Re: How setting heading rows and columns in Excel, and reading of those by NVDA, works . . .

Cearbhall O'Meadhra



It does look as though you have a profile for the Spreadsheet.

Press NVDA +control +p to see what profiles you have in your NVDA. There should be a “Normal” profile by default.


When you are on the  desktop, the Normal profile is active. Your column reading parameters would then be saved in the Normal profile.


If, as I suspect, you have the “Spreadsheet” profile, this will become active as soon as you open Excel.


When you set the parameters while outside Excel, the column reading parameters that you set up were saved in the Normal profile.


What you have done now that you have opened Excel, is to set the column reading settings in the Spreadsheet profile and that explains why they are now working whenever you open excel.


There is a detailed explanation of the profiles in the NVDA user manual. I recommend you read that and try setting up manual profiles and triggered ones just to see how they work.


All the best,




m +353 (0)833323487 Ph: _353 (0)1-2864623 e: cearbhall.omeadhra@...



From: <> On Behalf Of John Isige
Sent: Wednesday, January 26, 2022 5:46 PM
Subject: Re: [nvda] Reading row or column headers in Excel, how does it work?


Thanks, that did it! I had that set but I wonder if the problem was that I set it in the general configuration, i.e. in NVDA outside of Excel? I did apply and then save it, but I wonder if it didn't get carried over into the Excel profile? Well I set it up, saved the workbook, and hit ctrl-NVDA-c to save the current configuration while in Excel. Opening the workbook again works, so yay!


On 1/26/2022 3:35 AM, Cearbhall O'Meadhra wrote:



Your table looks fine.


Have you set these three parameters in Document configuration in the excel profile?:

  1. Open an Excel worksheet to open the Excel profile;
  2. Press NVDA+Control+d for Document settings;
  3. Check all of these items:


    row/column headings

   Cell co-ordinates;

  1. Press control+shift +r to set row headings.

If those are all set, you should hear the row headings as described.


All the best,




m +353 (0)833323487 Ph: _353 (0)1-2864623 e: cearbhall.omeadhra@...



From: <> On Behalf Of John Isige
Sent: Wednesday, January 26, 2022 2:44 AM
Subject: Re: [nvda] Reading row or column headers in Excel, how does it work?


Thanks, everybody! I have a table like so:


A1: title

a2: artist

a3: album


If I go to A1 and hit NVDA-shift-c to set column headers, and then arrow down to A2, all is well, I hear Jalla Jalla, which is a track title, followed by A2. However, when I arrow right to B2, I hear Frigg B2. It is my understanding now, and thanks for the great explanation, that I *should* hear Frigg B2 artist.


I generated my table by making a CSV file from MP3Tag and then importing that file into Excel, and then saving the resulting worksheet, or workbook, or whatever it is. Could that be the problem? To check I hit ctrl-n to make a new thingy and did:


A1: stuff

B1: more stuff

C1: still more stuff


A2: 3

B2: 4

C2: 5


Arrowing down and then right just gave me 4 B2, rather than 4 B2 more stuff, which is what I'd expect from the explanation.


On 1/25/2022 5:24 PM, Brian Vogel wrote:

On Tue, Jan 25, 2022 at 05:35 PM, Cearbhall O'Meadhra wrote:

In a sample table like this:

A1= Invoice; b1=Name; c1= Date; d1= Cost ; ….

A2= 4000004325; B2=Fred Smith; C2= 02/02/2022; d2= $25.15; …   ….


One of the things that many have trouble wrapping their heads around, and I include myself, is that column headings reside in a ROW, and row headings reside in a COLUMN.  And, of course, depending on the format of the chart in question it may have only column headings (in one row) or row headings (in one column) but not both.

Cearbhall's example makes a perfectly wonderful illustration of exactly why that is, and also is a marvelous explanation of why what gets announced when it does depending on whether you are moving across (which will make column headings announced) versus down (which will get row headings announced).

My thanks for distilling this so very well.

Brian - Windows 10, 64-Bit, Version 21H2, Build 19044  

The instinctive need to be the member of a closely-knit group fighting for common ideals may grow so strong that it becomes inessential what these ideals are.

       ~ Konrad Lorenz (1903-1989)



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