How to Add the Developer Tab in Office Apps

Sooner or later, you will need the Developer Tab in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, or Outlook. Even if you know nothing about programming, there are buttons on the Developer tab that are necessary for some of the clever features in Office.

RAYMOND OGLESBY @RaymondOglesby2
September 28, 2021

Sooner or later, you will need the Developer Tab in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, or Outlook. Even if you know nothing about programming, there are buttons on the Developer tab that are necessary for some of the clever features in Office.

The Developer tab is not displayed by default, but you can add it to the ribbon in a few easy steps.

This is for devices running Microsoft Office

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First, open an Office app, like Word, and any document. Now, right-click within any Tab in the Ribbon and select Customize the Ribbon. Refer to below image:

Ribbon 1
Select Customize the Ribbon option

Next, in the right-hand side, select All Tabs from the drop down menu and simply checkmark the Developer tab box. Now, select OK to enable the Developer tab. See below image:

Ribbon 2
Enable the Developer tab

Next, exit your Office app, restart the app and load your document. You will see the Developer tab in your ribbon. Just click the tab to view its options. See following image:

Ribbon 3
Your Developer tab

Quote For the Day

‘Fahrenheit 451’ postulates a lot of things I didn’t want to have happen.

Ray Bradbury

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How to Use the Microsoft Measurement Converter

Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and Outlook offer a hidden measurement converter to save you from doing measurement conversions manually. If you are working with a document, presentation, or email that contains measurements, you will find this time-saving feature useful.

RAYMOND OGLESBY @RaymondOglesby2
August 17, 2021

Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and Outlook offer a hidden measurement converter to save you from doing measurement conversions manually. If you are working with a document, presentation, or email that contains measurements, you will find this time-saving feature useful. Lets explore this feature.

This is for Office 365. Screenshots are from Windows 10 PC.

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Enable Converter in Word and PowerPoint

First, open a document in Microsoft Word or a presentation in PowerPoint. Next, click

File > Options

from the menu. Now, select Proofing on the left and click AutoCorrect Options on the right. Refer to below image:

Accessing AutoCorrect.Options

Next, select the Actions tab. Now, check the boxes for Enable Additional Actions in the right-click menu then Measurement Converter from the list. You will notice other actions you can enable. Just checkmark any additional ones you would like to use. See below image:

Enabling Measurement Converter option

Click OK, then OK once more to save and exit the options menu.

Enable Converter in Outlook

First, open Microsoft Outlook and click

File > Options

from your inbox or an email window.

Now, select Mail on the left and click Editor Options on the right. See following image:

Accessing Editor Options

On the next screen, choose Proofing on the left and AutoCorrect Options on the right. Refer to below image:

Accessing AutoCorrect Options

Next, select the Actions tab. Now, check the boxes for Enable Additional Actions in the right-click menu, and Measurement Converter in the list. Like with Word and PowerPoint you can checkmark the boxes for any other actions you would like to use. See below image:

Enabling Measurement Converter option

Next click OK on all screens to save and exit,

Use the Converter in Office

When you receive a document that includes unfamiliar measurements, such as those from a foreign country, this tool takes the work out of manual conversions. And if you are creating the document yourself, you can convert the measurement for your audience.

Just, select the text containing the measurement. You can do this by dragging your cursor through it.

Now, right-click and move your cursor down to Additional Actions in the menu. You will see the Measurement Converter in the pop-out window. Refer to below image:

Accessing Measurement Converter

This lets you view the conversion. Additionally, you can click to select a conversion from the list and it will replace the measurement in your document, presentation, or email. This is convenient when you are preparing an item for someone expecting a different unit of measurement.

Quote For the Day

The greatest mistake you can make in life is continually fearing that you’ll make one.

Elbert Hubbard

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How to Spell Check Outlook Emails Before Sending

Nobody wants their communications to have spelling errors left in, so let Microsoft Outlook help by automatically spell checking emails before they are sent.

