Fix comments displaying across frozen panes
Comment bubbles only "float" over the fixed worksheet area that's set by default or that's manually changed by the user. They also will float over hidden adjacent rows or columns. However, if a comment is in a cell that's fixed using the "freeze panes" feature but the worksheet display isn't contiguous to the comment bubble, the bubble will be cut off instead of float over the frozen panes.
This makes it impossible to read a comment saved in a row 1 header field (say to read details of what type of data is supposed to go there) but the cell you want to edit is in row 1000.
Can comments be improved to float over all user interface and worksheet elements so they can display without interruption regardless of the freeze panes settings?
Ben Siron commented
It would seem like this would be a very easy fix for the Excel team to handle.
Only one comment is ever shown at a time, so there's no concern with comments overlapping or hiding other comments as you scroll around in a freeze pane view.
It also seems unnecessary to show the freeze pane divider line drawn over the comment window, since we would want the comment to float over the freeze pane and not be affected by the position of the freeze pane lines.
Finally, if there is some concern about this change breaking backwards compatibility, then I'd have to wonder who out there really actually wants their comments to be cut off and partially hidden as they are scrolling through a freeze pane view.
But if this is a concern, then comments could be given a per-comment switch to make the comment float above the the worksheet or continue to be anchored in the worksheet's freeze pane as before. All existing comments would be grandfathered into the current behavior, and all new comments would default to the new floating behavior. The comment window could then have a toggle button to switch the comment between the two overlay modes.
It would be just as helpful to not tie the comment to a column, but rather to a screen location relative to the cell with the comment. When panes are frozen, you can't see the hovering comment if it is located in a column not shown due to frozen panes, regardless of the state of the cell with the comment.
John McCallum commented
This has been one of the biggest annoyances for me with Excel for some time now. Please fix it! Anonymous' comment is clear, but I also see the problem if I have scrolled up to the top. I often put comments in the header lines, but when the headers are frozen for large data sets, those comments cannot be easily edited.
Awful "feature" has been with Excel through many versions over many years. OpenOffice shows comments even with frozen panes.
Joe T commented
How does this only have 2 votes??? The way comments are rendered on screen is one of the most pathetic problems with this powerhouse program. If a comment can render fully when underlying rows/columns are hidden or split, why is it so hard to render them relative to the scroll position of a frozen pane? Being able to DEFINE a relative rendering position would be fantastic, but at the very least the comment should be drawn either inside the unfrozen portion of the sheet, or on top of all so it renders at its original position but as a separate layer "above" the sheet (think CSS absolute positioning) would be sufficient.