F4 is one of the most used shortcuts in Excel.
- Cycles through all 4 types of cell references (absolute, mixed reference (2x) and relative). For example, select cell B5 below, click in the formula bar, move the insertion point in or to the right of G2, and press F4. Note: if you are not editing a cell, F4 repeats the last action, if possible.
- The mighty F4 key should be in your Excel arsenal for two completely different reasons. Use F4 to add dollar signs in formula references to make them absolute, mixed, or relative.; When you are not editing a formula, use F4 to repeat the last command. Illustration: Cartoon Bob D‘Amico Make a.
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Although you can type the dollar signs manually, the F4 key on your keyboard allows you to add both dollar signs with a single keystroke. If you create formulas frequently, this shortcut can save you a lot of time. Watch the video below to learn how to use the F4 shortcut.
It locks a reference, making it absolute to some extent depending on how many times you press it.
Written in Excel terms, it “toggles absolute and relative references”.
If you can’t get it to work, here’s why:
1: You are using a MAC
The F4 shortcut to lock a reference only works on Windows.
If you’re running MAC, use the shortcut: ⌘ + T to toggle absolute and relative references.
2: Your marker is not INSIDE the reference when you use the shortcut
You can’t select a cell and press F4 and have it change all references to absolute.
You need to have your marker placed inside the reference in the formula before it works when you hit the shortcut.
After you hit F4 once, it looks like this.
3: You are using a laptop keyboard
Laptop keyboards are smaller than stationary ones so typically, the F-keys (like F4) are used for something else.
This is easily fixed!
Just hold down the Fn key before you press F4 and it’ll work.
That’s it 🙂
Now, you’re ready to use absolute references in your formulas.-->
F4 On A Mac
Office 365 ProPlus is being renamed to Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise. For more information about this change, read this blog post.
The F4 keyboard shortcut does not work as expected in Microsoft Excel 2013, Excel 2010, or Excel 2007.
For example, when you sort a row (row A), and then you press F4 to repeat the action on another row (row B), row B is not sorted. Or, when you copy and paste a cell, and then you press F4, the cell is pasted. However, when you press F4 again, the cell is not pasted.
This is a known issue in Excel 2013, Excel 2010, and Excel 2007.
If you cannot use the F4 keyboard shortcut to repeat a command or action, manually perform the command or action that you want to repeat.
Excel For Mac Features
F4 is a predefined keyboard shortcut in Excel that repeats your last command or action. However, the shortcut does not always work.