Software

Quick access to Word's horizontal ruler

Now you see it, now you don't. Select this simple option to display Word's horizontal ruler when you need it.

Word displays a horizontal ruler in several views: Normal, Print, and Web Layout. If it isn't visible, check Ruler on the View menu. When you're done with it, tuck it out of sight by unchecking the Ruler option. The amount of screen space you free up by hiding the ruler is inconsequential. However, some people find the ruler distracting. In addition, you won't always want it visible. (The rule isn't available in Outline or Master Document views.) Even with the ruler turned off, it's still available. It's just rolled up under the toolbar — it appears as a thin gray line. If you know the right setting to check, that thin line quickly rolls down the horizontal ruler:

  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu and click the General tab. In Word 2007, click the Office button, click Word Options, and then select Advanced in the left panel.
  2. In the General Options section, check the Provide Feedback With Animation option.
  3. Click OK.
With the ruler unchecked on the View menu and the above setting checked, position the mouse pointer over the gray line below the toolbar. The animation setting kicks in and like magic, the ruler rolls down. When you move the mouse pointer away from the ruler, it rolls back up. This is an easy way to keep the ruler accessible without having it visible at all times.

About Susan Harkins

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.

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