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What's New in JAWS 7.0

This page lists the new features and significant bug fixes available in version 7.0 of JAWS. Please note that SMA holders and new product purchases since August 2, 2005, are already authorized to download and begin using this paid for upgrade when it becomes available. If you are not sure whether you are authorized for this version, you can look up your JAWS serial number on On the Activation page, choose the link: "Verify the number of activation keys available for your Freedom Scientific product." On this page, a table contains the specifics about your license.

If you have not purchased JAWS 7.0 yet, you can download and check out the free demonstration version.

JAWS Features
HTML, PDF, and the Internet
Microsoft Word
Microsoft Excel
Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express
Other Programs
Download JAWS 7.0

JAWS Features


FSClipboard extends the functionality of the Windows Clipboard. When you use the Windows Copy (CTRL+C) or Cut (CTRL+X) commands to place text on the Clipboard, it replaces any text already there. When using the FSClipboard feature, text that you copy is added to any text that you have previously copied to the Clipboard. This allows you to continue adding text to the Clipboard until you are ready to paste it into a document.

To add text to the Clipboard, select it using the text selection commands, and then press WINDOWS Key+C. The text is appended to the end of any text already on the Clipboard. To paste all the text that you have placed on the Clipboard so far, use the Windows Paste command (CTRL+V). The text is inserted into your document at the current location of the cursor. Each block of text that you copied is separated by a blank line.

Improved Menu Reading

JAWS now relies on Microsoft Active Accessibility (MSAA) information when reading menus. This allows for greater accuracy when reading menu items, which is useful for users who like to customize the Windows system colors.

Getting Started with JAWS Cassette Tape

The Freedom Scientific Training department has created a new cassette tape that helps you get up and running with JAWS quickly and easily. It introduces users to the basics of using JAWS to work with Windows. After you listen to the tape, you can receive further instruction and detailed information by listening to the JAWS Basic Training DAISY book.

Read DAISY Books on the JAWS Program CD with Most DAISY Readers

You can now insert your JAWS 7.0 program CD into most hardware DAISY book readers and access Freedom Scientific training materials in DAISY format. Most players present a list of all the DAISY training books on the CD, allowing you to select the book you want to read.

New Training Materials Available in DAISY Format

JAWS 7.0 includes even more short training guides for various new JAWS features available in DAISY format. To access this material, open the JAWS Help menu and choose Training. FSReader Demo (installed with JAWS) starts and a list of available DAISY training materials displays.

Note: These training materials are only available when installing JAWS from the program CD or demo CD. If you install the downloadable version of JAWS, you will need to download these materials separately from the Freedom Scientific Audio Demos page.

The supplemental DAISY training materials in JAWS 7.0 discuss the following topics: Portable Column and Row Titles in Excel, Using Custom Labels in Microsoft Word and Internet Explorer, MSN Messenger, How to Use the Placemarker and Custom Page Summary Features, Skim Reading with JAWS, Creating Custom Schemes for the Speech and Sounds Manager, Document Presentation Mode, and Custom Labels in Excel.

Run JAWS from a USB Thumb Drive

A USB thumb drive is a small, portable device that can store much more information than a floppy disk. You can now install a special version of JAWS on to any USB thumb drive. This allows you to carry your current settings with you to use on any computer. After you connect the drive to the computer, a dialog box displays allowing you to start JAWS. JAWS uses whatever authorization is available on the computer. If no authorization is available, JAWS runs in 40 minute mode.

To use JAWS on a USB thumb drive, the computer must have Microsoft Display Chain Manager (DCM) and JAWS Video Intercept installed. Any computer where JAWS or MAGic is installed already has these components. In addition, a special file is available that allows you to quickly install these components on any computer without installing JAWS.

