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Adding Pop-Up Documentation to a Cell

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Adding Pop-Up Documentation to a Cell.

Want a neat trick you can use to make your worksheets more helpful to users? How about adding a pop-up window that displays documentation whenever the cell is selected? To add such a feature, follow these steps:

  1. Select the cell for which you want the pop-up to appear.
  2. Choose Validation from the Data menu.
  3. Make sure the Input Message tab is displayed. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Input Message tab of the Data Validation dialog box.

  5. Make sure the Show Input Message When Cell is Selected check box is selected.
  6. In the Title box, enter a title for the pop-up window. (This title appears in bold at the top of the pop-up window.)
  7. In the Input Message box, enter the text of the documentation you want to appear in the pop-up window.
  8. Click OK.

There are, obviously, other ways you can use the Data Validation feature of Excel to check and limit the data that is entered in a cell. However, if you follow the steps above, all data is still accepted, and Excel displays a helpful message whenever the cell is selected.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3361) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Adding Pop-Up Documentation to a Cell.

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Comments for this tip:

Fadzil    25 Oct 2013, 06:33
I want to have a pop-up of image like tool_tip when the mouse move over the cell...
can anyone give me tips...
jose    28 May 2013, 11:16
Allen
Your tip was short and to the point..just what I needed..
thanks for sharing
jose
Gopi    07 Feb 2013, 10:50
Really which is very helpful. . .thanks a lot
pratik    28 Dec 2012, 06:38
Hi

I want to insert a pop-up table in an excel cell. Please let me know how can I do it.
Example: If i select a cell I want an editable pop up table with some fixed values and editable values. Is that possible ?
Please let me know at the earliest.

Thanks
Pratik
Galina    12 Apr 2012, 04:35
WOW! Thanks a lot! Finally, I found the info I needed! As simple as it is, took me forever in Google to find an answer
Alan    27 Dec 2011, 06:59
Hi Allen
You can achieve a similar result using cell comments. I've used this method to add pop-up help to column headers on flat data entry sheets.
Cheers
Alan

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