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  1. #1
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    Excel - Change cell background color

    I use Excel 2003 occasionally; don't have a lot of skill with it. I want to change the background color of a few cells.
    I searched for how to do this but for some reason nothing happens when I follow the instructions given. All of my
    worksheets are white background with black lines, figures, etc. Is there a setting (Tools/Options) that I need to
    change in order for the process to work?

    I would appreciate any help that may be given. Thank you.

    flavet
    W7 SP1, Excel out of Office Standard Edition 2003 SP3 for Students and Teachers CD

  2. #2
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Flavet,

    Right-Click on the cell (or group of selected cells) select Format Cells... -> Fill -> pick your color.

    HTH
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

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    Hi flavet

    Apart from the method described by RG, you could use the 'paintpot' to select a background cell color.
    In Excel 2003, in the top-panel, make sure you have the 'formatting' toolbar visible.
    To display the 'formatting toolbar, just right-click anywhere in the top panel, and then select Formatting from the list of toolbars:

    formatting-menu.gif

    In Excel2003, you can 'tear-off' the color selection block and move it anywhere on your sheet so that it is readily available when you are changing colors to lots of cells. (This nice 'tear-off' feature of the paintpot is no longer available in later Excel versions).

    paintpot.gif

    zeddy

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    @RG: Of course your suggestion is the standard way to change a cell's background color. It was the first thing I tried when I decided I wanted to use this feature to emphasize some text in a worksheet. At first not knowing how to do it, I accessed HELP. It showed that method; this did not work when tried, and tried different ways. So I displayed each drop down menu looking for something related to color or settings that may be related. Nothing.
    So I tried this in hopes of getting an answer that someone knew about that was different from the HELP method. Now, I no longer care to change a cell's color, I changed the text to italicized text.

    @zeddy: I am unable to follow what you say in your reply. I think that method merely puts a copy of the color choice block display in a more handy position on the toolbar area. My problem is I cannot get the standard method of changing a cell's background color to work at all.

    flavet
    Dell Inspiron 15R, 8GB, Win7 Home Premium 64bit SP1
    All help truly appreciated!

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    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Flavet,

    The question remains why did it not work for you?

    Is it possible you could post the workbook in question (if it was only a single workbook)?

    If this happens in all workbooks you may need to reinstall Excel.

    Have you checked that you have all the available updates for Excel?

    HTH
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    RG

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  6. #6
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    @RG - Yes, why indeed! doesn't it work for me.

    Not sure I know how to post a workbook, sorry.

    I could try to reinstall the application, I have the CD sitting right here.

    I believe I have all the updates for this application that were released by MS. Until just very recently I had my Windows Update settings to give me updates for other MS products along with the Windows Updates, i.e., give me Microsoft Updates. But recently I did a wholesale resetting of my Microsoft/Windows update settings due to the awful way MS is trying to jam down W10. I don't know how to check for any missing updates, though. I see in the Excel HELP dropdown menu a Check for Updates item. If I used that option, would it be restricted to just checking for updates to Excel or would this be a shortcut to a full blown MS update search?

    Incidentally, after reading your most recent reply, I opened another worksheet and tried to color a couple of cells but it did not work there either.

    flavet
    Last edited by flavet; 2016-06-05 at 13:12.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flavet View Post
    Incidentally, after reading your most recent reply, I opened another worksheet and tried to color a couple of cells but it did not work there either. flavet
    I'd say a Reinstall is in order.
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

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    Hi flavet

    It's not clear to us whether you can see any colors in the color palette or not. Are they all 'greyed out'????

    To view the Standard Colors pallette available in your .xls workbook, use Tools>Options
    ..then click [Color] tab to view the Standard colors. You can use the [Modify..] button to change ANY of the Standard Colors. Perhaps these have all been modified to white????

    In Excel2003 you can also 'import' colors used in another Excel .xls file into the current workbook, i.e. import the colors defined/modified in another workbook.

    You try [Copy colours from] on the File>Options>[Color] tab, and use the attached file as the source.

    If that doesn't work, as RG has suggested, you probably have a defective Excel 2003 installation.

    zeddy
    Attached Files Attached Files

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  11. #9
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    @zeddy - Thank you, but all the color palettes I can access show the expected colors. The problem does not seem to be there. I have opened the color palettes from Tools, and from
    the Format menu option, but none produce a result. This is such a small matter that I no longer care about it; I am ready to go on without an answer.

    flavet

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    A workbook can have its own modified colour palette. To reset to the default choose Tools|Options|Color tab, click Reset then OK

    here's a couple of links relating to colour palette issues, and also an add-in that's supposed to solve the problem of workbooks over-righting the default

    http://www.mrexcel.com/forum/excel-q...e-changes.html

    http://www.techsupportforum.com/foru...ns-283619.html

    http://www.4shared.com/file/65936963...rueColors.html



    hopefully, one of those will help shed some light on your problem

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    flavet (2016-06-07)

  14. #11
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    SOLVED SOLVED Please consider this thread solved. I no longer wish to pursue this subject.

    Thanks to one and all that tried to point to a possible fix.

    flavet

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