Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Precise Ruler Adjustments.

Precise Ruler Adjustments

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 12, 2016)

You already know that you can precisely adjust items by using the various dialog boxes that Word makes available through the use of the menus. For instance, you can precisely adjust tab settings by using the Tabs dialog box, which is displayed by choosing Tabs from the Format menu.

There are times, however, when you may want to do some precise formatting using the mouse, instead of pulling up a dialog box. If the formatting element is displayed on the Ruler, you are in luck—Word provides a handy way to be very precise. All you need to do is hold down the Alt key as you use the mouse to drag different items around on the Ruler. When you do this, Word displays distances on the Ruler very precisely, allowing you to adjust positioning to a hundredth of an inch.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1729) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Precise Ruler Adjustments.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Inserting the Document Creation Date

One of the pieces of information tracked by Word is when a document was first created. Here's how you can access that date ...

Discover More

Getting User Input in a Dialog Box

Want to grab some interactive input from a user in your macro? The best way to do that is with the InputBox function, ...

Discover More

Thoughts and Ideas on Significant Digits in Excel

Ruminations and reflections about significant digits in Excel. Includes examples of how significant digits can affect the ...

Discover More

The First and Last Word on Word! Bestselling For Dummies author Dan Gookin puts his usual fun and friendly candor back to work to show you how to navigate Word 2013. Spend more time working and less time trying to figure it all out! Check out Word 2013 For Dummies today!

More WordTips (menu)

Formatted Merging

When you use the mail-merge capabilities of Word, the information merged takes on the formatting of your source document, not ...

Discover More

Turning Off Smart Quotes for Specific Styles

Smart quotes can be helpful in making a great-looking document, but at times they can be a real pain. Wouldn't it be ...

Discover More

Extra Shaded Lines

Put a page break at the beginning of a shaded paragraph and you may be surprised at what you get on your printout. This tip ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is seven less than 7?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

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.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.