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Speed Up Office Experience

Even before you begin using Microsoft Office, the best way to speed it up would be to clear the temp files on your system. If you are using Windows 7, go to Start > Run, type %temp% in the search bar and press Enter. XP users can go to Start >Run. In the text box type %temp%. Delete all the files that you see.

Speed up the Help dialog box in Office 2007 and 2010

The Help setting in Office 2007 and 2010 is set to Online Help by default. This means that every time you need to refer to the Help guide, Microsoft Office will connect you to Online Help page. This might take a while if you have a slow internet connection and can be irritating when you are in a hurry to finish your work.

There is a simple setting to fix this. Press F1 key in Word, a dialog box would appear. In Office 2010 Click on the 'Connected to Office.com' or select 'Connected to Office Online' button in 2007. Now click on "Show content only from this computer" from the menu.

Block unnecessary add-ins from loading

If MS Word takes way too long for startup then it maybe because it loads templates and other add-ins which you might never use. Blocking these would reduce the start-up time and your Word document would launch much faster. A quick way to do this is to move the start-up files that Word loads up each time, here's what you do. First you need to make sure that your hidden files are visible. Go to Tools > Folder Options> View. Under the Hidden Folders and Files select 'Show hidden files, folders and drive'. Once your hidden folders are visible, follow this path C:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data\Microsoft\Word\STARTUP, from here move all the files which have a .dot extension to C:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data\Microsoft\Templates. The add-ins will not load at start up now. You can choose to put the .dot files back in its respective folder if the need arises.

Get more undoes

Wouldn’t it have been great if life had an unlimited Undo button? Only if the guys at Microsoft had designed it, we surely would have. Anyway, to clear the mistakes in your PowerPoint presentation with up to 150 undoes this is what you do. Select the File tab in the ribbon. The Microsoft Office Backstage View appears. Click the Options button. The PowerPoint Options dialog box appears. Click Advanced in the left pane. Underneath Edi ting options, next to Maximum number of undoes, click the box and enter the maximum number of edits you wish PowerPoint to remember i.e. from 3 to 150. Click OK on the bottom-right of the dialog box to close it. Now you can afford to make a few more goof ups.

Remove hidden and invisible objects

Many a times while pasting objects in your Excel file you tend to paste some unwanted content as well. This may be unintentional, as we copy figures, text boxes, etc., from source without being aware that it’s copied on to your workbook. All the unnecessary data copied makes your file heavier and increases its startup time.

Unnecessary data sets copied in Excel worksheet

Figure shows a screenshot where a data set has 35 rows of data but only a few are visible. As you may notice that there is an image at the top left corner of the screenshot and some check boxes in column B which indicate that additional items were copied. Now, to make sure that any important data doesn't get deleted, the first step is to verify that you have additional data pasted on your sheet which you are not going to use, you can do this by viewing the Selection Pane, to turn on the selection pane (on the Home Tab go to the Edi ting Chunk > Find Dropdown > Selection Pane option making the pane visible) looking at the Selection Pane you'll get to know the list of objects on the current sheet. If this list is empty then you do not have any additional items.

Selection Pane showing 100 items got pasted

The next step is to turn on the Design mode. If you do not have the Developer Tab visible in the ribbon, you can enable it with the following steps: Office Button > Excel Options. Check the "Show Developer tab in the Ribbon" checkbox on the default popular tab. You are now ready to select objects using the Go to Special dialog. To select all the objects in the box Ctrl +G to open the Go to dialog > Special button Object. Click OK. The objects are all fitted now within their selection handles visible. Now all you have to do is to hit the Delete key to remove unwanted objects. Removing the objects will make your file smaller in size and it'll have better start up time.
Select objects to remove using Ctrl + G

