Referencing Tables From RefEdit Controls

SamRad is back with another guest post.  Today Sam is writing about another feature he worked on – supporting table referencing from places other than the formula bar.  Enjoy.

Dave posted about Tables and the new “structure referencing” feature in previous posts … see here for the details.  You’ll be happy to know that the formula bar isn’t the only area that gets these new table referencing capabilities, but some special RefEdits as well.  This is a short post that will describe table referencing in RefEdits, and call out which areas of Excel got this new functionality.

Table references in RefEdits works similarly to the formula bar – as you select cells in a table, the RefEdit will put the table reference into the RefEdit, and the feature this RefEdit is hooked up to (i.e. charting) will then take advantage of the the reference to the table.  Below is a picture of the RefEdit in the Name Manager dialog:

In the name manager RefEdit, I’ve selected the Player column for Table2.  As you can see, with that selection the RefEdit creates the formula “=Table2[Player]”.  This provides all the benefits of table referencing – readibility, automatic grow and shrink, etc.

You’ll be able to see this new RefEdit functionality in the following features:

  • Page Setup
  • Pivot tables
  • Defining Names
  • Function wizard
  • Charts

You can also simply type the reference, of course, if you are not the type of user that uses the mouse a lot.

Also note that these RefEdits have had their limit bumped up.  Before they were 255 (or so) characters; now some support 2k characters and others support 8k characters, pending the technology and feature behind the RefEdit.

… and if table referencing in the RefEdits doesn’t sell you, check out our new stunning RefEdit icon: