Resize the formula or name box in the formula bar

To make it easier to view and edit a long formula (formula: A sequence of values, cell references, names, functions, or operators in a cell that together produce a new value. A formula always begins with an equal sign (=).) or large amount of text in a cell, you can adjust the size of the formula box in the formula bar (formula bar: A bar at the top of the Excel window that you use to enter or edit values or formulas in cells or charts. Displays the constant value or formula stored in the active cell.). To accommodate long names (name: A word or string of characters in Excel that represents a cell, range of cells, formula, or constant value.), you can also resize the name box (Name box: Box at left end of the formula bar that identifies the selected cell, chart item, or drawing object. To name a cell or range, type the name in the Name box and press ENTER. To move to and select a named cell, click its name in the Name box.) in the formula bar. The worksheet and formula bar work in tandem so that contents of both do not overlap.


Resizing the formula bar

Callout 1 Adjust the width of the name box left or right.
Callout 2 Adjust the height of the formula box up or down.

What do you want to do?


Resize the formula box

Do one or more of the following:

  • To switch between expanding the formula box to three or more lines or collapsing it to one line, click the chevron button Chevron Button at the end of the formula bar. You can also press CTRL+SHIFT+U.
  • To precisely adjust the height of the formula box, hover over the bottom of the formula box until the pointer changes to a vertical double arrowVertical double arrow, drag the vertical double arrow up or down to where you want it, and then either click the vertical double arrow or press ENTER.
  • To automatically fit the formula box to the number of lines of text in the active cell up to the maximum height, hover over the formula box until the pointer changes to a vertical double arrow Vertical double arrow, and then double-click the vertical double arrow.

 Notes 

  • You can resize the formula box to a maximum size so that only one worksheet row is visible.
  • When you resize the formula box, the active cell always stays visible on the worksheet.
  • A scroll bar in the formula box means that there is more text to view. To activate the scroll bars, click the cell or the formula box.
  • By default, when you enter text in a cell, it is one line of text with no line breaks, but the text wraps when displayed in the formula bar. If you manually insert a line break in the cell by pressing ALT+ENTER, the line break also displays in the formula bar.

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Resize the name box

  • To adjust the width of the name box either smaller or larger, hover between the name box and the formula box until the pointer changes to a horizontal double arrow Horizontal double arrow, drag the horizontal double arrow left or right to where you want it, and then either click the horizontal double arrow or press ENTER.

 Note   The maximum width of the name box is half of the width of the worksheet.

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Applies to:
Excel 2007