What is Microsoft One Note ?

There you are, you’ve returned. I will be introducing you to OneNote by Microsoft, a digital notebook that can be used to organize across all your devices. Use to make a quick note of an idea or sketch those ideas, a place to add notes while in the classroom or a meeting, clipping from websites, or make a to-do-list, and yes for genealogy research as well. The possibilities are endless.

  • Type, Write and Draw
  • Capture Anything
  • Get Organized
  • Made for Teamwork
  • Always with You

In this article, we will explore those possibilities through screenshots and instruction videos. The screenshots will be of both versions, the newest version of OneNote 2019 for Windows 10 and the prior version OneNote 2016, which is still available for older Windows versions, just not being updated. Microsoft suggests using Windows 7 or Windows 8 and want to get the most UpToDate version of OneNote, then use OneNote Online, the Web version.

I need to mention if you have Office 365 or Office 2019 and Windows 10, there is a good chance you have both versions installed; that’s no problem; you can use them side by side if you wish.

The two programs are different in how they look, although the 2019 version has added enhancements. I have been using OneNote for a while but not to its full potential; I will also show you how I’ve been using OneNote in genealogy research.

Let’s get started with OneNote Basics

Let’s find out what is Microsoft One Note. This App is fantastic; it is the ultimate tool. I haven’t found anything that I can’t do. Let’s check out basic features and some of the only available features in the OneNote 2016 version.

OneNote Basic

What is Microsoft One Note

1. Remember everything

  • Add Tags to any notes.
  • Make checklists and to-do lists.
  • Create your custom tags.
What is Microsoft One Note

2. Collaborate with others

  • Keep your notebook on OneDrive.
  • Share with friends and family.
  • Anyone can edit in a browser.
What is Microsoft One Note

3. Keep everything in sync

  • People can edit pages at the same time.
  • Real-time Sync on the same page.
  • Everything is stored in the cloud.
  • Accessible from any device.
What is Microsoft One Note

4. Clip from the web

  • Quickly clip anything on the screen.
  • Take screenshots of products online.
  • Save important news articles.
What is Microsoft One Note

5. Organize with tables

  • Type, then press TAB to create a table.
  • Quickly sort and shade tables.
  • Convert tables to Excel spreadsheets.
What is Microsoft One Note

6. Write notes on slides

  • PowerPoint to OneNote.
  • Word docs to OneNote.
  • Annotate with a stylus on your tablet.
  • Highlight and finger-paint.
What is Microsoft One Note

7.  Integrate with Outlook

  • Take notes on Outlook.
  • Insert meeting details.
  • Add Outlook task from OneNote(NOT AVAILABLE in 2019 Version).
What is Microsoft One Note

8. Add Excel spreadsheets

  • Track finances, budgets.
  • Preview updates on the page.
What is Microsoft One Note

9. Brainstorm without clutter

  • Hide everything but the essentials.
  • Extra space to focus on your notes. [1]

Get New Features with OneNote for Windows 10

Microsoft is working on updating OneNote continually. Following this, we will take a look at new features and a list of upcoming features.

Dark Mode: This new option switches elements from light to dark as a color preference or a functional benefit.

What is Microsoft One Note

Printouts of Office files: You can insert Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, or PowerPoint presentations either as a virtual printout to include their pages as images in your notes. In OneNote,> Click Insert > File, choose an Office file to insert, select Insert as a printout. You can move, resize, delete, and annotate any of the printout images that appear.

What is Microsoft One Note

Navigate and Organize Notebooks: Windows 10 version has more notetaking space providing a more natural way to control the navigation. You can display a notebook, section, and page navigation panes when needed.

What is Microsoft One Note

Improved Print to OneNote: You can select OneNote as your default printer, then print files from any app or browser on your PC. Instead of printing out the information on a printer, the printout is sent to OneNote; it lets you choose where to add the page, in any section of your open notebook.

What is Microsoft One Note

Upload local notebooks to the cloud: If you have upgraded to OneNote Windows 10 from an older version, we’ll notify you if we detect any notebooks stored on your computer and help move them to the cloud where you can access them from anywhere.

What is Microsoft One Note

Get coordinates from math equation graphs: Get the X and Y coordinates of any graph created from math equations by hovering the mouse pointer over the graph line. A tooltip will appear, displaying the coordinates. (To use the math feature, you’ll need an Office 365 subscription.)

What is Microsoft One Note

Yes, There’s More

Mark Notes with Tags: Tags in notes is a great way to visualize and categorize important notes and follow up. To create your tags, click the Tag menu dropdown on the Home tab, then click Create New Tag.

What is Microsoft One Note

Search for Tagged Notes: Searching for in one note now displays matching tags in separate search results, making it easier to find and follow up.

What is Microsoft One Note

Search for text phrases, not just keywords: In addition to searching your notes, you can enclose any search phrase in quotation marks to find those exact words. Click the Search button, enter your phrase into the Search box, press Enter.

What is Microsoft One Note

Upload and Insert Cloud Files: You want to insert a file into your notes, OneNote now offers the new “Upload to OneDrive and insert a link.” Storing your file attachments in the cloud instead of your notebook keeps documents more manageable and lets you collaborate with others easily.

What is Microsoft One Note

Edit and Save Embedded file attachments: after inserting a file attachment into OneNote, you can double click to open then edit the file. Any changes you make are saved to the original attachment without having to re-insert the file. Click the File button on the Home Tab. Please select the file you want to embed and then choose to insert it as an attachment.

What is Microsoft One Note

Read Math Solutions steps aloud: after creating a Math equation in OneNote, select an action to solve the equation, and then click to show the solution steps. To have the Immersive Reader read aloud the solution steps, click the speaker icon.[2] (requires office 365 subscription)

What Is Microsoft One Note

Clean and Simple Layout

What is Microsoft One Note
What is Microsoft One Note
What is Microsoft One Note
What is Microsoft One Note
What is Microsoft One Note
What is Microsoft One Note

Also, larger screens for projects and files.[3]

Using OneNote in Genealogy Research

OneNote is my favorite for keeping my genealogy research documents and source citations. It is my Computerized Color Coded Filing System.

As you can see below, with the three screenshots of the same ancestor’s file, I can scroll down and add as many documents as I wish; there is no end.

I can store all my documents, but I can Click on any of the URLs, and they lead to the source. I can make as many Notebooks as I want, unlimited Tab sections, and add as many pages as I wish to each Tab section.

What is Microsoft One Note

As it is quite apparent, OneNote for Windows 10 has many excellent features that are especially beneficial to Genealogy research, not only the filing system in the above image but a place to build your research forms, i.e., to-do-list, correspondence log, cross-reference log, research log, map log, timeline chart, family group form or any method to keep your computerized research organized.

®Microsoft Office OneNote; is one of my favorite tools for my genealogy research; it perfectly fits my genealogy software program.

Thank you for taking the time.

Please comment below and let me know your opinion of the topic it would be gratefully appreciated.

Kindest Regards


[1] instructions that came with my OneNote 2013-2016 version as a notebook: intitled my notebook, section: quick notes, page: one note basic, my office 365 subscription

[2] https://support.office.com/en-us/article/what-s-new-in-onenote-for-windows-10-1477d5de-f4fd-4943-b18a-ff17091161ea

[3] https://support.office.com/en-us/article/get-started-with-the-new-onenote-ab84fcc2-f845-41ac-9c29-89b0720c8eb3

Leave a Comment