Data Validation in Microsoft Excel

What is Data Validation in Excel?

We use Data validation to restrict or validate the entry in a worksheet or workbook. Through data validation we can allow to user for the specific entries in the data. For example in a range we want to enter only date and other then entry we want to restrict we can validate the range only for date entry.

How to use data validation?

 To understand how to use data validation, let's take an example:-

Original Question:-

We want validate a range, in which we will able to enter only 1,2,3 and letters r & d.

Following is the snapshot of range in which we will apply data validation.




We need to follow the below steps:

  • Select the range A1:D5
  • Press ALT + D + L shortcut key
  • From Settings tab click on Allow drop down & select List
  • In Source box enter “1,2,3,r,d”
  • Ensure unchecking the “In-cell dropdown”




  • Click on Ok button
  • You will find no drop down list in selected cell.
  • User will not allow to enter any value except the number between 1 to 3 & characters ‘r’ & ‘d’ in range A1:D5




  • If we try to enter other value then we will receive following error message




In this way we can work with data validation list without drop down list.


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