To run JAWS from a USB thumb drive, you must download a special version of the program from the Freedom Scientific Web site. In addition, you can download the executable file that allows you to install Video Intercept and Microsoft DCM. The thumb drive version of JAWS will be available tomorrow, October 4, 2005. For more information on running JAWS from a thumb drive, see JAWS for Thumb Drives - Questions and Answers.

Note: A thumb drive version of MAGic Screen Magnification (version 9.50) will also be available.

New Start Menu Shortcut for Reference Materials

A new shortcut named "Explore the Manuals" has been added to the Explore JAWS submenu in the JAWS program group. You can use this shortcut to open a folder containing electronic copies of printed JAWS documentation and other useful reference materials, including the JAWS Quick Start Guide and a list of keystrokes in Word (.doc) and text format.

Support for Roaming Profiles

You can now use the command line switch "/roam" when installing JAWS on a network with roaming profiles. No separate folders are created for user and shared settings. All settings are stored in the folder where you installed JAWS. If you are installing JAWS from the package for the Web, you will need to precede this switch with the /a switch as well.

Hear the Name of the Script Attached to a Keystroke

When you enable JAWS keyboard help, you can once again hear the name of the script attached to a keystroke. After pressing INSERT+1, press any JAWS keystroke three times quickly to hear JAWS say and spell the name of the script attached to that keystroke.

Use JAWS Authorization when Working in PAC Mate Desktop

JAWS 7.0 provides a new feature that allows you to make use of third-party scripts that are locked to your JAWS serial number while using PAC Mate Desktop. To enable this feature, open the Options menu and choose Basics. Then, choose the Advanced button. Clear the Use Authorization from PAC Mate check box. Remote JAWS will then use the computer's authorization information (including the serial number) instead of the PAC Mate's information.

Re-Initialize Authorization

You can now use the Re-Initialize Authorization command on the Utilities menu to force JAWS to search for valid ILM authorization. If the search is successful, JAWS displays your serial number.


Focus 40/80 Shortcuts for Word, PowerPoint, and Excel

JAWS now provides Focus 40/80 shortcuts for various commands in Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. These commands are the same as those previously available for the Focus 44/70/84.

HTML, PDF, and the Internet

Document Presentation Mode

Document Presentation Mode allows you to read tables by row, just as they are presented on the screen. With this feature, you can change how JAWS structures HTML pages and other virtual documents (such as PDF documents) in the virtual buffer. If you select "Simple Layout," each cell in the table is displayed on a separate line. This is the default layout, and the behavior should be familiar to users of JAWS 6.20 and earlier. If you select "Screen Layout," pages are rendered in the virtual buffer in a way that is more similar to what a sighted user sees on the screen. All items in a single table row are displayed on the same line, and each column is separated by a vertical bar. This helps you better understand the overall table design as well as the relationship between table cells in each row.

To switch to Screen Layout mode temporarily, press INSERT+V. Alternatively, you can change this option for the current Web site by pressing INSERT+SHIFT+V. Select "Document Presentation" and press the SPACEBAR to choose "Screen Layout." You can permanently change this setting on the Misc tab of the HTML Options dialog in Configuration Manager.

This new feature is especially useful for copying and pasting table information from virtual documents. Because all text in the row appears on the same line, you can easily select all the text in every cell in a row with SHIFT+DOWN ARROW. Alternatively, you can press F8 to select the entire table (if you are at the beginning). When you copy and paste the row(s) or table into another document, the text of each cell is separated by a vertical bar to preserve readability. You can even use the enhanced functionality of FSClipboard to copy non-contiguous rows or rows from different tables and then paste them all into another document.

To see this new feature in action, press INSERT+V now. Select "Document Presentation" and press the SPACEBAR to choose "Screen Layout." Then, read the table below to see how the information is presented. Notice how each cell is separated with a vertical bar and each row appears on its own line.

Command Desktop Keystroke Laptop Keystroke
Read Current Row
Read from Current Column

Tip: The DAISY training material that can be installed with JAWS 7.0 includes a lesson on using Document Presentation mode. To listen to this DAISY book, open the JAWS Help menu and choose Training. Then, select the book "XTraDocumentPresentationAndHTMLElementSelection" and press ENTER.

