Customizing Your World

Xara is nothing if not accomodating. If you don't like the main tool bar to be on the left, drag and drop it onto the screen. (Drag on the surrounding portion of the barónot the buttons). Or drag it over and dock it on the right side of the screen. (When you reach the right scroll bar area the outline changes to a slim rectangle and it will dock on the right side of the screen until you move it again).

Buttons on the Infobar or Main Toolbar can be respositioned by holding down the Alt key while you drag the button to a new location. Be careful, however, if you drag and drop a button off the bar upon which it resides, you will have discovered how to delete a button!

Now You See Them...

Xara offers many more function buttons than are present on the default page. To see some of these additional functions known as Control Bars, select Control Bars... from the Window menu. This opens the Control Bars dialog shown here. NOTE: You won't see New Button Bar, we are going to create it later on.

Checking any of the check boxes causes the appropriate Control Bar to appear on the Infobar. Go ahead and try it out. I'll wait right here until you're finished.

By default, the Main Tool bar (on the left of the page) has large buttons. If you want more screen space, un-check the Left option box. If you can't see the buttons on either the Main Tool Bar or the Infobar , because they are too small, select All.

Creating Your Own Custom Control Bar

At the bottom of the Control Bars dialog is Button Palette. Click this option to display the entire selection of buttons as seen on the left.

 If you allow your cursor to rest over any of the buttons for a moment, a Tool Tip appears giving the name of the button. There is a button for just about any function.

You can Alt drag and drop any of these buttons onto the Infobar (or Main Tool Bar). Or you can create your own special Control Bar. Here's How.

In the Control Bars dialog (shown in the previous illustration), click New. Key in a name for your new Control Bar in the new Control Bar dialog.


A small blank bar will appear on the page. You can leave it like this if you want, but I would recommend adding some buttons to the new bar. With the Button Palette open, hold down the Alt key and drag and drop your desired buttons onto your new bar..

Here is my new Control Bar which contains the following buttons: (left to right) Bitmap Tracer, Web Address, Page Rulers, Print Borders, Save As, and Paste at Same Position.

To add the new Control Bar to the Infobar, drag and drop it on the Infobar. To toggle the new bar on or off, check or un-check the name in the Control Bars dialog.

Double Your Pleasure! Double Your Fun!

Want to add a quick guideline? Double click on the ruler where you want to add the guide. For evenly-spaced guides, enable Snap To Grid.

Want a fast way to toggle between Maximize and Restore? (The center of the three button in the top right side of every window). Double click on the title bar.

Non-Xara-related TIP: Nothing is worse (in your editor's opinion) than a dishwashing soap bottle, after a few months use, with partially dried soap coating the sides. Yuck! If you put some of the liquid dishwashing soap in one of those liquid hand soap dispencers, you can pump out a little at a time, as needed, without making a mess. And the soap lasts longer too.

Got TIPS? Click Here to send your editor your TIP(s) via e-mail. If I use your tip, I'll give you credit. Fair enough?