Lock Cells in Excel  Step by Step Guide ▷ 2020

By default, Microsoft Excel is the most widely used spreadsheet program in the office environment, to present and manage any data flow effectively. Reason why, it has numerous users today.

Thus, many of them use this Microsoft tool to expose a series of data (especially numerical) in order to easily distribute them. Therefore, for security reasons, they require certain options that allow them to protect them and thus prevent third parties from modifying them.

In this sense, to send your data via Excel files and at the same time make sure that no one else will be able to edit them, the cells of these documents must be protected, making use of the program’s own integrated functions.

Why should I lock an Excel cell and in what kind of documents to do it?

Today, just as the Internet simplifies different processes, it can also generate certain risks for its users. For this reason, when sending or distributing a file or any information by any of its means, it is important to take into account certain forecasts.

Given this need, Microsoft Excel has been strengthened and has some optimal security options. One of them refers to the possibility of protect or block a certain cell in a file created from there.

Thus, one of the most important reasons to make use of this function, without a doubt, is that it can help you avoid changes to the information or to the formulas entered in these fields. So, in a way, users will achieve maintain your copyright and prevent any impersonation in your Excel documents.

In addition to this, the utility of this program, guarantees the free handling of the document by its creator, solely and exclusively. In other words, only the user who locked a cell in the first place will be able to unlock and edit it. Thanks to this, it consists of a function that certifies great exceptionality to data managers.

Now, locking a cell is a function that should be used, especially in those documents that are distributed on the web and in which collaborators take part, whether they are administrators or editors. Since, they are ideal to ensure that the owners or administrators of the spreadsheet are the only ones with the power to unlock, edit or delete them. While, editors will view locked cells without the possibility of modifying the values ​​added in them.

Steps to lock and unlock a cell and other sections of an Excel worksheet

In view of the remarkable utility exhibited by the function of restricting a cell in any Excel spreadsheet, it is relevant to know each step to follow to be able to protect one of these fields in this program, easily and correctly. Then, we show you how to block and unblock them:

To block

In case the spreadsheet in question is protected, the procedure to follow consists of:

  • Once you access the Excel document, go to the options bar and click on the “Review” tab.
  • Next, in the Changes group, click on “Protect sheet” and a popup box will be displayed, there uncheck the option “Protect sheet and content of locked cells”. In case you are asked for the password to unprotect the book, enter it and press “OK”.

To block

  • Now, select the entire spreadsheet by clicking the button “Select all” which is in the upper left corner of the sheet.
  • Then, from the Home tab, press the inclined arrow belonging to the Font group and a new Format Cells window will be displayed, where you must click on the “Protect” tab.
  • After that, it is time to uncheck the box that says “Blocked” and click on the button “To accept”.

To block

  • Once this is done, all the cells in the spreadsheet will automatically be unlocked and now, it’s time to select the cells that you want to specifically restrict.
  • Once you choose all the boxes to protect, Go back to the box “Format cells” from Home tab and group Source. To enter the section “Protection” Y check the box that says “Blocked”. So, click “To accept”.

To block

  • Lastly, from the ribbon, select the “Review” tab and in the group Changes, click on the box “Protect sheet and content of locked cells” and then click OK.

To block

To unlock

In addition to restricting the cells of an Excel sheet, it is also possible to unlock all those boxes or other ranges that are protected, so that other users can modify and manage them freely. Then, we specify the step by step to follow:

  • First, find and access the spreadsheet that you need to manage in this way.
  • Followed by that, locate yourself at the top of the main window, in the options bar specifically and click on the “Review” tab.
  • Subsequently, several options will be displayed and within the Changes group, choose “Allow users to modify changes” which is an option available only when the spreadsheet is not protected.

To unlock

  • Next, if you need to add a new editable range, click on “New”.
  • If you want to modify an existing editable range, just select it in “Ranges unlocked by password when sheet is protected” and then press on “Modify”.
  • In case you need to delete an editable range, click on it in the box “Ranges unlocked by password when sheet is protected” and finally, click “Delete”.
  • Further, in the Title box, you can enter the name of the rank you want to unlock.
  • Also, directly from the box Corresponding to cells, you can write the equal sign (=) and add the reference of the range to unlock.
  • If it is a password access, write a key that allows access to the range, in the box “Range password”.
  • For access permissions, click on “Permissions” and then on “Add”. To specify the type of permission for the user you have chosen, in the Permissions box, check or uncheck the Allow or Deny check boxes and then, click “Apply”.

If you have any questions, leave them in the comments, we will answer you as soon as possible, and it will surely be of great help to more members of the community. Thank you! 😉

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