Nobody wants their communications to have spelling errors left in, so let Microsoft Outlook help by automatically spell checking emails before they are sent. Of course you can manually check before sending by opening an Outlook email and head to:

Review > Spelling & Grammar

But who wants to do this for every email you send. Instead, the Microsoft Outlook desktop client has a setting that forces spell check to take place after you click the Send button. If no errors are found, the email is sent like normal. If a spelling error is found, Outlook gives you the option to correct it before the email is sent.

This is for PCs running Outlook

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To enable this feature, open the Outlook desktop application and click:

File > Options

Refer to below image:

Outlook 1
Accessing Options

Next. in the Mail > Compose Messages section, toggle on the Always check spelling before sending checkbox. See below image:

Outlook 2
Enabling Spell Check

Now, click OK in the bottom-right corner to save and close the Options panel. See following image:

Outlook 1
Saving your change

Now, when we click Send on an email with a spelling error, Microsoft Outlook will pick it up and give you the chance to change it. Refer to below image:

Outlook 4
Spell Check in action

If the spell checker has found a misspelled word and you want to change it, click Cancel. Or, you could use one of its suggestions. See below image where “Savvy” is misspelled:

Outlook 5
Cancel your email

If you choose to cancel, a dialog box will open that lets you quit sending the email. Click No to stop the email from being sent. See following image:

Outlook 6
Cancel sending your email

Note! The spell checker will not pick up the wrong words, just words that are spelled incorrectly. So, if you meant to type in “Savvy” but instead typed “Savoy”, the spell checker will not pick that up because “Savoy” is a correctly spelled word.

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How to Insert an Outlook Contact Into Word

There are a number of ways to insert contact information into a Word document, like using Mail Merge. But what if you just wanted to insert specific Outlook contacts. The easiest way is by adding an Address Book button to the Quick Address Toolbar (QAT) so that you can add contacts on-the-fly and at the touch of a button in any Microsoft Office application.

There are a number of ways to insert contact information into a Word document, like using Mail Merge. But what if you just wanted to insert specific Outlook contacts. The easiest way is by adding an Address Book button to the Quick Address Toolbar (QAT) so that you can add contacts on-the-fly and at the touch of a button in any Microsoft Office application. Lets explore how to insert an Outlook contact into Microsoft Word.

This is for devices running Microsoft Word

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Adding the QAT Address Book Button

(If you have already done this, you may skip this step). To add the button, click the arrow icon in the QAT. This icon opens a drop-down menu that allows you to customize the QAT. Refer to below image:

Contacts 1
Accessing the Quick Access Toolbar

Now, from the available options, choose More Commands. See below image:

Contacts 2
Choosing More Commands

Next, click the Quick Access Toolbar from the left sidebar. Now, choose Commands Not in the Ribbon from the Choose Commands From drop-down menu. See following image:

Contacts 3
Accessing commands not on the ribbon

Now, choose Address Book. Next, click the Add button to add it to the QAT. Refer to below image:

Contacts 4
Adding the Address Book button to the ribbon

Finally, click OK to add the Address Book button. See below image:

Contacts 5
Saving your change for the ribbon

Inserting Contacts Into a Word Document

To insert a contact, position the cursor where you would like to add the contact information. Next, from the Quick Access Toolbar, click the Address Book icon you just added. See following image:

Contacts 6
Selecting the Address Book button to insert a contact

Now, contact names from your address book should appear. If you have multiple address books, select one from the drop-down box to view its contacts. Click the contact you would like to add, then click the OK button. Refer to below image:

Contacts 7
Inserting an Address Book contact into Word

Now, any information that you have for the contact should appear in the document. This, however, is almost entirely up to how thorough you are in creating the contact. For some, it will be just a name and an email address. For others, you will get the full details that includes address, phone number, and the like. It all depends on what you added when you created a new contact (or edited it later).

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How to Navigate Outlook’s New Search Feature

Recently, Microsoft has changed how the Search works. It is now more robust with many new options. The Search box is now located at the top of the screen in the title bar. This is called Microsoft Search and is available in both client and web apps.

Recently, Microsoft has changed how the Search works. It is now more robust with many new options. The Search box is now located at the top of the screen in the title bar. This is called Microsoft Search and is available in both client and web apps.

