to enter next based upon text you just entered, thus reducing errors and speeding up your work. AutoComplete comes into play only when you’re entering a column of text entries.

AutoComplete looks at the kinds of entries that you make in that column and automatically duplicates them in subsequent rows whenever you start a new entry that begins with the same letter or letters as an existing entry.

For example, if you enter Jack Sprat Diet Centers in cell A2 of a worksheet and then move the cell cursor down to cell A3 in the row below and type J (lowercase or uppercase, it doesn’t matter), AutoComplete immediately inserts the remainder of the entry in this cell. Then you can simply press Enter and Excel enters the text in the cell so you don’t have to type the rest of it.

AutoComplete duplicates a previous entry if you start a new entry in the same column that begins wi
AutoComplete duplicates a previous entry if you start a new entry in the same column that begins with the same letter.

However, if you want to type a different entry that begins with the same letter as another entry in the same column, rather than accepting AutoComplete’s suggestion, you would just continue typing the entry (ignoring AutoComplete) and then press Enter when the entry is complete.

If you find that the AutoComplete feature is making it difficult for you to enter a series of cell entries that all start with the same letter but are otherwise not alike, you can turn off the AutoComplete feature.

To disable the AutoComplete feature, follow these steps:

  1. Click the Office button and then click the Excel Options button.

    The Excel Options dialog box appears.

  2. Click the Advanced tab.

    The Advanced options appear in the right pane.

  3. Click the Enable AutoComplete for Cell Values check box in the Editing Options section to remove its check mark.

  4. Click OK.

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