Saturday, October 10th, 2015

Move a Paragraph Up or Down in Microsoft Word (Mac)

When the Mac keyboard shortcut doesn’t work – here’s how to fix it!

In Word on the PC you can click in a paragraph or select a paragraph or two (or even a row in a table) and move it up and down the document using Shift + Alt + Up Arrow of Shift + Alt + Down Arrow.

Sadly on the Mac this doesn’t work the same. The Mac keystroke is a little different – press Shift + Control + Up Arrow or Shift + Control + Down Arrow. So far so good – problem is that these are the exact same keystrokes that display Mission Control and Application Windows on the Mac so they don’t work. That is until you fix them to work.

Now I don’t use Mission Control at all so I have no need to go backwards and forwards between Mission Control and Application Windows and, worse still, I often hit those keys by mistake so I can easily live without this shortcut. Turns out, if you disable that Mac default shortcut then the Word one works.

To do this, launch System Preferences and select Keyboard > Shortcuts. You need to disable two options here – Mission Control and Application Windows so deselect the two checkboxes and close the window. That’s all there is to it. Now the keyboard shortcuts Shift + Control + Up Arrow and Shift + Control + Down Arrow work just fine in Word for the Mac.

 

how to make the shortcut for moving a paragraph in Word for Mac work properly

It’s the small things that put the biggest smile on my face. This is a small change but I use it every day and I love it – hope it works for you too!

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

Copy Excel Formulas Without Updating References

Copy formulas without the cells updating to their new location

I have had an ongoing problem with a worksheet I use to track data by date. Each month I need to copy a range of cells to start the data comparison for the next month. Problem is that you can’t copy cells in Excel without the cell references updating to their new location. And, guess what? That’s exactly what I need to do – copy cells, paste them into their new location without the formulas changing – at all.

One way you can do this is to copy each formula manually by double clicking the cell, copy the text in the Formula Bar, press Esc and then go to the cell to copy it to and paste it in. It works, but you can only do it one cell at a time. I have ten or more cells so that’s just a plain waste of time.

I could write a macro – and in future, I will – but there is a super neat solution that I am using for now.

First of all, press Control + ` (grave) to show formulas in cells (or choose to Show Formulas from the ribbon).

Next select and copy the cells containing the formulas.

Paste these as text into a document. I use Paste Special > Unformatted Text in Word but you can paste into any text editor.

Return to Excel and hide the formulas using Control + ` again.

Now select the text of the formulas from your document and copy it, then paste it into the appropriate cells in the worksheet. The Data Parse feature in Excel will automatically split the text containing the formulas and paste one formula into each of the cells.

It might sound complex, but you can do this really quickly, and it’s accurate and effective.

 

Friday, July 31st, 2015

Left Arrow to Get to the Bottom of a Word Document – Mac Only Stupidity

Move to the top or bottom of a Word Document on a Mac

From a file labelled stupid commands comes this one for getting to the top or bottom of a Word document on the Mac. You see simple commands like Page Up and Page Down which work on a PC fail spectacularly on a Mac so most hapless users just use the arrow key (a lot) or scroll bars to get around a Word document.

Smart users know there is a key combination that will do it, but it uses the Left Arrow and Right Arrow keys – I kid you not! How stupid is that? However, since it is useful (albeit stupid), I’ll tell you how. To get to the top of the document use Fn + Command + Left Arrow and to get to the bottom of the document use Fn + Command + Right Arrow.

So, now you know and you can move faster around your documents. Just try explaining that key combination to a friend and hold your tongue as they look at you like you’re nuts.

Friday, May 29th, 2015

Print a List of Files in a Windows Folder

Learn how to quickly make a printable list of files in a folder (and how to import it into Excel)

Sometimes I need to get a list of files or folders inside another folder in Windows. I like to either print the results or take them to Excel to work on them. However, it isn’t self evident how to do this – there’s no print command in Windows Explorer that can do it for you. However, once you know how to do it, it’s easy to do.

Start by navigating to the folder whose contents you want to print. You want to have this folder visible in the right hand pane in Windows Explorer. Hold the Shift key as you right click this folder. A shortcut menu will appear, from it choose the Open Command Window here option.

This opens a MSDOS window inside the folder.

Now type this DOS command at the prompt and press Enter:

dir > filelist.txt

The name filelist.txt can really be any file name of your choice, I just like to use the .txt extension since its contents are plain text.

When the prompt reappears close the window.

If you now look inside this folder you will see a text file called filelist.txt. You can now print it by right clicking it and choose Print or double click to open it in Notepad and print it from there.

 

You can also open it in Excel and convert it to columns of text using the Text Import Wizard. The file is a fixed width file so it converts pretty easily into columns of text – you simply need to drag the lines in the preview to mark out how the text will convert to columns.


Then, when you are done, click Finish and you have the data in Excel – save it as an .xlsx file and you’re good to go.

 

Thursday, April 2nd, 2015

How to Open Winmail.dat files

Got a Winmail.dat file? Open it the easy way!

