If you need to learn about the dialog boxes Office XP has available and the wizards Office XP uses, read this free lesson.
So far, you've learned that commands let you control how an Office XP program works. In order to execute many commands, your input is necessary. Dialog boxes help you accomplish this.
Dialog boxes look a lot like other windows and feature controls you use to change the function or appearance of a program.
For example, let's say you want to open an existing Word document. Whether you choose File Open from the menu bar or click the Open button on the Standard toolbar, an Open dialog box appears, ready for your input.
While exploring various menus in Office XP, you may have noticed an ellipsis (...) next to some menu commands. If you select a command that's followed by an ellipsis (...), a dialog box will appear.
Below is an example of an Office XP dialog box.
Tabs look like file folder tabs. Tabs let you switch between windows of information. When you click a tab, a window of new information appears.
A command button, such as OK and Cancel, tells the computer to carry out an action. Execute an action by clicking a command button.
Option buttons appear when you are shown a list of choices, and you need to select only one option. To select an option, click inside the circle next to your choice. When selecting an option, a small black dot fills the circle.
Check boxes appear when selecting more than one option. To select an option, click inside the box. When selecting an option, a check mark appears in the box.
A text box provides space to type information. For example, when naming a file you type the name into a text box.
Drop-down list boxes
A drop-down list box shows only one option at a time (the option that is selected), and there is a downward arrow at the right end of the box. To view the entire list of options, click the arrow. Select an option from a list of choices, and click a command button to execute the command.
A spin box is used to set a value, such as the number of copies to print. To increase or decrease the number, click the up or down arrow.
A list box usually is a large white space that contains a list of options. If the list of option is too long to fit in the list box, a vertical scroll bar lets you view the entire list.
A slider looks like a sliding volume control on a radio. A slider sets a value within a continuous range of values, such as from slow to fast. To move a slider, place the mouse pointer on the slider, left-click it, then drag it from side to side.
A wizard is a short series of dialog boxes that asks you a few questions and then creates an item like a chart according the your answers.
If you can operate a dialog box, you should have no problem using wizards.
When Office XP was installed on your computer, several wizards were installed on your computer. The Microsoft Windows installer loads other wizards the first time you try to use them. There are more wizards available online in the Microsoft Office Template Gallery.