Friday, October 09, 2009

Tip: Navigate “Back” like in a browser in Microsoft Word

Quick tip: In Microsoft Word, in a document with in-document hyperlinks, after navigating to another location in the document by clicking on a hyperlink (typically by holding Ctrl and clicking the link, as Word will prompt when the mouse cursor is hovered over a link), you can go back to where you were before in the document by using Alt+LeftArrow (hold down the Alt key and press the Left Arrow key) – similar to clicking on the Back button in a web browser.

Alt+RightArrow also works to go forward once again after using the Alt+LeftArrow shortcut to go back.

These are a good shortcuts to be aware of, since Word doesn’t by default show Back/Forward buttons in the toolbar like a browser does.  (This is the case in Word 2003 – I don’t have a copy of Word 2007 in front of me at the moment to check.)

In Word 2003, you can get Word to show Back/Forward buttons in the toolbar by making Word’s Web toolbar visible.  (Right-click a blank area of the toolbar at the top of the Word window, and select Web from the context menu that appears.)

The Alt+LeftArrow and Alt+RightArrow keyboard shortcuts to navigate Back or Forward respectively also work in most web browsers on Windows.

29 comments:

  1. Very helpful. Thanks.

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  2. Excellent tip Thanks mate.

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  3. Thanks. This is the tip I was searching for. Very Helpful

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  4. Thank you mate...

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  5. Thanks for the great tip, Jon!

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  6. That was quite helpful.

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  7. How about navigating back after finding text (Ctrl+F) and making edits?

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  8. Thank you! Finally I found the tip.

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  9. Great Help.. Saves Lot of Time.

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  10. Thanks for that great time saving tip.

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  11. My Hero of the day! :)
    5 and a half years later :P
    Thx mate!

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  12. Daargh - been frustrated with the lack of a back button for years. Thanks for this! For Word 2010 users, you can add the back/forward buttons to the quick-access toolbar or the ribbon by right-clicking on the tools ribbon, choosing the appropriate customize option, selecting "All Commands" from the "Choosing Commands From:" pick list, navigating alphabetically to the "Back and/or "Forward" buttons, and selecting "Add". :)

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  13. Thanks for the tip.

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  14. Thank you! Have been looking for this MS help was utterly unhelpful.

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  15. This is a brilliant and most valuable tip. I have written a 300 page Word document with thousands of hyperlinks so you can imagine how helpful this is.

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  16. How to go back after using Navigation Pane to another Section Heading.. and back to where I was.

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  17. Many thanks for this small, simple but disproportionately useful tip!

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  18. I was wondering where that little button went! Thanks!!

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  19. Thank you! I knew it had to be a thing! This was the second google result. The first had to do with going back to where you left off your editing. Now I need to google how to go back in forth once I pdf this word doc!

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  20. Simple and useful tip! Thanks!

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  21. Thank you for this amazing tip!

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  22. I use this button all the time. It has recently stopped working when I am in a shared document (shared on SharePoint). Has this happened to anyone else? Is there another way to use this function while working in a shared document?

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