Office challenge: Why are some of the Style Pane options disabled?

Take a crack at the latest TechRepublic Microsoft Office Challenge and match wits with your peers. The Challenge: Why are some of the Style Pane options disabled?

Word's (2007 and 2010) Style window can display every style and variation of every style - which can be a lot of annoying clutter to wade through. You can clean things up quickly enough by displaying only those styles in use or in the current document. Either option will remove most of the clutter and display somewhere around a dozen items or so (for the average document) as follows:

  1. Click the Styles dialog launcher.
  2. In the Styles window, click the Options link (bottom-right corner).
  3. Choose In Use or In Current Document from the Select Styles To Show dropdown.
  4. Click OK.

You can further eliminate unnecessary items by displaying only character, font, or list formats. But what happens if a user can't do the latter - what do you tell a user whose options are disabled?

Last week we asked: Why is PowerPoint losing hyperlinks. Wrwzrd was the first to mention that hyperlinks only work in presentation mode - a great reminder. I really liked the troubleshooting questions Samkirk and Jjackson offered. But what if everything seems to be exactly as it should be and you still have the problem?

Here's what Microsoft has to say: You cannot save changes to hyperlink settings in PowerPoint. PowerPoint limits the number of hyperlinks you can have in a presentation. Of course, most of us will never reach that limit, but if you do, it'll certainly frustrate you if you can't determine the problem and fix it! Imagine telling your boss that you've fixed the hyperlinks only to have them fail in the middle of a presentation. Even though it isn't your fault, you're going to catch the fallout.

I can't imagine a single presentation so large that you'd reach this limit, but it's certainly possible! 


Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.


In the Editing options (Office Button | Word Options | Advanced), you have have the "Keep track of formatting" checked. office furniture Canberra


If those options are not available, the user might want to click on the Manage Styles icon at the bottom of the Styles Pane, If "Limit formatting to permitted styles" is selected in the Manage Styles dialog box, the user won't have those options available. She can uncheck this box (assuming it's not password protected or she knows the password) to reenable those options in the Styles Pane Options box.

Editor's Picks