View two workbooks at the same time

To save ourselves the trouble of viewing two Excel sheets back and forth, it's always efficient and easier if both the worksheets are aligned side by side, this makes the data-comparison easy. Excel has a built-in way with which you can view two workbooks at the same time. You can use this to avoid having to constantly check two Excel files or without the need to copy data from one workbook to the other. This is useful when you are comparing similar values or graphs between workbooks. Open both workbooks you want to compare side by side. Window > Compare Side by Side with [workbook2]. There are two options for viewing the data of the two workbooks you are now comparing Click 'Synchronous Scrolling' to scroll through both documents at the same time. Uncheck independent scrolling. You can also reset the scrolling position to the starting position by clicking the button 'Reset Window Position'. When you are finished with your comparison, click Close Side by Side to return to the normal worksheet view.

Rearrange paragraphs

It’s fairly easy to rearrange paragraphs in Word, this speeds up your work and all it takes is just three mouse clicks. All you have to is to select the paragraph you want to move by triple clicking on it. Once you have selected the desired paragraph, click and hold your mouse button and drag it to the place where you would like the text to appear. Release the mouse button.

Select text vertically

Most of us know how to select text horizontally in Word, but many a times text aligned vertically needs to selected for reformatting. Here is a simple trick to help you out. Point the mouse pointer in front of the text you want to select, now press the Alt button while holding down the Alt button and select the text vertically.

Select text vertically in Word

Transpose the contents of your table

If you are one of those who use a lot of tables in your Word document, you might have felt the need to transpose the rows and columns which basically means that your rows become columns and the columns become rows. Interchanging the two can prove to be quite useful and time efficient. Here's what you can do Create your table in MS Word. Select the entire table and copy it to the Clipboard. In MS Excel, use Paste Special to paste the table as text. Select the cells you would like to transpose. Click on Edit > Copy. Right-click on the upper left-hand corner of a range of empty cells that can accommodate the transposed result. Select Paste Special and check the transpose checkbox. Your values have been shifted and are now placed in their respective rows and columns.

Turn off email notifications

While working on an important assignment you suddenly receive an email message which eats up your time and does not let you progress further with your work. We all get tempted to look at our mail, distracting us from the work we were doing. To make sure your efficiency is not cut down you can choose to temporarily disable or turn off notifications in MS Outlook. This is what you can do Click on Tools > Options > E-mail Options > Advanced E-mail Options. In the middle of the dialog box, under When new items appear in my Inbox, clear the Display a New Mail, Desktop Alert check box. Click on OK.

Sparklines in Excel 2010

The Sparklines feature in Excel 2010 is a very handy option when you have multiple columns of data to look at, Sparklines creates a visual breakup of the columns in form of bar graphs making it easier for you to look and understand the figures. It tracks and highlights the important data trends in a rather complex work sheet. Sparklines are mini-charts that you could place inside the cells along with the figures so that you can view the data and the chart on the same table. To create one, begin with a regular spreadsheet document, any Excel sheet with tabular numeric data can be used. Select the cells where you want the Sparklines to appear. You can choose to put it at the side of the table for easier viewing. Click the Insert menu from the ribbon then choose Column under the Sparklines group. Select or enter the range of cells that will be the source of the data for the charts. The charts should appear at the side of the table. You would now be able to glance at the trends of growth or decline. The ones in circles have growing trend. With proper use of Sparklines, data analysis and breakup is quicker and more direct and to the point.

Sparklines adds graph bars to your worksheet

You now just need to look at the right most column to figure out the trends in this worksheet without spending hours minutely analyzing each figure.

Zoom only selected cells

Zooming only a part of your excel sheet certainly helps in acquiring only the required figures quickly. In order to select only a specific part on your excel sheet use the Selection option with Zoom. This option not only chooses just the right percentage to see the selection as large as possible, it also allows you to select the cells you would like to zoom in on. Select the range you would like to enlarge. Using the Zoom drop-down arrow, select View Zoom> Fit selection. When you are finished, select 100% (or the appropriate percentage) from the Zoom control in the Toolbar or select Edit Undo Zoom or click on Ctrl + Z