How the Chart Editor Applies Templates

Chart settings are applied in the following order, with each subsequent setting overriding previous, overlapping ones. That is, if a subsequent template specifies a setting also in a previous template, the subsequent template's setting overrides the previous template's setting. The order of template application is:

  • Preferences set on the Charts tab of the Options dialog box, except for the default chart template.
  • The default chart template specified on the same tab.
  • Templates applied from syntax, in the order that they appear in the syntax. Templates applied later in the syntax override earlier ones.
  • Templates applied by the user in the Chart Editor.

The Chart Editor does not carry unused settings from each step. For example, if the default chart template defines a style for a reference line, but the chart created is a pie chart, the reference line settings are not saved with the chart.

Templates modify existing chart elements of the same type. Templates can also add elements to a chart if the chart does not include an element identified in the template. However, templates never delete elements in the chart if they do not exist in the template. The template might hide elements, but it will never delete them.