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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Is there a way to disable Task Panes? (2002)

    I am testing Office XP for my company, and have run across what I consider to be a significant problem (at least for me) in Task Panes. I am a keyboard-oriented person, and it would appear that task panes are a hindrance to my work. I have not had a great deal of time to fiddle with XP because of my workload, but in my efforts, I have found no way to disable them. Is there a way to disable them? If not, are they as onerous as I perceive them to be, or are there ways to make them work for me?

    Many thanks

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Is there a way to disable Task Panes? (2002)

    I don't think you can disable the Task Pane, but you can create macros that show the pre-Word 2002 dialogs, and assign these to the menu items that open a Task Pane by default. Here are a few instructions that show an "old-style" dialog:

    <table border=1><td>File | New...</td><td>Dialogs(wdDialogFileNew).Show</td><td>Format | Styles...</td><td>Dialogs(wdDialogFormatStyle).Show</td><td>Tools | Mail Merge...</td><td>Dialogs(wdDialogMailMergeHelper).Show</td></table>

  3. #3
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    Re: Is there a way to disable Task Panes? (2002)

    As Hans has already said, you can use the old dialogs in preference if you set up code to avoid calling the Task Pane in the first place. You also don't seem to be able to disable it completely in the same way you can do for other toolbars eg
    CommandBars("Task Pane").Enabled = False
    You can however hide it once called by... (but it's too late then)
    CommandBars("Task Pane").Visible = False

    I am gradually warming to the Task Pane now after looking over my six year daughter's shoulder as she was creating her first Powerpoint file. I can now appreciate how new users or non-power users might want that screen real estate to contain this information. I must say it has taken months to get over my loathing for the Task Pane. At least the power users can choose another path if they are more comfortable in the older style dialogs.

    One thing that makes the Task Pane semi-useful is the ability to add templates into the New Document view. You can customise the number of recent templates to accept more than two but you can also add permanent ones to appear below the General Templates... line. If you don't have too many templates, you can list every template you use here and get a new file that way with a single click - this is the only thing that I personally like about the Task Pane but I'm hoping I'll discover others eventually.
    Andrew Lockton, Chrysalis Design, Melbourne Australia

  4. #4
    Lounger
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    Re: Is there a way to disable Task Panes? (2002)

    Andrew,

    In the New Document task pane, how do you extend the number of recent templates to more than two, or list templates below the General Templates

  5. #5
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Is there a way to disable Task Panes? (2002)


  6. #6
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    Re: Is there a way to disable Task Panes? (2002)

    Robin

    To flush or change the number of recent templates you need to edit the Registry. MSKB 288353 details how to change the number of recent templates listed. They don't provide VBA code to do the task so they expect you to edit the registry directly.

    To answer the other part - making templates persist on the task pane, have a look at this thread. You better get in quick before that old one gets wiped in the next lounge purge.
    Andrew Lockton, Chrysalis Design, Melbourne Australia

  7. #7
    Lounger
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    Re: Is there a way to disable Task Panes? (2002)

    Andrew, and Hans,

    Many thanks for your quick response.

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