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The Excel 2016 Window

When you open an Excel worksheet, you are presented with the Excel window. You use this window to interact with the software—you type your data into the window and you use the window to tell Excel what to do. In this section, I will explain the parts of the Excel window.

A Quick Access Toolbar: In the upper-left corner of the window is the Quick Access toolbar, sometimes referred to as the QAT. The Quick Access Toolbar provides commands you frequently use. Save, Undo, and Redo appear on the toolbar by default. Click Save to save your file, Undo to roll back an action you have taken, and Redo to reapply an action you have rolled back.

B Title Bar: In the top center of the window to the right of the Quick Access toolbar is the Title bar. The Title Bar displays the title of your workbook. Excel names the first new workbook you open Book1. As you open additional new workbooks, Excel names them sequentially. When you save a workbook, you assign the workbook a new name.

C Help Button help button : The Help button, along with several other buttons, is located in the upper-right corner of the window. It takes you to the Excel help area. In the help area, you can search for information on how to perform tasks.

D Ribbon Display Options Button ribbon display options : The Ribbon Display Options button is located next to the Help button. Use it to display the following menu options: Auto-hide Ribbon, Show Tabs, and Show Tabs and Commands. To learn more about these options, see the section The Excel Ribbon.

E Minimize Button minimize button : The Minimize button is located next to the Ribbon Display Options button. To remove Excel from view and place the Excel icon on the Windows taskbar, click the Minimize button. To restore Excel, click the Excel icon on the Windows taskbar.

excel window

F Restore Down restore down : The Restore Down button is located next to the Minimize button. The Restore Down button reduces the size of the Excel window. When you click the Restore Down button, it turns into the Maximize button.

Maximize Buttonmaximize button: The Maximize button fills your screen with the Excel window. When you click the Maximize button, it turns into the Restore Down button.

G Close Button close button : The Close button is located in the far right corner of the Excel window. It closes the active workbook. When you click the Close button, if you have not previously saved your workbook or if you have made changes to your workbook since you last saved, a dialog box opens. Click Save if you want to save your changes, Don’t Save if you do not want to save your changes, or Cancel if you have decided not to close your workbook. If the workbook you are closing is the only workbook open, the Close button also closes Excel.

H Ribbon: To tell software what to do, you issue commands. In Excel, you can use the Ribbon to issue commands. The Ribbon is located below the Title bar. To learn more about the Ribbon, see the section The Excel Ribbon.

excel ribbon

I Formula Bar: Optionally, the Formula Bar is found below the Ribbon. Use the Formula Bar to enter and edit data. If your Formula Bar is not visible, follow the steps listed here:

Display the Formula Bar

show formula bar

  1. Choose the View tab.
  2. Click Formula Bar in the Show group. Excel displays the Formula Bar.

formula bar

J Vertical and Horizontal Scroll Bars: You can move up, down, and across your window by dragging the icon located on a scroll bar. The vertical scroll bar is located along the right side of the window. The horizontal scroll bar is located just above the Status bar. To move up and down your worksheet, click and drag the icon on the vertical scroll bar up and down. To move back and forth across your workbook, click and drag the icon on the horizontal scroll bar back and forth.

K Status Bar: The Status bar appears at the very bottom of the window and provides information such as the sum, the average, and the count of selected numbers. You can change what displays on the Status bar by right-clicking on the Status bar and selecting the options you want from the Customize Status Bar menu. A check mark next to an item means it is selected. You click an unselected menu item to select it. You click a selected menu item to unselect it.

L Worksheet: Just below the Formula Bar is your worksheet. This is where you enter your data. Each worksheet contains columns and rows. The columns are lettered starting with A to Z and then continuing with AA, AB, AC and so on. The rows are numbered starting with one. Only your computer memory and your system resources limit the number of columns and rows you can have in a worksheet.


M Cells: Worksheets are divided into cells. The combination of a column coordinate and a row coordinate make up a cell address. You refer to cells by their cell address. For example, the cell located in the upper left corner of a worksheet is call cell A1, meaning column A, row 1. Column E10 is located under column E on row 10. You enter your data into the cells on the worksheet.

N Normal Button normal button : The Normal button formats your worksheet for easy data entry.

O Page Layout Button page layout button : The Print Layout button displays your workbook in such a way as to make it easy for you to assign printing options and to see how your worksheet will look when printed.

P Page Break Preview page break preview button : The Page Break Preview button displays your workbook and shows where each page begins and ends.

Q Zoom Slider and Zoom: The Zoom slider zooms in and out on your workbook. Dragging the slider to the left zooms out, makes your workbook smaller, and allows you to see more of your workbook. Dragging the slider to the right zooms in, makes your workbook larger, and reduces the amount of your workbook you can see. The Zoom slider appears on the Status bar if Zoom Slider is selected on the Status bar menu. The percentage of zoom appears to the right of the zoom slider, if Zoom is selected on the Status bar menu.

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