Excel: Isolating Specific Rows Using Autofilter

Ever need to show only the rows that contain certain criteria?

Click on the Data menu and Select the AutoFilter option. Excel will add a small arrow to the first cell in each row. Clicking on that arrow shows a unique list of all entries in that column. Selecting one of those entries, Excel will only show rows with that criteria. From there you can manipulate the data however you like.

For instance, lets say you had a spreadsheet filled with different items and you want only to see entries for a particular item. By using the AutoFilter feature, you can pick the item that you want, from the drop down menu available through the arrow, and Excel will only display the rows with that item included. Even if you have hundreds of rows for any item, the AutoFilter drop down will only show one instance of it, for every unique item in the column.

Every column has one of those arrows, so you can really refine your data precisely.

Note: If you aren’t sure whether your data is filtered or not, just take note of the color of the arrows. If they are blue, then you are filtering on that column. If they are black, then you are not filtering them.

To turn it off, just go back in to the Data menu, an click off the AutoFilter option.


Joe Austin

Joe Austin is the founder of Potentials Unleashed. He is currently an IT Professional Manager in the Financial Industry and has been using computers since 1978. While mostly self-taught, he is proficient in several computing areas, such as Programming , Web Development, most Microsoft Office programs, Internet Marketing, Spyware / Malware Removal and even 3D Animation & Modeling.

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