Visible Cells

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Visible Cells

Postby drmsucks » Sat Jun 21, 2008 5:35 am

I have a spreadsheet with columns A through L. I want to just print A, B, C, L. When I hide the columns and print, the entire spreadsheet prints - how do I just print the desired columns (visible cells)? Also, when I have the columns hidden - how do I copy and paste just the visible cells?

Thanks!
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Re: Visible Cells

Postby squenson » Sat Jun 21, 2008 6:46 am

When I print a document with hidden columns, the hidden columns are not printed with OOo 2.4.1 under Windows XP. Which version do you use?

Concerning the copy of hidden cells, this is unfortunately an issue of OOo and even a severe problem when you delete or paste such ranges with hidden (or filtered) rows or columns. See here for more details.
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Re: Visible Cells

Postby drmsucks » Sat Jun 21, 2008 7:38 pm

@squenson: Thanks for the reply - and for not noting that I made a terrible post lacking much information!

OS = Win XP SP3, OOo v 2.4.0

Cells (columns) are hidden by: Format->Columns->Hide. You are correct that the hidden columns do not actually print; however, the columns show up in Page Preview (I assume this to be the same as Print Preview.) When I posted last night, I didn't actually print because the hidden columns were not hidden in Page View. (I note that when I printed this morning that I had to select a Print Range first - something that I would not need to do in Excel. Do I always need to set a Print Range before printing or previewing in Calc?)

With regard to your link concerning changes to hidden (non-visible) cells - I find it preposterous that there could be an advocate of such a position. The "ability" to change hidden cells unintentionally is clearly a defect. And it strikes at the heart of the relationship between software and user. There has to be a trust that builds up in the user for a piece of software to be deemed "good." And the trust in a spreadsheet program is, perhaps, the most important for most users. The trust issue is that if the user uses the program as intended, the program won't cause harm to the user by yielding unintended outcomes; e.g., specifically, if I change visible cell B2, I don't anticipate a change in hidden cells B3..B8. But I understand that this is exactly what happens if I "drag" the contents of B1 down a column where there are visible and non-visible (hidden) rows. I never had this trust issue with Lotus or Quattro Pro (starting with the DOS programs) and I don't have it with Excel. Admittedly, my trust has been established by long use of Excel; but, as I try to learn Calc, at the outset I'm amazed by the arrogance of a programmer (programmers?) who won't admit that this quirk of Calc is a defect and a flaw.

Thanks again for your reply.
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Re: Visible Cells

Postby squenson » Sat Jun 21, 2008 9:02 pm

Concerning the 'Page Preview' issue and the need to select a print range each time, may be you should update to OOo 2.4.1 as I cannot reproduce it under my Windows XP version. In my case, the Page Preview shows the right number of columns, and hidden ones are not shown.

Your second point is excellent and the concept of trust is exactly what I miss when using OOo: too many times the software breaks without warning, the wrong approach of copy/paste feature with hidden rows or columns, questionable behaviors (if I select several columns and I resize them with the mouse, they are all re-sized, but if I want to hide them only one is hidden!). All in all, I consider the product as 'very good' and I highly recommend it, but without this trust, it will never become a mainstream tool for professionals.
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Re: Visible Cells

Postby drmsucks » Sat Jun 21, 2008 9:34 pm

My Page Preview seems to be "whacked!" I'll see if I can explain this properly.

Open the spreadsheet, no hidden cells, 18 columns, 37 rows. Page Preview shows 3/3 and displays p. 3 and I can click back to p. 2 & p. 1. Correct. Now, if I hide consecutive columns in the middle via the Format option and do a Page Preview, it shows exactly the same! BUT, if I do a Print Area Define, Page Preview would display a 4th page with the columns hidden (what I would expect except for the p.4); but I could click back and the first 3 pages would show the entire spreadsheet.

Note that I have two worksheets in this workbook - same data, different sorts. It also seems that if I hide columns on worksheet 1 then switch to worksheet 2, the Page Preview settings from worksheet 1 are displayed.

This is XP v 2.4.0 - I'll try 2.4.1 when I have time to download!

Thanks.
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Re: Visible Cells

Postby drmsucks » Sat Jun 21, 2008 10:48 pm

Ok - installed 2.4.1; Page Preview same as in 2.4.0. I guess that I'll have to try to get used to the way it displays the print preview. BUT, there is no getting used to the notion that hidden cells are copied, changed or deleted because of a defect that appears to have been known since 2003.
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Re: Visible Cells

Postby Villeroy » Sat Jun 21, 2008 11:22 pm

It's not a bug. It is programmed to work like this.
A macro to copy visibles: http://www.oooforum.org/forum/viewtopic.phtml?t=38775
A set of macros to copy the first visible row or column across visibles (*not* drag&drop). Replace built-in commands Edit>Fill>Down|Right|Up|Left with the respectice copyVisibles_ macro: http://www.ooomacros.org/user.php#188206
Please, edit this topic's initial post and add "[Solved]" to the subject line if your problem has been solved.
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Re: Visible Cells

Postby drmsucks » Sun Jun 22, 2008 1:40 am

@Villeroy - Thanks for the links.

Villeroy wrote:It's not a bug. It is programmed to work like this.


I did not say that this program behavior was a "bug" - I said it was a defect.
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