#OneNote : Linking in OneNote


Insert_Link_VIIOneNote offers great flexibility to jump from section to section, page to page and much more. This is one of the features that makes it a favorite for so many people. The functionality to accomplish this is linking content to each other. This can be done via ‘Insert Link’. There are various ways to Link content. In this blog post I will show you some of those options.

The Insert Link option
We start of with the first option. When text is created and you want to link some content you can apply the following steps.

Select the text you want to add a link to. In the ribbon, on the Insert tab click ‘Links’. The following dialog will pop up:


In that dialog browse to the OneNote notebook that contains the page where you want to ‘link’ to. You see that the text to display can be altered to something other than the selected text. So if you want ‘other’ text here overwrite the original text. The address is important because that is the actual anchor OneNote is ‘looking’ at when the link is clicked. Ok when I click the link it will take me to that page and on that page I only have an image to show for. Let’s add a link to the page to get back to the page we came from. In this case the table of contents.

Click the image/picture so it is selected. You can see this by the dots appearing around the image. Next click ‘Link’ again on the Insert tab. You will see a similar dialog as shown above with one small difference. Can you spot the difference?

Insert_Link_IIIIndeed because the source we are ‘linking’ from is a picture there is no text to display. Now here comes the challenge. By now you have located the location you want to link to and clicked OK. So there is an active link on the image/picture. How do you know there is an active link on this picture? How does anyone else knows about this? Well if you are using the mouse you can hover over the picture. It will show you the necessary info.

Other device: touch
So I can hover the mouse over the image to see it is clickable, but what if I am using a touch device and don’t use a mouse at that point? Well OneNote will show you another indicator that you can use. In this case you will see a circle with a cross in it. Clicking this circle will show another menu with options to Insert_Link_IVchoose from. In this case you will see options what to do with the various ‘link’ options. Click ‘open link’ to go to the content linked to the picture. In this case it will bring us back to the TOC page I came from. I did not specify a specific point on the TOC page just that it needed to go back to that page.

Navigating the obvious
So you can add links to your content. Linking is part of navigating your notebook. If you are working with multiple users in a notebook it is important to know what the navigation consists of. Make it obvious and make a note at the beginning of the first page explaining how users can get from one content object to the next and back. In the case of the picture it could be an option to describe that all pictures with ‘red borders’ around them are clickable and will give you the option to go back to the page you originally came from.

Adding a link from a page
You can also add links to a page by right clicking the page title in the ‘Pages Pane’. We right-click the page title in the pages pane and see the following menu pop up:


Now when you have clicked that option you can go to any page you like and click paste. What will be pasted is the text from the page title with an active link to the page it came from. This is a great option if you want the text to be exactly the same to the page title. Is the ‘link’ editable afterwards? Of course right-click the link and choose ‘edit link’ it’s as easy as that!

Creating links to section groups
This is a challenging one. When you created section groups you can ‘link’ to those as well. At least this works in the client version without any problems.


SharePoint issues
When you have links created that ‘link’ to section groups in your notebook you will see that these links don’t work properly in a SharePoint environment. In that case you have to implement a work around yourself. The first step is to create a link from the section group you want to refer to. To do so navigate to the section group. Now copy the URL from the address bar. Go back to the page where you would like to add the link and past the URL in the link properties. There is no fixed solution for this yet so this is your best bet. The other option of course is to just navigate yourself to the designated section!

Final tip:
I leave you with this tip for today. Every time you add ‘links’ to you pages it my be an idea to add a Tag to that page. Create a new tag and call it ‘Page contains links’ add the globe with the link sign as a symbol to the tag. Now for every page where you add a link add this tag to that page. After a couple of months you will see that this indicator is a great reminder for every link you made in that book. Especially when you added links from and to pictures!

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