Freeze, sort, and filter in Microsoft Excel

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Anyone who wants to work with large tables in Microsoft Excel will sooner or later need things like filter, sort and freeze.

Below, we’ll explain what they refer to in detail so you can better understand what they’re all about.

Freeze panes

When you scroll through a large table, you won’t have a sticky first column and you won’t know what certain columns refer to, that’s where Freeze Panes comes into play.

The Freeze Panes option can be found on the Browse tab.

  1. Click on the View tab.
  2. A little to the left you will see the Freeze Panes option.

How to Freeze Panes

To freeze the column pane to the left and top of a specific row, follow the instructions below:

  1. Click the first cell below the row you want to freeze and after the column, you want to freeze.
    You will see a lineup to the left to help you select this cell.
  2. Go to the View tab, then Freeze Panes.
  3. Click the Freeze Panes button.

How to freeze the top row

To freeze only the top row, follow the instructions below:

  1. Go to the View tab, then Freeze Panes.
  2. Click the Freeze Top Row button.

Your top row has suddenly become immobile.
Scroll down to see the rest of the worksheet.

How to freeze the first column

By following these procedures, you can freeze only the first column in the worksheet:

  1. Go to View and then Freeze Panes.
  2. Select Freeze First Column.

How to unfreeze panes

Follow the instructions below to unlock all rows and columns:

  • Select View.
  • Click on Freeze Panes.
  • Click on Unfreeze Panes from the menu.

Sort in Excel

Sorting is an option that allows us to sort certain text in a table.

Before using this option, it is important that the table is nicely formed.

Column sorting

  1. Place the mouse cursor in the column you want to sort.
  2. Then, on Home, select Sort and Filter. (You can also find the option on the Data tab.)
    • Sort options are A to ZZ to A, and Custom.

Custom sorting

  1. On Home, select Sort and Filter. (You can also find the option on the Data tab.)
  2. Click on Sort and Filter.
  3. Select Custom Sort.
    Things in the table will be highlighted automatically.
  4. Here we have options to:
    • Sort by…
    • Sort on…
    • Order…
  5. Click on Add Level.
  6. Select additional sorting.

Excel filtering

You may have noticed that the filter option is located in the same place as the sort option.
On Home, select Sort and Filter. (You can also find the option on the Data tab.)

How to do filtering

  1. Select any cell in the range.
  2. Select Data.
  3. Select Filter.
  4. Select the Filter arrow from the column header.
  5. Select Text Filters or Number Filters, then a comparison, such as Between.
  6. Fill in the filter criteria and click Ok.