Like in my previous post, I found this strange behaviour when testing some sample files for my next article about PowerPivot in a computer magazine. In some cases, Excel 2010 does not correctly display the selected cell, especially if you are freezing rows. This behaviour does not appear in Excel 2007.
To reproduce the error, you may first create a new workbook in Excel 2010 and store the file. It does not matter whether you choose the old file format XLS or the new modern XLSX format. I created the two sheets „Fixed“ and „Standard“ in my workbook and formatted some cells as you can see in the screenshots below. Please note, that only Excel 2010 in German is currently available for me, but I think, this will be suffisent for the demonstration.
The areas I to IV are containing merged cells. And the pane was freezed between row 7 and 8. If you select cell D2 by clicking with the mouse on this cell, then select the worksheet „Standard“ and go back to the sheet „Fixed“, the selected cell is correctly displayed.
An interesting effect occurs if you click on other cells. The follwing series of screenshots shows this behaviour of Excel 2010. First, I selected area I, as you can see below:
Then I activated the worksheet „Standard“ and I selected a cell there.
And now, I go back the worksheet „Fixed“.
As you can see on the screenshot, no cell is marked as active (area I had to be selected). If you press the arrow key to the right, the next adjacent cell is selected, in this case C1.
This behaviour also occurs, if you select another area like II or III and if you repeat the mentionned steps before. Now, let’s look what happens if I select a cell from row #7, for example C7.
After selection the worksheet „Standard“ and going back to „Fixed“, I got this view:
The frame for highlighting the active cell was reduced to a line. If you select an area below row #7, for example IV, V or VI, then Excel 2010 produces no error and always correctly displays the selected cell.
Please note, that I only got this strange behaviour if I had selected the cells with the mouse. If you use the arrow keys for selecting cells and then switch between the tables, all selections are correctly displayed. If you activate another workbook and go back to the previous workbook, all is working fine. And if you create a new table and then go back to the worksheet „Fixed“, then it works correctly; however just one time. Then, I noticed the same errors as mentionned above.
I am using the German Excel 2010 version and Windows 7 Ultimate. I can not say if the error also occurs on another operating systems, because I have not tested this.
Finally I think the error is not critical, but if you do not know about it, it may be a little confusing. Let’s hope that Microsoft will fix this in a further update.