The Annoyance:

I’m the vice president of sales and marketing of a 5,000-person corporation, and I want my assistant to create a pie chart that shows the relative sales percentages of our 70 products. I’ve finally gotten over the fact that Excel can display only 56 colors at a time. Really, I have. But what I truly hate is that the color palette has some repeat colors in it. I need every color I can get! Can I replace those repeat colors in the Excel color palette with new ones?

The Fix:

You can, indeed. The repeat colors in the Excel palette, listed by ColorIndex value, are:

  • Color 32 (repeats Color 5, Blue)

  • Color 27 (repeats Color 6, Yellow)

  • Color 26 (repeats Color 7, Magenta)

  • Color 28 (repeats Color 8, Cyan/Aqua)

  • Color 30 (repeats Color 9, Dark Red)

  • Color 29 (repeats Color 13, Violet)

  • Color 31 (repeats Color 14, Teal)

  • Color 54 (repeats Color 18, Plum)

  • Color 34 (repeats Color 20, Light Turquoise)

To change colors in the Excel color palette, follow these steps:

  1. Choose Tools Options and click the Color tab to see the current workbook’s color palette. Figure 2-6 shows the positions of the repeat colors in the default Excel palette (the repeats are crossed out).

  2. Click the color you want to replace and click the Modify button.

  3. In the Colors dialog box, click the desired replacement color. If you don’t see the color you want or if you want to enter a precise RGB value, click the Custom tab (see Figure 2-7). (RGB is an abbreviation ...

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