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How to protect cell formatting but only allow data entry in Excel?

In many cases, you may need to protect the formatting of a range of cells and only allow data entry in Excel. This article provides three methods to achieve it.

Protect cell formatting but only allow data entry by protecting worksheet
Protect cell formatting but only allow data entry with VBA code
Protect cell formatting but only allow data entry with Kutools for Excel


Protect cell formatting but only allow data entry by protecting worksheet

For protecting cell formatting but only allow data entry, you need to unlock these cells firstly, and then protect the worksheet. Please do as follows.

1. Select the cells you need to protect their formatting but only allow data entry, then press Ctrl + 1 keys simultaneously to open the Format Cells dialog box.

2. In the Format Cells dialog box, uncheck the Locked box under the Protection tab, and then click the OK button. See screenshot:

3. Now go to click Review > Protect Sheet.

4. Please specify and conform your password in the Protect Sheet and Confirm Password dialog boxes. See screenshot:

Now the worksheet is protected, and the cell formatting is not changed. But the specified cells are allowed data entry only.


Protect cell formatting but only allow data entry with VBA code

You can also run the following VBA script to protect cell formatting but only allow data entry in Excel. Please do as follows.

1. Press Alt + F11 keys at the same time to open the Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications window.

2. In the Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications window, double click ThisWorkbook on the Project pane, and then copy and paste the below VBA code into the ThisWorkbook (Code) window.

VBA code: Protect cell formatting but only allow data entry

Sub AllowDataEntryOnly()
    ActiveSheet.Protect Userinterfaceonly:=True, AllowFiltering:=True
    Range("C2:C20").Locked = False
        MsgBox "Only allow data entry in range C2:C20", vbInformation, "Kutools for Excel"
End Sub

Note: In the code, C2:C20 is the range which the cells you just allow data entry. Please change the range based on your needs.

3. Press the F5 key to run the code. In a popping up Kutools for Excel dialog box, click the OK button.

Now the worksheet is protected as well as the cell formatting. And only the specified cells are allowed data entry.


Protect cell formatting but only allow data entry with Kutools for Excel

You can easily unlock selected cells and protect worksheet with the Worksheet Design utility of Kutools for Excel.

Before applying Kutools for Excel, please download and install it firstly.

1. Click Kutools Plus > Worksheet Design to activate the Design tab.

2. Select the cells you need to protect their formatting but only allow data entry, click Unlock Cells under the Design tab, and then click the OK button in the popping up Kutools for Excel dialog box. See screenshot:

3. Click the Protect Sheet button under the Design tab.

4. And then specify and conform your password in the Protect Sheet and Confirm Password dialog boxes. See screenshot:

Now the worksheet is protected. And the specified cells are allowed data entry only.

  If you want to have a free trial (30-day) of this utility, please click to download it, and then go to apply the operation according above steps.


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Comments (16)
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This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Cette manœuvre ne fonctionne pas. Les formules ne sont toujours pas sécurisées
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Tried that and save, after I close file, it asks for password. Which of course there is none and I am now locked out of my workbook. Pls adv
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Hi Pamela,
If you apply the VBA code mentioned in the post. The worksheet is protected, but there is no password. Please click Review > Unprotect Worksheet to unprotect the worksheet without entering a password.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
I read the "Protect cell formatting but only allow data entry by protecting worksheet" is wrong. The format can still be changed. I thought you had found something there. You did not...
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Yeah.. this does not work at all. It does not prevent the cells from being formatted. Bad site!
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Hi, Thank you for the code, it was very useful. I was wondering if you could put in a part where the supervisor could enter a code so that they could edit the formatting and then locking it again without having to delete the code every time this is needed.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
I followed the directions, but was not able to enter data into the locked cells as mentioned in the instructions. Anyone have a solution?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Hi kristen,
For a protected worksheet, you can only enter data into the unlocked cells.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
It still allows for users to delete the formulas...
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
It is any way that you can lock the cells for the formulas and allow input data only? With regular excel not having enterprise
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
The "Protecting Worksheet" instructions do not lock the formatting. If you copy cells in normally the formatting is copied over with them.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Please let us know if found a solution for this specific case.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
The solution is here, however it is very medicore because You may forget about ctrl + z :P Useless if You want to preapare worksheet for others but usefull for own purposes if set as "ctrl + shift + v"

https://www.extendoffice.com/documents/excel/2545-excel-set-paste-values-as-default.html
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
agreed.... did you find any other solution to this anywhere?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Came here looking for a solution to this same problem which Matt mentioned.
If you paste a cell from another sheet to the protected cell, unfortunately cell formatting is overwritten!
Any solution to this issue so far?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
I am having the same. The whole reason I want to protect the formatting is to stop the copy & paste issue! I hope someone has a solution.
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