Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.
The following articles are available for the 'Word's Environment and Interface' topic. Click the article's title (shown in bold) to see the associated article.
Adding a Little Color
The normal way to change the color of selected text is through the use of the Font Color tool. If you have to use the same color over and over again, there is a different way—you can create your own color tool as described in this tip.
Arranging Document Windows
When you have multiple documents open at the same time, you need a way to control how those document windows appear on the screen. Here's a way to make sure that all your windows are displayed as you want them displayed.
Asking for Delete Confirmation
When you select some text and then press the Del key, the text should immediately be removed from your document. If you see a message on the status bar asking if you are sure you want to make the deletion, this is an artifact of the WordPerfect support built into Word. This tip explains how to get rid of this prompt so you can get on with deleting.
Button for Leaving Full-Screen Mode
If you display your document in full-screen mode, there are a couple of ways you can get back to normal mode. One method relies on a special toolbar, but what are you to do if that toolbar doesn't display as you expect? This tip provides a couple of things you can do to get operations back to normal.
Controlling Display of the Status Bar
The status bar is used to display all sorts of information about the document on which you are working. Depending on your version of Word, you can easily turn the status bar off if you never use it.
Controlling Field Shading
If you use fields in your documents, you may want to highlight them in some way so that you can find them easier. Word includes a setting that allows you to specify exactly how you want your fields shaded.
Discovering Where Word Stores Settings
How to find your setting information in Word.
Entering Units of Measurement in Dialog Boxes
There are many dialog boxes in Word that allow you to specify various settings that affect the way the program lays out your document. Fortunately, Word is very flexible in letting you enter measures in virtually any manner you can imagine.
Getting Context-Sensitive Help
Word employs what is called a context-sensitive help system. This means that the program tries to direct you to the portion of the help system that is most likely to answer your question, based on what you are viewing or doing. There are several ways to invoke this type of help, as you learn here.
Minimized Word Window
When you open a document by double-clicking its icon, does it open maximized or minimized on the screen? This tip explains one of the causes of Word not opening the way you want it to—through making some configuration changes in Windows itself.
Nifty Zooming With the Mouse
Want to use the mouse to control the zoom level for your document? You can do it by combining your mouse use with the Ctrl key.
Page Layout Zoom Settings
The zoom setting at which you view a document can sometimes be saved with a document. This tip explains how the zoom setting is set and reset within Word.
Single Instance of Word
Here's a nifty macro that allows you to limit how many instances of Word 97 are open at the same time.
Understanding MRU Files
Don't you love all the acronyms used in computer terminology? One such acronym—pertinent to Word users—is MRU. This tip explains what MRU means and why it should matter to you.
Understanding the At and Ln Indicators
Part of the helpful information that Word provides on the status bar is designated by the labels "At" and "Ln." Here's what those designations mean.
Want to see how your document will look before it's printed? Or, do you want to see what things will look like if you put your document on the web? Word allows you to easily view your document in a few different ways. Here's how.
Using Text Boundaries
Text boundaries can help you better visualize where text can appear in your document. The feature is easy to turn on and off, as described in this tip.
Using the Style Area
The style area is an esoteric feature of Word that allows you to easily see the styles applied to the paragraphs in your document. Here's how to display and use that style area.
Viewing Your Document Full-Screen
Want to see the absolute most of your document that you can? Then you need to become familiar with the full-screen display built into Word.
Viewing Your Entire Document Width
The Zoom tool is very useful to help you see all of your document information. Here's how to make sure you can see all the document information horizontally.
Working with Document Panes
Need to work with two different parts of a document at the same time? The answer is to rely on Word's ability to display document panes. Here's how you use them.
The following are additional topics related to the subject of Word's Environment and Interface. A bracketed number after the topic indicates how many articles are related to that subject.