I select a column (e.g. Sheet1!A:A) to be protected, then in the right pane I edit the settings (name, permissions), and finally I click Done

What happens: The protected range then switches to Sheet1!A1:A100 (if there are 100 rows).

Naturally, I want to protect the entire column, to avoid fields in that column in new rows to be editable by certain users.

Is it possible to protect an entire column (A:A)? If not, what is the logic behind that restriction?

(See also my question in the Google Product Forums.)


I got here with a similar issue for conditional formatting. Your problem seems fixed as far as protected ranges is concerned Sheet1!A:A is no longer converted into A1:A100 (for example)


As far as I know there is no way around that restriction. Protection of cells is however a new feature to Google docs, and I wouldn't be surprised if they improve it. (Although, cell protection has been heavily requested since at least 2009 and was just recently implemented, so I wouldn't hold my breath.)

Edit: As pointed out in comments, if you add rows within the range the range is automatically expanded, but it fails for the "Add rows att bottom"-button or if you select the last row and select add row below.


I don think so that feature is available within Gdocs. If its there also I am sure its with a technical code.. Mean while I had a similar stint but still try hard to find an option. But came across some alternatives such as CollateBox for the same.. Here in this article http://www.collatebox.com/web/collatebox-or-spreadsheets.html if yu look at the benefits of data, it speaks something similar to what most of us are looking at..This one

  • Yes CollateBox is not yet out in the market, but hope so it reaches us soon. Btw I read through some of their blogs blog.collatebox.com n find them relevant to my use case. Hence banking on this one for spreadsheet sharing solution. – James Sep 4 '12 at 5:41

We can protect a column range in Google Spreadsheet

The owner of the particular spreadsheet can give permission to the viewers or editors of that spreadsheet .

For protecting a column range from users, you need to select a range of cells and right click on it. Select the option NAME AND PROTECT RANGE. Once you select it, check mark the protect button. And you can assign permission to the users whom you share the document with. If you don't want the users to edit the columns, then select the can comment button.

  • 1
    That's what I wrote in my question. It's possible to protect a cell range such as A1:A100. However, it is not possible to protect an entire column such as A:A. Or did I miss something? – feklee Jun 28 '13 at 9:06

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