How to Select Non-Contiguous Cells in Excel

HomeExcel BasicsHow to Select Non-Contiguous Cells in Excel

Normally when you need to select multiple cells which are not continuing you press and hold the control key and then select each cell with the mouse.

Right?

That’s the simple method. But I can bet that you have never heard about selecting non-contiguous cells without using a mouse.

The reason for this is no one ever found this method. Luckily me.

But here’s the kicker: There’s also a way which you can use to select non-continues cells [non-adjacent] without using the control key.

But in today’s post, I’m going to show you exactly two different ways to select all the non-adjacent cells.

1. Without Using Ctrl Key

Just follow these simple steps to do it.

  1. Select the cell from where you want to start your selection.
  2. Press Shift + F8 for once.
  3. You get a message “Add To Selection” on your status barbottom of your Excel window. 
    select-non-adjacent-cells-without-holding-ctrl-key-1
  4. Now, you can select your cells just by clicking on them.
    select-non-adjacent-cells-without-holding-ctrl-key-2.gif
  5. So, you can do anything with your selection (formatting, deleting, etc.).
  6. Just press ESC to release your selection.

2. Without Using Mouse

To select non-continues cells without using your keyboard follow these simple steps.

  • Press shift + F8 to activate the “Add To Selection” Mode.
  • Navigate to the range you want to include in your selection, press Shift + F8 again.
  • And, so on.
    select a non-adjacent-cells-without-holding-ctrl-key-3.gif

Note: While trying to select non-adjacent range without the keyboard. When you try to add single cells to your selection, this method will not work.

Conclusion

So, here is the story about this quick and smart way to select non-adjacent cells in Excel. What do you think method is better to use? First or second. Or, you still want to use the Ctrl key to select non-adjacent cells in Excel.

10 thoughts

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  1. Do you know which keys to press on a Mac? I have Excel for Windows installed on my Mac using Parallels Desktop, but I am using a Mac keyboard. Thanks!

    Reply
  2. This is a neat trick that I have not seen before in over 20 years of Excel use. However, you say that your second method “Without Using Mouse” doesn’t work for single cells. It does. The trick is to realise that each press of Shift-F8 toggles you in and out of “Add To Selection” Mode so, for each cell you want to select after the first, press Shift-F8 twice. The first press takes you out of Selection Mode with the present selection and the second one puts you back into it allowing you to move using the keyboard again. Thank you for publishing this though!

    Reply
  3. Please do not give so much importance to yourself and claim that all of this has been introduced by you.
    BTW good work!

    Reply
    • Hey John, Welcome to Excelchamps.

      When a master praise you, its an inspiration.

      Thanks for your words.

      Love
      PG

      Reply