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Personal website of Gregory K. Maxey, Commander USN (Retired)

Ribbon Images & Labels Part I
(A Microsoft Word Help & Tip page by Gregory K. Maxey)

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This Microsoft Word Tips & Microsoft Word Help page is the first in a series of tips pages written to show how to apply and use ribbon control attributes to define, modify and display control images and labels. See the Word Help & Tips Index for links to the other pages in this series

If you are unfamiliar with ribbon customization I recommend that you review my Customize the Ribbon before reading further.

I felt that I needed to break this subject into parts as the topic is broad and while the methods presented in this tips page are simple and straight forward, they become seemingly quite complex as the series progresses.

The tips and methods presented in these pages are a culmination of many months of frustration and web searching looking for a way to "bend" the ribbon to my will and in particular, apply dynamic custom images to my ribbon controls. I might still be searching if not for the outstanding contributions of two Microsoft Excel programming masters Bob Phillips and Ron de Bruin; and suggestions by Word MVP Jonathan West.

Built-In Images and Labels

I'll start with the static images and labels applied to the built-in office controls.

I use the term static to indicate images and labels that are created at design time when the ribbon loads and remain constant. The illustration below shows a custom ribbon tab that I created for this tips page. All of the controls are fully functional. You can download the demonstration document used to create this pages which contains the associated ribbon, custom XML and VBA callbacks using this link: Ribbon Images & Labels Part I

ribbon images and labels p1 1

Group 1 contains the built-in controls "FileClose" and "FilePrint." The following XML can be used to create this group:

RibbonXML Script:
<group id="Grp1" label="Group 1" >
  <button idMso="FileClose" size="large" label="Close me" imageMso="HappyFace" />
  <separator id="Grp1Sep1" />
  <button idMso="FilePrint" size="normal" label="Print me" imageMso="CreateMacro" />
</group >

Site Note Icon Note: "imageMso" corresponds with the fixed "idMso" for all office built-in controls. You can determine the idMso of most Word built-in controls using the Quick Access Tab customization dialog and pausing your mouse over a built-in in command list in the "Choose command from" listing. The idMso appears in screen tip in parenthesis e.g., Popular Commands | File (FileSave).  The collection control images are available through several web links such as this one:  http://soltechs.net/CustomUI/imageMso01.asp:
Additionally, a complete list of office Ribbon UI control names and types can be downloaded from Microsoft.  See Customize the Ribbon for links.

Group 2 contains the built-in controls "FileNew," "FileSave As" and "MenuPublish." The following XML can be used to create this group:

RibbonXML Script:
<group id="Grp2" label="Group 2" >
  <button idMso="FileNew" size="normal" showLabel="false" />
  <separator id="Grp2Sep1" /:gt;
  <button idMso="FileSaveAs" size="large" label="Save Me As" showLabel="false" />
  <separator id="Grp2Sep2" /:gt;
  <menu idMso="MenuPublish" size="large" showLabel="false" label=" " screentip="Publish" />
</group >

Group 2 illustrates how to use the showLabel attribute to hide a control's label.

Group 3 contains the built-in controls "FileSendMenu" and "FilePrepareMenu." The following XML can be used to create this group:

RibbonXML Script:
<group id="Grp3" label="Group 3" >
  <menu idMso="FileSendMenu" size="normal" label="Send Me" showImage="false" />
  <separator id="Grp3Sep1" />
  <menu idMso="FilePrepareMenu" size="large" label="Prepare Me" showImage="false" />
  <button idMso="FileSave" size="large" label="Save Me" showImage="false" imageMso="About" />
</group >

This group illustrates how to use the showImage attribute.

Finally Group 4 contains the built-in controls "FileOpen," "FileSave" and "FileClose." The following XML can be used to create this group:

VBA Callback Script:
<group id="Grp4" label="Group 4" >
  <button idMso="FileOpen" size="large" image="Insert" />
  <separator id="Grp4Sep1" />
  <button idMso="FileSave" size="large" getImage="RX.GetImage" getLabel="RX.GetLabel"
          getShowImage="RX.GetShowImage" getShowLabel="RX.GetShowLabel" />
  <separator id="Grp4Sep2" />
  <button idMso="FileClose" size="normal" getImage="RX.GetImage" getLabel="RX.GetLabel"
          getShowLabel="RX.GetShowLabel" getShowImage="RX.GetShowImage" />
 </group >

This group illustrates that the ribbon attributes image, getImage, getLabel, getShowLabel and getShowImage are not associated with built-in controls (large or normal).

This concludes this tips page. In the next tips page in this series, Ribbon Images & Labels Part II, I'll review applying images and labels to custom controls.

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