by Rick Broida, PC World - Ingenious. That's the only word I can use to describe Search Commands, a free Microsoft Office Labs tool that adds a search tool to the Office 2007 Ribbon.
See, for anyone who cut their teeth on Office 2003 or an earlier version, the move to Office 2007 can be daunting. Much as I like the Ribbon, it's not immediately intuitive. And to this day I still have trouble finding commands that were a snap to locate in the old menu system.
(Speaking of which, you can restore those "classic" menus to Office 2007 by installing the free UBitMenu add-on.)
That's why I'm jazzed about Search Commands. Once installed, it adds an eponymous tab to the Ribbon. Click it, then click in the search field and type the name of the command you're after.
Like all search engines should be, this one's dynamic: It starts producing results as you type. So if you're looking for, say, macros, you'll see matching commands just by typing mac. Then just click the one you want.
Search Commands also provides context-sensitive help, meaning if you type out macros and then click the blue Get help question mark, it'll open the help window for that subject.
Although the Labs page for Search Commands says it's compatible only with 32-bit Windows XP and Vista, I'm running it just fine on my 64-bit Windows 7 system. Keep in mind, however, that because this is not an official Microsoft product, you can't get support for it.
That said, this is a must-have addition to Office 2007. Why Microsoft hasn't built it into the suite--and, for that matter, the upcoming Office 2010--is beyond me.
Originally published on PC World. Click here to read the original story.