Lately I have been writing about using formulas and about different kind of cell referencing in Microsoft Excel. The most commonly used formula in any spreadsheet depending upon various application, is to sum up the total of the adjacent cells. AutoSum is the handy tool for this situation.
What is AutoSum?
AutoSum is a simple mathematical formula to display the total sum of the neighboring cells. Excel chooses these cells automatically based on the ideal usage of the position of the result. AutoSum first checks if there is any continuous group of cells which has numbers above the result cell for its range, then it checks to the left side of the result cell. But the range of cells that are included for the calculation can be reselected manually by dragging if it’s wrong.
How to use AutoSum?
In Excel 2003, you can use the AutoSum symbol (which is a sigma sign) from the toolbar and In Excel 2007, you can find the AutoSum function in the Editing section (which is on the far right side) under Home tab.
Keyboard Shortcut to AutoSum in Excel
But you can always use the keyboard Shortcut, ALT + = to do the AutoSum. This tip comes very handy if most of your daily calculations depend on addition of values.
Quick Tip: AutoSum can be used not only when the values are adjacent to the result cells, but even if it’s randomly displayed. All that you have to do is, press ALT+= in the cell where you want the result to be displayed and while holding the CTRL key click all the cells that you want to be included in the result.