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Disappearing text in Excel cells



 
 
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  #1  
Old August 14th 06, 03:02 AM posted to microsoft.public.excel,microsoft.public.excel.misc
Shannon Jacobs
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7
Default Disappearing text in Excel cells

Actually, the text hasn't gone anywhere, but it just becomes invisible or
turns into a row of XXXXs when you leave the cell. Clicking in the cell
makes it visible again--but only until you leave.

I've found a lot of threads that discuss various aspects and manifestations
of the problem. Many people think it is related to text wrapping, but I'm
not sure about that. I am sure that it is not related to the size of the
text. At least not directly. Many of the threads suggested various
workarounds that are supposed to make it go away, but I've tried a bunch of
them, and no joy.

Microsoft "support" website was useless, as usual.

Anyone able to explain what's going on here? Yet another fix?

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  #2  
Old August 14th 06, 01:14 PM posted to microsoft.public.excel,microsoft.public.excel.misc
Dave Peterson
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 35,220
Default Disappearing text in Excel cells

If you mean you see ###'s (not XXX's), then...

It could mean a few things.

1. The columnwidth is too narrow to show the number.

Widen the column or change the font size of that cell. Or change the
numberformat to General.

2. You have a date/time in that cell and it's negative

Don't use negative dates. If excel was helping you, it may have
changed the format to a date. Change it back to General (or some
other number format).

If you need to see negative date/times:
Tools|options|Calculation Tab|and check 1904 date system
(but this can cause trouble--watch what happens to your dates
and watch what happens when you copy|paste dates to a different
workbook that doesn't use this setting)

3. You have a lot of text in the cell, the cell is formatted as Text.

Format the cell as general.

4. You really have ###'s in that cell.

Clean up that cell.

5. You have # in a cell, but it's format is set to Fill.

Change the format
(format|cells|alignment tab|horizontal box, change it to General.

Shannon Jacobs wrote:
>
> Actually, the text hasn't gone anywhere, but it just becomes invisible or
> turns into a row of XXXXs when you leave the cell. Clicking in the cell
> makes it visible again--but only until you leave.
>
> I've found a lot of threads that discuss various aspects and manifestations
> of the problem. Many people think it is related to text wrapping, but I'm
> not sure about that. I am sure that it is not related to the size of the
> text. At least not directly. Many of the threads suggested various
> workarounds that are supposed to make it go away, but I've tried a bunch of
> them, and no joy.
>
> Microsoft "support" website was useless, as usual.
>
> Anyone able to explain what's going on here? Yet another fix?


--

Dave Peterson
  #3  
Old August 15th 06, 01:08 AM posted to microsoft.public.excel,microsoft.public.excel.misc
Shannon Jacobs
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7
Default Disappearing text in Excel cells

Dave Peterson wrote:
> If you mean you see ###'s (not XXX's), then...
>
> It could mean a few things.
>
> 1. The columnwidth is too narrow to show the number.
>
> Widen the column or change the font size of that cell. Or change
> the numberformat to General.


No. I said text.

>
> 2. You have a date/time in that cell and it's negative
>
> Don't use negative dates. If excel was helping you, it may have
> changed the format to a date. Change it back to General (or some
> other number format).
>
> If you need to see negative date/times:
> Tools|options|Calculation Tab|and check 1904 date system
> (but this can cause trouble--watch what happens to your dates
> and watch what happens when you copy|paste dates to a different
> workbook that doesn't use this setting)


No. I said text.

> 3. You have a lot of text in the cell, the cell is formatted as Text.
>
> Format the cell as general.


Tried both.

> 4. You really have ###'s in that cell.
>
> Clean up that cell.


No.

> 5. You have # in a cell, but it's format is set to Fill.
>
> Change the format
> (format|cells|alignment tab|horizontal box, change it to General.


No.

I'm trying to assume that you had good intentions, but your response was not
helpful in any way. Not even the slightest approach to utility, and it could
easily be taken as an insult to my intelligence. Please don't project. It
makes me wonder why you aren't an MVP. If you have nothing useful to say, it
is much better that you say nothing.

