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Barry MacDonnell's
Toolbox for WordPerfect

Macros, tips, and templates for Corel® WordPerfect® for Windows®
© Copyright 1996-2021 by Barry MacDonnell. All Rights Reserved.

Page updated Mar 11, 2019

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How to change the default "audiocassette" icons on toolbar buttons after assigning macros to them (or change any toolbar icon)

Notes and related pages -

¤  To add buttons to a toolbar see "How to create a toolbar button to play a macro, load a program or file (or folder), use a built-in WordPerfect feature, or play back keystrokes" here; once created you can add a custom image to the button as discussed in the next column -►

¤  To retrieve and use buttons from WordPerfect X6 or earlier in a newer WordPerfect version see Footnote 1 below

¤  See here for some downloadable icon images related to the macros on this site you can use for your own WordPerfect toolbars 

¤  Using WordPerfect 10
(c. 2002)?
The methods described in the next column do NOT directly work in WordPerfect (WP10/SP2), released in 2001
(your current version is shown in Help, About...). See Footnote 2 below about updating this specific version of WP10

There are several methods you can use to customize a toolbar button's image (i.e., the icon on the button).

Some methods are specific to your version of WordPerfect. These are explained below the following Updates, which summarize the  changes in newer WordPerfect versions.

UPDATES — June 2014; June 2016 

Starting with WordPerfect X7 (i.e., version 17, released in 2014) the program no longer has the ability to manually edit toolbar button icons with its old (somewhat primitive) built-in icon editor.

Instead, users of WordPerfect X7 and later versions must import any desired image directly from the disk if they want to use a custom icon on a toolbar or property bar button.

This is not particularly difficult and since it uses pre-existing disk images it should not take too much time and effort.
(Note: It might also be possible to retrieve icons from the buttons in a prior version: See Footnote 1 below.)

Methods you can use

For those using WordPerfect X7 or later versions the following information — as well as methods #3, #4, and #5 belowshould help you customize your toolbar and property bar icons. [For those using WordPerfect X6 or earlier you can skip the rest of this section and jump down to the basic method and the two advanced methods (#1 and #2) below.]

From Corel WordPerfect X7's Help module (with some related tips):

"You can customize icons on toolbars. WordPerfect lets you use 32bpp full color images with transparency as toolbar icons. For best results, create a 24-bit, 16 x 16 pixel PNG image with an 8-bit alpha transparency channel...." [See "More tips" below for other options.]

Related tips:

In addition to PNG images you should be able to use 16x16 pixel BMP, GIF, and ICO files, too.

The program's 7-step instructions immediately below tell you to browse to the folder where the PNG images are stored so you can select one of them.

In fact, for convenience you can put other custom image types in the same (default) image folder if you wish. (Since it's a protected Windows folder you'll need Administrator rights to copy anything into it.)

If you decide to do that ... i
n step 4 (below) the "Import Graphics - Icons" dialog appears; you just need to set the "File Type:" field to All Files to see all the available image types.

Note that GIF images are normally 8-bit files but they seem to work in my tests when installed as described below. Full-color images with some areas made transparent might look better than images with a lower color level and/or no transparent areas, but as long as they are 16x16 pixels in size they should still be useful to tell you what the button does.

"... To use a custom image for a toolbar icon [in WPX7 and later]

1.   Create a new icon by using an image-editing application, such as Corel PaintShop Pro, which supports PNG graphics with alpha channel transparency.
[Or you can copy an existing image to use; see methods below. (-Ed.)]
2.   In WordPerfect, right-click on a toolbar, and click Edit.
3.   On the toolbar, right-click the icon that you want to change, and click Customize.
4.   In the Customize Button dialog box, click Import.
5.   Browse to the folder where you store your PNG image [see Note below], then click the image, and then click Open.

[Note: You can store your 16x16 pixel images in any folder. The program's (factory installed) default folder for toolbar icon images for Windows 7 and Windows 10 is --
C:\Program Files (x86)\Corel\WordPerfect Office NN\Graphics\Icons
(where "NN" = version such as X8, X9, etc.) -- but any preferred and accessible folder can be used
. In any case, it is suggested that you use a dedicated folder for this purpose and back it up often. (-Ed.)]

6.   Click OK in the Customize button dialog box.
7.   Click OK in the Toolbar editor dialog box.


•  If you don’t want to create your own icon, search the Internet for free 16x16 pixel PNG icons."

More tips:

•  A good graphics "clipping" program such as FastStone Capture might be used to carefully select and clip an existing square button image from your screen (e.g., see steps 2-3 above to display a Customize Button dialog with the image to use).