Support for Mozilla Firefox

JAWS now supports the Mozilla Firefox Web browser (version 1.5 beta or later). Firefox is a free browser that you can download from As of the JAWS 7.0 release, Firefox is in the process of public beta testing. A final version has not yet been released. Even if Mozilla releases Firefox from beta testing, the current level of support for JAWS 7.0 remains under development. Freedom Scientific is continuing to work with its beta team and IBM to complete full access to all the functionality and features of this exciting new accessible Web browser. While the majority of this support is in place now, not everything is complete and Freedom Scientific will not be able to provide Technical Support for this program as a result.

Freedom Scientific's goal is to make all of the features and useful tools available in Internet Explorer available for Firefox as well. You'll be able to use navigation quick keys, PlaceMarkers, custom labels, lists of HTML elements, and more.

Support for MSN Messenger 7.0 and 7.5

JAWS now supports MSN Messenger 7.0 and 7.5. A number of the keystrokes available in previous versions have been removed or changed. For a complete list of current keystrokes, see the JAWS Help for MSN Messenger. In addition, you can now access a list of verbosity options for MSN Messenger by pressing INSERT+V. These options allow you to enable or disable the typing sound, typing announcement, automatic message reading, announcement of contacts that sign in, and whether JAWS speaks the name of a contact when you receive a message.

In addition, JAWS 7.0 features a new MSN Messenger dictionary file that contains definitions for a number of abbreviations commonly used during online conversations. When you encounter these abbreviations, JAWS reads the corresponding definition instead. For example, if you read the abbreviation "LOL," JAWS says, "Laugh out loud." Other abbreviations that JAWS recognizes include IMO (in my opinion), BRB (be right back), BTW (by the way), HTH (hope this helps), and many more.

Tip: The DAISY training material that can be installed from the JAWS 7.0 program CD includes a lesson on using the new MSN Messenger features. To listen to this DAISY book, open the JAWS Help menu and choose Training. Then, select the book "XTra_MSN_Messenger" and press ENTER.

Enhanced Features for Adobe Acrobat and Reader

Freedom Scientific has been working closely with Adobe to make PDF files more accessible to JAWS users. When reading PDF files with JAWS and Adobe Acrobat or Reader, you will experience increased responsiveness and improved accuracy. JAWS can also better read font information and switch to the appropriate synthesizer language when necessary. Navigation in complex tables has also been improved. In addition, you can now select text using the Virtual Cursor. You can then press the APPLICATION Key to access a context menu containing commands applicable to the selected text.

Note: Language detection is not available in version 6.x of Acrobat or Reader.

Furthermore, the same great features available in Internet Explorer are now available in virtual PDF documents. You can navigate using the same commands you use for Web pages, including using Navigation Quick Keys to jump to different document elements. Features like PlaceMarkers, custom labels, and the custom summary are fully supported. You can even press INSERT+V to access the same verbosity options available in Internet Explorer.

In order to take advantage of these great features, it is important that the PDF files are properly created and tagged by the document author. Information on authoring accessible PDF documents is available at

Support for Yahoo! Messenger

JAWS now supports Yahoo! Messenger version 7.0. Yahoo! Messenger is a collaboration tool that allows you to stay in touch with your friends and co-workers in a variety of ways. With Yahoo! Messenger you can send mobile phone text messages (SMS), place PC-to-PC and PC-to-phone calls, use traditional instant messaging, and more. You can download the program from

New Keystroke for Activating Mouse Overs

The keystroke for activating mouse overs on Web pages has been changed to INSERT+CTRL+ENTER. This was done to avoid a conflict with the Firefox keystroke, CTRL+ENTER.

