Replacing the MS Office Shortcut Bar

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Office 2003 installation has uninstalled and eliminated the Microsoft Office Shortcut Bar.  You can follow these instructions to create a Windows Toolbar that has a similar look and function.

Creating Your Toolbar

First, right-click on the gray area of the Windows Task Bar at the bottom of your screen, move your cursor to Toolbars>, then move your cursor to New Toolbar and click (left-click).

The "New Toolbar" dialog will open.  Navigate to the place where you want to store your new toolbar (My Documents might be a logical choice), select it with a single click, then click the New Folder.  A "New Folder" icon will appear in that folder.

Right-click the "New Folder" icon and select Rename.  Then, type in a new name for your new toolbar folder, such as "MyToolbar" and hit Enter

Finally, click once on your renamed folder and it's name will appear in the "Folder:" line near the bottom of the screen, then clickOK.

A new toolbar will appear on your Windows Task Bar

Relocating Your Toolbar

Mimimize all open windows so you can see your entire desktop.  Grab the vertical bar on the left side of the toolbar and drag it to your desktop.  Release the mouse button.

The toolbar will appear as a large open window.

Now, grab the blue title-bar of this New Toolbar window and drag it to the side of the screen where you want to "dock" it.  It will snap into place.

Configuring Your Toolbar

Right-click the toolbar and the pop-up menu will appear.

Make the following changes (depending on your preferences):

bulletUncheck "Show Text"
bulletUncheck "Show Title"
bulletCheck "Always on Top"
bulletCheck "Auto-Hide"
Note that after selecting "Auto-Hide", the toolbar may disappear.  Simply move your cursor to the edge of the screen where the toolbar is and it will reappear.

You can also adjust the width of the toolbar by slowly moving your cursor to the edge of the toolbar closest to the center of the screen until it changes from a pointer to a double-headed arrow.  Then drag the edge of the toolbar until you get the width you want.  A width of just enough for the icons is recommended.

Populating your toolbar

There are several ways to populate your toolbar:

bulletDrag icons from your desktop to the toolbar.  When you release the mouse, a small icon will appear for that program.


bulletFor items on your Start Menu or within My Computer or Windows Explorer, right-click on the item, select Copy, then right-click on your desktop and select Paste Shortcut.  Then, you can drag the shortcut to the toolbar.
bulletYou can also add web sites, files, folders, and other objects to your toolbar by similar methods.

Using your Toolbar

To activate a program from this toolbar, simply left-click it once.

When you hover your cursor over an icon, the program name will be displayed.

If you right-click an icon and choose properties, you can see where it is pointing and change it's icon.
You can move an icon on the toolbar by simply dragging it to a new position.  A line will show the new position until you release the mouse button.