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Excel/Date formatted as "general"


Hi Tom

I work with a spreadsheet in which the dates are entered in the format "03.07.13" for example, and when I look on the format cells menu, the are formatted as general.  I need to work with these dates, but Excel 2010 doesnt seem to recognise them as dates.  Do you know a formula that will convert them to a proper date format?  I have tried using format, cells, date, but it dosent work.




I am assuming your version of excel doesn't recognize the period as a delimiter in a date.  

As far as a formua, then In another cell, yes.  Say that you have the date 03.07.13  (July 3, 2013) in cell A1

then in B1

(I am assuming your regional settings are DayMonthYear)


in either case format the cell to have the date format you want for display. The underlying  value produced by the formula should be a date serial number

For in place conversion:

You could select the cells anduse the replace part of the find and replace function to replace  "." with "/"  This should convert the cells to dates in situ.  Then format them with the date format  you want.  (they may first appear as date serial numbers - the number of days since the beginning of 1900).  

Tom Ogilvy  
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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.]


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

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