Indicate ColSpan in Braille for HTML Tables

If you select the Indicate ColSpan in Braille check box, JAWS inserts one vertical bar per column span between table cells. This can help you read HTML tables with cells that span multiple columns. For example, if a table cell spans two columns, the contents of that cell will be followed by two vertical bars on your braille display. This provides you with a better representation of the visual layout of HTML tables. This check box is selected by default. You can change this setting on the Lists and Tables tab of the HTML Options dialog in Configuration Manager. This new option is only applicable if you select "Screen Layout" as the Document Presentation Mode.

Microsoft Word

Navigation Quick Keys

Navigation Quick Keys for Word provide you with an easy and efficient way to move through a document. You can quickly move the insertion point to a number of different page elements, including headings, tables, form fields, pages, sections, and more, with a simple keystroke. This feature is similar to the navigation quick keys in Internet Explorer, but is especially designed to help you navigate Word documents.

Navigation Quick Keys are automatically enabled while you are reading with the Say All command. If you want to use this feature when not performing the Say All command, press INSERT+Z. Then, use the keystrokes in the Word Navigation Quick Keys table to move the insertion point to the next or previous page element of the given type. To turn off Navigation Quick Keys again, press ENTER. JAWS also turns off Navigation Quick Keys if you switch to another document or program.

Note: While Navigation Quick Keys are enabled, you cannot type text into the document. In addition, you can only use the TAB key to move to the next form field or table cell.

Table of Word Navigation Quick Keys

Tip: You can use the SHIFT key in combination with most of the keystrokes in the table below to move to the previous element of that type in the document.


Quick Key

Next Bookmark


Next Comment


Next Endnote


Next Form Field


Next Graphic


Next Heading


Next Footnote


Next Paragraph


Next Section


Next Table


Move forward out of a table or list


Move backward out of a table or list


Next Page


Previous Page


Announce Accented Characters

If Typing Echo is set to characters, JAWS now announces accented characters (such as à, é, î, and many others) and special characters (such as ¿, ¡, and ß) as you type them. For more information on how to type accented characters in Word, refer to the Microsoft Word online help.

Hear Nested List Levels

JAWS can now automatically announce the nesting level of paragraphs formatted as bulleted or numbered lists. Level one paragraphs are at the highest level. Level two paragraphs are nested below level one paragraphs, and so on. To enable this option, press INSERT+V in Word, select "Announce List Nest Level," and press the SPACEBAR to choose "On."

New Functionality for INSERT+T

In addition to announcing the name of the current document, pressing INSERT+T now announces the current document view (such as normal, page layout, outline, and so on).

Hide Custom Labels for Form Fields

JAWS 6.0 introduced the ability to assign custom labels to form fields in Word documents. Now you can temporarily hide your custom labels and use the original labels instead. Press INSERT+V, select "Use Custom Labels," and then press the SPACEBAR to choose "Off." The next time you move to a form field with a custom label, JAWS reads the original label instead (if one is available).

New Keystroke for Selecting a Hyperlink in Word

The keystroke for selecting a hyperlink in Word has been changed from INSERT+F8 to INSERT+F7. However, when you are using Spell Check in Word, pressing INSERT+F7 still reads the misspelled word as it did in previous versions. This change makes the keystroke for this command consistent for all Microsoft Office programs.

Indicate Bullet Types

When you move to a paragraph formatted as a bulleted list, JAWS now indicates the type of bullet used to create that list. JAWS can identify ten of the most common bullet types, including picture bullets. If you want to hear specific information about images used as picture bullets, turn on the "Borders & Pictures" verbosity option. If you do not want JAWS to indicate the type of bullet, press INSERT+V, select "Bullet Type Indication," and press the SPACEBAR to choose "Off."

More Support for Non Uniform Tables

JAWS can now properly detect and navigate non uniform tables with cells that span one or more rows. In addition, JAWS 7.0 features a new verbosity option that can provide you with detailed information about complex tables that can help you get oriented. This option is enabled by default. To disable this option, press INSERT+V, select "Table Description," and press the SPACEBAR to choose "Off." This setting is retained even after you quit Word.

