Microsoft Word uses horizontal and vertical rulers to align paragraphs, tables, images, etc. It is essential not only to have a layout that suits your style of writing but also to decide how the documents get printed. By default, the unit for these rulers is set to inches but, you can change it to a unit of your choice easily. In this guide, we will share how you can change the ruler unit in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint from inches to cm, mm, points, and picas.
Change ruler unit in Word & Excel
It works on any Office installation. I tried it with Office 365 on my computer. As an example, we will show you how to do it in Word:
- Open Word, and then click on the File menu and choose Options.
- In the Word Options window, select the Advanced section in the left panel.
- In the right-pane scroll until the Display section is visible to you.
- When found, select the desired unit from the drop-down list and click on ‘OK’.
You can change the ruler unit from inches to centimeters, millimeters, points, and Picas. Points are used when you need to simulate pixels, while Picas are typically used to represent fixed horizontal measurements.
When you want to see how exactly it will look on a physical paper, this is what should be used. It is used mainly for designing newspapers, magazines, newsletters, and ads. Picas are 1/6 inch and contain 12 points.
The same applies to any Microsoft Office, including Excel, PowerPoint, and more. The option is available under Advanced > Display section.
Under the display section, you have two more options.
- Show pixels for HTML features – It is to use pixels as the default unit of measurement in dialogue boxes that are related to HTML features.
- Show measurements in the width of characters are useful when it comes to printing.
When you want to change the ruler unit back to the default units of measurement, head back to the same setting in the Office application options window.
Change Ruler unit in PowerPoint
Microsoft PowerPoint doesn’t offer a direct way to change ruler unit, but instead, it depends on Regional Settings of Windows 10. It is rather crude, but if you want to change the unit, you need to change the settings in Windows. The default setting on my computer is cm as I am following the Metric. If I change it to the US, it will display inches.
- Open Classic Control Panel, and then click on Region icon
- Click on the Additional Settings at the bottom of the window which will open the option to customize the format
- Change from Metric to the US in the measurement system
- Close PowerPoint, and relaunch it.
- Now when you open the PowerPoint and go to View Tab > Show and expand it by clicking on the arrow link, it will reveal the settings in inches
Also, you should notice the change in the ruler. tick on the checkbox of the ‘Ruler’ option and the ruler will appear in inches instead of cm.
Hope this helps.
Also read: How to crop images using PowerPoint.