Every time I teach a class on Word, I remember why I changed the toolbar. The
default installation of Word includes toolbar buttons that I never use. Years
ago, I changed them and I've never looked back. Every time I upgrade Word, it
finds my modified toolbar, so I've never had to think about it again.
Many people think that their application software can't be changed. Not true.
In Word, there may be a lot of toolbars available that you don't even know about.
For example, if you want to insert a picture, rather than choosing the command
from the menu, show the Picture Toolbar, which has a button for the Insert Picture
command. Choose View/Toolbars and click to put a checkmark next to Picture. The
little yellow button is Insert Picture.
If you have trouble figuring out which button is which, you may want to turn
on ScreenTips which are the little yellow text pop ups that
says what each button does. (Screen Tips are great for those of us that are
a bit forgetful!) To ScreenTips, choose View/Toolbars/Customize. Click
the option Tab and put a checkmark next to Show ScreenTips on toolbars.
You can put any Word command onto any toolbar or create your own new toolbars
with all your favorite commands on them. The trick is the Tools/Customize
When the Customize dialog box is open, you can drag buttons to
any toolbar you want to modify or can drag buttons back off the toolbar to remove
them. You can even rearrange buttons by dragging them into a new position. Be
careful when dragging and dropping buttons, howeverif you drag one button
on top of an existing button, Word thinks you are replacing the button, which
may or may not be what you intended to do.
For example, on my personalized Word toolbar, I have a button called Word
Count. This button comes in handy for articles like this one that may need
to be a certain length. Instead of choosing the command from the Tools menu,
I just click a button.
Here's how I added it to the toolbar. First, choose Tools/Customize and
click the Commands tab. You'll see a list of Categories. These
categories correspond to the Word menus. Since we know that the Word Count
command is in the Tools menu, you click the Tools category.
Now scroll down until you find the Word Count command.
Now, click and drag the Word Count command to a toolbar. I put it at
the end of the Standard toolbar (at the top, closest to the menus). But you
can add the button to any toolbar that is visible on your screen. It will show
the name of the command, but you can change it to something else if you prefer.
If you want to change your button, click the Modify Selection button
in the Customize dialog box.
Depending on how you use Word, you may find that you want buttons for commands
that don't appear in the menus. If you don't see the command you are looking
for in a particular category, click All Commands in the Categories
box. You'll see every available Word command.
As I said, while you have the Customize dialog box open, you also can easily
remove buttons. If adding all those buttons makes your toolbar too crowded,
just click and drag the buttons you don't want off the toolbar. And voila, you
have a useful toolbar that only includes the stuff you use and doesn't include
the stuff you don't use.
If you do a search in the online help on Toolbar, you can
find more information on creating your own toolbars and changing the pictures
on buttons too. So go forth and customize!
To read more about customizing toolbars and menus in Word, also see: http://www.mousetrax.com/toolbars.html