This post will guide you how to use** Excel LEFT function** with syntax and examples in Microsoft excel.

Table of Contents

**Description**

The Excel LEFT function returns a substring (a specified number of the characters) from a text string, starting from the leftmost character.

The LEFT function is a build-in function in Microsoft Excel and it is categorized as a Text Function.

The LEFT function is available in Excel 2016, Excel 2013, Excel 2010, Excel 2007, Excel 2003, Excel XP, Excel 2000, Excel 2011 for Mac.

**Syntax**

The syntax of the LEFT function is as below:

**= LEFT(text,[num_chars])**

**Where** the LEFT function arguments are:

**Text** -This is a required argument. The text string that you want to extract from.

**num_chars**-This is an optional argument. It will specify the number of characters that you want to extract from Text string.

Note:** **The **Num_chars** value must be greater than or equal to zero. If Num_chars is greather that the length of text string, it will return all of text string. If Num_chars value is omitted, it is set to be 1 by default.

**Example**

The below examples will show you how to use Excel LEFT Text function to extract the leftmost substring from a text string.

**#1** To extract the leftmost 4 characters in the B1 cell, just using formula: **=LEFT(B1,4).**

### More LEFT Function Examples

- Split Text and Numbers

If you want to split text and numbers from one cell into two different cells, you can use a formula based on the FIND function, the LEFT function or the RIGHT function and the MIN function. .… - Sorting IP Address

Assuming that you have an IP list of data in the range of cells B1:B5, and you want to sort those IP list from low to high, how to achieve the result with excel formula. You need to create a formula based on the Text Function, the LEFT function, the FIND function and the MID function, the RIGHT function..… - Removing Salutation from Name

To remove salutation from names string in excel, you can create a formula based on the RIGHT function, the LEN function and the FIND function…… - Sum if Cells Begin with Specific Text or Number in Another Cells

Assuming that you have a list of data A1:B4, and you want to sum all cells in column B if cells in column A begin with a specific text “excel” or a specific number “201”.You also can create a formula based on the SUMPRODUCT function and the LEFT functio..… - Extract Part of Text String

Assuming that you have a list of data in the range of cells B1:B5, and you want to get the most left 5 characters from cells, or you want to get the most right 4 characters as a substring from cells…… - Insert The File Path and Filename into Cell

If you want to insert a file path and filename into a cell in your current worksheet, you can use the CELL function to create a formual…….. - Extract First or Last N Characters

If you want to extract the first n characters of a sting in a cell in Excel, you can use the LEFT function to create a formula to achieve it. ……..

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