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Few features in Excel will save you as much time as the Format Painter, the topic of Excel Video 207. The Format Painter simply copies the format from one cell to another. The format includes the way the cell is displayed (font, font color, font size, cell color, bold, italics, etc.) as well as any conditional formats that apply to a cell. I was working on a consulting project for a group the other day that had a range of cells with 20 conditional formatting rules applied to the same range. I had to add new cells below the range. Rather than edit each of the 20 rules to extend the range to conditionally format the new cells, I simply used the Format Painter to copy all 20 rules plus the cell formatting at once. It’s beautiful thing.
The Format Painter is typically a one time copy of the formatting, but if you double click the Format Painter, you can copy the formats to as many cells and/or ranges of cells as you like. You can even use Format Painter on an entire project, like I do toward the end of the video. If you aren’t using Format Painter yet, start today.