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Disable the Mini Toolbar and Live Preview in Word 2010 or 2007

A couple of enhancements in Word 2010 & 2007 is the Mini Toolbar and Live Preview features. While these enhancements are welcome by some, other users may find them annoying. Here is how to turn both features off.

Mini Toolbar and Live Preview Features

The Mini Toolbar pops up when you select text in a document. It allows you to change fonts, underline, bold, italicize the selection and more.

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Live Preview allows you to hover the mouse over different style types and instantly show you how the document will look with the changes.

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Disable Mini Toolbar and Live Preview in Word 2010 

If you are annoyed by the Mini Toolbar and / or Live Preview while creating documents, we can easily disable one or both. In your Word document click the File tab to access Backstage View and click Options.

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Click General and under User Interface Options uncheck either Show Mini Toolbar on selection, Enable Live Preview or both then click OK.

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You don’t need to restart Word, the features will be disabled right away. Now when you highlight text, no annoying Mini Toolbar…

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And when choosing different Style Sets or other configurations of the document it will no longer show you how it will look with Live Preview.

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Word 2007

You can disable both features in Word 2007 as well. Click on the Office Button the Word Options.

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Under the Popular section just uncheck the Mini Toolbar and Live Preview boxes.

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If you’re moving from Office 2003 to a newer version, you might find the new features to be quite handy, on the other hand, you might find them very annoying. If so you can easily turn them off, or if you want to use the features again, just go back and re-enable them.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 08/16/10

Comments (4)

  1. Prashant

    Why would anyone want to diable Live Preview? I find it very useful.

  2. mcdaddydouble_d

    Thanks for the info. This Mini-Toolbar has been very annoying. Hopefully this will do the trick. I guess that time will tell though.

    I am in total agreement with Prashant in that “[w]hy would anyone want to disable Live Preview”? So I have left that feature intact as is.

  3. Delia Casey

    the purpose of the mini toolbar is that you can still format text even though you are using a different part of the ribbon otherwise you have to keep going back to the home tab. By diabling it you are using office 2007/2010 as Office 2003 – why bother upgrading!

  4. Sean

    I have deselected the mini-toolbar in Options, but it will not go away. Does anyone know why?

    I find the mini-toolbar to be an annoying waste of screen space. I always use “Keep source formatting” in my work, so there’s never a need to tweak formatting on the fly.

    I did manage to turn off Live Preview. I’ve been using Word since the first version. If I can’t picture what my changes will look like without a preview, I must be doing something wrong.

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