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How to generate unique combinations in Excel?

Author: Sun Last Modified: 2020-05-28

Supposing you have three lists, and now you want to generate unique combinations from these three lists as below screenshots shown, and how can you quickly solve this troublesome problem in Excel?

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Generate unique combinations use multiple formulas

Generate unique combinations by Kutools for Excelgood idea3


Generate unique combinations use multiple formulas

1. Select a blank column next to the three lists, for instance column D, and type this formula =MOD((ROW()-1),4)+1 into the formula bar, then Ctrl + Enter keys to apply this formula into the whole column. See screenshots:

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2. Then go to select the whole column E which is next to the first formula column D, and type =MOD(INT((ROW()-1)/4),4)+1 into the formula bar, and press Ctrl + Enter keys to apply the formula. See screenshot:

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3. Move to the third new column F next to the second formula column E, and type this formula =MOD(INT(INT((ROW()-1)/4)/4),4)+1 to formula bar, and press Ctrl + Enter keys to apply the formula to whole column. See screenshot:

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4. Go on to select the Column G, and type this formula =INDEX(A$1:A$4,D1) into the formula bar, and press Ctrl + Enter keys to get the result. See screenshot:

Tip: A1 is the first cell of the first list, and D1 is the first cell of the column contains your first formula.

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5. The click at G1, and then drag the autofill handle right to I1, and then separately select column H and column I to apply the formula to whole columns. see screenshot:

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Then you can combine the column G, column H and column I.

6. Select J1, then type this formula =G1&H1&I1 into it, press Enter key, and drag the auto fill handle down until a duplicate appears. See screenshots:

Tip: G1, H1 and I1 are the cells containing formulas.

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Now all the unique combinations have been generated by the three lists.

Note: in the formulas =MOD((ROW()-1),4)+1, =MOD(INT((ROW()-1)/4),4)+1, and =MOD(INT(INT((ROW()-1)/4)/4),4)+1, 4 indicates there are 4 data in the list.


Generate unique combinations by Kutools for Excel

With above method, that is too complex and troublesome for users, fortunately, Kutools for Excel’s List All Combinations can quickly generate unique possible combinations by three lists.

Kutools for Excel, with more than 300 handy functions, makes your jobs more easier. 

After free installing Kutools for Excel, please do as below:

1. Click Kutools > Insert > List All Combinations. See screenshot:

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2. Then in the List All Combinations dialog, select Value from Type drop down list, click Browse button to select first list, and click Add to add the list into the Combinations list. See screenshot:

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Repeat this operation to add all lists into the Combinations list section successively. See screenshot:

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3. Click Ok, and to select the first cell of destination range to output the combinations in the popping dialog. See screenshot:

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4. Click OK, and it has been generated all unique combinations.

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