Note that you should clip just a 16x16 pixel area since WordPerfect's toolbar buttons are about 24x24 pixels in total size. The extra area is not part of the icon image, so you don't want to include it. (FastStone Capture can be set to clip a fixed-size region (e.g., 16x16), which can make this easier.)

Optionally, resize the clipped image in the clipping program to 16x16 pixels, and edit it if desired.

Then save the image as a .PNG or .BMP or .GIF file and include it along with the other PNG images that come with the program (referenced in step 5 above).

It can then be imported to your WordPerfect X7+ toolbar (as above).

•  You should be able to resize (and if necessary convert) a .GIF, .BMP, .ICO or .PNG image with a program such as the free and well-regarded IrfanView utility.

Just open (or paste) the image into IrfanView, resize it if necessary, then Save As one of the file types WordPerfect can use, such as PNG. Note that when saving PNG images, IrfanView can let you choose the area outside the main icon that should be transparent: choose Show options dialog on the Save As dialog. This will let the toolbar's background color show up around the icon itself.


The basic method and the advanced Method #1 and Method #2 below will not work in WordPerfect X7 and newer versions of the program since they rely on the old, built-in Image Editor which does not exist in the newer versions.

If you have WordPerfect X7/X8/X9 (or later) you can try the other methods (#3-#5) below.

Perhaps this change is the reason some older default toolbar icons have changed appearance somewhat in newer versions — they were recast as full color (24bit) images with transparent areas. But many older images without the need for high color or transparent areas can work just as well for most users. [See an example in a post on WordPerfect Universe here. See also the Note about WordPerfect 10 (released back in 2001) in the sidebar at left.]

The basic, simple method (for WordPerfect X6 and earlier)
This method uses the program's built-in Image Editor in WPX6 and earlier. [Note that this Editor is missing in WPX7 and later, so in those newer versions you must use the above method or one of the other methods below. (Note: It might be possible to retrieve old buttons from a previous WordPerfect version: See Footnote 1 below.)

Step 1. Right-click on the toolbar with the button you want to change.

Step 2. Choose Edit from the context menu; this brings up the Toolbar Editor dialog.

Step 3. While the Toolbar Editor is on screen,

•  either right-click the button you want to edit and choose Customize,

•  or simply double-click the button.

The Customize Button dialog appears; click Edit and the Image Editor appears.

Step 4. To use the Image Editor in its basic, default way to edit button graphics:

•  Click the Single pixel radio button (or the brush icon in later versions of WordPerfect) in the Drawing mode area of the Image Editor dialog to change the graphic image one square (pixel) at a time, or click the Fill whole area button (or paint bucket image) to change larger areas of one color to another color.

•  Click the color you want in the color palette, then click on a square in the zoomed image area to change the color to your chosen color.

•  You can click Undo to reverse your last change or Clear to erase the entire graphic.

•  Click Copy if you want to copy the current image to the Clipboard. Click Paste to insert the current Clipboard contents into the Image Editor.

Step 5. Click OK until you get back to the main document screen.

You can use these rudimentary tools to create your own icon image from scratch or edit an existing icon to add something (or some color) to make it different from other button images.

Some more advanced methods

Method 1. (for WordPerfect X6 and earlier) 

"Borrow" an existing icon image from another WordPerfect feature or from another (existing) toolbar button, and then customize it for your new button.

Since WordPerfect is full of features that you can add to a toolbar with the Toolbar Editor's Features tab ("Activate a Feature" button in WP6x), these already have predrawn icons associated with them. You can copy any of these images to your macro's toolbar button and modify them if desired. This is done by temporarily adding one of these WP features to the toolbar so that you can get at its icon. (You can delete the temporary button/feature later.)

Or, if you already have a toolbar button that will serve as a basis for a new icon, you can copy the image to a new button. The toolbar button can even be on a different version of WordPerfect installed on your computer.

Step 1.

Right click the toolbar or property bar you want to edit, then select Edit from the list. This brings up the Toolbar Editor. (The Editor will work only on the toolbar or property bar that you choose by right-clicking it.)

Step 2.

Alternative 1:

To copy an image from a WP feature: Scroll through the Feature Categories in the Toolbar Editor, and use your mouse to click on various features in the drop down list below each category. You'll see the associated icon displayed below the Features list. When you see one that looks useful, click the Add Button to add that button/feature to the toolbar. It should immediately appear at the end of the last row of your toolbar's buttons.

Alternative 2:

To copy an image from another toolbar button, skip this step and go to Step 3.

Step 3.

With the Toolbar Editor still open, right click the desired "source" button and select Customize to bring up the Customize Button dialog box.

