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Author Topic: Microsoft OneNote - some experiential Tips & Tricks  (Read 4742 times)
IainB
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« on: July 25, 2012, 11:12:33 AM »

Still unresolved/unanswered:
Microsoft OneNote 2007 + CHS - a useful undocumented(?) feature
(Originally posted on: 2012-07-25, 11:12:33)

I made an accidental discovery today of what seems to be an undocumented feature in the OneNote SCT (Screen Clipping Tool):
  • The SCT is loaded into the Systray and can be activated by the default key combo Win+S, whereupon the screen "freezes" and turns slightly opaque, and a cross-hairs appears on the screen under the mouse.
  • By making a single first click and dragging (I use a tap and drag on my laptop Touchpad), a rectangle can be drawn around that part of the screen you want to clip an image of.
  • If you then make a second click of the mouse (I use a tap on the Touchpad), the selected area is copied as an image to a new page in the OneNote Unfiled Notes.
  • I have the SCT setting such that the image also goes to @mouser's CHS (Clipboard Help and Spell), and it also goes to my archive in Clipstory (which I have been trialling for a while now) - yes, belts-and-braces, I know.
  • I have the Touchpad settings such that, if I hold down the LeftShift key before making the first click, then the mouse slows down to a crawl, so I can carefully make very precise clips at the start, then release the Shift key, move rapidly to the end point and press the Shift key again if I want precision at the cutoff point, then I release the Shift key, click the mouse again and that sends the clip image to OneNote.

I had tediously taken several clips in this way from a long scrolling browser window (because SSC scroll capture could not seem to cope with it), but then I clipped as per the last point above, except I did not release the Shift key before the last mouse click.
To my great surprise, instead of copying the image clipping to OneNote and then popping up the usual window saying that's what it had done, a different-looking window popped up saying "Copying clip to OneNote" or something, with a progress bar - which is what it typically does when you manually copy and paste a large/complex chunk of text and html and objects from a web page to OneNote.
The text was in Unfiled Notes - not the image - but the image was in CHS.

I was able to repeat this behaviour a second time, on a separate part of the same page (it was a report), which proved that it could be repeated on that web page at least.
However, I have not been able to repeat it yet, using other material. Am still experimenting.
The two times it worked was on a report from here: ICSI Netalyzr

What seems to have happened is that some of the defunct but great old "Send to OneNote" functionality may be operating - but I don't see how that could be as it had been disabled (made defunct) under Win7-64, so it shouldn't (it doesn't) work. The workaround for that deficiency is a very poor kludge, and I don't use it much.
Somehow the text and html and objects copied to OneNote bypassed CHS, which just retained the image.
What I would like to do is to be able to repeat this behaviour at will, because it would be very useful and a potentially huge timesaver. It's just what I want.

Any ideas?  

EDIT: 2014-09-09 - Thread title changed to "Microsoft OneNote - some experiential Tips & Tricks" (from "Microsoft OneNote 2007 - some experiential Tips & Tricks")
« Last Edit: September 08, 2014, 07:46:57 PM by IainB; Reason: To develop the thread into a generally more helpful/informative/useful direction that other DCF users might like to contribute to. » Logged
IainB
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« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2012, 11:35:50 AM »

I changed the title of this thread to shift the context a bit, the idea being to develop the thread into a generally more helpful/informative/useful direction that other DCF users might like to contribute to.
The original opening post describes an odd/undocumented aspect of OneNote that I have not yet fully resolved/understood.

The background to my changing the title of the thread is that I have been gradually and progressively exploring the use of OneNote for about three years now. However, I still regard OneNote as being only a temporary/provisional/interim solution.. My main uses for OneNote include using it to:
  • Act as PIM (Personal Information Manager) for general Personal/Business information.
  • Help me to explore and co-ordinate scientific literature and notes on same. (In conjunction and some functional overlap with the reference management system Qiqqa and also Calibre.)
  • Gather info and then read/analyze what has been gathered.
  • Act as a general note-taking tool.
  • Provide for basic/essential note-formatting (e.g., bulleted/numbered lists with multi-indentation if required), including tables, images (mandatory where needed) - e.g. figures from papers in the notes; make concept maps or diagrams as aids to comprehension/understanding).
  • Provide easy, simple and fast wiki-like hyperlinking to notes within other OneNote Notebooks, to URLs on the Internet, and to files (documents/images) on my local hard drive. (Though document/image files can be embedded in the OneNote Notebooks as well, if you want.)
  • Form an integral part of the Windows Search functionality for the local client/PC, so that the one search function can access all information sources, or at least as many as possible.

