Adding to the Customize Command List

Why the Office command list isn’t comprehensive and how to add ‘missing’ items.

Our Command Finder list is the list supplied by Microsoft in the command customization dialog. We’ve provided an easier way to find that information but are limited to what Redmond has provided all Office users.

Not everything is exposed in the Customize command list. Some features and settings don’t get added to the command list according to reasoning that is hidden from us mere customers.

To add a ‘missing’ option to a ribbon or Quick Access Toolbar you have to first create a short VBA function and to make that function you need the right VBA command.

All Office features should be available via VBA methods or properties. You can find the VBA equivalent of a command or setting using the Record Macro feature. In short, turn on Remove Macro, do the thing or change the setting you want, turn off macro recording then look at the macro to see the VBA version of your actions.

For example, several readers have pointed to the Keep Track of Formatting setting under Word Options | Advanced | Editing. It’s not listed in the customize command list.

From the recorded macro you’d find that the true/false setting is:


Turn that into a macro which reverses the current setting:

Sub FormatScanningToggle()
 Options.FormatScanning = Not Options.FormatScanning
 End Sub

Or a macro to make sure the setting is on:

Sub FormatScanningOn()
Options.FormatScanning = True
End Sub


Now when you go to the Customize Ribbon or Quick Access Toolbar dialog in Office you’ll find your macro under the Macros list. You can add the macro as a button on the QAT or a ribbon.

Office - Macro command list.jpg image from Adding to the Customize Command List at

In this case the command is stored in the Normal template and available to all documents on that computer.