Watch Window in Excel

What is Watch Window in Excel?

Watch window in excel is used to watch for the changes in the formulas we use while working with a large amount of data and formulas, they are available from the formulas tab in the formula auditing section, when we click on watch window a wizard box appears and it gives us the option to select the cell for which the values we need to be monitored or watched.

Usually, when we are working with a small amount of data, it is easy to find the mistakes and correct them. However, when you have to deal with large sets of data, we cannot do that regularly.

We have a tool called Watch Window to inspect some useful and important cells at any time without scrolling back is a wonderful thing to have. Today, I will introduce you to this fabulous tool.

This is available from the 2010 version. In this article, we will see how to watch window works.

  • Go to Formula Tab, then Formula Auditing and Watch Window.
Watch Window

The shortcut key to open this Window is ALT + M + W.

  • Keep track of useful cells or formulas in the worksheet or workbook.
  • It will work on different sheets.
  • You can add or delete cells or formulas from this window.

Examples of Watch Window in Excel – Examples

Let’s get started to understand this practice.

You can download this Watch Window Excel Template here – Watch Window Excel Template

Example #1

Suppose you have sales data from range A1:A391. As shown in the below image, we have total sales, and we need to keep track of the total sales amount.

Excel Data

We can do this by our wonderful tool called Watch Window.

Follow the below steps to add a watch window.

  1. Select the targeted cell you want to watch. Go to Formula Tab, then Formula Auditing and Watch Window.


    Watch Window Location

  2. In this dialogue box, click on the Add Watch button.


    Click on Add Watch Button

  3. The below window will open, and by default, it will take the targeted cell which you have selected earlier.


    Targeted Cell

  4. Click on the add button now. This will instantly create the below Watch Window.


    Watch Window in Excel Example 1-4

Watch Window in Excel Example 1-5

Example #2

Add Watch Window from multiple sheets. We can watch multiple sheets of cells in the same watch window. This is very helpful when you deal with multiple sheets.

Assume you have below sample data in two different sheets.

Watch Window in Excel Example 2

Now we need to add a watch window for both employee’s CTC in one window. To add, follow the below steps.

  • Select the data in the first sheet, i.e., Employee 1 sheet.
  • Go to Formula Tab, then Formula Auditing and Watch Window.
Watch Window in Excel Example 2-1
  • Clicks add, and this will add one cell watcher for this sheet because you have selected only one cell.
Watch Window in Excel Example 2-2
  • Now again, click on add watch and select the second sheet (Employee 2 sheet) CTC cell.
Select CTC Cell
  • Click on add, and it will show two different sheet names under Sheet’s name.
Different Sheet Names
  • Part 1: In this section, it is showing the name of the workbook we are referring to. In this example, we have used only one workbook. Therefore, it is showing only one workbook name.
  • Part 2: In this section, it is showing the name of the worksheet we are referring to. In this example, we have used two different worksheets. Therefore, it is showing two different worksheets names.
  • Part 3: In this section, it is showing the name of the cell in that worksheet we are referring to. In this example, it is showing C12 as cell reference in both the sheets.
  • Part 4: In this section, it is showing the value of the cell in that worksheet we are referring. In this example, it is showing 4,32,000 in the first sheet reference and 5,38,650 in the second sheet reference.
  • Part 5: In this section, it is showing the formula cells from which cells it is taking reference. In this example, it is showing C7 + C9 + C10 as cell reference in both the sheets.

Delete Cells from Watch Window

Like how we added watch windows to our important cells, we, too, can delete those cells from the watch window. Follow the below steps to delete the cells.

  • Select the existing Watch Window section.
  • Select the cells you want to delete and click Delete. To delete more than one, use shift and arrow keys.
Watch Window in Excel Example 3

Dock Your Watch Window Below Your Excel Ribbon

The watch window is the floater in general. You can fix it at below your ribbon. In order to do that, just double click on the title bar of the watch window.

Double Click on Title Bar

As soon as you double click on the title bar, it will fix it below the excel ribbonExcel RibbonThe ribbon is an element of the UI (User Interface) which is seen as a strip that consists of buttons or tabs; it is available at the top of the excel sheet. This option was first introduced in the Microsoft Excel 2007.read more bar.

Watch Window below Ribbon

Important Points

  • You can add as many cells in your watch window. But, the more you add, the more sluggish your workbook becomes.
  • Duck the watch window to the right end of the excel (only in excel 2013 afterward versions)
  • You can add cells from different worksheets, but you cannot add cells from another workbook. Every workbook has its own watch window section.
  • It is very useful to track all the important cells in a single frame window.
  • The best thing is you need to set it one time. Need not to do it at regular intervals of time.

Things to Remember

Below are some of the important things about Watch Window

  • Name of the Cell: When you add a watch window to a cell, it will also capture the name of the cell is given by the user.
  • Address of the Cell: It will show you the cell address.
  • Value of the Cell: It will display the value of the particular cell.
  • Formula of the Cell: It will also display the formula of the cell.
  • Worksheet Name: It will capture the worksheet name also. It is very useful when you are dealing with so many worksheets.
  • Workbook Name: It will also capture the name of the workbook along with the worksheet name.

Recommended Articles

This has been a guide to Watch Window in Excel. Here we discuss how to use Watch Window to watch for the changes made in the formulas along with examples and a downloadable excel template. You may also look at these useful functions in excel –

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