I arrived at OneNote after having tried and discarded as "not useful enough for my needs" many other PIMs and note-taking applications over the years. I still review some of these periodically, as they are updated. Some of them are very good - e.g., one in particular that I have used for years and that I am still using - InfoSelect (IS) - though I have stuck with IS8 (version 8 ), after trialling IS2007 (version 9), and the latest IS10 (version 10).

The shortcomings of these others were generally and variously things that reflected my requirements:
  • Difficulty/inability to accommodate copies of RTF or HTML notes, though IS8 did have the ability at one time to incorporate native web pages, but that was dependent on the then prevailing/current version of IE (Internet Explorer) and the ability was "broken" when IE was updated.
  • Non-existant or difficult/cumbesome wiki-like hyperlinking.
  • Inability to make tables.
  • Did not include simple arithmetical functions.
  • Difficult/impossible to incorporate images or draw images.
  • Primary dependency on accessing cloud-based data or functionality (e.g., as in Evernote) if you want full (unconstrained) functionality of the tool on  the client PC - which is mandatory for my requirements.

The ideal is not yet in my grasp, hence I say that the temporary/provisional/interim solution I have come up with is Onenote. It allows me to do the main things that I mention above - and quite a bit more - but nothing is perfect.
So this isn't intended as a OneNote "fanboy" thread. As a Onenote user, I am always interested in examples/case studies - if only just for reference - as to how I can improve on how I might be able to make more advantageous/beneficial use of OneNote.
What I intend to do is share those things that I might have learned in this regard, and I would be very interested to read of other DC Forum members' experiences, problems, workarounds or tips regarding OneNote. There seem to be only a few websites with very useful notes about OneNote, so perhaps this discussion thread might be able to fill some gaps.
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IainB
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« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2012, 12:20:49 PM »

Searching for information in audio notes in OneNote.
The OneNote Help File is extensive and comprehensive, but OneNote is chock-a-block with useful features, and the usefulness of some of of those features is sometimes left up to the user to discover.
I have a habit of taking short written notes in a paper notebook when attending any meeting. Since starting to use OneNote, I have also started to take audio notes via my telephone - which doubles as a dictaphone and which is also sensitive enough to pick up a discussion in a meeting.
I have installed a journalling add-in to OneNote, where notes can be made logged in a journalised form for a particular date/time.
I transcribe my handwritten meeting notes into a journal entry in OneNote, and copy the related audio notes in as an embedded and playable .MP3 file within OneNote.
I also sometimes make a copy of radio talks that I listen to, and embed those as playable .MP3 files within a journalled OneNote entry.

The other day I was reading something that used the expression "right to be rich". It seemed an unusual expression, but I thought that I had come across it before, but I could not remember where or in what context. I thought it might have been in a meeting discussion, but did not recall any such discussion where the phrase would probably have been uttered.
Anyway, I eventually got around to searching for it in OneNote, and was very impressed with what I found and the ease with which I found it. OneNote had apparently transcribed and indexed all the voice items that it could detect in my audio recordings (I checked, and it has done this with the sung audio lyrics part of the music .MP3 files that I had saved into OneNote). It takes you straight to the audio clip and the position (time) in the audio clip that the searched item occurs:







« Last Edit: June 14, 2013, 09:57:40 PM by IainB; Reason: Minor correction. » Logged
IainB
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« Reply #3 on: October 11, 2012, 01:49:00 PM »

ERROR (Solved): The protocol "oneindex" does not have a registered program.
A fix to a very annoying OneNote problem: (Win 7-64, Microft Office 2007, OneNote)
   ERROR: (When trying to open a search find to a OneNote item, in the Start menu.)
Quote
Unable to open this Internet Shortcut. The protocol "oneindex" does not have a registered program.



