11 Ways to Delete a Comment in Microsoft Excel

Do you want to learn how to delete a comment in Excel? Then you must follow this ultimate guide on Excel comments.

Often, you add comments in your Excel worksheets as instructions or to explain a complex formula for future reference.

Microsoft Excel offers some of the best ways to manage comments including effortless deletion as and when needed.

Read this quick Excel tutorial until the end to learn some of the tried and tested methods to delete Excel worksheet comments.

What Is a Comment In Excel?

Example of Excel notes
Example of Excel comments

An Excel comment is a threaded conversation between the collaborators of the workbook. Excel cells showing a dark magenta arrow in the top right corner mean this is a comment.

This comment styling is for the newest Excel for Microsoft 365 desktop app. For dated editions, comments are indicated as tiny red arrows in the top right corner. In the Excel 365 app, tiny red arrows mean notes.

When you hover the cursor over the cell, the threaded conversation appears. Here, you’ll mostly see your name as synced from your Microsoft 365 subscriptions. You can reply to, resolve, and delete a comment. On the contrary, you can’t reply to a note. You can only edit, hide, or delete notes.

Now that you know the basics of Excel 365 comments and how it’s different from notes, explore various methods to delete notes. If you’re using an older version of Excel, these methods still apply.

Using the Comments Button

Position of the Comments button
Position of the Comments button

If your Excel worksheet contains, you can get an itemized list by clicking on the Comments button in the top right corner of the Excel app. It’s near the Share button.

List of comments
List of comments

Click on that to open a right-side navigation panel listing all the comments in chronological order.

Delete thread
Delete thread

Now, you can click the three dots or More Actions icon to expand a context menu containing two comment management options.

Click on the Delete thread option to remove the comment.

You can now follow the same steps for the rest of the comments in the right-side panel to delete all comments.

Using the Right-Click Method

Three comments in column D
Three comments in column D

Suppose, there are three comments in column D. You want to delete the one in cell D6.

Delete Comment
Delete Comment

You can do that quickly by simply right-clicking on the cell and clicking on the Delete Comment option in the context menu.

This method is only useful if the worksheet you’re working on is quite small and you can see all the datasets, tables, shapes, etc., on one screen.

Using a Keyboard Shortcut

If you like to use keyboard shortcuts to pace up your productivity on Excel, I’ve also got a secret hotkey that you can use to delete a comment.

Shortcut key to delete comment
Shortcut key to delete comment

Select the cell that contains a comment.

Now, press Alt + R + D to remove the comment instantly.

Using the Editing Tool in the Home Tab

Clear Comments and Notes
Clear Comments and Notes

Navigate to the cell or cell ranges containing a comment.

Go to the Home tab and click on the Clear drop-down menu in the Editing commands block.

Choose the Clear Comments and Notes option from the context menu.

Using the Comment Box

You can also delete a comment directly from the comment box.

Delete thread on comment box

Go to the cell from which you’d like to delete a comment.

Hover the cursor over the cell or the comment icon to open the comment box.

Now, drag your cursor on the comment and click on the More Options or the three dots icon.

Select Delete thread from the context menu.

If a comment has been previously resolved by you or someone else, you won’t see the three-dot menu.

Trash bin to delete resolved comments
Trash bin to delete resolved comments

In that scenario, when you hover the mouse cursor over the comment, the comment box with a delete or trash bin icon pops up.

Click on the trash bin to remove the comment.

When you delete or edit a comment on Excel, you can revert to the previous state or bring back the comment by using the Excel Undo feature.

This method is suitable when you’re carefully auditing an Excel worksheet to remove comments.

Deleting Multiple Comments

You can use any of the methods explained already to remove multiple comments instantly. You just need to select all the cells containing comments.

Select whole worksheet
Select the whole worksheet

For instance, you can press Ctrl + A to select the whole worksheet.

How to delete multiple comments in Excel
How to delete multiple comments in Excel

Now, press Alt + H + ZE + E + M to delete all the selected comments.

This hotkey simply uses the Clear Comments and Notes command to delete comments.

Deleting Comments From Data Validation

Clear comments and notes not working
Clear comments and notes aren’t working

Sometimes, you might find that the Delete Comment or the Clear Comments and Notes tools aren’t working when you select a comment.

These comments show up on a yellow dialog box and don’t seem related to the latest threaded conversation style.

These are actually notifications from the Input Message feature of the Data Validation tool.

Therefore, none of the methods you’ve learned so far won’t work on such comments. These notifications also clutter your worksheet similar to redundant comments.

Input message in Data Validation
Input message in Data Validation

If you don’t require the Data Validation comments, highlight the cell or cell range where you get the Input Message box.

Click on the Data Validation drop-down arrow in the Data Tools commands block of the Data tab in the Excel ribbon menu.

You should again see the Data Validation option in the context menu. Click on that.

Deleting Input Message
Deleting Input Message

The Data Validation dialog box will pop up. Navigate to the Input Message tab.

Remove the contents of the Title and Input Message fields.

Click OK to save and apply the changes you’ve just made.