The following question remains unaddressed regarding text disappearing from
cells in Excel. If there were a useful question in the "response", I'd be
glad to provide more data, but I can't think of what else to add. Perhaps it
is useful to know that some of the strings were relatively short, while
others were very long. Upon reflection, I suspect there might be hidden
characters pasted in from some other program, but I just gave up on using
Excel for the task, and pasted the afflicted cells into Word, where they
arrived without any apparent damage. (Or if anything had disappeared, at
least it wasn't flashing on and off, so I never noticed it.)

> Shannon Jacobs wrote:
>>
>> Actually, the text hasn't gone anywhere, but it just becomes
>> invisible or turns into a row of XXXXs when you leave the cell.
>> Clicking in the cell makes it visible again--but only until you
>> leave.
>>
>> I've found a lot of threads that discuss various aspects and
>> manifestations of the problem. Many people think it is related to
>> text wrapping, but I'm not sure about that. I am sure that it is not
>> related to the size of the text. At least not directly. Many of the
>> threads suggested various workarounds that are supposed to make it
>> go away, but I've tried a bunch of them, and no joy.
>>
>> Microsoft "support" website was useless, as usual.
>>
>> Anyone able to explain what's going on here? Yet another fix?


  #4  
Old August 15th 06, 01:43 AM posted to microsoft.public.excel,microsoft.public.excel.misc
Dave Peterson
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 35,220
Default Disappearing text in Excel cells

Sorry it didn't help.

Shannon Jacobs wrote:
>
> Dave Peterson wrote:
> > If you mean you see ###'s (not XXX's), then...
> >
> > It could mean a few things.
> >
> > 1. The columnwidth is too narrow to show the number.
> >
> > Widen the column or change the font size of that cell. Or change
> > the numberformat to General.

>
> No. I said text.
>
> >
> > 2. You have a date/time in that cell and it's negative
> >
> > Don't use negative dates. If excel was helping you, it may have
> > changed the format to a date. Change it back to General (or some
> > other number format).
> >
> > If you need to see negative date/times:
> > Tools|options|Calculation Tab|and check 1904 date system
> > (but this can cause trouble--watch what happens to your dates
> > and watch what happens when you copy|paste dates to a different
> > workbook that doesn't use this setting)

>
> No. I said text.
>
> > 3. You have a lot of text in the cell, the cell is formatted as Text.
> >
> > Format the cell as general.

>
> Tried both.
>
> > 4. You really have ###'s in that cell.
> >
> > Clean up that cell.

>
> No.
>
> > 5. You have # in a cell, but it's format is set to Fill.
> >
> > Change the format
> > (format|cells|alignment tab|horizontal box, change it to General.

>
> No.
>
> I'm trying to assume that you had good intentions, but your response was not
> helpful in any way. Not even the slightest approach to utility, and it could
> easily be taken as an insult to my intelligence. Please don't project. It
> makes me wonder why you aren't an MVP. If you have nothing useful to say, it
> is much better that you say nothing.
>
> The following question remains unaddressed regarding text disappearing from
> cells in Excel. If there were a useful question in the "response", I'd be
> glad to provide more data, but I can't think of what else to add. Perhaps it
> is useful to know that some of the strings were relatively short, while
> others were very long. Upon reflection, I suspect there might be hidden
> characters pasted in from some other program, but I just gave up on using
> Excel for the task, and pasted the afflicted cells into Word, where they
> arrived without any apparent damage. (Or if anything had disappeared, at
> least it wasn't flashing on and off, so I never noticed it.)
>
> > Shannon Jacobs wrote:
> >>
> >> Actually, the text hasn't gone anywhere, but it just becomes
> >> invisible or turns into a row of XXXXs when you leave the cell.
> >> Clicking in the cell makes it visible again--but only until you
> >> leave.
> >>
> >> I've found a lot of threads that discuss various aspects and
> >> manifestations of the problem. Many people think it is related to
> >> text wrapping, but I'm not sure about that. I am sure that it is not
> >> related to the size of the text. At least not directly. Many of the
> >> threads suggested various workarounds that are supposed to make it
> >> go away, but I've tried a bunch of them, and no joy.
> >>
> >> Microsoft "support" website was useless, as usual.
> >>
> >> Anyone able to explain what's going on here? Yet another fix?


