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How to: Get started customizing the ribbon

Applies to: yesVisual Studio noVisual Studio for Mac


This article applies to Visual Studio 2017. If you're looking for the latest Visual Studio documentation, see Visual Studio documentation. We recommend upgrading to the latest version of Visual Studio. Download it here

To customize the Ribbon of a Microsoft Office application, add a Ribbon (Visual Designer) or Ribbon (XML) item to an Office project.

Applies to: The information in this topic applies to document-level projects and VSTO Add-in projects for the following applications: Excel; InfoPath 2013 and InfoPath 2010; Outlook; PowerPoint; Project; Visio; Word. For more information, see Features available by Office application and project type.

To add a ribbon to a project

  1. On the Project Menu, click Add New Item.

  2. In the Add New Item dialog box, select Ribbon (Visual Designer) or Ribbon (XML). For more information about these templates, see Ribbon overview.

  3. In the Name box, type a name for the Ribbon item.

    Names cannot contain the following characters:

    • Pound (#)

    • Percent (%)

    • Ampersand (&)

    • Asterisk (*)

    • Vertical bar (|)

    • Backslash (\)

    • Colon (:)

    • Double quotation mark (")

    • Less than (<)

    • Greater than (>)

    • Question mark (?)

    • Forward slash (/)

    • Leading or trailing spaces (' ')

    • Names reserved for Windows or DOS such as ("nul", "aux", "con", "com1", "lpt1", and so on)

  4. Click OK.

    The Ribbon item appears in Solution Explorer. For information about the next steps, see Ribbon overview.

See also