Weekly Computer Tip # 261
21 February 2009

Quickly format text using your Mini Toolbar
(Office 2007)

Last Monday my mission was to make people fall in love with Word 2007. What was funny was that they all seemed to like the new Office 2007 "Mini Toolbar", something I'm not a great fan of myself. So when asked for their favourite thing (with apologies to anyone who finds themselves humming the Sound of Music tune for the rest of the day) one of them said "mini bar". Now there's a novel way to stop ignoring its disappearing act. (Images of posh hotels with well-stocked fridges flood my mind.)

So what is it? Well, when you select text, a miniature, semitransparent toolbar pops up that provides quick access to the most common formatting tools, such as font, size, alignment and indentation.

Here's how:

  1. Select the text you want to format. (See tip_50.php and tip_51.php for tips on how to select text.)
  2. Move your mouse cursor to the Mini toolbar above your selection.
  3. Select the preferred button(s).

When you right-click anywhere in a document the Mini toolbar also appears, along with the right-click drop-down menu. If it drives you nuts, simply turn it off by clicking the big blob (the Microsoft Office button) in the top left hand corner, click the Word Options (or PowerPoint Options or Editor Options etc) button and unselect the "Show Mini Toolbar on selection" check box.