Click Edit to bring up the Image Editor.

Click Copy to copy the icon to the Windows clipboard.

Exit the Image Editor for that icon (click Cancel twice until you get back to the Toolbar Editor).

Step 4.

If you have used Step 2/Alternative 1: Delete the new, temporary button from the toolbar by right clicking it and choosing Delete. (The icon image is still on the clipboard.)

If you have used Step 2/Alternative 2: Skip this step and go to Step 5. (The icon image is still on the clipboard.)

Step 5.

Now you can customize your new icon.

Right click the "target" button, select Customize, and click the Edit button. This brings up the Image Editor dialog.

Click the Clear button to delete the default audiocassette image, and immediately click Paste to insert the newly copied icon. You can then fill the image's sections with different colors and/or add something to it to make it stand out on your toolbar.

When done, click OK twice to exit back to the Toolbar Editor.

While the Toolbar Editor is still on screen, you can drag and drop the new button to another location on your toolbar by left-clicking it and holding the left mouse button down.

Close the Toolbar Editor with the OK button to save your work and return to the main document window.

Note: To delete a toolbar icon from the main doucument window, you can simply hold down the Alt key while you drag the icon from the toolbar.

Method 2. (for WordPerfect X6 and earlier)

Use any 16x16-pixel bitmap icons (i.e., files that end in .BMP).

Step 1.

Open Microsoft Paint (which comes free with Windows), with Start>Programs>Accessories>Paint.

Step 2.

In MS Paint, click Image>Attributes. Set the image width and height to 16 (set Units=pixels, Colors=Colors). Click OK.

Step 3.

On the Paint menu, click Edit>Paste From. Select the image file, and click Open. The image should appear in Paint as a tiny image in the work area. You can use View>Zoom>Custom>800 to enlarge it.

Step 4.

Click Edit>Select All to select the entire icon image. Then click Edit>Copy (or use Ctrl+C) to copy the icon image to the Windows clipboard. If you are going to use more than one image in WP, click Edit>Clear Selection to clear the current image from MS Paint.

Step 5.

Minimize the MS Paint program, and go into WordPerfect.

Step 6.

Right click the appropriate WordPerfect toolbar, then choose Edit from the context menu that appears. Next, right click on the icon you want to change, then choose Customize, then click the Edit button. The Image Editor should now be on screen.

Step 7.

Click the Clear button in the Image Editor to remove the exusting icon image, then click Paste to insert the new image. (Some images at this point will be very blurry and "pixelated"; the Image Editor shows a Preview of what the icon will look like on the toolbar button.) Make any changes to any pixels, the click OK until you are back to the main WordPerfect screen.

Repeat steps #3 through #7 for other icon images you want to use.

Method 3. (for WordPerfect X7 and later)

Use larger images of various types that are first reduced to 16x16-pixels.

With a free, online conversion tool (on an unrelated web site here) you can use almost any existing image on your computer — a bitmap (BMP), a GIF image, an ICO (icon) image, and even a JPG/JPEG image (e.g., a digital picture or photo) if its file size on disk is not too large — to create a 16x16-pixel icon image.

Or use the free and highly regarded IrfanView program, where you can open an existing image from a file or just paste a copied image into IrfanView's workspace. Then you can resize it to 16x16 pixels.

Be aware that not all such large, original images will be suitable to turn into a toolbar icon. For example, complex landscape images probably will not be particularly useful because they have too many details, but you can use such things as a close-up photo of your face or a simple high-contrast picture. 32x32-pixel BMP and GIF icon images are often very useful since you already have an idea what they will look like when reduced in size to 16x16. Many corporate logos will work well if they are relatively simple and square-shaped. Experimentation is the key here.

If you want to use .JPG (JPEG) files — a photo or other JPG image — you might want to crop a copy of the image into a roughly square shape first, since toolbar icons are square. There is no need to resize them at this point, since this can be done easily and automatically on the Internet with the following tool. Almost every image editing program has a cropping tool.

As noted, a free interactive tool is available on the Internet ("FavIcon from Pics" - http://www.html-kit.com/favicon/) to reduce the image to toolbar-icon size, maintaining a rough semblance of the original. It was originally created to convert such images into "favicons" — those small icons you sometimes see next to some web site addresses (i.e., URLs) in your browser's address field — but it can also be used to create toolbar-size GIF images, which, in turn, can be quickly turned into a toolbar icon.

Method 4. (for WordPerfect X7 and later)

You can import a 16x16 BMP, GIF, or ICO image directly (see WordPerfect's Help instructions above), or use an image editing program such as Paint Shop Pro or Corel Presentations to convert an image in another size or format (e.g., JPG) to a 16x16 GIF image. You can also use a program such as IrfanView.