New Focus Shortcut for Left Alignment of Paragraphs

The Focus braille display shortcut for left aligning the current paragraph has been changed to LEFT SHIFT+DOTS 1-2-3 to avoid conflicting with another shortcut.

Microsoft Excel

Create Custom Summaries in Excel

The Custom Summary feature allows you to create a snapshot of important data from a worksheet, such as monthly totals, grand totals, and so on. You define which cells appear in the custom summary by assigning labels to them. The summary then displays the contents of all the specified cells. The summary contains links, allowing you to move quickly to any of the cells. If the worksheet's data changes after the custom summary is created, the same summary can be used to obtain the new information.

Use CTRL+INSERT+TAB to assign a label to the current cell. Once you have assigned labels to all cells you want to include in the summary, you press CTRL+INSERT+SHIFT+TAB to view the summary. JAWS displays summary information for all worksheets that have custom summary labels assigned.

Tip: The DAISY training material that can be installed from the JAWS 7.0 program CD includes a lesson on creating custom summaries in Excel. To listen to this DAISY book, open the JAWS Help menu and choose Training. Then, select the book "XTraCustomLabelSummaryExcel" and press ENTER.

Easy Creation of Excel Formulas that Reference Different Workbooks or Worksheets

When you create a formula in Excel, you can navigate to and select a cell or range of cells in another workbook or worksheet in order to use that data as part of the formula. When you create a formula this way, JAWS now makes it easier to navigate to the cells containing the data you want to include by announcing the name of the active worksheet/workbook. In addition, you can now press CTRL+NUM PAD 5 when creating a formula to hear the coordinates of the last cell you navigated to.

Define Row and Column Titles for Worksheets with Multiple Regions

The ability to use names in Excel to define row and column titles has been extended to worksheets that have multiple regions. You can now use names to define unique row and column titles for each region on your spreadsheet. In addition, JAWS can now detect if the active worksheet contains multiple regions. If it does, then multiple region support is automatically enabled in the Excel verbosity options.

Tip: The DAISY training material that can be installed from the JAWS 7.0 program CD includes a lesson on using names to define row and column titles in Excel. To listen to this DAISY book, open the JAWS Help menu and choose Training. Then, select the book "XTraNewPortableRowAndColumnTitlesInExcel" and press ENTER.

New Keystroke for Setting Monitor Cells

The keystroke for setting monitor cells in Excel has been changed from ALT+CTRL+SHIFT+1 through 0 to INSERT+SHIFT+1 through 0. This keystroke is easier for most users to press.

New Keystroke for Selecting a Hyperlink in Excel

The keystroke for selecting a hyperlink in Excel has been changed from CTRL+SHIFT+H to INSERT+F7. This change makes the keystroke for this command consistent for all Microsoft Office programs.

Phonetic Cell Coordinates in Excel

You can now press INSERT+C three times to hear the coordinates of the active cell announced phonetically.

More Information About Input Messages

Input messages can be used to create forms in Excel. When you move to a cell with an input message, JAWS now announces the following information:

  • The type of input (drop-down, date, time, and so on).
  • Any restrictions relating to the input that is expected (for example, time input between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM).
  • Tutor help appropriate to the type of input expected.
  • Appropriate screen-sensitive help for the type of input expected.

JAWS also provides this information in Braille, if you have a Braille display.

Review Detailed Information About Cell Appearance

You can now press INSERT+TAB twice while in a cell to display detailed information regarding the visual appearance of that cell in the Virtual Viewer. JAWS displays the width of the column, the height of the cell if greater than one line, whether the text has been shrunk or rotated, the cell's vertical and horizontal alignment, font information, the presence of any inverted negative numbers and their color, the indentation level, and the number format.

