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I'm using Word 2003. (Not my choice!) The keyboard shortcuts work normally except that Alt+O highlights but does not open (descend) the Format menu. I have to use Alt+O, Enter, to open the Format menu.

There are no other (added) menus that are also shortcutted with Alt+O. Repeated presses highlight, then un-highlight the word "Format" in the menu bar.

Anyone have an idea why this might be happening?

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What about <Alt>+<O>, <F> which is how I get into the Format menu? – user3463 Apr 27 '12 at 20:30
Did you ever figure this out? – skypecakes Jan 13 '13 at 23:07
@skypcakes, nope, it still does this. However, my employer will be upgrading us to Office 2010 soon, which will remove this problem by removing menus entirely and replacing them with the Ribbon [spit!]. – CarlF Feb 11 '13 at 15:35

It suggests that there is another menu item which uses the same accelerator (i.e. O). The simplest answer is probably just to change it to something else; this page has a reasonable writeup on how to do this.

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You mean another menu item like I specifically wrote did not exist? – CarlF Apr 27 '12 at 20:28
@CarlF - the behavior you describe suggests that the focus is going somewhere, which would imply that Word is considering something else (a toolbar icon?) to have the same accelerator. Changing the shortcut for the Format menu would bypass that altogether. Alternatively, you could figure out where the focus is going - what do you get when pressing enter when the Format menu is not highlighted? – Geoff Apr 27 '12 at 20:55
Geoff is right, something else in the application has the same accelerator assigned to it. Since you say it is not a menu, it must be something else like a toolbar button. – skypecakes Apr 29 '12 at 7:05

Press Alt-O twice, so that the Format menu is not highlighted, then press Enter to activate whatever control does have focus. See what happens. If you're lucky some other menu will drop down or some obvious change will occur (e.g. some dialog will pop up, or the text style at your insertion point will change), leading you to find what control is sharing the alt-O accelerator.

If that doesn't lead to anything, press shift-F10 or the context menu button on your keyboard. If the control has a context menu, it will pop up somewhere on screen, even if the control itself is located outside the visible area of the window.

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Alt-O twice just unhighlights Format. It really isn't any other visible control. – CarlF May 2 '12 at 20:22
It must be going to a non-visible control, then. Have you tried pressing Enter at that point, as Geoff and I have both suggested? Also try invoking the context menu (see my edit). – skypecakes May 4 '12 at 21:52
Did you read the question, where I specifically say that I press Enter to open the menu? Guess what: pressing Enter opens the menu! If I press Alt+O twice, Enter does nothing whatsoever (including putting a carriage return in the document--nothing at all). – CarlF May 7 '12 at 13:07
I got that pressing enter when focus is on the Format menu opens the format menu. I was asking what it does when focus is in whatever mystery location it goes to; sounds like the answer is "nothing happens." Does shift-F10 do anything when focus is in the mystery location (i.e. not on the Format menu)? – skypecakes May 9 '12 at 18:14
Nothing at all. – CarlF May 14 '12 at 17:43

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