Customize the ribbon

Use customizations to personalize the ribbon the way that you want it. For example, you can create custom tabs and custom groups to contain your frequently used commands.

 Important   Ribbon customization is specific to the Microsoft Office program you are working in at the time. Ribbon customization does not apply across the Office programs.

You can rename and change the order of the default tabs and groups that are built-into Microsoft Office 2010. However, you cannot rename the default commands, change the icons associated with these default commands, or change the order of these commands. The default commands appear in gray text.

To add commands to a group, you must add a custom group to a default tab or to a new, custom tab. To help you identify a custom tab or group and to distinguish from a default tab or group, the custom tabs and groups in the Customize the Ribbon list have (Custom) after the name, but the word (Custom) does not appear in the ribbon.

Commands added to a new group in a default tab

Callout 1 Default tab and group that has commands that cannot be changed
Callout 2 Custom group in a default tab that has new commands added. These new commands can be changed.

To start to customize your ribbon, see the steps below.

What do you want to do?


Watch videos that show how to customize the ribbon

Watch a series of videos that shows you how to customize the ribbon at Video: Customize the ribbon.

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Get to the Customize the Ribbon window

  1. Click the File tab.
  2. Under Help, click Options.
  3. Click Customize Ribbon.

 Tip    You can also get to the Customize the Ribbon window, by right-clicking any tab on the ribbon, and then clicking Customize the Ribbon.

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Work with tabs

Add a custom tab

When you click New Tab, you add a custom tab and custom group. You can only add commands to custom groups.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click New Tab.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

To add commands to a custom group, see the Add commands to a custom group section.

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Rename a default or custom tab

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the tab that you want to rename.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Rename, and then type a new name.
  2. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Hide a default or custom tab

You can hide both custom and default tabs, but you can only remove custom tabs.

 Note   In the Customize the Ribbon list, the custom tabs and groups have (Custom) after the name, but the word (Custom) does not appear in the ribbon.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, clear the check box next to the default tab or custom tab that you want to hide.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Change the order of default or custom tabs

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the tab that you want to move.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click the Move Up or Move Down arrow until you have the order you want.
  2. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Remove a custom tab

You can hide both custom and default tabs, but you can only remove custom tabs.

 Note   In the Customize the Ribbon list, the custom tabs and groups have (Custom) after the name, but the word (Custom) does not appear in the ribbon.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the tab that you want to remove.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Remove.
  2. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Work with groups

Add a custom group to a tab

You can add a custom group to either a custom tab or a default tab.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window, under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the tab that you want to add a group to.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click New Group.
  2. To rename the New Group (Custom) group, right-click the group, click Rename, and then type a new name.

 Note   You can also add an icon to represent the custom group by clicking the custom group, and then clicking Rename. For more information about what the icon is used for, see Why am I seeing a green ball on the ribbon?.

  1. To hide the labels for the commands that you add to this custom group, right-click the group, and then click Hide Command Labels.

 Note   To see the labels for the commands in the custom group after you have hidden them, right-click the group, and then click Hide Command Labels.

  1. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

To add commands to a custom group, see the Add commands to a custom group section.

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Rename a default or custom group

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the tab or group that you want to rename.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Rename, and then type a new name.

 Note    While you are renaming a custom group, you can also click an icon to represent that group when the ribbon is resized.

  1. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Change the order of the default and custom groups

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the group that you want to move.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click the Move Up or Move Down arrow until you have the order you want.
  2. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Remove a default or custom group

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the group that you want to remove.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Remove.
  2. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Replace a default group with a custom group

You can’t remove a command from a default group, a group built-into Microsoft Office. However, you can make a custom group with only the commands that you want to replace the default group.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the default tab where you want to add the custom group.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click New Group.
  2. Right-click the new group, and then click Rename.
  3. Type a name for the new group and select an icon to represent the new group when the ribbon is resized.
  4. In the Choose Commands from list, click Main Tabs.
  5. Click the plus sign (+) next to the default tab that contains the group that you want to customize.
  6. Click the plus sign (+) next to the default group that you want to customize.
  7. Click the command that you want to add to the custom group, and then click Add.

 Note    You don’t have to add all the commands. Instead you can add the ones that you want.

  1. Right-click the default group, and click Remove.

 Note    You can get the default group back by resetting the ribbon, but if you want to use your ribbon customizations again, you should export them first.

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Work with commands

You can only add commands to a custom group that is under a custom or default tab. You cannot add commands to a default group. Only commands added to custom groups can be renamed. To see how to update a default group, see the “Replace a default group with a custom group” section.

Add commands to a custom group

 Note   In the Customize the Ribbon list, the custom tabs and groups have (Custom) after the name, but the word (Custom) does not appear in the ribbon.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the custom group that you want to add a command to.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. In the Choose commands from list, click the list you want to add commands from, for example, Popular Commands or All Commands.

Choose commands from list

  1. Click a command in the list that you choose.
  2. Click Add.
  3. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

 Note   You can also rename a command and add an icon to represent the command by clicking the command, and then clicking Rename. For more information about what the icon is used for, see Why am I seeing a green ball on the ribbon?.

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Remove a command from a custom group

You can only remove commands from a custom group.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window, under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the command that you want to remove.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Remove.
  2. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Rename a command that you added to a custom group

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the command that you want to rename.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Rename, and then type a new name.

 Note   While you are renaming a command you added to a custom group, you can also click an icon to represent that command.

  1. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Change the order of the commands in custom groups

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window under the Customize the Ribbon list, click the command that you want to move.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click the Move Up or Move Down arrow until you have the order you want.
  2. To see and save your customizations, click OK.

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Reset the ribbon

You can choose to reset all tabs on the ribbon or only the selected tabs to their original state. When you reset all tabs on the ribbon, you also reset the Quick Access Toolbar to show only the default commands.

Reset the ribbon to the default settings

 Important   When you click Reset all customizations, you reset both the ribbon and the Quick Access Toolbar to the default settings.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window, click Reset.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Reset all customizations.

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Reset only the selected tab

You can only reset default tabs to their default settings.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window, select the default tab that you want to reset to the default settings.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Reset, and then click Reset only selected Ribbon tab.

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Export a customized ribbon

You can export your ribbon and Quick Access Toolbar customizations into a file that can be imported and used by a coworker or on another computer.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window, click Import/Export.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Export all customizations.

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Import a customized ribbon

You can import customization files to replace the current layout of the ribbon and Quick Access Toolbar. By being able to import the customization, you can keep Microsoft Office programs looking the same as your coworkers or from computer to computer.

 Important   When you import a ribbon customization file, you lose all prior ribbon and Quick Access Toolbar customizations. If you think that you might want to revert to the customization you currently have, you should export them before importing any new customizations.

  1. In the Customize the Ribbon window, click Import/Export.

 Note    To get to the Customize the Ribbon window, see the “Get to the Customize the Ribbon window” section.

  1. Click Import customization file.

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