Troubleshooting navigation issues in Microsoft Excel

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Article ID: 307812 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q307812
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SYMPTOMS

In Microsoft Excel, when you use the mouse or the keyboard to move the cell pointer from one cell to another, the cell pointer may not move as expected. You may experience one of the following symptoms:
  • You may unintentionally highlight a cell range instead of selecting a different individual cell.
  • The worksheet may scroll when you click the arrow keys on your keyboard.
  • The cell pointer may move to an unexpected location when you click the arrow keys on your keyboard.

CAUSE

Unexpected changes to the navigation functionality may indicate that one of several keyboard settings or Excel settings are turned on without your knowledge. Or, that you have a malfunctioning keyboard or a mouse driver. Additionally, this problem may indicate that the hardware is malfunctioning.

RESOLUTION

To troubleshoot navigation issues, try the following methods in the order that they appear.

Method 1: Click each mouse button

Click the left mouse button, the middle mouse button, and the right mouse button to see whether this resolves the issue.

Method 2: Check for extend-selection mode

The extend-selection option changes mouse and arrow key functionality in the following manner. If you use the mouse to click a cell, all the cells between the previously selected cell and the cell that you are currently trying to click are now selected. If you press an arrow key, the previously selected cell and the adjacent cell in the direction of the arrow key are now selected. If you are seeing this behavior and EXT is shown in the Excel status bar, you can press the F8 key to turn off the extend-selection option.

Method 3: Check for SCROLL LOCK

When SCROLL LOCK is on, "SCRL" appears on the Excel status bar. If you press the arrow keys when SCROLL LOCK is on, you scroll one row up or one row down. Or, you scroll one column to the left or one column to the right. To use the arrow keys to move between cells, you must turn SCROLL LOCK off.

Method 4: Check that a SHIFT or Control (CTRL) key is not stuck

Keyboard keys can sometimes get stuck in the "Down" position. If one of the Shift keys is stuck in the "down" position, the same symptoms occur when the extend-selection option is selected. If you notice this behavior, but you do not see the "EXT" status in the status bar, one of the Shift keys may be stuck on your keyboard. Press each Shift key a couple of times to see if you can resolve this issue. If the issue is not resolved, your keyboard may be damaged. If that is the case, follow the steps in Method 6 to troubleshoot further.

If one of the Ctrl keys is stuck and you use the mouse to click a different individual cell, the previously selected cell and the cell that you are currently clicking are now selected. However, the cells in between are not selected. If you press an arrow key, the cell pointer moves in any direction more than one cell. The cell pointer may move to the end of a range of data. Or, if there is no data, the cell pointer may move toward the direction of the arrow keys. This frequently occurs when the cell pointer is moving toward the end of the row or column. To resolve this problem, press each Ctrl key a couple of times. If this still does not resolve the issue, we recommend that you follow the steps in Method 6 because your keyboard may be damaged.

Method 5: Reboot your computer

To shut down and then restart your computer, follow these steps:
  1. Quit your programs.
  2. Click Start, and then click Shut Down.
  3. In the Shut Down Windows dialog box, click Shut Down, and then click OK.
  4. Make sure that you completely turn off your computer, and then wait at least one minute.
  5. Turn the computer back on. Then, restart the computer.
The mouse drivers should load back into memory.

Method 6: Remove and reinstall the hardware driver for the mouse or keyboard

Some third-party hardware producers include additional software with the hardware packages, such as installation files for hardware drivers. If your mouse or keyboard has additional software included, go to Control Panel, choose Add or remove programs, and then click to select the software from the list of installed programs. Click the Remove button and uninstall the software. After you uninstall the software, shut down your computer. Then, restart your computer. The operating system should detect the hardware again, and the operating system should load the standard drivers or the default drivers.

Test the functionality of the hardware by using the default driver that was provided by the operating system. If the hardware works as expected using the default driver that was provided by the operating system, there may be a problem with the manufacturer's software. Sometimes, when you remove and then reinstall the software, you can resolve the issue. However, you should check the manufacturer's Web site for an updated version of the software or driver, or both, for your hardware, and then install the latest version that is available.

If your hardware did not include additional software, follow the instructions in this section based on your operating system.

Microsoft Windows Millennium, Microsoft Windows 98, Microsoft Windows 95

To remove and reinstall the mouse driver, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
  2. In Control Panel, double-click System.
  3. In the System Properties dialog box, click the plus sign next to Mouse or Keyboard on the Device Manager tab.
  4. Select the hardware that is not functioning properly, and then click Remove.
  5. In the Confirm Device Removal dialog box, click OK.
  6. In the System Properties dialog box, click Close.
  7. Click Start, and then click Shut Down.
  8. In the Shut Down Window dialog box, click Restart, and then click OK.
  9. Allow your computer to locate the hardware.
  10. In the System Settings Change dialog box, click Yes to restart your computer.
This procedure will reinstall your hardware driver.

Microsoft Windows NT 4, Microsoft Windows 2000, and Microsoft Windows XP

To remove and reinstall the hardware driver, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
  2. In Control Panel, double-click System.
  3. In the System Properties dialog box, click Device Manager on the Hardware tab.
  4. In the Device Manager dialog box, click the plus sign next to Mice and other pointing devices for the mouse, or click the plus sign next to Keyboard for the keyboard.
  5. Select the hardware that is not functioning properly.
  6. On the Action menu, click Uninstall.
  7. In the Confirm Device Removal dialog box, click OK.
  8. Click Start, and then click Shut Down.
  9. In the Shut Down dialog box, select Restart from the drop-down list, and then click OK.
  10. Allow your computer to locate the mouse.
  11. In the System Settings Change dialog box, click Yes to restart your computer.

Method 7: Change the problem hardware or the hardware driver for the mouse or keyboard

If you have another mouse or keyboard that is available to test, shut down your computer. Then, replace the existing hardware with another mouse or keyboard. Boot your computer, start Excel, and then test the functionality.

Properties

Article ID: 307812 - Last Review: January 31, 2007 - Revision: 7.2
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Office Excel 2003
  • Microsoft Excel 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Excel 2000 Standard Edition
Keywords: 
kbprb KB307812

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