Office 2010 Ribbon

Dear Computer Lady,

Through my workplace, I was able to purchase Microsoft Office 2010 for home us at a ridiculously low price. While I was happy to be able to have it to prepare myself for when my company makes the switch, I find I’m not really happy with it. In particular, I hate the “ribbon” approach. Do you know of any way to set things up the old way? Any suggestions would be appreciated. Your column is wonderful and filled with so many useful things. Thank you.


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Dear Sharlene,

I have not had a chance to install Office 2010 on my computer yet, but I am familiar with the Office ribbon since it was introduced in Office 2007.

I do agree with you, for someone who is used to working with older versions of Office and using the menu bar, the ribbon is hard to learn. In fact, I find myself using Word and Excel 2007 less than I used earlier versions.

There is a program that you can purchase from a company called, Add In Tools at: that will add a menu bar to Office 2007, and they have a new version that works with Office 2010.

I have not used this program, and I don’t really know anything about it, but I thought I would mention it to you.

Another option would be to use the free office program, Open Office. It still uses menu bar navigation like the older versions of MS Office.

There is not option built into the new versions of MS Office to replace the ribbon with a menu bar, but the help menu is there for you to use. When I find myself looking for a command in Office and can’t find it in the new ribbon interface, I just search for it in the help menu. This makes my search a lot shorter.


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    • alori
    • June 18, 2010

    There is a freeware program for personal use that makes Office 2007 & 2010 look like 2003.

    • reggierhy
    • June 18, 2010

    Wow i was so excited to read this today. I can upgrade now thanks to the info you gave about adding menu bar options. I also found that this company has a program to add tabs to Word just like internet browsers. That really got me excited. Thanks for providing this important information that will allow us holdouts to upgrade.

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