Freezing Column or Row Headers

Otherwise know as Freeze Panes. This feature, under the Windows menu, allows you to lock certain columns, rows, or both in place so that they never scroll out of view.


Start by locating the split bars. I don’t their technical name, but it was either split bars or doohickies. I went with the former. The horizontal split bar is just above the arrow on the vertical scroll bar. When you hover over it, the cursor changes to a two-headed arrow.

FreezPanes2 FreezPanes3

The vertical split bar is just to right of the horizontal split bar and has the same function. These bars can be moved to split the window into two or four panes.


You can scroll inside any of these panes, which can be useful, but is more often just confusing. To lock those panes into place so that their contents can’t be scrolled, use the Freeze Panes option.


The thick split pane bars now become thin freeze pane bars. You can click inside those panes, you just can’t scroll around in there and get lost. To remove, go back to the Windows menu and choose Unfreeze panes.

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15 thoughts on “Freezing Column or Row Headers

  1. The first half of this article is unnecessary.

    There is no need to use the “split bars,” merely select any cell, then choose Windows > Freeze Panes. The panes will freeze immediately above and to the left of the selected cell.

  2. Side Question: Are you using anything special for screen captures? (Yours are very clear and readable). I have a couple utilities, but always struggle with quality when sizing for documents and user amnuals.

  3. Ray: Good point. I still use them, though. Also, I should have noted that when you’re in A1, it splits them in the middle – or so it seems.

  4. Alex,

    I use Hypersnap for snipping GIFs:
    When you hit Ctrl PrntScrn, a precision cursor appears so you can get it pixel perfect. It shows you the dimensions as you are dragging the frame. It even autonames the files. Sits there nicely in your system tray.

    They’ve got quite a selection of free utilities.

    I love freeware. I downloaded TClock Light the other day. Now I can see the seconds tick over on my taskbar, set it to blink for lunch time, set the taskbar transparent (sexy!) and replace the start button text/gfx.


  5. I too use Snagit, excellent screen capture program. Does “video” too.

    To get good results on a web page, use the GIF format.
    For printing jpg is fine too, but you need to check the quality setting that is used for creating the jpg format.

  6. I use SnagIt, too. Not free, but pretty cheap, and it is so versatile. I use it for some of my web site graphics, but mostly for documentation of my projects for my clients. It has COM add-in hooks for Office apps, so if you’re working in an app like Word or PowerPoint, you click the button, the app minimizes and you select what you want captured, and it’s inserted where you were in the original app’s document.

    I used to use a lightweight bit of freeware called ScreenSeize, which also was worth the price. (Lots of free stuff isn’t.)

  7. Thanks for the feedback, everybody.
    (Dick – sorry, I didn’t realize you had listed your software under “About this Blog”.

    I think I’m getting addicted to my “Daily Dose”. Keep up the good work.

  8. Anyone know how to find out which cell is at the intersection of the frozen rows and columns? It seems to be a write only property.

  9. How about

    Function GetFrozenInt(wn As Window) As Range
        If wn.Panes.Count = 4 Then
            With wn.Panes(1)
                Set GetFrozenInt = _
                   .VisibleRange(.VisibleRange.Cells.Count).Offset(1, 1)
            End With
        End If
    End Function
  10. Very nice, Dick! Another hitherto undiscovered (by me) part of the Excel object model revealed.

    This shorter code seems to do the same thing. What do you think?

    Function GetFrozenInt(wn As Window) As Range

    If wn.Panes.Count = 4 Then
    With wn.Panes(4)
    Set GetFrozenInt = .VisibleRange(1)
    End With
    End If

    End Function

  11. Much better Doug. I started out with Panes(1) because I new I could rely on it. Only later did I add the If function, but didn’t think to simplify the original code. Good work.

  12. Is there any way to freeze alternating columns? My columns are in a certain order that I need to keep them in, but only certain columns need to be viewed. Ctl doesn’t work with the freezing of panes?

Posting code? Use <pre> tags for VBA and <code> tags for inline.

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