How-to enable the Developer tab in the Ribbon bar

I am a new user to Office 2007 (Beta 2) and I am having fun discovering things around. If you already downloaded the 2007 Microsoft Office system Beta 2 and you are ready to start experimenting with Office, here is a nice trick related to the very cool Ribbon bar.

The Ribbon provides a Developer tab that groups a set of commands related to Office programmability and extensibility. The following figure shows the Developer Ribbon (Word 2007).

Developer tab in the Ribbon UI

By default, the Developer tab is disabled. Why? My personal guess: Regular end-users don't know about Office programmability and extensibility, so they might never use the Developer tab. On the other hand, developers are a different set of users that have a completely distinct way of working with programs, solving problems, and discovering things. Developers have a great research spirit and will easily find how-to enable the Developer tab. Here's how...

To show the Developer tab

  1. Open a 2007 Office System application, for example Word 2007.
  2. Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Word Options.
  3. In the Top options for working with Word section of the Word Options dialog box, click Personalize.
  4. Select Show Developer tab in the Ribbon, as shown in the next figure.
  5. Click OK.

    The Word Options dialog box

    Note   When you are in developer mode, you see the Developer tab in the Ribbon UI.

Once you get this running and start playing around, the next step is to start researching about extending the Ribbon. You can extend the Ribbon to show custom tabs and command chunks. The new Ribbon page inside MSDN contains great resources (blogs, videos, articles and downloads) that will allow you to get started with extending the Ribbon.

Don't miss Frank's articles and blog, he is a great writer and will be sharing more on extending the Ribbon with you guys.

  • Have fun with the Beta,


  • Comments (10)

    1. Pour tout ce qui qui veulent avoir l’onglet "Developer" sous Word 2007, Erika Ehrli vient de poster,…

    2. Pavan Raut says:


      I was able to get the developer tab but i didn’t see the record macro button there. I am using Office 2007 (powerpoint) Beta 2.



    3. Erika Ehrli says:

      Hi Pavan,

      I tried it myself and you are right, this looks like a bug. I will report this to the PPT team.

      Thanks for reporting this issue :).

    4. Linda says:

      I tried following your steps but I was unable to detect that macro button. i am really pissed off!

      I have got Office(2007) and it looks to me like a bug. If u could please help….

    5. Dhammika Fernando says:

      I want to manipulate a form developed in Word 2003, which I used to be able to type in areas which were not fields, by ‘unlocking’ the form. When I open it in Word 2007, I can’t find an option to do that.

    6. DSE says:

      Excellent! just was looking for

      thank you very much!


    7. Elsie G. says:

      Wow! Great…I followed your step by step procedures. Thank you for this page I found it. God speed!

    8. tasha says:

      you cant seem to be able to do this in excel starter 2010, if you could tellme  a way of finding and enableing the developer tab it would be much appriciated,


    9. GB says:

      Brilliant help! Straight to the point


    10. VALLURI says:

      hi this one is the nice post. You can a video tutorial for this procedure in following link

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