Tips and alternatives

•  From Roy Lewis, Corel C_Tech (11/23/04):

"The basic idea is to create toolbar icons from program (and other large) icons, which are 32x32 pixels. Presentations can resize them by a roundabout route, and when it then Resamples the now smaller icon it seems to do some anti-aliasing as well. I found the results attractive. Tested in 9 and 12."

Download a small ZIP file (IconNew.zip)
with instructions and an example graphic (.WPG) image.

•  Here's another tip from Roy Lewis, posted on the Corel WP9 newsgroup, about using Corel Presentations to edit the icon's bitmap image. In reply to the question, "Is there any way of accessing more colors from a color pallet than the ones supplied?" Roy answered:

Right-click the WP Tool-/Property Bar. Choose Edit. Then -

Right-click an icon: Customize|Edit|Copy to copy the icon's image to the clipboard. Cancel out of all dialogs.

Open Presentations (you can get there from within WP, but this is the way I go):

Load Presentations. Click File|New from Project|Presentations Drawing|Create
Click on Edit|Paste. Right-click the icon and choose Edit, then View|Zoom.

Now you have a bitmap of the correct size which you can edit as you wish.

Format|Object Properties|Fill sets the default colour.

(Try experimenting with the Fill Pattern button on the left of the screen, and "paint" the "background" of the icon with it.)

When happy, File|Close bitmap editor.

Select the icon|Copy [and then exit from Presentations].

Back in WP, repeat the first two steps above, but, instead of Copy, choose Paste. [OK] out from the dialogs.

To get a good start for a new icon, click your way into Edit as above, then fuddle through the various predrawn button icons (by clicking on the various items under File, Edit, and so on) until you find one that a) has a suitable icon and b) is not one you are about to use. Click Add Button. Right-click the new Button. Click Image-Edit. Click Copy. Now Paste it either in Presentations for modification, or directly to a button, as above.

For your starting icon, you can collect an icon from any application with similar size icons [16x16 pixels], Corel or not.

If you find that what should be transparent is not, then do the usual Edit Toolbar|Customize [button]|Edit and use the grey colour just above the word color - not the green which is on the same text line as the word color.

Method 5. (for WordPerfect X7 and later)

•  You can use some of the author's custom icons by simply copying them according to the instructions given on the WPicons page. The can also be downloaded in ZIP files there.

•  It might be possible to retrieve old buttons from a previous WordPerfect version: See Footnote 1 below.

Method 6. (for WordPerfect 10 - Service Pack 2 ... c. 2002)

[This workaround is a method that should also work for WP10/SP1 and earlier versions.]

Corel introduced a problem in Service Pack 2 (i.e., WP version that caused an inability to edit the default icon on toolbar buttons. Here's a tip for a workaround from a user ("Re Silient") on the Corel WP10 newsgroup:

Note that you can drag-and-drop a shortcut from your Windows desktop to the toolbar or a property bar. (To remove it later, just hold down the <Alt> key and drag the icon from the toolbar or property bar.) You can use this little-known fact to create a custom icon for a shortcut that plays a macro, then drag it to your WP toolbar or property bar.

•  Create a new custom icon (or modify an old one to customize it) in MS Paint, IconEdit, or similar program, or use an icon image library to obtain one;

•  create a new shortcut on your desktop to the WP macro on your disk that you want to add to your WP toolbar or property bar;

•  use the Change Icon button in the shortcut's Properties (right-click the shortcut and select Properties) to change the icon to the new custom icon;

•  drag-and-drop the modified shortcut to your toolbar or property bar. You can reposition it by holding down the <Alt> key and drag it with your mouse to a new location (or, as mentioned, you can drag if from the toolbar to delete it).

Note: The problem with editing icons has been fixed in WP10/SP3 (version, released on 09/18/2002.

Footnote 1
[...continued from sidebar Notes above]

How to retrieve and use old toolbar buttons with custom icons from WordPerfect X6 or earlier in a newer WordPerfect version

Toolbars — along with some other shortcut features (e.g., keyboard shortcuts) — are stored in the program's default template file. (Sometimes specific user-customized toolbars can exist inside custom templates, but the procedures here should apply to both types of template.)

You can try this basic procedure to migrate (i.e., transfer) toolbar button customizations from the older WordPerfect version.

(1) Close WordPerfect (both versions of them if both are installed and open) and use the Windows file explorer (or any other file manager) to locate both the older version's default (or other) template file and the newer version's default template file.

