Selecting cells in worksheet with a printable background - how to


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On page 732 of MrExcel's book "Learn Excel 2007-2010" it explains how to add a printable image to a sheet. At the bottom of the page is a "Gotcha: It is now difficult to select a cell with the mouse" ... and it is. The book goes on to say "To avoid this, you click outside the picture and then use the arrow keys to navigate to the cells behind the picture." This works but is difficult and confusing. I came up with a workaround.

I used the cell format menu to unlock the cells I want to access. I clicked "Review" then "Protect Sheet" and selected the "Select Unlocked Cells" option only. With the sheet locked and the graphic not selectable it is now possible to tab (or arrow around) through the unlocked cells and enter data. The form prints as expected.

NOTE: I started with a graphic of the form I wanted to fill out. I inserted a graphic of the form as a background and used the background as a template to properly arrange my cells. When the cells I wanted to enter data into were all properly located, sized, (and unlocked as described above) I got rid of the background (since it doesn't print) and added a printable background to the worksheet as described on page 723 of the book. After using the trick explained above I had myself a form!

Hope this helps some folks!;)

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