Let’s take a look. Here we have a set of dates in column B of our table. Let’s start off by copying these dates to all columns. Let’s look first at the Short Date and Long Date formats. We can apply both of these date formats using the Number Format menu on the home tab of the ribbon. If we visit the Format Cells dialog box, we see that both the Short and the Long date formats are marked with an asterisk indicating that they are controlled by regional date and time settings in the operating system. If we change the Long Date format in Windows in the Region and Language control panel, we’ll see that change reflected in Excel. This means that dates in these formats may look different on different computers. To set the Date format indicated in columns E through H, we need to use the Format Cells dialog. Access this dialog using any of the techniques covered previously. We’ll use several methods here. The date format in column H includes time. Since we haven’t set a time for any of these dates, they will all display with a time of 12:00 AM. As with other number formats, note that the value stored in each cell doesn’t change. Only the display is different for each format.  The value in column H looks different, but if we apply the default date format again, we can see that the value is actually the same.

Dave Bruns

Hi - I’m Dave Bruns, and I run Exceljet with my wife, Lisa. Our goal is to help you work faster in Excel. We create short videos, and clear examples of formulas, functions, pivot tables, conditional formatting, and charts.