Monthly Archives: March 2011

Protect A Word Document

There are many different kinds of protection you can give to your Word 2010 document. You can protect your document in the following ways:

Encrypt With Password

You can make it so that anyone who wants to open a document has to supply a password. Click the File tab > Info > Protect Document (in the Permissions section) > Encrypt with password.

Encrypt With Password

In the password window that opens, type in a password.

Encrypt Document

You will need to supply the password twice. Now, whenever someone tries to open the document, they will be presented with a password window similar to the one above. They will need to supply the correct password before they can see the document.

When a document has been protected this way, you will see the following in backstage view:

Word Permissions

Mark as Final

Marking a document as final makes it read-only, so no changes can be made to it. This setting is advisory only. You can quite easily make the document available for further editing by reversing the steps outlined below. Marking as final indicates that editing is complete and that this is the final version of the document. Click the File tab > Info > Protect Document (in the Permissions section) > Mark as final. When the confirmation window is displayed, click OK.

Mark As Final

Restrict style formatting

You can restrict the kinds of style formatting changes that can be made by clicking File > Info > Protect Document > Restrict Editing, and in the Formatting restrictions section, check the Limit Formatting to a selection of styles box.

Restrict Formatting And Editing

If you then click Settings you will be able to select all the formatting styles that you want to be allowed (for example, Body Text, Heading 1, etc).

Formatting Restrictions In Word


Editing Restrictions

Similar to the above, click File > Info > Protect Document > Restrict Editing, and in the Editing restrictions section, check the Allow only this type of editing in the document.

Editing Restrictions

If you select from the drop down list Tracked changes, Comments or Filling in forms, then only those kinds of edits will be allowed. If, instead, you select Read only then you can define exceptions – that is, areas of the document that can be edited. To do this, select a region to which you wish to allow editing, and then in the Exceptions section, select each user who should be given this privilege.

Restrict Open and Modify

You can prevent people opening and/or modifying a document by clicking the File tab > Save as > Tools > General options.

General Options

Enter a password into the Password to open box to restrict opening of the document and a password into the Password to modify box to… well you can guess.

General Options Window

If you found this tutorial interesting, you may find the How To Remove The Password From Word tutorial useful, too.

Display The Ruler In CMs In Word

The ruler in Microsoft Word runs horizontally along the top of your workspace and helps you align the elements in your document correctly.

The Ruler In Word

Click to enlarge

If you can’t see a ruler, go to View tab and make sure that Ruler is checked (in the Show group):

Display The Ruler In Word

But the numbers that are displayed on the ruler – what do they refer to? That is, what units of measure does the ruler use?  To determine which units you are using, or to change them, click the File tab > Options, and click on the Advanced tab on the left. In the Display section, you should see the Show measurements in units of dropdown selector.

Ruler Units Of Measure In Word

Click to enlarge

This shows you the units currently being used, and also allows you to change them. You’ll find that the most popular units are inches and centimeters, but the whole list of options is here:

  • Inches
  • Centimeters
  • Millimeters
  • Points
  • Picas

Knowing the units of measure being used is helpful when you are dealing with margins, for example. In the image below, you can tell at a glance that the left margin is set to be 2.5 cm, if you know that your units of measure are centimeters.

Margins In Word

Word: Getting The Next Heading To Appear Automatically

Have you ever worked on a Word document that automatically sets the style to be the next sequential heading when you press Enter after the current one? That is, you type out a Heading 1, press Enter and the styling is automatically set to Heading 2. But then you work on other documents and when you press Enter the styling simply reverts to Normal.

Sometimes, depending on the kind of document you’re amending, you might want to automatically move on to the next heading. For example, if you’re writing a detailed specification that includes many sub headings, it might be helpful for Word to move on to the next sequential heading automatically.

But how do you do set this up?

Modify Heading 1 Style

By default, Word reverts back to the Normal style after pressing Enter on a heading. We can change this by modifying the heading style. Let’s do this on a Heading 1. Right click on Heading 1 in the Styles gallery (Home tab, in the Styles group) and select Modify.

Modify Heading Style

In the Modify Style window that opens, change the Style for following paragraph selector to be Heading 2.

Style For Following Paragraph

Click OK to accept the changes. Go on, try it out! Type out a Heading 1 and then press Enter. The style automatically moves on to Heading 2.

As you can imagine, you just need to repeat this simple process on all the other headings you are likely to use in your document. If this is a common requirement of your documents, you could always save the document (after you’ve made your formatting changes) as a template. If you do this, you can then base new documents in the future on this template, and have this formatting already set up for you.