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In a Google Doc spreadsheet I would like to have each row the same height no matter how much text is in each cell.

I have tried "resize row" but no matter how many pixels I put in, the row expands downward to the height of the highest cell with full expanded text.

How can I force the row to stay a certain height and insert scrollbars for all text that is longer than that height?

alt text

Here's a video explaining what I mean:


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I can't find a way to do it. I'd be interested in seeing a solution to this as well. –  Al E. Sep 22 '10 at 12:55
There may be a way to show a limited amount of content and then expand it or open in a box onclick using a custom script. How tied are you to the particular interface scetched in your image? –  Dan Roberts Oct 1 '10 at 1:19
The solution I need to to be able to paste "endless text/images" into the little cells so that I can zoom in and look at all that text if I want but can at any time, back up and get an overview of all my notes and code. Right now, I cannot get this overview since the long texts and code inserts expand everything so far down the page. –  Edward Tanguay Oct 7 '10 at 7:21
I've just joined, so my lack of rep points means I'm not allowed to upvote user554370's solution to this, namely to add the large bit of text as a comment instead. I'm not sure if it would have solved the OP's question or not, but it certainly helped me out, so thank you. –  user66994 Apr 25 '14 at 10:56
Took the liberty to upvote !! –  Jacob Jan Tuinstra Apr 25 '14 at 12:05

10 Answers 10

There is no solution for this one. This is just how HTML works. They are using Table for the cells and by default it's not adding scroll bars if the text doesn't fit. Maybe they will change it in the future, but I don't think that this is in their priority list. And it looks like you can merge cells only horizontally, just in case you wanted to merge vertically to make it look nicer.

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I wonder why they didn't implement overflow:scroll on cells to allow for this. –  Al E. Oct 6 '10 at 21:39
Incorrect @Lipis. It's not a limitation of HTML. A simple <div style="overflow:hidden; height: 20px;">Stuff in here</div> would do the trick. –  Levitikon Jun 9 '12 at 17:26
@Levitikon but can you imagine how ugly would that be with so many scrollbars? and if you don't have scrollbars you wouldn't see the whole text.. and you had to guess that there is something more there to see it after you click on it or something.. I don't think that that is a good solution.. –  Lipis Jun 9 '12 at 19:41
@Lipis: So you have cell { overflow:hidden } cell:hover { overflow:scroll } and then you only see the scrollbar of the cell you've hovering over. –  RickMeasham May 22 '14 at 6:35

Fourth option from the right (Menu bar - once you're in the spreadsheet with the results, etc.). There is an option "WRAP TEXT", select the rows you want and click it.

This sorted it out for me. Once wrap text was on and all rows went to a single line height, I could then also select all rows and resize them all when resizing one, just like in Excel.

** The 'Wrap Text' isn't in any of the dropdown menus, it is a button on the ribbon underneath (same section as horizontal and vertical align).

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This was the answer for me, thanks! –  Znarkus Mar 22 '13 at 9:32
This answer is just much more useful than the accepted one! –  freitass Mar 29 '14 at 19:03
@freitass: For the OP, this isn't 'more useful'. He has code in his cell which has many linebreaks. Turning off the wrapping wont fix his (or my) issue as you just end up with the cell being as long as the number of newlines in your content. It would work for paragraph text though. But that isn't the OP's problem. –  RickMeasham May 22 '14 at 6:33

There is no actual way, wrapping will effect cell width not it's height. Whenever it bothers me I add the text as a comment block. Simply right click on a relevant cell and select "comment" off the context menu; delete the auto generated text and paste yours. This way you'll be able to maintain a fixed row height for all your rows.

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I've found that it works to add an additional row under the row you're working on, and then merge the two rows together.

Now, if you paste long text in any of the fields in the "double" row, it will only show you a few lines, keeping your sheet clean and manageable. The text in any field expands for you to read if you double-click on that field.

An example of a spreadsheet excerpt demonstrating the described behavior

Downsides appear when trying to rearrange or sort rows, for instance, since rows work "by two" with this solution, but maybe that's not a big problem.

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If they're not offering the feature your only option may be to create a Greasemonkey script, assuming you want it that bad.

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I agree, that so far this is impossible but have you tried using different hex characters like NBSP for your text? This would make things ugly and lose your formatting I noticed without carriage returns the length of the entry has no bearing on the height.

Edit: You should also submit your (very well presented idea) here

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Simple. Select all cells in the spreadsheet, then unselect the WRAP TEXT button. See button highlighted in the below screenshot. Every row and column will revert back to identical sizes.

enter image description here

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This only works if the text is wrapped. If the text has carriage returns or new lines (as does the text posted in the question) that button doesn't do anything. –  zeh Feb 6 '14 at 20:48

It has to do with the fact that you're copying and pasting from somewhere else. If you're pasting, copy the material to Notepad first and get rid of any unwanted spaces. Then paste into Google Spreadsheet. Then the wrap will work correctly.

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Wrap text worked for me. Here is why: After unwrapping the particular row, I noticed that there was a column for which someone had reduced the width drastically. Not even one character would fit properly in that column (but there were couple of lines of text in that column) and that had caused the row to grow in height tremendously. Since the column was so small, none of the text was visible and even after resizing, the row height did not change. Once unwrapped, all it needed was to change the column width and wrap the row again.

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Fourth option from the right (Menu bar - once you're in the spreadsheet with the results, etc.). There is an option "WRAP TEXT", select the rows you want and click it.

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How does this answer the question? –  Vidar S. Ramdal Nov 6 '12 at 14:32

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