Insert the current date and time in a cell

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Let's say you want to easily enter the current date and time while making a time log of activities or display the current date and time automatically in a cell every time formulas are recalculated. There are several ways to insert the current date and time in a cell.

What do you want to do?

Insert a static date or time

Insert a date or time whose value is updated


Insert a static date or time

Current date     Select a cell and press CTRL+;

Current time     Select a cell and press CTRL+SHIFT+;

Current date and time     Select a cell and press CTRL+; then SPACE then CTRL+SHIFT+;

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Insert a date or time whose value is updated

To do this task, use the TODAY and NOW functions.

Example

The example may be easier to understand if you copy it to a blank worksheet.

ShowHow to copy an example

  1. Create a blank workbook or worksheet.
  2. Select the example in the Help topic.

 Note   Do not select the row or column headers.

Selecting an example from Help

Selecting an example from Help
  1. Press CTRL+C.
  2. In the worksheet, select cell A1, and press CTRL+V.
  3. To switch between viewing the results and viewing the formulas that return the results, press CTRL+` (grave accent), or on the Formulas tab, in the Formula Auditing group, click the Show Formulas button.
 
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Formula Description (Result)
=TODAY() Current date (varies)
=NOW() Current date and time (varies)

 Note   The TODAY() and NOW() functions change only when the worksheet is calculated or when a macro that contains the function is run. They are not updated continuously. The date and time used are taken from the computer's system clock.

Function details

TODAY

NOW

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Applies to:
Excel 2003