Protect a sheet

To prevent a user from accidentally or deliberately changing, moving, or deleting important data from a sheet or workbook, you can protect certain sheet or workbook elements, with or without a password. You can remove this protection as needed.

 Caution   Passwords in Excel for Mac and Word for Mac have a 15-character limit. You cannot open a workbook or document that has been password protected in the Windows-based version of Excel or Word if the password is longer than fifteen characters. If you want to open the file in Office for Mac, ask the Windows-based author to adjust the password length.Sheet and workbook element protection should not be confused with workbook-level password security. Element protection cannot protect a workbook from users who have malicious intent. For an additional layer of security, you should help protect your whole workbook file by using a password.

Do any of the following:

ShowProtect sheet elements

By default, when you protect a sheet, all the cells on the worksheet are locked, and users cannot make any changes to a locked cell. For example, they cannot insert, modify, delete, or format data in a locked cell. However, you can specify which elements that users will be able to change when you protect the worksheet.

  1. Switch to the sheet that you want to protect.
  2. Do any of the following:
To Do this
Unlock any cells that you want users to be able to change Select each cell or range. On the Format menu, click Cells, click the Protection tab, and then clear the Locked check box.
Unlock any graphic that you want users to be able to change Select the graphic, and then on the Format menu, click the command for the type of graphic that you want to unlock: Shape, Text, or Picture. In the navigation pane, click Properties, and then clear the Locked check box.
Unlock any object or control that you want users to be able to change Select the object or control, and then on the Format menu, click Format Object or Control. Click the Protection tab, and then clear the Locked check box. Clear the Lock text check box if it is present.
Hide any formulas that you don't want to be visible to users Select the cells that contain the formulas. On the Format menu, click Cells, click the Protection tab, and then select the Hidden check box.
  1. On the Review tab, under Protection, click Sheet.

Review tab, Protection group

  1. Type a password for the sheet, and then retype the password under Verify.

 Note   The password is optional. If you do not supply a password, any user can unprotect the sheet and change what was protected. If you do enter a password, make sure that you choose a password that is easy to remember, or write it down and keep it in a safe place. If you lose the password, you cannot access the protected parts on the sheet.

  1. In the Allow users of this sheet to list, select the elements that you want users to be able to change.
  2. Click OK.

ShowRemove protection

  1. Select the protected sheet.
  2. On the Review tab, under Protection, click Sheet.

Review tab, Protection group

  1. If prompted, enter the password for the protected sheet.

See also

Protect a workbook

Restrict permission to content in a file

Restricting changes by using read-only status

 
 
Applies to:
Excel for Mac 2011