Delete Specific Comments Using Find & Replace

Sometimes, you might want to delete all comments in a worksheet containing a specific name, value, or keyword. You can utilize the Find and Replace tool to achieve this task.

Setting up Find and Replace
Setting up Find and Replace

Firstly, navigate to the worksheet from which you’d like to remove certain comments.

Click on any blank cell and press Ctrl + F to bring up the Find and Replace dialog box.

Type the target keyword, like Priority for the sample exercise in the Find what field.

Click on the Look in drop-down menu and choose Comments from the list.

Find All results
Find All results

Click the Find All button to list all the comments in the worksheet that contains the keyword Priority.

The list also shows you the worksheet name and the cell where the comment is located.

Click on a result
Click on a result

Click on an item in the Find and Replace search results list to select the cell in the worksheet.

Delete comment option
Delete comment option

Now, navigate to the selected cell, right-click, and choose Delete Comment from the context menu.

You can also use this method to delete comments in bulk that contain a specific value or word.

Highlight all search results
Highlight all search results

For that, select an item in the Find and Replace results list and press Ctrl + A to highlight all items.

You’ll see that Excel has highlighted those cells in the worksheet.

Delete multiple comments
Delete multiple comments

Right-click on any of the highlighted cells and click on the Delete Comment option.

Disable Comments From Excel Options

Do you want to temporarily remove all the comments from your worksheet for public presentation purposes? You can try this secret hack to hide all comments within a workbook. These comments will stay hidden until you turn them on again.

Bring up Excel Options
Bring up Excel Options

Open the workbook that contains comments distributed in several worksheets.

Press Alt + F + T to bring up the Excel Options dialog.

Change comments display
Change comments display

Click on the Advanced menu located on the left-side navigation panel.

Scroll down the options on the right side menu of the Excel Options to find the Display section.

Once you locate the Display section, click on the No comments… selection.

Click OK to save and apply the changes you’ve just made.

You’ll now find that there are no comments in the workbook. To get back the comments, repeat the above steps, and choose the Indicators only… selection.

Deleting Comments in Excel Using VBA

Do you know how to automate tasks on Excel using VBA? Are you willing to learn Excel VBA by using pre-written VBA scripts?

If yes, I’ve created this special segment just for you. Here, I’ve demonstrated how to delete a comment in Excel programmatically using VBA.

Before you take a look at the simple VBA scripts for different ways to delete comments, learn below the technique to set up a macro using a VBA script:

📒 Read More: How To Use The VBA Code You Find Online

Now that you’ve learned the simple method to create a VBA macro, let’s look at the automatic methods and scripts below:

VBA Script To Delete All Comments in All Worksheets

Use this VBA script to create a VBA macro that’ll delete all the threaded conversations or comments in all worksheets of the active workbook.

VBA Script To Delete All Comments in All Worksheets
Sub RemoveComments()
    Dim ws As Worksheet
    For Each ws In Worksheets
        ws.Cells.ClearComments
    Next ws
End Sub

You don’t need to customize any part of the above code.

Macro dialog box
Macro dialog box

Once you’ve created a VBA macro, press Alt + F8 to bring up the Macro dialog.

There, select the RemoveComments macro and hit the Run button.

Microsoft Excel will immediately remove all the comments.

⚠️ Warning: Any changes you make using a VBA macro are irreversible. You can undo the change automatically. So, create a backup copy of your workbook before trying the VBA-best methods.

VBA Macro To Delete All Comments in a Specific Worksheet

Let’s say there are more than 100 worksheets in your workbook. It’s an unproductive approach to manually navigate to Sheet73 and delete all of its comments manually.

Instead, create a VBA macro using the following script:

Delete comments in a specific worksheet
Delete comments in a specific worksheet
Sub DeleteThreadedComments()
    Dim ws As Worksheet
    Dim targetSheetName As String
    Dim c As CommentThreaded
    
    ' Show an input box to enter the target worksheet name
    targetSheetName = InputBox("Enter the name of the target worksheet:")
    
    On Error Resume Next
    Set ws = Worksheets(targetSheetName)
    On Error GoTo 0
    
    If Not ws Is Nothing Then
        For Each c In ws.CommentsThreaded
            c.Delete
        Next c
        MsgBox "Threaded comments deleted successfully.", vbInformation
    Else
        MsgBox "Worksheet '" & targetSheetName & "' not found.", vbExclamation
    End If
End Sub
Enter worksheet name
Enter worksheet name

When you execute the above macro, you’ll see a dialog box like the one shown in the above screenshot. There, you can enter the name of the worksheet.

All comments deleted using VBA

Once the process is complete, you’ll see a notification as displayed above.

For dated Excel desktop apps, use the following VBA code instead:

Sub DeleteCommentsInSpecificWorksheet()
    Dim ws As Worksheet
    Dim targetSheetName As String
    Dim comment As comment
    
    ' Prompt user for the target worksheet name
    targetSheetName = InputBox("Enter the name of the target worksheet:")
    
    ' Check if the worksheet exists
    On Error Resume Next
    Set ws = Worksheets(targetSheetName)
    On Error GoTo 0
    
    If Not ws Is Nothing Then
        ' Loop through all comments in the worksheet and delete them
        For Each comment In ws.Comments
            comment.Delete
        Next comment
        MsgBox "All comments in '" & targetSheetName & "' have been deleted.", vbInformation
    Else
        MsgBox "Worksheet '" & targetSheetName & "' not found.", vbExclamation
    End If
End Sub

The above script has been tailored to remove old Excel comments, presently known as Notes in the Excel 265 app.

