In computer interface design, a toolbar (originally known as ribbon) is a graphical control element on which on-screen buttons, icons, menus, or other input or output elements are placed. Toolbars are seen in many types of software such as office suites, graphics editors and web browsers. Toolbars are usually distinguished from palettes by their integration into the edges of the screen or larger windows, which results in wasted space if too many underpopulated bars are stacked atop each other (especially horizontal bars on a landscape oriented display) or interface inefficiency if overloaded bars are placed on small windows.
There several user interface elements derived from toolbars:
A search box is not ipso facto a toolbar but may appear on a toolbar, as is the case with the address bar.
Toolbars may appear in different software; some web browsers allow additional toolbars to be added through plug-ins. These browser toolbars have caused controversy as unscrupulous companies use software bundling to force users downloading one program to also install a browser toolbar, some of which invade the user's privacy by tracking their web history and search history online. Many antivirus companies refer to these programs as grayware or Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs).
[...] a ribbon that contains labeled icons (64×64 bit maps) representing tasks and tools that has been instantiated by the user. Each tasktool is represented by a different icon.
Media related to Toolbars at Wikimedia Commons
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