Validating Cell Contents

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Validating Cell Contents

When creating spreadsheets for other people to use, you may want to make sure they enter data that is valid or appropriate for the cell. You can also use validation in your own work as a guide to entering data that is either complex or rarely used.

Fill series and selection lists can handle some types of data, but they are limited to predefined information. To validate new data entered by a user, select a cell and use Data → Validity to define the type of contents that can be entered in that cell. For example, a cell might require a date or a whole number, with no alphabetic characters or decimal points; or a cell may not be left empty. Valid values may also be defined by the contents of a cell range.

Depending on how validation is set up, the tool can also define the range of contents that can be entered and provide help messages that explain the content rules you have set up for the cell and what users should do when they enter invalid content. You can also set the cell to refuse invalid content, accept it with a warning, or start a macro when an error is entered.

See Chapter 2 (Entering, Editing, and Formatting Data) in the Calc Guide for more information.

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