A google search eventually turned up this post "answer" in Microsft Community/Office/Windows 7:
OneNote Search Location not available
- which contained details for a registry file fix:

I applied the fix, and the Search was OK and now resulted in:

« Last Edit: October 21, 2012, 08:47:47 AM by IainB; Reason: Change subject title. » Logged
IainB
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« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2012, 08:22:51 AM »

Align image sections - 2 half-page image clips of a page of a document;then OCR.

Objective:
  • To capture a browser image of a single sample page of a document which was behind a paywall.
  • To OCR scan the text.
Steps:
  • Take OneNote image clip of top half of the page.
  • Scroll down.
  • Take OneNote image clip of bottom half of the page.
  • Abut the two images to look like a single image.
  • OCR scan the text in the image.

The image below shows the steps, focussing just on the abutted parts of the images.
The result is pretty good OCR output.

« Last Edit: October 30, 2012, 01:25:16 AM by IainB; Reason: Reduce attached image size; minor correction. » Logged
IainB
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« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2012, 02:17:01 AM »

Where document layout and appearance is important, then consider copying your notes into a MS Word document, if you want them to look their nicest on publication.
This is an example of why:

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IainB
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« Reply #6 on: September 08, 2014, 07:48:37 PM »

I just changed the title of the opening thread and added this to the foot of the OP:
Quote
EDIT: 2014-09-09 - Thread title changed to "Microsoft OneNote - some experiential Tips & Tricks" (from "Microsoft OneNote 2007 - some experiential Tips & Tricks")
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IainB
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« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2014, 08:07:42 PM »

I came across this basic question in a OneNote discussion forum:
How can I search for phrase (not just single word) in OneNote - Microsoft Community
Quote
i love using onenote but one thing that truly bother me is the search function (control+F). If i try to search for single word, it works just fine. However the problem occur when I try to search for a phrase.
For example: If I search for "September", OneNote will highlight all the text "September" in my note. Thing is, if I search for "September 2014", OneNote will highlight each of "September" and each of "2014" instead of highlighting the phrase "September 2014" altogether.
This is annoying to me because i have a very long note and I need to manually scroll to find specific phrase that I need to find. How can I fix this in OneNote?
PS: I use OneNote 2013 for desktop version in Windows 8.1 (and not modern tile version)

- and a helpful answer:
 
Quote
Put quotes around the groups of word you want to search for. It'll return only the instances of that word group you're searching for. See this website for some Tips and Tricks too:
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/o...for-notes-in-onenote.aspx
Granted the author is using OneNote 2010, these still carry over to OneNote 2013. You can even use Boolean keywords like AND and OR to fine tune your search results, however no wildcards.

Though the link is to an old site and refers to an earlier OneNote version (current version is OneNote 2013), the website has lots of useful and still relevant OneNote stuff.

I was reminded of this DCF comment by @CWuestefeld:
Top OneNote tips
Quote
There's a nice list of OneNote tips & tricks from Chris Pratley's Office Labs and OneNote Blog, and I know there are plenty of folks around these parts loving organizer tools including OneNote.

Here are a couple of cool ones I hadn't known before:
Quote
13. Type a word, right click on it, click "Create Linked page", then click the link and presto you're on a new page with that title that is linked to from the first page. Great for things like "here is the recipe for Grandma's cookies". highlight "Grandma's cookies", right click, create linked page. [CWuestefeld: this sounds like a Wiki?]
EDIT by IainB on 2014-11-28 1059hrs: This functionality was replaced in OneNote 2007 and later. All you have to do now is type out a word or phrase with double square brackets at both ends - e.g., [[this phrase]] - and if a page in your open Notebooks already exists with that word/phrase as its title, then OneNote will underline the text of the word/phrase you have just typed in and turn it into a hyperlink to that existing page, otherwise OneNote will create a page with that word/phrase as a title, in the section you are currently in, and will underline the text of the word/phrase you have just typed in and turn it into a hyperlink to that newly-created page.
This is Wiki-like hyperlinking, and potentially incredibly useful.