This is for devices running Outlook. Screenshots are from Office 365

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The Search Box

Refer to below image for the new Search box:

Search 1
The new Search box

First, you will notice the Search box is bigger and longer. Also, Microsoft has added two keyboard shortcuts; CNTL+E and ALT+Q for those people who favor the keyboard over a mouse.

Now when you click inside the Search box or use a keyboard shortcut, a menu appears that shows recent searches, people and actions. See following image:

Search 2
The Search box menu

The menu is in a fixed position and covers up a lot of tools found on the Search tab ribbon. If you want to access these tools you have click on a blank space outside the Search results. See below image:

Search 3
Click off the Search box

Using the Search Box

As you type in the Search box, the menu will filter down search terms, people, and actions to match what you type. This is the biggest change in Microsoft Search: it no longer just searches through email. The new feature searches everything in Outlook, including Outlook functionality.

If you want to know how to edit emails, type “edit” in the Search box and, below any emails that match the word, the menu will display relevant commands. Refer to below image:

Search 4
The Search box actions

Filter Your Search

Unlike the old Search, Outlook now has a much better and easier user interface for filtering your search. Click the drop-down arrow next to the Search box and a simple search menu appears. See following image:

Search 5
The Search box filters

Type into these filters and Outlook will automatically add the correct syntax to the Search box (as noted below). You no longer need to remember the right commands to type. Refer to below image:

Search 6
Setting up a filter

You are not limited to the default search fields, now you can change the default search fields as well. Just click Add More Options. This will bring up additional options you can turn on or off. Click Apply when you’re done.See below image:

Search 7
More Search options

The Search Command

If you’re not a fan of the new dropdown, the Search tab on the ribbon is still there, although now it only appears when you click into the Search box, then click on a blank space in the ribbon. See following image:

Search 8
The Search command

The new Search has more power and functionality than the old Search box and provides more screen space for your actual emails. It’s a definite improvement. Enjoy the new Search feature.

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How to Use an Email Expire Date in Microsoft Outlook

Outlook lets you add an expiration date to email you send or receive. Once the expiration date has passed the email will be displayed with different formatting, a strikethrough, and you can use Outlook’s built-in tools to manage expired email automatically.

Outlook lets you add an expiration date to email you send or receive. Once the expiration date has passed the email will be displayed with different formatting, a strikethrough, and you can use Outlook’s built-in tools to manage expired email automatically.

This is for Microsoft Outlook 2010 and later. Screenshots are from Microsoft 365 Outlook

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Set an Expire Date for a Sent Email

To add an expiration date to an email you’re sending, you need to open the Properties window for the email.

Open Outlook and compose a message. Then click on Options. Next, in the More Options Group click on Message Options. The Propeties window will be displayed. Now, in the Delivery Options Group, checkmark Expires after and set the Date and Time you wish for the email to expire. Refer to below image:

Outlook Expire Date 1
Settring Expire Date for a sent email

Outlook has a formatting rule for expired emails. This rule can be found under the Conditional Formatting dialog. The dialog box is displayed from the View tab, then select View Settings. Next, select Conditional Formatting option. The email that has expired has a grey font and the text has a strikethrough. See below image:

Outlook Expire Date 2
Setting Expire date formatting

This formatting rule will be applied to the receiptents’s Outlook as well as other web apps, like GMail. Now, click OK twice to close the dialog boxes.

For demonstration purposes, I am backdating the email to show the strikethrough formatting when I open the email. Now, close the Properties window and send the email. You will get a prompt saying the Expire Date has passed if backdating or if the date has actually passed, just click Yes. It can still be opened but the strikethrough gives a visual indication that the email is no longer relevant. See following image:

Outlook Expire Date 3
The sent email with formatting

Set an Expire Date for All Messages You Send

You can setup Outlook to automatically add an expiration date of some number of days after the message is sent.

