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CELL Function

The CELL function is one of the information functions. It is used to return information about the formatting, location, or contents of a cell.

The CELL function syntax is:

CELL(info_type, [reference])


info_type is a text value that specifies which information about the cell you want to get. This is the required argument. The available values are listed in the table below.

[reference] is a cell that you want to get information about. If it is omitted, the information is returned for the last changed cell. If the reference argument is specified as a range of cells, the function returns the information for the upper-left cell of the range.

Text value Type of information
"address" Returns the reference to the cell.
"col" Returns the column number where the cell is located.
"color" Returns 1 if the cell is formatted in color for negative values; otherwise returns 0.
"contents" Returns the value that the cell contains.
"filename" Returns the filename of the file that contains the cell.
"format" Returns a text value corresponding to the number format of the cell. The text values are listed in the table below.
"parentheses" Returns 1 if the cell is formatted with parentheses for positive or all values; otherwise returns 0.
"prefix" Returns the single quotation mark (') if the text in the cell is left-aligned, the double quotation mark (") if the text is right-aligned, the caret (^) if the text is centered, and an empty text ("") if the cell contains anything else.
"protect" Returns 0 if the cell is not locked; returns 1 if the cell is locked.
"row" Returns the row number where the cell is located.
"type" Returns "b" for an empty cell, "l" for a text value, and "v" for any other value in the cell.
"width" Returns the width of the cell, rounded off to an integer.

Below you can see the text values which the function returns for the "format" argument

Number format Returned text value
General G
0 F0
#,##0 ,0
0.00 F2
#,##0.00 ,2
$#,##0_);($#,##0) C0
$#,##0_);[Red]($#,##0) C0-
$#,##0.00_);($#,##0.00) C2
$#,##0.00_);[Red]($#,##0.00) C2-
0% P0
0.00% P2
0.00E+00 S2
# ?/? or # ??/?? G
m/d/yy or m/d/yy h:mm or mm/dd/yy D4
d-mmm-yy or dd-mmm-yy D1
d-mmm or dd-mmm D2
mmm-yy D3
mm/dd D5
h:mm AM/PM D7
h:mm:ss AM/PM D6
h:mm D9
h:mm:ss D8

To apply the CELL function,

  1. select the cell where you wish to display the result,
  2. click the Insert function
    icon situated at the top toolbar,
    or right-click within a selected cell and select the Insert Function option from the menu,
    or click the
    icon situated at the formula bar,
  3. select the Information function group from the list,
  4. click the CELL function,
  5. enter the required argument,
  6. press the Enter button.

The result will be displayed in the selected cell.

CELL Function

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