8. Right-click on image (e.g. screen clipping), copy text from picture (also works great when searching for a screen clipping - Find (Ctrl-F) will find text inside your images!)
http://blogs.msdn.com/chr...3/10/i-heart-onenote.aspx
Anybody want to contribute other tips?

Some of these sites referring to earlier versions of OneNote are still relevant and worth study, as the functionality in OneNote versions seems to have been consistently upwards/backwards compatible.
« Last Edit: November 27, 2014, 04:36:27 PM by IainB; Reason: EDIT 2014-11-28 to embedded quote. » Logged
AzureToad
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« Reply #8 on: September 09, 2014, 09:14:35 AM »

Thanks for these tips on OneNote - always interesting to find the little "undocumented" features, isn't it!  Wink
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IainB
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« Reply #9 on: September 09, 2014, 05:18:59 PM »

@AzureToad: You're welcome, and thanks for the appreciation. OneNote seems to be an incredibly useful/powerful PIM (Personal Information Manager), which most users probably won't need to use more than (say) 20% of - rather like MS Word. Trial-and-error discovery often turns up some useful points though, and that's one reason why I subscribe to OneNote forums in my Bazgux feed reader - you can see the errors/problems other users are having, and though many of these discussions might often seem to be about kinda basic problems, the discussions can sometimes lead to little discoveries that you might not otherwise have made if you hadn't been paying attention.
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IainB
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« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2014, 03:42:19 AM »

The latest changes/updates in MS Office 2013 (including especially OCR features in OneNote) have helped to make life easier for notetakers.

« Last Edit: October 25, 2014, 04:12:42 PM by IainB » Logged
IainB
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« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2014, 04:19:29 PM »

Made an EDIT to Re: Microsoft OneNote - some experiential Tips & Tricks above:

EDIT by IainB on 2014-11-28 1059hrs: This functionality was replaced in OneNote 2007 and later. All you have to do now is type out a word or phrase with double square brackets at both ends - e.g., [[this phrase]] - and if a page in your open Notebooks already exists with that word/phrase as its title, then OneNote will underline the text of the word/phrase you have just typed in and turn it into a hyperlink to that existing page, otherwise OneNote will create a page with that word/phrase as a title, in the section you are currently in, and will underline the text of the word/phrase you have just typed in and turn it into a hyperlink to that newly-created page.
This is Wiki-like hyperlinking, and potentially incredibly useful.
« Last Edit: November 27, 2014, 04:37:13 PM by IainB » Logged
IainB
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« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2014, 04:30:08 PM »

I just now stumbled upon this Lifehacker overview (not too detailed) and comparison: Lifehacker Faceoff: OneNote vs. Evernote
The post is dated 2014-03-25.
I think it could be pretty useful if OneNote and Evernote were somehow merged...   undecided
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« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2014, 08:14:07 AM »

Thank you Ian for sharing your OneNote experience and discoveries.
The bracket tip is a true gem!  Thmbsup
One thing i miss with this program is a better integration with Windows own search engine.
Perhaps FARR will come up with a plugin for it someday?
Hint!  Cool

Have been looking into www.tiddlywiki.com but i think OneNote has way too many advantages at present time.
One has only so much time to dedicate at using these programs.
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IainB
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« Reply #14 on: November 29, 2014, 10:17:32 AM »

@dantheman:
Glad you found my notes useful!

Where you say:
...One thing i miss with this program is a better integration with Windows own search engine. ...
- I don't quite understand. OneNote is already integrated with Windows Search.
What version of Windows and OneNote (MS Office) do you have?
What sort of things does Windows Search not pull out of OneNote (on your system)?
If you tell me, then maybe I can help.

