A bug in Excel Conditional Formatting for Marking Duplicates Also Highlights Unrelated Cells
Microsoft Excel is a powerful suite of tools for managing and manipulating data. One of its most useful features is conditional formatting, which allows users to apply formatting to data based on certain criteria. For example, you can use conditional formatting to highlight duplicate values in a column, or to highlight cells that exceed a certain threshold.
However, a recent bug in Excel’s conditional formatting feature has been causing problems for users. Specifically, when users apply conditional formatting to highlight duplicate values in a column, the formatting is also applied to unrelated cells. This can be particularly problematic when users are relying on conditional formatting to highlight important data points.
The bug appears to be related to how Excel handles relative and absolute references when applying formatting. When a user selects a range of cells and then applies conditional formatting to highlight duplicate values, Excel will apply the formatting to any cells that meet the criteria, even if they are outside of the range that was selected. This can be confusing for users, as they may not be aware that formatting is being applied to cells outside of their desired range.
Fortunately, Microsoft has acknowledged the issue and is currently working on a fix. In the meantime, users can take a few steps to minimize the impact of this bug. First, they should always select a single column or range of cells when applying conditional formatting. This will ensure that the formatting is only applied to the desired cells. Second, they should keep an eye out for any unexpected formatting that appears, and delete it as needed.
Overall, this bug in Excel's conditional formatting feature can be an annoyance for users. However, it can be managed by taking a few precautionary measures, such as selecting a specific range of cells when applying conditional formatting, and monitoring for unexpected formatting. Microsoft is also working on a fix, so hopefully this issue will be resolved soon.