Working in the Program Environment

The most common way to start any Office 2010 program is from the Start menu, displayed when you click the Start button at the left end of the Windows Taskbar. On the Start menu, click All Programs, click the Microsoft Office folder, and then click the program you want to start.

When you start Microsoft Word, Excel, or PowerPoint without opening a specific file, the program window appears, displaying a new blank document, workbook, or presentation.

When you start Microsoft OneNote without opening a specific notebook, the program window displays the notebook you opened most recently.

A typical Office 2010 program window contains the following elements:

● The title bar displays the name of the active document. At the left end of the title bar is the program icon, which you click to display commands to move, size, and close the program window. Three buttons at the right end of the title bar serve the same functions in all Windows programs: You can temporarily hide the program window by clicking the Minimize button, adjust the size of the window by clicking the Restore Down/Maximize button, and close the active document or exit the program by clicking the Close button.

● By default, the Quick Access Toolbar appears to the right of the program icon at the left end of the title bar. Each program has a default set of Quick Access Toolbar buttons; most commonly, the default Quick Access Toolbar displays the Save, Undo, and Redo buttons. You can change the location of the Quick Access Toolbar and customize it to include any command to which you want to have easy access.

● Below the title bar is the ribbon. All the commands for working with file content are available from this central location so that you can work efficiently with the program.

● Across the top of the ribbon is a set of tabs. Clicking a tab displays an associated set of commands.

Tip: You might find it efficient to add all the commands you use frequently to the Quick Access Toolbar and display it below the ribbon, directly above the workspace. For information, see “Customizing the Quick Access Toolbar” later in this course.

● Commands related to managing the program and files (rather than file content) are gathered together in the Backstage view, which you display by clicking the colored File tab located at the left end of the ribbon. Commands available in the Backstage view are organized on named pages, which you display by clicking the page tabs located in the left pane.

● Commands related to working with file content are represented as buttons on the remaining tabs. The Home tab is active by default.

Tip: Don’t be alarmed if your ribbon has tabs not shown in our screens. You might have installed programs that add their own tabs to the ribbon.

● On each tab, buttons are organized into named groups. Depending on your screen resolution and the size of the program window, the commands in a group might be displayed as labeled buttons, as unlabeled icons, or as one or more large buttons that you click to display the commands within the group. You might want to experiment with the screen resolution and width of the program window to understand their effect on the appearance of tab content.

● If a button label isn’t visible, you can display the command, a description of its function, and its keyboard shortcut (if it has one) in a ScreenTip by pointing to the button.

Tip: You can control the display of ScreenTips and of feature descriptions in ScreenTips. Simply display the Backstage view, click Options to open the program’s Options dialog box, and click the ScreenTip setting you want in the User Interface Options area of the General page. For more information, see “Changing Program Settings” later in this course.


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