How to Lock and Unlock cells in Excel

here I'm going to show you another way

that you can protect your worksheet

where you don't have to worry about

entering passwords now what I mean is

for instance say that we want the

benefits column to always be editable

but we don't want anything else in a

worksheet to be able to be edited and we

don't want to have to enter a password

to edit the benefits part now a very

simple way to do this is to I'll show

you by example first right click one

cell and click format cells now if you

go to the protection tab you'll notice

this locked and there is a box next to

it that's always checked now by default

it's checked so all of them are checked

if you uncheck this once click OK then

go to tools protection protect sheet and

here have select unlocked cells checked

but do not allow locked cells to be

selected so uncheck that select ok what

you'll notice is that you cannot select

any cells in the worksheet except for

those that are unlocked and here you

only have one so

you can delete it reenter it now what

I'm going to do here is unprotect the

sheet and I'm going to select this

entire range then right click format

cells and uncheck the locked box now

this entire column is unprotected or is

unlocked it's not locked so I'm going

hit tools protection protect sheet and

now if I hit OK it's going to allow me

to edit any one of these cells so one

good thing to note is that even though

you can't even click on any of these

cells they're still going to be updated

when you enter data into this cell and

that's because all the cells under total

compensation or formulas so also if you

wanted to make it so that you can select

these cells but you can't edit them go

up to tools protection unprotect sheet

then re protect the sheet so just go

tools protection protect sheet and in

this box check the box next to select

locked cells click OK now what that's

going to allow you to do is to select

any cell however you cannot put any data

in these cells but here you can delete


and add whatever you want now the reason

is because these cells are unlocked so

that's how if they are making a form or

anything like that that you need to send

out to a large amount of people and you

want them to fill in their own

information what you can do is have a

form made out and have all of the cells

locked except for the cells where you

want people to enter their own data so

you unlock those specific cells then

protect the worksheet and they're going

to be able to enter say like their own

benefits whatever that is and send it

back to you but they're not going to be

able to change anything else in any of

the other columns or rows so that's the

benefit of doing this in addition you

can add a password to it if you want

just unprotect the sheet and then re

protect it by adding a password up here

and also note that in this box under

here if you select any of these say

format cells format columns insert row

insert column what that will allow you

to do is it will allow anyone without

this password to format a cell or a

column or to insert a row or a column

there's a large list here and if you

check any of them it allows you to do

that while the worksheet is protected I

go into more depth on that subject in

another tutorial but the point of this

one is just to show you that if you

unlock a cell you can edit it while all

of the other cells are uneditable in a

protected worksheet