Regarding www.tiddlywiki.com - yes, it is rather good. Frustratingly, it seems that nothing comes close to OneNote if you:
  • (a) want or can make use of all that functionality (e.g., including rich text, voice sound as data, OCR, hyperlinking, tagging, etc);
  • (b) want the integration with the Windows OS and Windows Search;
  • (c) want the integration with MS Office and OLE (Object Linking and Embedding), and IE and want it to run on a stand-alone PC/laptop client and the Cloud (as necessary).
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dantheman
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« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2014, 11:17:16 AM »

Ian,

I'm using OneNote 2013.
If use Windows Search key, (after finding specific text to search for), all i get is a folder icon with nothing to tell me what its from and it won't open to wherever the data is either. On the other hand, if i search within OneNote itself, there are no problems.
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« Reply #16 on: November 29, 2014, 11:25:51 AM »

Ian,

I'm using OneNote 2013.
If use Windows Search key, (after finding specific text to search for), all i get is a folder icon with nothing to tell me what its from and it won't open to wherever the data is either. On the other hand, if i search within OneNote itself, there are no problems.

By default, the contents are not indexed in windows search.  To fix this, open the Indexing options in control panel, choose Advanced, then File Types tab. Scroll down to the OneNote file types and for each one, choose the option to Index Properties and File Contents. After doing this for the multiple OneNote file types, choose Ok. The index will need to be rebuilt after this, so it won't be immediate- but this should fix that problem.
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« Reply #17 on: November 29, 2014, 02:50:05 PM »

Thanks a bunch Wraith!
You just taught an ol' dog some new tricks!  Grin

Now back to OneNote with renewed enthusiasm!
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IainB
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« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2014, 04:13:13 AM »

@dantheman: How did @wraith808's good advice work out for you?

Also, you did not say: What version of Windows do you have?

The version may be relevant, because Microsoft apparently somehow messed up the Windows Index/Search for OneNote file extensions (and some other file extensions) in Win8. To fix it, you needed to install the iFilters pack for MS Office 2013, but that iFilters pack was apparently only momentarily released and then promptly withdrawn without explanation. The prevailing advice following that seemed to be to use the iFilters pack for MS Office 2010, but that led to some instances of the iFilters not being properly registered (in the Registry) for certain file types, so they would still show up in searches almost exactly as you described above:
If use Windows Search key, (after finding specific text to search for), all i get is a folder icon with nothing to tell me what its from and it won't open to wherever the data is either. On the other hand, if i search within OneNote itself, there are no problems.
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« Reply #19 on: November 30, 2014, 08:08:36 AM »

Thank you Ian for your thoughtfulness!

Actually, i waited to give search time to update the other day and following your reminder, have just tried to test how wraith808's tip does and nothing has changed.

Using 32bit Office 2013 on Windows 7 64bit with SSD on a laptop.

It's not a major issue for me though.
Searching through OneNote itself is sufficient for my present needs.

But i do agree with you about Microsoft messing up on things.
Outlook 2013 isn't 2010 but i won't go down that road.
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IainB
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« Reply #20 on: November 30, 2014, 06:33:01 PM »

This is just a quick, general summary of what seem to be the current issues relating to WDS (Windows Desktop Search) and ON (OneNote) search.
  • 1. WDS searches local (i.e., on the client PC) files only. Thus:
    • (a) if you have the primary working copy of ON Notebooks on the Client, then - assuming that search for the relevant file types has been enabled (per @wraith808's point, above) - the WDS will have indexed those Notebooks.
    • (b) if you have the primary working copy of ON Notebooks on SkyDrive, and are syncing those to the Client, then the WDS will not have indexed those Notebooks.

  • 2. WDS on Win7-64 worked fine with ON in this regard, though you could find problems - e.g., ERROR (Solved): The protocol "oneindex" does not have a registered program..

  • 3. WDS on Win8-64 and Win 8.1-64 seems to have had some so far not always explained problems with ON searches, according to discussions on user forums. A lot of these problems seem to hinge on issues relating to iFilters and the proper registration of same in the Registry. It's a real PITA. I am unsure whether what are termed "search connector protcols" are also involved in this.

  • 4. Searching ON Notebooks using the built-in ON search functionality seems to work fine whether the Notebooks being searched are on SkyDrive or the Client, or both. The only caution is that they may need to be open in ON for indexing/search to take place successfully.

Refer also to the comprehensive Microsoft Windows Search Overview (Windows)
« Last Edit: November 30, 2014, 06:39:23 PM by IainB; Reason: Minor correction. » Logged
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