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How to highlight the modified/updated cells in Excel?

Sometimes, you may want to highlight the modified cells while you edit a sheet/workbook to follow the changes, but how can you handle it in Excel?

Highlight the modified cells with Track Changes

Highlight the modified cells with VBA code

Highlight the modified cells in tables with Tables Merge

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Highlight the modified cells with Track Changes


In Excel, the Track Changes function can highlight the changes.

1. Save the workbook before you apply the Track Changes feature, and then click Review > Track Changes > Highlight Changes.
doc highlight modified cells 1

2. In the Highlight Changes dialog, check both Track changes while editing. This also shares your workbook and Highlight changes on screen options. Also, you can specify the limitation of time, users and range while tracking change.
doc highlight modified cells 2

3. Click OK. Now the Microsoft Excel dialog box comes out and reminds you to save the workbook.
doc highlight modified cells 3

4. Click OK. Now a new modified will be highlighted with an angle.

doc highlight modified cells 4 doc arrow right doc highlight modified cells 5

Tip: this function works for the whole workbook.


Highlight the modified cells with VBA code

If you need VBA code to handle the job, you can do as follows:

1. Press Alt + F11 keys to enable the Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications window.

2. Click Insert > Module, and then double click at ThisWorkbook in VBAProject pane and paste below code to the script.

VBA:Copy and paste cell address

'UpdatebyExtendoffice20180307
Private Sub Workbook_SheetChange(ByVal Sh As Object, ByVal Target As Range)
    If Target.Value <> "" Then
        Target.Interior.ColorIndex = 6
    End If
End Sub

doc highlight modified cells 6

3. Save the code and go back to the workbook, while you modified the sheet, the cells will be highlighted with a background color.
doc highlight modified cells 7

Note: If you just want to apply the highlight in current sheet, just right click at the sheet tab and click View Code in the context menu, then paste below code to the script.
doc highlight modified cells 8

Private Sub WorkSheet_Change(ByVal Target As Range)
'UpdatebyExtendoffice20180307
    If Target.Value <> "" Then
        Target.Interior.ColorIndex = 6
    End If
End Sub

Highlight the modified cells in tables with Tables Merge

If you want to update a main table based on another one, and then highlight the modified/new data in the main table, you can try Kutools for Excel’s Tables Merge feature.

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After installing Kutools for Excel, please do as below:(Free Download Kutools for Excel Now!)

1. Select the main table which needs to be modified or updated by other table, and click Kutools Plus > Tables Merge.
doc highlight modified cells 9

2. Select the table range you want to update the main table based on in Tables Merge wizard.
doc highlight modified cells 10

3. Click Next, and select the key column you want to compare two tables based on.
doc highlight modified cells 11

4. Click Next, select the columns you want to update.
doc highlight modified cells 12

5. Click Next, in the Highlight options section, select the background color and font color you want to use for the modified cells.
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6. Click Finish and Yes close dialogs. Now the modified cells have been highlighted.
doc highlight modified cells 14


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