How to use the ribbon and the commands on the ribbon

Tekla Structures
Tekla Structures

How to use the ribbon and the commands on the ribbon

All the essential commands in Tekla Structures are available on the ribbon. The commands are grouped according to their use. You can modify the appearance of the ribbon, and customize the content of the ribbon, if needed. All commands throughout Tekla Structures work in the same manner.

How to use commands on the ribbon

To Do this

Find commands

Slide the ribbon right or left with your mouse, or scroll with your mouse wheel.

Some commands have more options under them. The options become available when you click the command's name:

Activate the command you want to use

On the ribbon, click the command.

The command runs until you end it or use another command.

Check which command you need for your current task, if you are unsure

Rest the mouse pointer on a command.

A small window called tooltip appears. Tooltips provide more information about commands and also give examples, hints, and tips. For example:

Press Ctrl+F1 when a tooltip is open to find more help on the command.

To switch the tooltips on or off, click File menu > Settings > Switches, and then select or clear the Tooltips check box.

View more detailed instructions on how to use the currently active ribbon command

In the side pane, click to open the Instructor side pane window.

On the ribbon, click a command. The Instructor side pane window shows short videos, steps and other information on how to use the active command.

End command

Right-click and select Interrupt.

You can also press Esc.

Re-activate the last command

Press Enter.


You can complete many commands by using the Enter or the space key as a shortcut, or by using the middle mouse button.

To use the Enter key as a shortcut for completing commands, set the advanced option XS_ENTER_FINALIZES_COMMANDS to TRUE.

Change the appearance of the ribbon

You can change the order of ribbon tabs, choose how they are aligned, and even hide some parts of the ribbon if you do not need them in your current project. For example, if you are only modeling steel parts, you can temporarily hide the Concrete tab.

To Do this

Change the order of tabs on the ribbon

Drag and drop the tab titles.

Change how the tabs are aligned

Right-click on the top bar of the ribbon, select Navigation mode, and then select one of the options.

  • Scroll visible: the ribbon movement is minimal when you switch between the tabs

  • Align to left: the icons start from the left side of the ribbon

  • Align to tab: the icons start from the left side of the current tab

Hide the tabs that you do not need in your current project

  1. Rest the mouse pointer on a tab title.

    A small eye symbol appears next to the tab title:

  2. Click the eye symbol .

    The eye symbol changes and the tab title becomes gray:

    The View tab is now hidden from the ribbon. If you slide the ribbon, hidden tabs appear as:

  3. To re-display the hidden tab, click the eye symbol again.

Minimize the ribbon

You can minimize the ribbon to save space on your screen. When the ribbon is minimized, the command buttons are hidden but the tabs are visible.

  1. Right-click on the top bar of the ribbon, and select Minimized.

    The ribbon is now minimized to save space on the screen:

  2. To access the commands when the ribbon is minimized, click a tab title.

    The ribbon becomes visible so that you can select a command.

  3. To restore the ribbon, right-click on the top bar of the ribbon, and select Minimized again.
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