Here's our Microsoft Office Tip for.. February 1, 2005
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Need the Results without the Hassle
To learn the sum of a range of values, you must enter a formula that refers to the values you want to sum. Right? Not really. Excel has a feature called AutoCalculate that will display the result of several functions without ever fooling with a formula. Let's suppose cells A1:A4 contain the values 1, 2, 3, and 4, respectively. If you want to see the sum of all four values, select cell A1. Then, drag the mouse over cells A2:A4.

Now, look on the right side of the status bar. You'll see a short message, Sum = 9. If you'd rather see the average value instead of the sum, right-click the message in the status bar and choose Avg from the context menu. You'll find several other functions available.