More Information when Selecting Cells

When you select cells with Excel's selection commands, JAWS now indicates the range of cells that you have selected. For example, if you are in cell A1 and then select cells B1 and C1 with SHIFT+RIGHT ARROW, JAWS says "Select C1."

Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express

Disable Announcement of Header Fields

You can now turn off the automatic announcement of the From and Subject fields when you open a message in Outlook Express. To change this setting, press INSERT+V, select "Announce Header Fields with Message," and use the SPACEBAR to choose either "Yes" or "No."

Disable Automatic Message Reading in Outlook Express

In JAWS 6.20 and later, JAWS no longer reads the entire message automatically when you open it in Outlook. In JAWS 7.0, this feature has been extended to Outlook Express as well. If you want JAWS to automatically read the message body after reading the subject, press INSERT+V, select "Read Messages Automatically," and press the SPACEBAR to choose "Yes."

Read and Move to the BCC Edit Box

You can now press ALT+6 to read the BCC field while composing a message in Outlook. Press this keystroke twice quickly to move the cursor to the BCC field.

Disable Information Bar Announcement

In JAWS 6.10, a new feature was added that automatically announced the content of the Outlook information bar. If you want to turn this feature off, you can now press INSERT+V, select "Announce Information Bar Messages," and press the SPACEBAR to choose "No."

Message Flag Announcement

If this option is on, JAWS announces when the currently selected message has one of Outlook's message status flags, such as Important, Business, Follow up, Personal, and so on. Turn this option off if you do not want those flags announced. This option is only available in Outlook 2002 or later.

Other Programs

Quattro Pro

JAWS now supports Quattro Pro versions 11 and 12.


New Functionality for F2 and SHIFT+F2 in Script Manager

In the JAWS Script Manager, pressing F2 or SHIFT+F2 no longer selects the script name. This prevents the user from accidentally typing over the function or script.

New Keystroke for Displaying the Object List in Homerow Mode

While in homerow mode (INSERT+SPACEBAR), you can now press ALT+F9 to display the object list for the current homerow window in the Virtual Viewer. This command is no longer available when cycling through the MSAA output types with F10 while in homerow mode.

Download JAWS 7.0

You must download the version of JAWS that is compatible with your Windows operating system. JAWS 7.0 or later does not support Windows NT or 95. If your computer runs under Windows NT or 95, you should use version 6.20 or earlier of JAWS instead.

Note: You must have the Internet License Manager (ILM) version of JAWS 6.0, 6.10, or 6.20 to update to version 7.0 (the ILM version can also use a dongle for authorization). If your version of JAWS still uses the 3.5-inch disk authorization, contact Freedom Scientific Sales for details on switching to ILM authorization.

Full Version of JAWS

 JAWS 7.00.135 for Windows XP/2000 October 2005 English ILM Release (52 MB)
 JAWS 7.00.135 for Windows ME/98 October 2005 English ILM Release (52 MB)

JAWS for USB Thumb Drives

The following files allow you to run JAWS from a USB thumb drive. The dongle system driver is only required if you are using a dongle for authorization. In addition, you do not need to install JAWS/MAGic (DCM) Video Intercept on a computer that already has JAWS or MAGic installed. For more information on running JAWS from a USB thumb drive, see JAWS for Thumb Drives - Questions and Answers

 JAWS 7.00.135 for USB Thumb Drives (Windows XP/2000 only) (24 MB)
 JAWS/MAGic (DCM) Video Intercept 10.11.086 (0.8 MB)
 Dongle System Driver (3.4 MB)

Note: Please note that extracting or copying the JAWS program files to your thumb drive may take up to five minutes if you have a USB 2.0 port and compatible USB 2.0 thumb drive. With USB 1.1 ports or USB 1.1 thumb drives, this process may take twice as long.

Other Downloads

 Surf's Up - Surfing the Internet with JAWS Download (updated for version 7.0)
 JAWS for Windows Basic Training
 JAWS Audio Demos