Using the Page Setup Dialog Box

In Excel page setup options can help you make your worksheet look more professional. Learn all about using the page setup feature in Excel here.

Introduction

By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

The Page Setup dialog box

Before you print your spreadsheet, you will want to define page orientation, paper size, print quality, margins, sheet settings, and headers and footers.

The Page Setup dialog box includes four tabs to help you do this:

  • Page
  • Margins
  • Header/Footer
  • Sheet

Tabs in Page Setup Dialog Box

Page orientation and paper size

If your spreadsheet is wider than it is tall, change the page orientation or paper size.

The default paper size is 8.5x11 inches, or portrait. Changing to landscape orientation prints the longer side of the paper at the top (11x8.5 inches), allowing room for extra columns.

To change page orientation:

  • Choose Filelesson actionPage Setup from the menu bar.
  • Click the Page tab.
  • Choose an orientation (portrait or landscape).

THEN

  • Click the down arrow to the right of the Paper size list box. A list of available paper size options appears.
  • Click the paper size you want to use.
  • Click OK.

Page Setup Dialog Box

Important pointYou can shrink spreadsheet data so it fits on a specified number of pages when you print. Click the Page tab, click the Fit to: option button, and enter the desired number of pages wide and pages tall.

Important pointPrint quality is measured in dpi, or dots per inch. High dpi gives you a higher resolution and a better print quality. However, it takes longer to print.

Setting up margins

By default, the top and bottom margins are set at 1 inch. The left and right margins are set at 0.75 inch. You can change these margins using the Page Setup dialog box's Margins tab.

Margins display as dotted lines. Use the spin box controls to determine the size of each margin.

Page Setup dialog box Margins tab

To change the margins in the Page Setup dialog box:

  • Choose Filelesson actionPage Setup from the menu bar.
  • Select the Margins tab.
  • Use the spin box controls for each margin you want to change. A sample displays.
  • Click OK.

Headers and footers

A header is a title that appears at the top of each page of a document. Footers are printed at the bottom of the page. Headers and footers display in the 0.5-inch space between the header and footer margin and the regular margin. The default setting is no header and no footer.

If you want to add a header and/or footer to your spreadsheet, you can do so using the Page Setup dialog box's Header/Footer tab.

Page Setup dialog box Header Footer tab

To select and create headers and footers:

  • Choose Filelesson actionPage Setup from the menu bar.
  • In the Page Setup dialog box, select the Header/Footer tab.
  • Click the Header drop-down list and select a predesigned header or click the Custom Header button to create your own header. If you choose to create your own header, the Header dialog box appears. Make your entry and click OK to return to the Page Setup dialog box.
  • Click the Footer drop down list and select a pre-designed footer or click the Custom Footer button to create your own footer. If you choose to create your own footer, the Footer dialog box appears. Make your entry and click OK to return to the Page Setup dialog box.
Header Dialog Box

Footer Dialog Box

Placeholders in the Header/Footer dialog box

In the Header/Footer dialog box, there are a series of placeholder buttons you can ignore or use to format text, insert page numbers, date, time, file name, and tab name.

Placeholder buttons

To insert a page number, date, time, file name, or tab name, position the insertion point in the appropriate text box, then choose the appropriate button.

When the file is printed, Excel will replace placeholders with those you selected. Click OK to return to the Page Setup dialog box.

Select text and click the Font button to format header and footer text. Click OK to return to the Page Setup dialog box.

Button
Button Name
Function of Placeholder
Page Number
Page Number
Current page number
Total Pages
Total Pages
Total pages printed
Date
Date
Date worksheet printed
Time
Time
Time worksheet printed
File Name
File Name
Name of workbook
Tab
Tab
Name of worksheet

Sheet settings

The Page Setup dialog box's Sheet tab allows you to consider other options for your worksheet, such as whether to print gridlines or row and column headings.

Page Setup Dialog Box Sheet Tab

Print area

By default, Excel prints from A1 to the last occupied cell in a worksheet. You can specify a different range of cells to print.

Print titles

This feature prints column and row labels on each page of the printout. Specify these rows or columns in the Rows to Repeat at Top and Columns to Repeat at Left text boxes.

Print or hide gridlines

This determines whether gridlines are printed. However, turning off gridlines does not affect their appearance in Normal view.

Draft quality

Choose draft quality to print a worksheet without gridlines or graphics.

Black and white

If you used colors in your worksheet but don't want to waste the ink in your color printer, use black and white.

Row and column headings

Click this option to include row numbers and column letters in your printed document.

Page order

This determines the order in which worksheets are printed.

Important Point To turn off gridlines, you can also choose ToolsLesson ActionOptions from the menu bar. Click the View tab and uncheck the gridlines option.

Did you know?

When you return to Normal view, don't be alarmed if you don't see your header and footer displayed in your spreadsheet. When you print, Excel places your header and footer in your spreadsheet. You can preview your headers and footers, margins, and page orientation using Print Preview.