--

Dave Peterson
  #5  
Old August 15th 06, 08:58 AM posted to microsoft.public.excel,microsoft.public.excel.misc
Pete_UK
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 8,856
Default Disappearing text in Excel cells

Dave's point 3:

If the cells were formatted as Text and you do Format | Cells etc to
change them to General, the change does not come into effect until you
edit the cells - press F2 or click in the formula bar as if to edit,
then click elsewhere.

I see that you have found a solution by using Word, but if you do go
back to Excel then confirm that the formatting has been changed to
General.

Hope this helps.

Pete

Shannon Jacobs wrote:
> Dave Peterson wrote:
> > If you mean you see ###'s (not XXX's), then...
> >
> > It could mean a few things.
> >
> > 1. The columnwidth is too narrow to show the number.
> >
> > Widen the column or change the font size of that cell. Or change
> > the numberformat to General.

>
> No. I said text.
>
> >
> > 2. You have a date/time in that cell and it's negative
> >
> > Don't use negative dates. If excel was helping you, it may have
> > changed the format to a date. Change it back to General (or some
> > other number format).
> >
> > If you need to see negative date/times:
> > Tools|options|Calculation Tab|and check 1904 date system
> > (but this can cause trouble--watch what happens to your dates
> > and watch what happens when you copy|paste dates to a different
> > workbook that doesn't use this setting)

>
> No. I said text.
>
> > 3. You have a lot of text in the cell, the cell is formatted as Text.
> >
> > Format the cell as general.

>
> Tried both.
>
> > 4. You really have ###'s in that cell.
> >
> > Clean up that cell.

>
> No.
>
> > 5. You have # in a cell, but it's format is set to Fill.
> >
> > Change the format
> > (format|cells|alignment tab|horizontal box, change it to General.

>
> No.
>
> I'm trying to assume that you had good intentions, but your response was not
> helpful in any way. Not even the slightest approach to utility, and it could
> easily be taken as an insult to my intelligence. Please don't project. It
> makes me wonder why you aren't an MVP. If you have nothing useful to say, it
> is much better that you say nothing.
>
> The following question remains unaddressed regarding text disappearing from
> cells in Excel. If there were a useful question in the "response", I'd be
> glad to provide more data, but I can't think of what else to add. Perhaps it
> is useful to know that some of the strings were relatively short, while
> others were very long. Upon reflection, I suspect there might be hidden
> characters pasted in from some other program, but I just gave up on using
> Excel for the task, and pasted the afflicted cells into Word, where they
> arrived without any apparent damage. (Or if anything had disappeared, at
> least it wasn't flashing on and off, so I never noticed it.)
>
> > Shannon Jacobs wrote:
> >>
> >> Actually, the text hasn't gone anywhere, but it just becomes
> >> invisible or turns into a row of XXXXs when you leave the cell.
> >> Clicking in the cell makes it visible again--but only until you
> >> leave.
> >>
> >> I've found a lot of threads that discuss various aspects and
> >> manifestations of the problem. Many people think it is related to
> >> text wrapping, but I'm not sure about that. I am sure that it is not
> >> related to the size of the text. At least not directly. Many of the
> >> threads suggested various workarounds that are supposed to make it
> >> go away, but I've tried a bunch of them, and no joy.
> >>
> >> Microsoft "support" website was useless, as usual.
> >>
> >> Anyone able to explain what's going on here? Yet another fix?


  #6  
Old August 15th 06, 09:24 AM posted to microsoft.public.excel,microsoft.public.excel.misc
Shannon Jacobs
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7
Default Disappearing text in Excel cells

The original formatting of the cells was General, but I tried Text just to
see if that helped. I actually went back to the original file a couple of
times, trying to find something in it that could have been globally changed,
or tweaked on a column or row basis. Nothing I did made it better. Of course
turning off the word wrap worked in the sense that the text became a single
line running out of the cell, but that was no solution to being unable to
read the file, even though I could edit it without any obvious problems. As
long as I was in the cell, the data appeared normally visible...

