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Date Format Changed

By Liz Montague ·
Several columns of dates in my Excel 2003 spreadsheet changed to a number format. When I click on the cell, the correct date format shows in the command line above but I can't get it to change to that in the cells themselves. Eeeeeeek.

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Dates

by oldbaritone In reply to Date Format Changed

Just highlight the columns that are supposed to be dates, and change their format to "Date" and whatever style you want.

Internally, Excel stores all dates and times as a number. The integer part is the day, and the fractional (decimal) part is the time, as a fraction of a 24-hour day. Once you learn how it works, you'll see that it's very easy to add and subtract dates.

=Now() is right now.
=Now() + 1 is this exact time tomorrow.
=Now() - 0.5 is twelve hours ago.

and the same applies to any date/time field.

Two important points -
you MAY SUBTRACT one date from another to find the difference between them,
and you MAY ADD OR SUBTRACT a number of days, but
ADDING TWO DATES is MEANINGLESS, as are MULTIPLICATION or DIVISION.
(unless you REALLY know what you're doing!)

http://www.cpearson.com/excel/datearith.htm

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Date Format Changed

by Liz Montague In reply to Dates

I already tried the obvious solutions, such as highlighting the column and changing to date. That is not working. I've worked with Excel for years but have never encountered this. For instance, in the command line the date shows 4/16/2010 but in the cell it shows 40284.

Any other ideas?

Liz

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