Hide / Protect A Formula

Sometimes you don’t want other users to see the formula written in a cell or you don’t want other users overwriting the formula. The following steps will show you how you can hide and / or protect the formula in a cell

  • By default Excel sets the cells as Locked when a new worksheet is created.
    Our first step is to change this and unlock all cells in the worksheet.

    Click the top left corner of the worksheet to select all cells.
    Hide Formula1

    Press Ctrl + 1 to open the Excel Options dialog box.
    Select the Protection tab.
    Hide Formula2

    Clear the Locked checked box.
    Click OK
    Hide Formula3

  • The next step is to select the cells that you want to protect / hide.
    You can repeat these steps for each cell or select a range of cells.

    TIP
    You can select multiple cells by clicking on the first cell then hold the Ctrl key and click the other cells you want to format.

    Select the cell(s) where you want the content to be hidden.
    In this example we have selected multiple cells that contain formulas.
    Hide Formula4

    Press Ctrl + 1 to open the Excel Options dialog box.
    Select the Protection tab.
    Hide Formula2

    Check the Locked check box to protect the cell(s) and stop any users from entering a new value in the cell(s) thus deleting the formula.
    Check the Hidden check box to hide the cell(s) contents when anyone clicks on the cell.
    The contents/formula will remain in the cell but will not be visible.
    Click OK.
    Hide Formula3

  • To apply these actions the worksheet must be protected.
    We will now go through the steps to protect the worksheet.

    Click on the Review tab.
    Select Protect Sheet.
    Hide Formula5

    There is an option to add a password when you protect the worksheet. If you don't want to add a password just click OK.
    Hide Formula6

    When you click on the cells you formatted you will now see that the contents is hidden and if you Locked the cell you will notice that you cannot add new content into the cell.
    Hide Formula7

    The first step in this guide made all the cells unlocked allowing these cells to be edited even when the worksheet is protected.