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Microsoft Office to OpenOffice Migration Guide
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Filling down or to the right

Using the Fill Down (or Fill Right) feature

In Excel, it is possible to copy and paste a cell to a range of cells below or to the right of the target cell by selecting a range, with the source cell at the top (when filling down) or at the left (when filling to the right); then use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+D (to fill down) or Ctrl+R (to fill to the right). There is also a menu path that accomplishes the same task as the keyboard shortcuts.

In Calc, the same features are available, but only through a menu path, not through keyboard shortcuts. Also, in Calc, it is possible to fill up and to the left. The menu path is: Edit > Fill > Down (or Up, Right, or Left).

Using the fill handle

In both Calc and Excel, the fill handle can be used to copy contents of a cell down or to the right. This feature works somewhat differently between Calc and Excel.

To use the fill handle, select the source cell, position the pointer over the fill handle so it becomes a small plus sign, and then drag either down or to the right.

  • In Excel, the above action will copy the contents of the cell.

  • In Calc, if the source cell contains only letters, or a string of letters and numbers but not ending in a number (example: A4B), then the source cell will be copied exactly.

  • If the cell is numeric, the number will increment by 1 with each additional cell (example: 5, 6, 7, ...; or 1.5, 2.5, 3.5, ...). If the source entry is a string which begins with or ends with a number, the number component of the string will increment by 1 (example: A1, A2, A3, ...).

  • In Calc, it is possible to copy the source cell exactly, without incrementing, by holding the Ctrl key while clicking the fill handle and dragging.

In either Excel or Calc, if there are two adjacent cells which contain numerical entries, selecting both cells and then using the fill handle to extend the series will result in the same increment between the “filled” cells as was present between the two source cells. For example, if cell A1=1.0 and cell A2=1.1, selecting these cells and using the fill handle will yield: A3=1.2; A4=1.3; etc.

Microsoft Office to OpenOffice Migration Guide
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