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Changing the Comment Color

Many people like to use the comments feature of Word to embed comments in a document. When you later move your mouse pointer over the top of a comment indicator in the document, a small pop-up box appears that shows the comment associated with the indicator.

The normal color for the comment box is a pale yellow, to supposedly mimic the appearance of the paper sticky notes that we all know and love so well. What if you don't like pale yellow sticky notes, however? In that case, you may be looking for a way to change the color Word uses for the comment box.

The news here is both bad and good. It is bad because Word doesn't have a way to change just the color of the comment box. The good news is that Word relies on the system colors set in Windows to determine what color the comment boxes should be. Word uses the ToolTip color setting for the comment boxes. If you want to change that setting, follow these steps:

  1. Minimize Word, along with all your other programs.
  2. Right-click on any area of the desktop itself. Windows displays a Context menu.
  3. Choose Properties. Windows opens the Display Properties dialog box.
  4. Make sure the Appearance tab is selected. (See Figure 1.)
  5. Figure 1. The Appearance tab of the Display Properties dialog box.

  6. Using the Item drop-down list, choose ToolTip.
  7. Click on the Color indicator, to the right of the Item drop-down list. Windows displays a small palette you can use to select a color.
  8. Click on the color you want to use.
  9. Click on OK.

These steps work in Windows XP. If you are using a different version of Windows you'll need to adapt the steps to meet your needs. Now your comment boxes will be the color you selected. In addition, since you changed the ToolTip color, all your ToolTips in Word and all your other programs will be the same color, as well.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1429) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

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