What is Autofill?

Autofill lets you enter data quickly without having to type data in each cell. You can create columns of numeric, text, or date/time data that repeat a set of values or follow a series.

Repeat a set of values
The same set of values is repeated in a column. For example:
  • 1, 2, 3, 1, 2, 3, ...
  • Yes, No, Maybe, Yes, No, Maybe ...
  • 1/2/2014, 2/2/2014, 1/2/2014, 2/2/2014 ...
Continue a series
Numbers or dates follow a predictable pattern. For example:
  • 1, 2, 3, ..., 100
  • 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, ...
  • 1/1/2015, 1/2/2015, 1/3/2015, ...
Tip

When the Autofill handle appears, the status bar at the bottom of the window indicates whether the pattern will be repeated (3 3 3 3) or continued (3 4 5 6) by displaying one of the following messages:

  • Drag outside the selection to repeat pattern
  • Drag outside the selection to continue pattern

Create a column of repeating numbers

Select a single value to repeat it. Select multiple values to repeat the set of values.

C1
Number
1
1
1
1
Single
C1
Number
1
3
1
3
Multiple

Repeat one number

  1. Select the cell that contains the first value of the pattern, for example, 1.
  2. Move the pointer to the lower-right corner of the cell until the Autofill handle appears.
    Autofill handle
  3. Drag the handle down the column until you have highlighted all the cells that you want to fill.
  4. Release the mouse button.

Repeat a set of numbers

  1. Select the cells that contain the first values of the pattern, for example, 1 and 3.
  2. Move the pointer to the lower right corner of the selection until the Autofill handle appears.
    Autofill handle
  3. Drag the handle down the column while pressing the Ctrl key until you have highlighted all the cells that you want to fill.
  4. Release the mouse button and then the Ctrl key.

Create a column of repeating date/time values

Select a single value to repeat it. Select multiple values to repeat the set of values.

C1-D
Date
1/1/2015
1/1/2015
1/1/2015
1/1/2015
Single
C1-D
Date
1/1/2015
2/1/2015
3/1/2015
1/1/2015
2/1/2015
3/1/2015
Multiple

Repeat one date

  1. Select the cell that contains the first value of the pattern, for example, 1/1/2015.
  2. Move the pointer to the lower-right corner of the cell until the Autofill handle appears.
    Autofill handle
  3. Drag the handle down the column while pressing the Ctrl key until you have highlighted all the cells that you want to fill.
  4. Release the mouse button and then the Ctrl key.

Repeat a set of dates

  1. Select the cells that contain the first values of the pattern, for example, 1/1/2015, 2/1/2015, and 3/1/2015.
  2. Move the pointer to the lower right corner of the selection until the Autofill handle appears.
    Autofill handle
  3. Drag the handle down the column until you have highlighted all the cells that you want to fill.
  4. Release the mouse button.

Create a column of repeating text values

Select a single value to repeat it. Select multiple values to repeat the set of values.

C1-T
Text
A
B
A
B
Example
  1. Select the cells that contain the first values of the pattern, for example, A and B.
  2. Move the pointer to the lower right corner of the selection until the Autofill handle appears.
    Autofill handle
  3. Drag the handle down the column until you have highlighted all the cells that you want to fill.
  4. Release the mouse button.

Create a column of a series of numbers

Select a single value to create a series. Select multiple values to extend a series.

C1
Number
1
2
3
4
Single
C1
Number
1
3
5
7
Multiple

Single cell selected

  1. Select the cells that contain the first values of the pattern, for example, 1.
  2. Move the pointer to the lower-right corner of the cell until the Autofill handle appears.
    Autofill handle
  3. Drag the handle down the column while pressing the Ctrl key until you have highlighted all the cells that you want to fill.
  4. Release the mouse button and then the Ctrl key.

Multiple cells selected

  1. Select the cells that contain the first values of the pattern, for example, 1 and 3.
  2. Move the pointer to the lower-right corner of the cell until the Autofill handle appears.
    Autofill handle
  3. Drag the handle down the column until you have highlighted all the cells that you want to fill.
  4. Release the mouse button.

Create a column of a series of date/time values

Select a single value to create a series. Select multiple values to extend a series.

C1-D
Date
1/1/2015
1/2/2015
1/3/2015
1/4/2015
Single
C1-D
Date
1/1/2015
2/1/2015
3/1/2015
4/1/2015
5/1/2015
6/1/2015
Multiple
  1. Select the cells that contain the first values of the pattern, for example, 1/1/2015, or 1/1/2015, 2/1/2015, and 3/1/2015.
  2. Move the pointer to the lower right corner of the selection until the Autofill handle appears.
    Single cell selected
    Autofill handle
    Multiple cells selected
  3. Drag the handle down the column until you have highlighted all the cells that you want to fill.
  4. Release the mouse button.

Define a custom pattern of text values

You can define your own custom lists of ordered text data for use with Autofill. Autofill will recognize and continue custom lists in the order in which they are defined. For example, a custom list could be: Strongly Disagree, Disagree, No Opinion, Agree, Strongly Agree.

Minitab includes the following predefined custom lists:
  • Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, ... , Saturday
  • Sun, Mon, Tue, ... , Sat
  • January, February, March, ... , December
  • Jan, Feb, Mar, ... , Dec
  1. With the worksheet active, choose Editor > Define Custom Lists.
  2. In the text field on the right, enter the custom list items, one value per line.
  3. Click Add List.
  4. Click OK.
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