Easy Ways to Lock and Unlock Excel Cells


    Before starting telling how to lock and unlock excel cells, you must know that a collection of cells and rows in Excel is known as an Excel worksheet. In simple words, a page that you are working on is called a worksheet. On the other hand, a collection of worksheets in Excel is called a workbook. Vertical series of cells in a chart, table, or spreadsheet is called a column while a row runs horizontally in the grid layout in the Excel worksheet. The boxes that you use to write content in Excel are known as cells. These are made of rows and columns.

    how to lock cells in excel

    Sometimes you come across situations where you have to protect certain cells and contents of the Excel worksheet from editing. You might have to do this for data security and integrity or for any other possible reason. The same thing goes for unlocking these cells. The user is required to enter the password to access these details. But what should we do without password? So, let’s see how to get it done by using the possible methods.

    How to Lock Certain Cells in Excel from Editing with Password

    Protecting the cells and contents of the file is critical in many cases. Apart from unlocking the locked files and cells, you also need to know how to set the limitations or how to lock cells. Here are some ways to do so.

    Way 1. How to lock cells in excel using the formula

    There are certain ways to lock the specific cells, like locking the cells with formula as Excel locks cells from editing. The below method will lock the cells with a formula without affecting the other cells.

    how to lock cells in excel

    1. Choose the cells with the formula and hold CTRL+1.

    2. Choose the ‘Protection’ option from the new window.

    3. Check the locked option and press Ok, and the cells with the formula will be locked.

    lock cells in excel

    Way 2. How to lock cells in excel using a shortcut

    There is no single shortcut in Excel to lock the specific cells, yet you can create one with VBA, but that would be pretty complicated. You can simply hold the CTRL+1 command to open the window that will allow you to lock the specific cells and set other limitations.

    Way 3. How to Lock Cells in Excel Formula Using VBA

    The code example below checks every cell in the range “B4:C9” from the active worksheet. If a cell has a formula, it locks the cell. Otherwise, the cell becomes or remains unlocked.

    Sub ProtectCellsWithFormulas()

    For Each rng In ActiveSheet.Range(“B4:C9”)

    If rng.HasFormula Then

    rng.Locked = True


    rng.Locked = False

    End If

    Next rng

    ActiveSheet.Protect “pass”

    End Sub

    lock cells with vba

    We have known how to lock certain cells using formula, shortcut and vba, you can also see How to Protect a Cell in Excel.

    How to Unlock Locked Cells in Excel Forgot Password

    If you don’t remember the password for the locked Excel worksheet, you need an intelligent password cracking tool that actually delivers results. There are some other ways, too, but the success rate might be lower, and you might end up losing important content.

    Way 1. Unprotect excel cells using PassWiper for Excel [100% Safe and Working]

    PassWiper for Excel is an advanced tool that is used by professionals to bypass the restrictions and editing limitations for Excel sheets.

    In case you are not allowed to edit the cells and contents of the Excel sheet, here are simple steps that you need to follow to remove restrictions for locked Excel cells:

    1. Install PassWiper for Excel on your laptop or computer and open the Excel file that you want to edit, and remove the password.

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    excel lock a cell

    2. Choose ‘Remove Excel Password’ after loading the locked file and let the process run. In a few moments, the password will be removed, and cells will be unlocked for all sorts of editing rights.

    locked excel cells

    Way 2. Unprotect excel cells Using ZIP Software

    Zip software like WinRAR can be used to remove the editing restrictions and limitations for any Excel file. You need to make sure that the file has .XLSX extension for this method to work. How did this method work if Excel locks a cell? Here are the steps:

    1. Change the extension of the file to .zip format and open the file with the 7-Zip tool.

    2. Right-click on the file that you want to unlock and choose the edit option from the list.

    3. Find the ‘sheet Protection’ tag and save the file after removing this tag.

    locked cells in excel

    Now, all the cells are unlocked, and you can make the edits as you want. You can also change the file format to .XLSX after the editing.

    How to Unprotect locked Excel Cells with Knowing Password

    In case you have access to the password for the locked file, it is the easiest case. You can simply enter the password to unprotect the cells in the Excel worksheet.

    excel lock cells from editing

    1. Select or choose all the cells that you want to unlock or unprotect.

    2. Follow the directory Home>>Cells>>Format>>Format Cells>>Protection and uncheck the locked option.

    3. Now, go to Review Tab>>Protect Sheet and press OK after entering the password.

    excel lock cells

    Frequently Asked Questions about How to Lock and Unlock Cells in Excel

    1. How to lock cells in excel when scrolling and filtering?

    Click the freeze panes button from the view tab and choose the different filters that you want to apply to the worksheet.

    2. How to unlock cells in excel with a VBA project password?

    The whole process can be pretty complicated as you will have to modify several lines of code. The simple solution is to use PassWiper for Excel to unlock cells in an Excel worksheet.

    3. How to lock cells in Excel Mac?

    The process is quite similar to Windows, and you can open the tab for locking the cells by pressing Command+1. Choose the locked box in the protection option, and selected cells will be locked.


    We have gone through all the methods on how to lock cells in Excel as compared to all the mentioned methods, using the PassWiper for Excel seems the most effective method with the highest success rate. You can try this tool to unlock and unprotect any Excel file, and it can also remove the limitations and restrictions set for different cells. Try the intelligent tool now and enjoy complete freedom.

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    April Ashley, young but professional and passionate in science and technology field, has been working for six years till now. Concentrating on studying Windows and Excel problems, she is dedicated to serving more people who have difficulties in this area.

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