Excel Basics – Data Validation in Excel


Data Validation

Data Validation Example | Create Data Validation Rule | Input Message | Error Alert | Data Validation Result

Use data validation in Excel to make sure that users enter certain values into a cell.

Data Validation Example

In this example, we restrict users to enter a whole number between 0 and 10.


Create Data Validation Rule

To create the data validation rule, execute the following steps.

1. Select cell C2.

2. On the Data tab, in the Data Tools group, click Data Validation.


On the Settings tab:

3. In the Allow list, click Whole number.

4. In the Data list, click between.

5. Enter the Minimum and Maximum values.

Validation Critaria

Input Message

Input messages appear when the user selects the cell and tell the user what to enter.

On the Input Message tab:

1. Check ‘Show input message when cell is selected’.

2. Enter a title.

3. Enter an input message.


Error Alert

If users ignore the input message and enter a number that is not valid, you can show them an error alert.

On the Error Alert tab:

1. Check ‘Show error alert after invalid data is entered’.

2. Enter a title.

3. Enter an error message.


4. Click OK.

Data Validation Result

1. Select cell C2.

Input Message

2. Try to enter a number higher than 10.

Error Alert


Note: to remove data validation from a cell, select the cell, on the Data tab, in the Data Tools group, click Data Validation, and then click Clear All. You can use Excel’s Go To Special feature to quickly select all cells with data validation.

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