Tell Bill Gates to fix Excel bug, urges 'Pivot King'
AccountingWEB's Excel Topic Expert David Carter has warned of a potentially lethal bug in Microsoft's Excel spreadsheet program and urged community members to tell Bill Gates to fix it.
"Now that the danger of the Y2K bug has passed, it's time to tackle the AZ bug," said Carter, the self-styled "Pivot King".
The problem occurs when users use Excel's AZ icon with a single column highlighted. Although data in that column will be sorted into alphabetical order, the other columns remain as they were - potentially corrupting the user's database.
"This is a Grade-A fault and quite lethal," said Carter. "One day you will need to do an AZ Sort and will click on the column heading without thinking. You won't realise what has happened until later, and if in the intervening time you have saved the workbook, your database is corrupted beyond repair.
"The long-standing flaw is highlighted in David Carter's latest AccountingWEB tutorial on auditing and financial reporting with pivot tables.
"If there was just one tutorial I would like an accountant to see in order to understand the sheer power of Excel and pivot tables, this would be it," he added.
The follow-up to last month's Sage Line 50 tutorial provides pivot-table ready accounting records (trial balance, debtors control summary, bank reconciliation, daybook analysis) and generates financial reports from them.
The AZ bug adds a bit of danger to the exercise. Carter advises users they can either train their subconscious minds always to click on a particular row, say Row 10, before clicking the AZ icon. Or they can send an email to Microsoft's chief software architect Bill Gates urging him to fix the glitch.
"If a thousand British accountants all complain politely about it to Mr Gates at the same time, maybe we'll get some action," said Carter.
Bill Gates can be reached at the email address email@example.com.
David Carter's pivot table tutorials are among the most popular items on AccountingWEB. They include demonstrations on how pivot tables can be used for budgeting, and sales analysis. Sage users can also download and try Carter's SagePivot data extraction program.
- Directors' advances and credits 309 1
- HMRC Statements 290 5
- What would you do here, potential insolvency. 1,273 14
- NEST web services & Moneysoft 505 7
- Goodwill on incorporation low level valuations 216 3
- Transfering bank balnces between old and new co. 344 10
- Best software for small practice? 372 12
- How did you recalculate your payroll fees 1,195 19
- Online accounting provider for multicompany with turnover £10m 168 3
- Anyone having problems with Taxfiler 166 4
- VAT and CT issues on splitting of business 285 6
- Costly Accounting Software contract 443 2
- Notifying HMRC when striking off company that never traded 242 3
- Company Number 10000000 644 5
- Any update on 2016/17 employer NIC allowance and directors? 231 2
- Car benefit or not? 2,343 21
- Cloud-based email services? 583 11
- Class 1A NIC on motorbike fuel 165 5
- 2012 13 HMRC QUERY 689 10
- Tax Planning for Family and Owner-Managed Companies 2015/16 459 7
- Self employed and HMRC Worldwide Subsistence Rates 757
- Interest paid - do new rules affect Tax Credits? 449
- Market Invoice (P2P invoice discounting) tax treatment 267
- DTA tie-breaker issue 260
- Tax on internet ad sharing income 242
- Credit against UK NI for NI paid to EEC Countries 219
- CGT for NOn UK residents 211
- Apprenticeship Levy 190
- What are the tax implications of overseas sales through a UK based company? 189
- Capital Gains personal representatives 174