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Restoring Email Toolbars

Pat from Fox writes:

I don’t know what the name of these are but at the top of my email page the following options: File, View, Edit, etc. are no longer there. How can I find them to get them back and keep them there? Thanks!

Unless you happen to be very well-versed in dozens of keyboard shortcuts, the main menu bar is an absolute necessity for navigating around a program like your email client. A disappearing menu bar can be caused by any number of issues, from accidentally hitting the wrong key combination to clicking the wrong option while trying to access a different menu. Regardless of how it vanished in the first place, getting your menu bar back so you can choose options like “File” and “Tools” is usually a very simple process.

The quickest way to bring back your menu bar is to right-click anywhere in any of the toolbars at the top of the window, which will bring up a list of toolbar options. Click the name of the vanished toolbar, which is usually “menu bar,” “standard bar,” or something similar. Presto: your menu bar should now appear where it needs to be.

Restoring the Menu Bar

In some cases the primary menu bar might not show up in the list of available options when you right-click the toolbar area. In this case, instead select the “Customize” option in the pop-up menu.

Customizing Toolbars

Click the check box next to the “Menu Bar” option (in Microsoft Outlook you will first need to navigate to the “Toolbars” tab) and click “OK” to restore your menu bar at the top of the screen.

The Toolbars Tab

You can also quickly bring up the menu bar simply by tapping any keyboard shortcut that loads any of the toolbar’s menus. For instance, Mozilla Thunderbird lets you open the “Message” menu in the main toolbar by tapping the “Alt” and “M” keys together. Pressing this combination forces the toolbar to appear so the “Message” menu can pop up on the screen.

A disappearing toolbar can also be caused by problems with add-ins and extensions installed with your email client. For example, the Microsoft Outlook email program will automatically disable any add-in that is causing a conflict or isn’t operating properly, but if the add-in affected the menu bar at the top of the screen it may cause that toolbar to also be removed. To get on fixing the problem, tap any keyboard shortcut that brings up the menu bar, such as “Alt” and “H” to bring up the “Help” menu. Select the “Disabled Items” option. If you are using Outlook 2010, you instead find the list of disabled items by choosing “Options” in the “File” menu and then navigating to the “Add-Ins” entry at the left side of the window.

Accessing Disabled Items

Highlight the name of the add-in that Outlook disabled and click the “Enable” button, and then check to see if the menu bar has reappeared.

~ Ty Arthur