You are here:

Excel/How to make an entire row read only


Hi Tom,

In my excel template i want to make an entire row read only or lock an entire row, so that no one can change the values in that particular row. Can you please guide me with this.

Thanks & Regards


each cell in it properties has a check box under the protection tab for a Locked property.  By default, this checkbox is checked and all cells are marked as locked.  You can select any group of cells (single cell, contiguous range of cells including entire rows or entire columns, discontiguous groups of cells, or the entire sheet), then right click on one of those selected cells and choose format=>cells.  Under the protection tab, you would check or uncheck the locked property checkbox.  

So in your case, if you only want one row protected, then you would select all the cells on the sheet (click in the upper left corner where the row and column headers intersect and this will select all cells).  then right click on one of the selected cells, choose format cells then go to the protection tab and uncheck the Locked property checkbox.   Now go to the row you want protected and select it by left clicking in the row label/header.  Now repeat the right clicking => format cells => protection tab and check the locked property checkbox.

Now you have done the formatting you need.  However, the locked checkbox does nothing until the sheet is protected.  so you would next protect the sheet in the Review Tab in Excel 2007 or later.  You would make whatever sheet protection options you want.  

Now that the sheet is protected, you will be able to type in the unlocked cells, but not change the locked cells (the protected row).  What you can actually do will be governed by the choices you make in the protection tab when you protect the sheet.   

For example, you could allow or not allow the locked cells to be selected.  

I hope this answers your question.

Tom Ogilvy

About Excel
This topic answers questions related to Microsoft Excel spreadsheet (or workbook) stand-alone or Mircrosoft Office Excel including Excel 2003, Excel 2007, Office 2000, and Office XP. You can get Excel help on Excel formulas(or functions), Excell macros, charting in Excel, advanced features, and the general use of Excel. This does not provide a general Excel tutorial nor the basics of using a spreadsheet. It provides specific answers to using Microsoft Excel only. If you do not see your Excel question answered in this area then please ask an Excel question here


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Tom Ogilvy


Selected as an Excel MVP by Microsoft since 1999. Answering Excel questions in Allexperts since its inception in 2001. Able to answer questions on almost all aspects of Excel's internal capabilities. If seeking a VBA solution, please specify that in your question itself so I give you the answer you want. [Excel has weak protection - if you are distributing an application, I don't answer questions on how to protect your project from your users.]


Extensive experience.

Master of Science (MS) degree Operations Research (ORSA)

Awards and Honors
Microsoft MVP in Excel.

©2016 All rights reserved.