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I use PSPad as a text editor, which allows you to press Alt + D to insert a timestamp, e.g.:

2010-07-17 23:45:44

Is there a way to do this in a Google Spreadsheet?

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This would be helpful in using a Google document as something like an engineering log. +1. – Thomas Owens Jul 17 '10 at 22:54
yes, I use google docs as external datasources for websites and would like to be able to timestamp for this reason – Edward Tanguay Jul 17 '10 at 23:17
@EdwardTanguay if you by any chance passing by.. you should change the correct answer to the most voted one :) – Lipis May 9 at 20:39

8 Answers 8

up vote 6 down vote accepted

I use AutoHotKey to perform this function.

AutoHotKey is a Windows scripting application and language.

The code I use is below, it would be easily modifiable to insert the time and change the slashes to hyphens if that is what you prefer.

+!d:: ;Shift-Alt-D: Insert current date
SendInput %A_DD%/%A_MM%/%A_YYYY%
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yes, autohotkey is my friend, odd I forgot about it for this, I used %A_YYYY%-%A_MM%-%A_DD% %A_Hour%:%A_Min%:%A_Sec% and it works perfectly, thanks! – Edward Tanguay Jul 18 '10 at 8:32
No worries, glad I reminded you :) – tobeannounced Jul 20 '10 at 22:28

Google Sheets doesn't support it, but you can try another workaround without external apps:

  1. Insert a comment (Ctrl + M)
  2. Copy the TimeStamp from there (Ctrl + C or Ctrl + X)
  3. Delete the comment (Right click > Delete)
  4. Paste the TimeStamp (Ctrl + V)

(If you are on a MacOS, use Cmd instead of Ctrl for Copy/Cut/Paste, but Ctrl + M for inserting the comment, because Cmd + M is minimizing the window.)

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Google Sheets supports the following keyboard shortcuts:

  • Ctrl + Shift + : is the keystroke to insert time.

  • Ctrl + ; is the keystroke to insert date.

See Keyboard accelerators, mnemonics, and shortcuts for more details.

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This is similar to Microsoft Excel, however, unlike Excel you can't seem to follow one shortcut with another in order to produce a complete timestamp. The shortcut in Google Docs only seems to work when the entire cell is selected, not when it is being edited, so you can only get the date OR the time with this method, not both. – w3d Jul 9 '12 at 14:21
Nice! Note, this only works for Spreadsheets, not Documents. – jimmyorr Sep 7 '12 at 17:26
The shortcuts insert time or date in a single cell but not both. – Rubén May 9 at 18:34
  1. In a nearby cell, or within a frozen pane, input =today() into a cell to get the current date.
  2. Copy the cell, and then use (Paste special → Paste values only) from the edit menu, to get a static date and time, at the time that you pasted the value in the cell that you wanted the date stamp.
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Equivalently, use Ctrl-C followed by Ctrl-Shift-V (without reaching the menu). The same approach can be used with =now() to get both date and time within the same cell: this is arguably the easiest way to do this without a script. – Normal Human Jul 22 at 16:04

You can put in a bookmarklet with this location:

javascript:var thetime=new Date();var txtNode=document.createTextNode((thetime.getMonth()+1)+'/'+thetime.getDate()+'/'+thetime.getFullYear()+' '+thetime.getHours()+':'+thetime.getMinutes()+':'+thetime.getSeconds()); var myInputNode=document.getElementsByClassName('cell-input')[1]; if (myInputNode.hasChildNodes()) {  myInputNode.replaceChild(txtNode, myInputNode.childNodes[0]); } else { myInputNode.appendChild(txtNode); }; void(0);

then edit the cell and click the bookmarklet.

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The formula for current date-time is =now(). This can be used to create a static timestamp as follows:

  1. Enter =NOW() in a cell
  2. Copy this value with CtrlC
  3. Paste into the same cell with CtrlShiftV (or equivalents for "paste text only" on other platforms)
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That's not a timestamp though, is it? It's just showing the current date/time when the spread sheet was opened, no? – Al E. Jan 9 '13 at 1:31

I created a little script that converts the string literal "_now" to current datetime -

function onEdit(e) {
  if (e.range.getValue() == "_now") {
    e.range.setValue(new Date());

I find it pretty handy to type _now and have it convert to current datetime value.

See and for more info on how to add this to your Google Spreadsheet

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Power to Google Apps Script – Jacob Jan Tuinstra May 20 '13 at 8:56
This one should be the answer if considering across all platforms not just for windows. – Robert Dec 24 '14 at 15:10
@Robert, Isn't a better answer? – Pacerier May 24 at 20:39
@Pacerier I don't think so as these short cuts only add the date or time. Not the date/time the OP asked for. Read the comments made at the link you provided. – Jacob Jan Tuinstra Aug 7 at 13:59

You can refer this tutorial, it contains video too. In the script code, change

var timestamp_format = "MM-dd-yyyy"; // Timestamp Format.

By default it only gives you date, change to below code to get time.

var timestamp_format = "MM-dd-yyyy hh:mm:ss"; // Timestamp Format.

Is this what you are looking for ? I tried it and it works perfectly.

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