Word 2007 Cheat Sheet

Microsoft Word 2007's new interface is likely to confound veteran Word users. Here's everything you need to know to make the switch.

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The Office Button and Quick Access Toolbar: Your New Best Friends

There are two more new Word tools that you'll want to get to know -- the Office Button and the Quick Access toolbar. Think of the Office Button as a greatly expanded File menu from the Word 2003 days -- the File menu on steroids.

Office Button options

Clicking the Office Button reveals everything the File menu used to, and more. Click to view larger image.

As you can see in the nearby figure, it's where to go for the various Open, Save, New, Print and related options and also includes a list of all your recently opened files.

But there are three particularly noteworthy new features here as well -- Prepare, Publish and Convert. Use Prepare when you've finished writing or editing your document and you're ready to send it to someone else. There are plenty of great new options here, such as marking a document as final or marking it read-only; encrypting the document; inspecting it for hidden metadata and information you'd prefer remain private; and editing the document's properties, such as title, keywords and author.

Publish does exactly what it says -- it gives options for publishing a document. You'll be able to publish your document as a blog to a variety of blogging services, including Blogger, Windows Live Spaces, TypePad and WordPress. If your company uses a document management server or SharePoint, you can publish it there as well.

Convert lets you convert documents saved in older formats to the new Microsoft Office Open XML format (.docx), which is the new Office standard.

For those who like to fiddle with the Word interface and how it works, the Word Options button, located at the bottom of the Office Button's box, lets you customize Word in many ways, including its display and editing options. It has many of the features that you accessed via Tools > Options in previous versions of Word.

One thing you won't find, however, is the plethora of customizable toolbars that were in previous versions. There's just one customizable toolbar in Word 2007, but you'll love it.

Even those who can't stand the Word makeover and the Ribbon will find at least one thing to cheer about -- the Quick Access toolbar. This nifty little tool, sitting just to the right of the Office Button, seems innocuous enough, but spend some time with it and you'll see it's one of the best additions to the new interface.

Customizing the Quick Access toolbar

It's easy to add and remove buttons on the Quick Access toolbar. Click to view larger image.

The three buttons on the left aren't particularly noteworthy -- Save, Undo and Redo -- but the nearly invisible Down arrow to the right of them is the key to the toolbar. Click it, and you'll be able to add and remove toolbar buttons for a preset list of commands.

Customize the Quick Access toolbar to your liking, and you will hardly ever have to use the Ribbon. And as you'll see in the next section, there are plenty of other ways to customize the Quick Access toolbar as well.

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