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Adds little box to the end of fields

Posted on 2011-09-26
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
It's a little formatting box.  Yet if I place the cursor in one of these cells, in the cell I see:

R55[]    (pretend those brackets are a little box)

But in the line where you edit the text, the box is not there.  And if I just press Enter, now the box is gone from this cell!  The problem is that I have many hundreds of these cells.

Any ideas anyone?
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Question by:dougp23
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6 Comments
 
LVL 26

Expert Comment

by:redmondb
ID: 36601728
dougp23,

Could you post a sample file with at least one of these cells, please?

It's very likely that it's a single character that just needs to be replaced (formula or macro, your choice), but in case there are others, the more data you can send, the better.

BTW, what program does the original data come from?

Thanks,
Brian.
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LVL 7

Assisted Solution

by:hippohood
hippohood earned 600 total points
ID: 36601783
You have one of special symbols (like Carret, Tab, etc.). They are used to format text in TXT format and not shown while printed. It is not unusual to have them in your spreadsheet after converting from a text file

If you are lucky, the very simple way to remove it is to
1) start editing the cell
2) select and copy (Ctrl+C) that symbol
3) press Esc, & Replace window
4) Paste (Ctrl+V) in the Find Waht fieldm and make empty the Replace With window.
5) press Replace All

Depending on the nature of symbol, it will or will not delete all it's occurences in your sheet

If it doesn't work, find out what symbol is that. The formula below (replace A1 with address to one of your cells) will tell you the code of the last symbol
=CODE(RIGHT(A1,1))

You can try enter this symbol in Find What field by dialing the code above on NUMPAD (important!) ketboard while pressing Alt. The entered symbol may stay invisible and look like space to you, but it would be reaplce.

If it also doesn't work - let us know what symbol code you are getting and we find a way
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LVL 7

Expert Comment

by:hippohood
ID: 36601795
the items 3) and 4) shall be as below. Sorry, it seems I have a problem with my browser

3) press Esc, open Find & Replace window (Ctrl+H)
4) Paste (Ctrl+V) in the Find What field and make empty the Replace With window.
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LVL 13

Expert Comment

by:nike_golf
ID: 36601804
We export some documents from a program that also leaves a similar item defined by the program, to identify page breaks on the report it generates a "square".

I would agree with Brian, in that a formula or macro is the best way to remove them unless you can suppress them in the actual program generating the data.

NG,
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LVL 50

Accepted Solution

by:
Ingeborg Hawighorst (Microsoft MVP / EE MVE) earned 1400 total points
ID: 36602196
You can also use the CLEAN() function to strip any non-printable characters from a cell

In a helper column use

=CLEAN(A1)

Copy down. Then copy the helper column and use Paste Special > Values to paste over the original data. Now you can delete the helper column.

This will remove several different non printable characters in one go, so you don't have to repeat a Find and Replace.

cheers, teylyn
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LVL 1

Author Closing Comment

by:dougp23
ID: 36712459
Wow, love that CLEAN function!!
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