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Removing Confusion When Using AutoCorrect

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Removing Confusion When Using AutoCorrect.

I find the AutoCorrect feature very useful and have added extensive words and phrases to make it easier for me to type my business letters. This has led to some amusing situations. One of my employees was typing a newsletter for his baseball team. He used the word "bat" and "bats" a number of times. My business is batteries, and these are abbreviations that I set up to AutoCorrect to "battery" and "batteries". When he typed out the newsletter, he had no idea where all these words had come from. I have some other words such as "options" that insert about half a page of text. Typing my initials inserts "Yours truly," three blank lines, and then my full name and title.

To avoid confusion when using AutoCorrect (such as my employee experienced), I now append an asterisk to the end of the AutoCorrect keyword. Thus, I use "bat*" and "bats*" instead of "bat" and "bats." With no asterisk, I just get the word as it is typed. The asterisk triggers the use of the AutoCorrect feature and inserts the full text.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (887) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Removing Confusion When Using AutoCorrect.

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Comments for this tip:

Steve Wells    30 Nov 2015, 18:17
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.
Chuck Haber    28 Nov 2015, 04:22
Thanks for the great AutoCorrect tip. I, too, have had this amusing problem & your tip will help me.
I also wonder if it is possible to import all of my AutoCorrect entries to a new computer -- or if I have to manually type them in all over again to set them up?

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