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How can we improve Word for Windows (Desktop Application)? Vote for an existing idea or share a new one.

Bring back the Object Browser

Word 2013 eliminated the "browse arrows" and Select Browse Object button from the vertical scroll bar. Although partial replacements for this utility are available in the Navigation pane and Go To dialog, none of them are as convenient as the simple browse arrows.

A search for "browse object" in the Word forum at Microsoft Community (http://goo.gl/eC3IZy) shows that many users are puzzled by and/or unhappy about the loss of this utility.

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    Suzanne S. Barnhill shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    declined  ·  AdminWord Product Team [MSFT] (Admin, Office.com) responded  · 

    Thanks for your feedback. We do not have plans to add object browser to Word at this time. Here is an alternative may help you to browse objects quickly in Word.

    Home → Find → Go To

    Thank you for bringing this issue to our attention and continuing to work with us on improving our products for customers worldwide.

    45 comments

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      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I use control page down and now there is no way to do this because you can't clear the find object. Even when you go to find and select clear, this does not work. This is a really bad thing to have eliminated.

      • Peter commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        So... in the absence of the object browser how do users now easily find and navigate through all field codes one by one in the document? e.g. Endnote inserted reference codes or other forms of user inserted field codes. The object browser was great for that and I've yet to find an easy alternative. Maybe users should just drop plans to use MS products altogether given a whole bunch of useful features keep getting scrapped or buried so deep they are near impossible to find.

      • Peter commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I agree - The object browser was really useful; faster and more efficient than the hunting through the ribbon and having to click all over the place to do the equivalent.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Well, that sucks utterly! Just upgraded from 2011 to 2016, and I already miss the browse buttons sorely! I work with long technical documents, and I used to browse by table or graphic very frequently. This was a rare example of a feature that was actually implemented WELL by MS, so of course, they had to remove it! (At least vertically split window is still available, though it has been made harder to use.)

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Crazy, we want to be able to do things the most efficient way!!! Bring it back please

      • MHS505 commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Bring back the browse buttons (page up, page down) that used to be on the vertical scroll bar. These were very easy, one-handed, one-step conveniences. Microsoft, don't make it hard for us to use Word.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I found a way to disable it but it took a while.

        - After doing a Find/Find & Replace, click on the tiny down arrow next to the box where you type what you are searching for.

        - Select "go to" and type in whatever page you want to go to and activate it by clicking on "go to." The screen will advance to the top of that page.

        - After you close out of the "Find and Replace" box Ctrl+PgDn or Ctrl+PgUp will resume scrolling from page to page.

        Not as convenient as the object browser but a relief to know the search function can be disabled in Word 2016.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I agree - we need the Select Browse Object button back! It's incredibly annoying that after using the Find command, the Ctrl+PageUp and Ctrl+PageDown key combos become "Find Next" and "Find Previous" commands - with no simple way to switch them back to "Next Page" and "Previous Page." UGH.

      • Penny commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I have added the Find Next option to my Quick Access Bar. My only question now would be why wasn't that presented as the alternative.

      • Penny commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        How is that alternative as convenient as a single click on the vertical scroll bar. Please either bring back the option or give a single click alternative to 'find next'

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        It's really amazing how Microsoft has this incredible ability to keep adding useless or annoying features but removes those that are really really useful.
        I really wish there were an alternative to the soon-to-be-completely-useless MS Word.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Who did you ask, Microsoft? Nobody who spends all day working on very long and complex documents, that's for sure! I have found workarounds for most things (although they are much less convenient), but I still haven't found a way to "find previous" when using find and replace - the object browser was so convenient for that, for browsing by section (to check setup for portrait and landscape secttions), by field (to check that hyperlinks were correct) ... Please listen to the people who use your products all day every day, and not just people who don't know how to use the full functionality.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Unfortunately, as a user with lots of large documents, I find that Microsoft's choice of defaults is, in a word, crazy! To delete the browse object and -- especially -- the page up and down buttons from the scroll bar is absurd. Maybe casual users creating one page letters or some such didn't use it, but it was a god-send for the multiple page documents that I use. BRING IT BACK!!

      • Dee M. commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I'm sorry you have declined to bring back this very useful feature. I find it particularly helpful when searching for a particular word or phrase in a very long document. You can close the dialog box, which gets in the way, and just click the down arrow. I hope you'll reconsider.

      • Janet commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        We have just upgraded to 2016 from 2010 and I can't believe there is no object browser! I used it many times on a daily basis.

      • Marianne commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I would also urge Microsoft to bring it back ASAP. It is an incredibly usefull feature!!

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