Hoping to find out how the troublesome file was created, I've sent a query
to the person who sent it to me, but she hasn't responded yet.

Pete_UK wrote:
> Dave's point 3:
>
> If the cells were formatted as Text and you do Format | Cells etc to
> change them to General, the change does not come into effect until you
> edit the cells - press F2 or click in the formula bar as if to edit,
> then click elsewhere.
>
> I see that you have found a solution by using Word, but if you do go
> back to Excel then confirm that the formatting has been changed to
> General.
>
> Hope this helps.

<older snipped>

  #7  
Old August 15th 06, 12:57 PM posted to microsoft.public.excel,microsoft.public.excel.misc
Gail
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 12
Default Disappearing text in Excel cells

Does the problem exist if the file is opened on a different computer?



"Shannon Jacobs" > wrote in message
...
> Actually, the text hasn't gone anywhere, but it just becomes invisible or
> turns into a row of XXXXs when you leave the cell. Clicking in the cell
> makes it visible again--but only until you leave.
>
> I've found a lot of threads that discuss various aspects and
> manifestations of the problem. Many people think it is related to text
> wrapping, but I'm not sure about that. I am sure that it is not related to
> the size of the text. At least not directly. Many of the threads suggested
> various workarounds that are supposed to make it go away, but I've tried a
> bunch of them, and no joy.
>
> Microsoft "support" website was useless, as usual.
>
> Anyone able to explain what's going on here? Yet another fix?



  #8  
Old August 16th 06, 03:39 AM posted to microsoft.public.excel,microsoft.public.excel.misc
Shannon Jacobs
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7
Default Disappearing text in Excel cells

That's one of the things I think I should have checked separately from
asking the originator about the file. However, do you have any specific
reasons to think it might be computer-specific? Still, this is a pretty new
and highly capable machine, and I'm thinking that any problems should have
been more likely in the other direction...

Gail wrote:
> Does the problem exist if the file is opened on a different computer?
>
>
> "Shannon Jacobs" > wrote in message
> ...
>> Actually, the text hasn't gone anywhere, but it just becomes
>> invisible or turns into a row of XXXXs when you leave the cell.
>> Clicking in the cell makes it visible again--but only until you
>> leave. I've found a lot of threads that discuss various aspects and
>> manifestations of the problem. Many people think it is related to
>> text wrapping, but I'm not sure about that. I am sure that it is not
>> related to the size of the text. At least not directly. Many of the
>> threads suggested various workarounds that are supposed to make it
>> go away, but I've tried a bunch of them, and no joy.
>>
>> Microsoft "support" website was useless, as usual.
>>
>> Anyone able to explain what's going on here? Yet another fix?


  #9  
Old August 16th 06, 02:32 PM posted to microsoft.public.excel,microsoft.public.excel.misc
Gail
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 12
Default Disappearing text in Excel cells

Am not sure, but I have seen it happen on a newly purchased system using
Office 2003 attempting to handle files created in Office 97 or Office XP,
however the file was absolutely fine on other computers


"Shannon Jacobs" > wrote in message
...
> That's one of the things I think I should have checked separately from
> asking the originator about the file. However, do you have any specific
> reasons to think it might be computer-specific? Still, this is a pretty
> new and highly capable machine, and I'm thinking that any problems should
> have been more likely in the other direction...
>
> Gail wrote:
>> Does the problem exist if the file is opened on a different computer?
>>
>>
>> "Shannon Jacobs" > wrote in message
>> ...
>>> Actually, the text hasn't gone anywhere, but it just becomes
>>> invisible or turns into a row of XXXXs when you leave the cell.
>>> Clicking in the cell makes it visible again--but only until you
>>> leave. I've found a lot of threads that discuss various aspects and
>>> manifestations of the problem. Many people think it is related to
>>> text wrapping, but I'm not sure about that. I am sure that it is not
>>> related to the size of the text. At least not directly. Many of the
>>> threads suggested various workarounds that are supposed to make it
>>> go away, but I've tried a bunch of them, and no joy.
>>>
>>> Microsoft "support" website was useless, as usual.
>>>
>>> Anyone able to explain what's going on here? Yet another fix?

>



 




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