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See all Formulas


September 06, 2017 - by Bill Jelen

See all Formulas

Excel usually shows you the results of your formulas. What if you would rather see all of the formulas? This article will show you the simple Show Formulas mode.

You inherit a spreadsheet from a former co-worker. You need to figure out how the calculations work. You could visit each cell one at a time and look at the formula in the formula bar. Or, you could quickly toggle between pressing F2 and Esc to see the formula right in the cell.

Sample Data Set
Sample Data Set

But there is a faster way. On most U.S. keyboards, just below the Esc key is a key with two accent characters: the tilde from Spanish and the grave accent from French. It is an odd key. I don’t know how I would ever use this key to actually type Piñata or Café.

The Faster Way
The Faster Way

If you hold down Ctrl and this key, you toggle into something called Show Formulas mode. Each column gets wider, and you see all of the formulas.

Show Formulas Mode
Show Formulas Mode

This gives you a view of all the formulas at once. It is great for spotting “plug” numbers or when someone added the totals with a calculator and typed the number instead of using =SUM(). This is great you can see that the co-worker left RANDBETWEEN functions in this model.

Watch Video

  • F2 puts a formula in edit mode, Esc will exit edit mode
  • Faster way to see all formulas: Ctrl + `
  • Press again to toggle back

Auto-Generated Transcript

  • Learn Excel from MrExcel Podcast Episode 2020
  • see all formulas at one time click the
  • eye on the top right hand corner you get
  • to the playlist for all the videos in
  • this series podcasting this entire book
  • welcome back to the district cell
  • NetCast i'm Bill Jelen all right so
  • you've inherited spreadsheet from
  • someone you need to see how they're
  • building the formulas you could always
  • press f2 to see one formula and then
  • escape to go back f to escape f to
  • escape f to escape that's a huge hassle
  • alright so on your keyboard if you're in
  • the US on the left-hand side you have an
  • escape key underneath that accent key
  • with a till day and the backwards accent
  • from French accent ego also known as a
  • krav accent sometimes in Europe these
  • keys are in different keys it's the
  • grave accent key that matters press
  • control in the crop accent key and it
  • will show you all of the formulas in the
  • spreadsheet see the columns get a little
  • bit water and we're now in show formulas
  • mode and I'll shoot look at that someone
  • put a plug number in it's great like all
  • these formulas are some other than that
  • one sticks out like a sore thumb and we
  • still have ran between just a great way
  • to see all of the formula cells in one
  • single go all right and get out just
  • control grov accent against it's a
  • toggle formulas numbers formulas numbers
  • there's also out here on formulas
  • there's a show formulas button that you
  • can use if you can't remember the
  • control grov accents this tip and many
  • more in this book click that I in the
  • top right hand corner go out and buy the
  • book I sincerely would appreciate it all
  • right f2 puts a formula edit mode mode
  • escape will exit the edit mode lets you
  • see forms as one of the time but a
  • faster way to see them all control in
  • the girl have accent press again to taco
  • back you know this book was crowdsource
  • people send in their favorite tips run
  • armstrong olgakay and spends simon all
  • sending this is their favorite excel tip
  • thanks to them and thanks to you for
  • stopping by we'll see you next time for
  • another NetCast from MrExcel

Download File

Download the sample file here: Podcast2020.xlsx

Title Photo: Kapa65 / Pixabay


Bill Jelen is the author / co-author of
Excel Subtotals Straight to the Point

I used to use the Subtotals feature daily after downloading mainframe data. This book covers every tip and trick for using Subtotals.