Winmail.dat is confusion in a very small package. It is a file attachment, usually from someone who uses Microsoft Outlook. They send you an attachment to an email and Outlook bundles it up in this little file that no other program can open. Handy isn’t it?

I am the kind of person who hates having to go back to someone and ask them to fix a problem however stupid it is. So, instead of sending the winmail2.dat file back where it came from, I sorted out how to open it.

Here’s the simple solution – head over to the site http://www.winmaildat.com and click Choose File to upload your winmail.dat file. Click Send File to send your file to the server which will then unlock the magic for you.

You will see a set of links for the things that were in the winmail.dat file so you can click to download those that you want.


Once you are done, you can click Delete to delete your files from the server. If you don’t – they are removed automatically after 2 hours.

The site is simple, it works and you don’t have to wait for someone to fix their Outlook so it stops doing this.

Friday, March 27th, 2015

Help! Excel Shows Columns as Numbers not Letters

 

What to do when Excel shows Column 1 not Column A

My Excel has been behaving stupidly lately. Instead of Column letters – A, B & C etc, the columns are numbered 1, 2, 3 and so on.

While I haven’t solved the fundamental problem I do have a short term solution. It all has to do with the Excel options. To change the column numbers back to letters chose File (the Office Button in Excel 2007) and choose Options > Formulas and disable the checkbox for R1C1 Reference Style.

On the Mac click Excel > Preferences > General and deselect the Use R1C1 Reference Style checkbox.

This setting kicks Excel back into the correct mode – much more to my taste!

Of course, if you prefer seeing numbers and not letters all you need to do is to click the checkbox and you are good to go!

Saturday, January 17th, 2015

Open Recent Files Missing from Word (Mac)

If your Recent files list disappears from your Mac, here’s how to put it back

Word on my Mac doesn’t have a recently opened files list but Excel does. Turns out the feature was disabled (or perhaps it was never enabled). Whatever the reason, it wasn’t there and I wanted it to be accessible.

Lucky for me it is just a preference setting. Click the Word button, click Preferences and then General. Look for the Track Recently Opened Documents option and enable it. Set the number of documents to track and click Ok. Yeah! Now you can open a recently opened file like you expect to be able to do.

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

Calendar Wizard in Word 2013 and Word 2016 – Yes!

Missing the Calendar Wizard in Word 2013? – no problem, here’s how to get it

Many years ago, Word had a wonderful Calendar Wizard that you could use to make calendar pages in Word. One really neat aspect of this Wizard was (and still is) that you can make calendar pages for any period of time – so you don’t have to wait till someone makes 2017 calendars for you to download – instead you can make your own and you can do it now! Hell you can make calendars for 2020 now if you want to really plan ahead!

In Word 2013 it might at first appear that the Calendar Wizard isn’t available – and it isn’t – that is, until you know how to make it accessible.

To start, download the WIZ file for the wizard from here: Microsoft Word Calendar Wizard Download for Word 2013 and Word 2016.

download link for Calendar Wizard for Word 2013 and Word 2016

Alternately, if you have an older version of Word on your computer, search for Calendar Wizard.wiz as you may have it on your computer somewhere already.

If you find a .cab file for the Calendar Wizard and if it is a zipped archive format file then you will need to open it. If double clicking it doesn’t launch an unzip program that can handle it, then download Express Zip File Compression as it can handle .cab files easily.

Extract the .wiz file (or copy it) to a folder of your choice or, better still, put it into your custom templates folder C:\Users\‹Username›\Documents\Custom Templates. If you’re downloading from the Dropbox link above then you have the .wiz file and you just need to move it into position.

If you are doing this, then change its name when you do so – calendar wizard.wiz is (and was) a good name for it. If you found the wiz file on your own drive, make a copy to this folder.

T’hen double click the .wiz file to launch it in Word. If you put it in your Custom Office Templates folder then you can launch it from inside Word 2013 by choosing File > New, click Personal to view your personal templates and click to run it from there.

You can view my YouTube video on downloading and running and using the Calendar Wizard here: https://youtu.be/0HlnXxYIr7k

Note: Post updated November 2016 to include a new download location which was valid at this time.

Note: Post updated September 2017 – it still works! And to add video link.

Tuesday, September 9th, 2014

Find Your templates in Microsoft Office – Mac

Need to manage your Microsoft Office templates but can’t find them?

It’s not easy to find the templates folder on your Mac. You might know it is My Templates but a typical search in Finder won’t turn it up.

Luckily help is at hand. Launch Finder and choose Go > Go to Folder. Now paste this folder name into the search box to go to your My Templates folder where you can now see and manage your templates!

~/Library/Application Support/Microsoft/Office/User Templates/My Templates

 

 

 

 

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

A Great Microsoft Office Tutorial Resource

Great find! A list of good quality Microsoft Office tutorial resources

I’ve recently discovered an enormous list of Microsoft Office tutorials that may be worth checking out. Each piece of Office software has several listed tutorials ranging from beginner to advanced difficulty and general to specific usage.

Best of all, each tutorial has a brief summary of its contents so you can quickly decide if its new and interesting information. Hopefully every Office user will find something of use. You can visit the page here.

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