Editing AutoCorrect ACL Files
Siegfried uses the AutoCorrect feature to save many abbreviations in five different languages. He wonders if there is any way of opening an ACL file in an editor, editing some entries, and saving it such that it can be used in the AutoCorrect function with the edited changes. In other words, he would like to edit ACL files for different languages without having to go through the one-by-one entries via the AutoCorrect menu.
Over the years there have been several macros developed that allow ACL files to be exported and imported, most notably so they could be moved from one machine to another. In the process of exporting, the ACL file is in a condition that can be edited prior to importing it again.
One such macro is mentioned at the Microsoft Knowledge Base, at this address:
This macro will work with Word 2000 or (it appears) with later versions. There are problems with it, however, as it won't work well on more complex ACL files, such as those using multi-paragraph corrections. In that case, you will want to check out the explanations (and associated macros) at the Word MVP site, located here:
The macros at this site are much more robust than those at Microsoft's site. When you export the AutoCorrect entries, they are in a text file that can be easily edited using a text editor.
WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (434) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.
Learning Made Easy! Quickly teach yourself how to format, publish, and share your content using Word 2013. With Step by Step, you set the pace, building and practicing the skills you need, just when you need them! Check out Microsoft Word 2013 Step by Step today!
Leave your own comment:
Comments for this tip:
Patrick Birdsall 13 May 2016, 06:29
There are many odd and interesting aspects to the ACL code. Allen's snippet (many thanks!) Lists multiple file entries, even if they are not accessible unless "in that language". I considered using Latin (otherwise unused) for chemical formulas and Greek for math, but until I have a good editor to manage them I have decided to keep it simple.
Note: I do proof in other languages but it is not necessary to have the strange behavior.if you are not aware of the proofing language of a document, it is not a good place to create ACL entries.
Debra 12 May 2016, 05:40
Hi Patrick and others,
It is interesting to read about your discoveries as to the diff acl files created for diff languages, etc, even tho you, Patrick, don't actually use diff languages! I suppose odd words might appear foreign to Word.
I want to learn as much as I can about these acl files/how autocorrect works, so it is helpful to know. Thanks.
Patrick Birdsall 09 May 2016, 15:15
Follow-up to my previous email
I discovered that my current problem is due to language use. Plain text ACL entries are stored in files specific to the language at the time of entry. Sounds reasonable, but it is not really. I don't create AC in different languages, but MS may "think" my word is.
MSO2013 had created 7 different files based on:
code Language File name
1033 English U.S. MSO1033.acl
1036 French MSO1036.acl
1040 Italian MSO1040.acl
1046 Portuguese (Brazil) MSO1046.acl
2057 English U.K. MSO2057.acl
3082 SpanishSpain (Modern)MSO3082.acl
The list doesn't give code "0127"
I still really need the editor, but at least I can understand the "strange" availability behavior of my AutoCorrect.
Patrick Birdsall 09 May 2016, 12:47
I've used AC for many years, but periodically Word has problems with it. I presume that this time it is because MS decided to try to integrate it with the other Office applications.
I need to resolve the problem of AC entries that work in one file, but not another. I think this is related to the link between the "7 ACL files" and the documents they are connected to.
I will be happy to provide the symptoms because i really should not be spending time on this. I haven't found support on this issue yet.
Eric Paroissien 24 Dec 2015, 07:39
Sorry, i had no intention of hiding my mail addresse, here it is active by a click on my name.
Eric Paroissien 24 Dec 2015, 07:36
I started to use autocorrect when working as a translator for Sony in Shinagawa in 1989 (!) since then i have refined my technique and word lists, mainly in French and English but also in Japanese, German and Chinese. Now, use both this function and AutoHotKey. This morning i discovered that i can dictate through my phone, to the PC into Word and use autocorrect with dictation. This is amazing. I will offer my lists on the net after some editing, mainly because i have entered personal contact addresses and phone numbers as well as passwords. You end up entering anything in those lists, url, programs to be executed, etc.
Debra 05 Dec 2015, 06:50
Hi Steve, Thanks for your reply. I have learnt a lot more since my post and it seems the problem that wipes all the entries is when the MSO2057.acl file reaches 2350KB (size viewed in Windows Explorer). I am autocorrect mad and am creating them for every single word and phrase that existd! (in English anyway. I do it as I go along when I'm typing, which I do for my work). Call me crazy but I love it.
So I noticed that all my saved/backup versions of this acl file only go to a certain size before it crashes. That seems to be the problem. No idea how to contact Microsoft about this or who I should speak to. I need a custom made version of Word or something that will allow me to continue my crazy mission maybe? I will check out your suggestion tho, that will defo be useful for editing the file. Many thanks, Debra
Steve Wells 30 Nov 2015, 18:25
I wrote the material below as a comment to a different AutoCorrect article comment, but it applies well for your question.
Use AutoCorrect.dot, a template that includes a macro to save and restore AutoCorrect settings. You can find it at: http://www.word.mvps.org/Downloads/index.htm
The macro inside the template saves a table of your custom AutoCorrect entries into a Word document. That document and its table are very easy for human review and editing. You can add more rows and create new entries directly, or modify/delete rows as desired. The AutoCorrect.dot macro can also restore the entries from your document table, or from any desired variant that you saved to a useful name/location.
Thus you can restore (copy) to a new computer or update the settings on an alternate computer. For example, I have home and work versions with obvious names: AutoCorrectHomeRestoreTable.doc and AutoCorrectWorkRestoreTable.doc. I apply colors to entries that I would prefer to remove if I copy from one file to the other. The macro doesn’t care about color, font, headers, or footers. So I can keep nearly identical versions synched, yet with slight differences.
You are welcome to email me for further examples/samples or other AutoCorrect tips. Or post in the comments here.
Debra 03 Oct 2015, 07:30
I also have this question. I would like to be able to edit my autocorrect file. (I have entered formatted entries in the past that have caused problems, so would like to remove them. The standard method of removing them says they do not exist! Even tho they are showing up in the dialogue box. So I cannot remove them. I would like to start afresh, avoiding all formatted entries this time. If I forget and add one by mistake (like with a paragraph return) they cause my whole autocorrect library to be wiped!
romiha 18 Sep 2015, 15:52
If you have more than 32,767 autocorrect entries, however, the macro won't work, as Word has maximum row table limitations.
Is there any way around this?
the KB link is no longer available.
I currently have greater than 40,000 autocorrect entries (tried importing them into another shortcut application).
I'd prefer to use the text editor to weed out some autocorrects but am running into a wall. one by one is very tedious.
thank you in advance!