Ability to copy "select" options from another column

It would be a huge timesaver to be able to copy “select” options from another column.

I have a spreadsheet I imported and am converting that has multiple columns using the same “select” options. Therefore, I can’t simply use the copy/paste workaround because it will overwrite the data that is there. Although it is very easy to type them in, it would be nice to have the option to copy a range or use the “select” options from a similar column.

When you have to do this for multiple columns, it would be much easier to say, copy column L and have them auto-populate.

Thanks, Linda

+1. Ability to copy over data type information is indeed helpful in cases like these.

Copy/Paste feature, when it supports various paste options (e.g. paste values only, formulas only, formatting only) will have this ability.
Will deliberate with team, if “Paint Format” should have the ability to do this. It doesn’t today.

Thank you for your reply. I would be happy to show you my spreadsheet if you would like to see a use case.

Hi Linda, we’d love to take a look, I will email you as a followup.


Hi Matt,
I just shared the spreadsheet with you. Let me know if you have any additional questions.

Thanks for sharing your workbook with me Linda. I’ve shared some detailed comments with you there and also wanted to post a note here relevant to this thread:

We are considering the concept of shared or select/multiselect lists in the future. We don’t have a timeline on this yet, so for now if you have multiple columns/ranges/cells that need to use the same set of options, unfortunately you need to define them in the data type settings for each of those columns/ranges/cells individually.

Hi Matt,
Thank you for your response and willingness to listen to user feedback. It is much appreciated.

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Just a note about Paint Format and data types. In Excel and Google Sheets, list options are controlled via the Data Validation feature and the Format Painter does not copy data validation.

Through the use of data types, SSDC has essentially merged data validation with number formatting.

I think it makes a lot of sense for the Copy/Paste feature to include a “data type only” option and use “cell formatting only” in place of “formatting only”. Later, you may want to include a “conditional formatting only” option, and maybe you also include an “all formatting” option that includes cell formatting, data types, and conditional formatting.

The idea is to avoid the ambiguity of the term “formatting”. Does it refer to the data type? Does it refer to the specific number formatting within a particular data type? Does it refer to the cell background color and font, word wrap and text alignment? Spreadsheet users are familiar with formatting referring to all of these things, but data types are quite different in SSDC. Data Types don’t just control number formatting (although all number formatting is controlled via data types).

One argument for avoiding copying the data type with the Paint Format feature is that replacing a data type in SSDC can cause you to lose data. Changing a data type gives you the “heads up” message warning you about this. GS and Excel behavior is that the Format Painter copies both cell formatting and number formatting, but it never affects your stored data. Recognizing that the Paint Format feature does not overwrite Data Types allows you to copy the cell formatting to cells with different types with confidence that your stored data will not be changed.

Agree. Right now in SSDC paint format does not copy data types, only “styling” (i.e. font, font styles [bold/italic/underline/strikethrough], font size, cell foreground and background colors, vertical and horizontal alignment, text wrapping, and borders).

Meanwhile, we are tracking the addition of a Paste Special option when pasting as enhancement #000835:

Enable ‘Paste Special’ menu option when SSDC cell data is in the clipboard in right click context menus and main worksheet Edit menu, with the following 4 options:
Paste values only
Paste styles only
Paste data types only
Paste formulas only

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