Comments and notes

Applies to: Excel for Office 365, Excel 2019, Excel 2016, Excel 2013, Excel 2010.

Office 365

Excel for Office 365 has updated how comments operate. Comments are now threaded, and enable you to have conversations with various people about the data. Notes are tailored for making notes or annotations regarding the data, and function similarly to comments like how they formerly worked in earlier versions of Excel.


Cell with $1,234.00, and a threaded comment attached: "Dave Ludwig: Is this figure correct?" "Amy Smith: Let me check..." and so on
Comments have a Reply box. When people reply, you can view a string of multiple comments linked together, presenting a virtual conversation in the workbook. If you must talk about data with other people, then use a comment.

Add a comment

  1. Right-click a cell and pick New Comment.
  1. In the comment box, write your comment. You can also @mention someone to add them in the comment thread.
  1. Shift your cursor off of the cell. The comment fades away, but a purple comment indicator is intact. To notice the comment again, hover over the cell.

Review comments

  • Click the Review tab, and press Previous Comment or Next Comment to check every comment in sequence.

Show/Hide all comments at once

  • Pick the Review tab, and select Show Comments. A new Comments task pane will appear on the right presenting each of your comments sequentially.

Delete a comment

  • Select the More thread actions button () in the comments’ upper right-hand corner, and press Delete thread.

Resolve a thread

  • Pick the More thread actions button () in the comments’ upper right-hand corner, and click Resolve thread.


Cell with $1,234.00, and an oOlder, legacy comment attached: "Dave Ludwig: Is this figure correct?"
Notes (previously called “comments” in earlier versions of Excel) have no Reply box. Notes are merely for creating annotations or reminders in cells. If a discussion about the data is irrelevant, then select a note.

Add a note

  1. Right-click a cell and press New Note.
  1. In the note box, enter your note.
  1. Select outside the note. The note box disappears, but a red note indicator stays constant. To view the note again, hover over the cell.

Note: To format your comment, highlight the text you want to change, right-click on the note and choose Format Comment.

Review notes

  • Choose the Review tab > Notes, and press Previous Note or Next Note to view every note in sequence.

Show/Hide all notes at once

  • Pick the Review tab > Notes >Show All Notes. This will switch your notes on and off.

Move a note

  • Select on a note’s border, then drag it.

Resize a note

  • Press on a note’s border, then drag one of the sizing handles on its side or corner.

Delete a note

  • Select on the note’s border, and press Delete.

Convert to Comments

  • If you want to exploit the threaded comments in a current note, click the Review tab > Notes > Convert to Comments.

See Also

What to do if you’re missing New Comment and New Note from Excel’s context menu

Need more help?

You can always ask an expert in the Excel Tech Community, get support in the Answers community, or suggest a new feature or improvement on Excel User Voice.

See Also

Insert comments and notes in Excel

The difference between threaded comments and notes

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