Double-click to open the message. Next, click on File then Options. Next, click on the Mail tab. Under the Send Messages Group, checkmark Mark messages as expired after this many days and set the days you wish for the email to expire. Click OK to save your change. Refer to below image:

Outlook Expire Date 4
Setting the Expire Date for all emails you send

Delete An Expired Email

To delete an expired email. Just select the strikethrough emails and click the Delete icon in the ribbon or press the Del key. You could also show the expired emails by adding a column to a folder that shows the expiration date.

If you have turned on Outlook auto archive feature, then you can delete emails automatically based on expire date.

Open the AutoArchives window by File > Options > Advanced. Select the option AutoArchive Settings. Checkmark the option Run AutoArchive every 14 days (the default). Select OK twice to save your change. See following image:

Outlook Expire Date 5
Setting the AutoArchive feature

When this option is enabled, emails will be deleted or moved (depending on other settings) when the date has passed.

Set an Expire Date for Received Email

You can set an expiration date for a message you have received.

Double-click to open the message. You can not set an expiration date from the Reading Pane.

Select File then Properties. Under Delivery Options, checkmark the box Expires after amd se;ect a date and time for your message to expire. Then, click Close and the Save icon in the upper left hand corner of your message or click File > Save to save your change. Refer to below image:

Outlook Expire Date 6
Setting Expire Date for received email

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Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

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How to Recall a Sent Microsoft Outlook Message

Oops! You just sent a Microsoft Outlook message that you did not want to send. You realize for one reason or another that the message has a mistake or that it shouldn’t have been sent at all. You can fix your mistake by recalling the message. Using the recall feature, under the right conditions, your email is deleted without the recipient ever seeing the message. You can also send the recipient a replacement email with the correct information.

Oops! You just sent a Microsoft Outlook message that you did not want to send. You realize for one reason or another that the message has a mistake or that it shouldn’t have been sent at all. You can fix your mistake by recalling the message. Using the recall feature, under the right conditions, your email is deleted without the recipient ever seeing the message. You can also send the recipient a replacement email with the correct information.

For a message to be recalled, both you and the recipient must have a Microsoft 365 Business Account or Microsoft Exchange email account in the same organization. The email must not not have been read by the recipient.

However, even if you and the recipient use different email accounts, the recall feature is useful. Though the initial email won’t be deleted, the recipient receives a follow-up message indicating that you want to recall the previous email. That tells them that your initial one is incorrect for some reason. You should then follow-up your initial email and recall message with another email that contains the right information or corrects the initial one.

To summarize, three emails are involved. The initial email with incorrect information, the recall message email, then the follow-up email with the correct information.

This is for Windows 10 PCs, Macs and other devices that support Microsoft Outlook

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Recall a Message

Let’s send an email. Open Outlook, start new email and address to a recipient, then send the email. Refer to below image:

Recall 1
Initial Outlook email

Now, let’s say you notice an error in your email and want to recall it. In our example, the vacation dates are incorrect.

Open the email from your Sent Items folder. Select the Actions icon and click the option Recall This Message. See following image:

Recall 2
Recall initial Outlook email

The Recall This Message window opens to offer two options. Choosing Delete unread copies of this message tries to remove the message with no follow-up. Choosing Delete unread copies and replace with a new message provides the opportunity to send a follow-up message with the correct information. To learn of the recall’s success, ensure the box is checked for Tell me if the recall succeeds or fails for each recipient then click OK. Refer to below image:

Recall 3
Options for recalling initial Outlook email

If you chose the option to replace with a new message, a new email appears with the text from the initial email. You can fix any errors and send a corrected replacement message or a follow-up email with the corrected information. In my example, the recall message failed because I had already read the message. See following image:

Recall 4
Recall of initial Outlook email failed because recipent (me) had read the message

If you and the recipient use the same Microsoft 365 Business or Exchange, then the initial email should be deleted automatically. If so, you will receive an email saying the recall was successful for that recipient.

If you and the recipient use different email accounts, the initial emails remains in that person’s inbox. A follow-up email arrives that tells the recipient you would like to recall the message. You then have to rely on the recipient to delete or ignore the initial message. At this point, a third email could be sent with the corrected information. Refer to below image:

Recall 5
Corrected Outlook email

RELATED

Note! Coming soon if inactive
How to Recall an Email in Gmail

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