VBA Script To Delete Comments in a Specific Range

Do you know in which cell range comments are available? You can use the following VBA script to develop a macro that’ll remove comments from the defined cell range:

Sample script for cell range
Sample script for cell range
Sub DeleteThreadedCommentsInRange()
    Dim ws As Worksheet
    Dim rng As Range
    Dim sheetName As String
    Dim commentRange As String
    
    ' Prompt for sheet name
    sheetName = InputBox("Enter the sheet name:")
    
    ' Prompt for cell range
    commentRange = InputBox("Enter the cell range for comments (e.g., A1:B10):")
    
    On Error Resume Next
    Set ws = ThisWorkbook.Sheets(sheetName)
    On Error GoTo 0
    
    If Not ws Is Nothing Then
        Set rng = ws.Range(commentRange)
        If Not rng Is Nothing Then
            rng.ClearComments
            MsgBox "Threaded comments deleted successfully!", vbInformation
        Else
            MsgBox "Invalid cell range. Please check your input.", vbExclamation
        End If
    Else
        MsgBox "Sheet not found. Please check the sheet name.", vbExclamation
    End If
End Sub
Provide the sheet name
Provide the sheet name

Upon running the above script, you’ll first see the input box to choose a worksheet.

Provide the target cell range
Provide the target cell range

Then, Excel will ask you for the cell range to look for comments.

Comment deletion task complete
Comment deletion task complete

The Excel VBA will show a notification once the task is complete.

VBA Macro to Delete Comments Based on Conditions

The following VBA script allows you to delete comments based on conditions, like authors, comment dates, and keywords in comments.

Sample of conditional VBA script
Sample of conditional VBA script
Sub DeleteThreadedComments()
    Dim ws As Worksheet
    Dim conditionType As String
    Dim conditionValue As String
    Dim comment As CommentThreaded
    
    ' Prompt for sheet name
    On Error Resume Next
    Set ws = Worksheets(InputBox("Enter the sheet name:"))
    On Error GoTo 0
    
    If ws Is Nothing Then
        MsgBox "Sheet not found. Please enter a valid sheet name.", vbExclamation
        Exit Sub
    End If
    
    ' Prompt for condition type
    conditionType = UCase(InputBox("Enter the condition type (Author/Date/Keyword):"))
    
    Select Case conditionType
        Case "AUTHOR"
            ' Prompt for author name
            conditionValue = InputBox("Enter the author name:")
        Case "DATE"
            ' Prompt for date
            conditionValue = InputBox("Enter the date (format: MM/DD/YYYY):")
        Case "KEYWORD"
            ' Prompt for keyword
            conditionValue = InputBox("Enter the keyword:")
        Case Else
            MsgBox "Invalid condition type. Please choose Author, Date, or Keyword.", vbExclamation
            Exit Sub
    End Select
    
    ' Delete matching comments
    For Each comment In ws.CommentsThreaded
        Select Case conditionType
            Case "AUTHOR"
                If comment.Author.Name = conditionValue Then
                    comment.Delete
                End If
            Case "DATE"
                If comment.Date = CDate(conditionValue) Then
                    comment.Delete
                End If
            Case "KEYWORD"
                If InStr(1, comment.Text, conditionValue, vbTextCompare) > 0 Then
                    comment.Delete
                End If
        End Select
    Next comment
    
    MsgBox "Threaded comments deleted based on the specified condition.", vbInformation
End Sub

Don’t make any changes to the script. You should use it as is.

It’ll show the following input boxes to guide you through the process:

Get sheet name
Get sheet name
  • Enter sheet name
Get condition
Get condition
  • Enter the condition type from Author, Date, and Keyword
Enter the data for condition
Enter the data for the condition
  • Enter the data for the chosen condition
Work completed notification
Work completed notification
  • Work completed notification

Troubleshoot Comment Deletion in Excel

No Delete Comment option
No Delete Comment option

Often you might find blank comments. You won’t be able to delete those using the Delete Comment command from the right-click context menu.

In that case, hover over the cell containing the blank comment.

Cancel comment
Cancel comment

On the comment box, click on the Cancel or cross button.

Conclusions

By deleting comments, you can make your worksheet more easily readable and free from unwanted content that might give away company secrets to the public.

Also, if your workbook is extremely bulky and you’re looking for ways to reduce Excel file size, you can delete comments.

Try the methods mentioned in this article that match your scenario. If the article helped you learn a new Excel skill or you want to share a better method to remove comments in Excel, write below.

About the Author

Bipasha Nath

Bipasha Nath

Bipasha is a technical content writer with 10+ years of experience in the technology industry. She previously worked in a SaaS software development company focused on SharePoint, OneDrive, Word, Excel, Word solutions.

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