The first file is often called the source and the second file is called the target. (To help find these files see "Related resources" below.)

You might want to back up both files, just in case.

(2) Copy the source template file into the same Windows folder as the target file — i.e., the currently installed default template file. If the older version is no longer installed or available you can use a backed up version of that version's default template file.

Note that these template files must have different filenames (but the same .wpt extension) so that they can co-exist in the same folder: You don't want to simply overwrite the new template with an old one using the same new name, since this can be problematic. (See "Related resources ... Transferring..." below.)

(3) Open the new (target) version of WordPerfect.

(4) Copy the toolbar itself (sometimes called an "object") that is stored inside the source template file into the target template file. This is done in the target WordPerfect version from its Tools, Settings, Customize dialog. (For more information see the mirrored WordPerfect Universe FAQ in "Related resources ... Transferring..." below.)

(5) Display the old toolbar (enable the appropriate checkbox) so that it appears on screen along with the standard (i.e., factory shipped) toolbar that you want to modify.

Multiple toolbars can be displayed at the same time, but they each will take up additional screen space. Some users move extra toolbars to the sides and/or bottom of the WordPerfect window, which might help. See Toolbars and Property bars for more information.

If you wish to just use the old toolbar "as is" in the new program version rather than copy/move buttons on it to the new toolbar, then you can skip the next steps. (You can always hide it or even remove it altogether with the Delete button.)

(6) Copy (or move) the desired toolbar buttons from the old toolbar to the new toolbar. (See "Related resources ... How to create a toolbar button..." below.)

(7) Optional: Stop displaying the old toolbar by disabling the appropriate checkbox).

(8) Optional: If some buttons on the previous toolbar played custom macros — and they no longer seem to play in the new WordPerfect version — you might have to edit the moved/copied button in the new version with its Toolbar Editor to specify the new path to the related macro on the new system.

This is needed if the buttons on the previous toolbar contained a specific path to the custom macros they were set up to play.

However, if the related custom macros are copied into either of the two folders specified in Tools, Settings, Files, Merge/Macro (i.e., the Default and Supplemental macro folders), then you should be able to use just their file names on the new version's toolbar buttons, without a full path (i.e., without the drive and folder name). The program will still find them if they are always located in either of those special folders. This can help avoid such annoyances in future upgrades. See "How to create a toolbar button..." for details.

Related resources on this site

•  How to find the correct default template (e.g., name, actual location, etc.) to be used as the source file. (If one of your custom templates has the toolbar you need you will have to locate that particular .wpt file instead.)

•  Updating, upgrading, or reinstalling WordPerfect - Part 5 - Migrating customizations (particularly Section III's Check List item: "Customized standard toolbars and user-created custom toolbars").

•  Transferring keyboards, toolbars, menus etc. from old version — a WordPerfect Universe FAQ mirrored here on this site on the above Migrating Customizations page (under Section IV: Some related WordPerfect Universe FAQs...).

•  How to create a toolbar button... (particularly the Tips section there).

Footnote 2
[...continued from sidebar Notes and Method 6 above...]

Old news ...

The methods described above do not directly work in WordPerfect
, also known as WP10/SP2. 

[Your 4-part version number (nn.n.n.nnn) is shown in your WordPerfect's Help, About....]

As one C_Tech on the Corel WP10 newsgroup said: "This is a known problem with the WP10/SP2 version. You can copy the toolbars back to a WPWin9 template file, then edit them in WPWin9. Finally copy back to WPWin10. Only known solution at present."

From Charles Rossiter, a Corel C_Tech:
"Copy your WPWin10 template file to the same location as the WPWin9 template file. Launch WPWin9. Do Tools, Settings, Customize. With the Toolbar tab showing, click Copy. In the top little window, select your WPWin10 template. In the bottom little window, select the WPWin9 template. In the middle window, select the toolbar to be edited. Click Copy. Now activate the toolbar, edit the buttons. Then reverse the copy procedure."

For an alternative method involving the use of desktop shortcuts, see Method 6 above.
To update WP10.0.0.663 to the latest version (WP10/sp4):

Download and install Service Pack 3 and Service Pack 4 in the listed order. You will have a much improved program in several areas.

These are very large files and it would be better if you have a broadband connection. If you prefer, you may call Corel in North America at 1-800-77COREL and they will send you replacement disks that include SP3 for a small shipping charge. The disks are worth having even if you download the patches.

Corel has stated that SP4 is not available on disk. It must be downloaded.
After installing SP3 you will have build After installing SP4 you will have build

(Thanks to "Chris D" on the Corel WP10 newsgroup for this tip.)