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Turning Off Comment Color when Printing

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: Turning Off Comment Color when Printing.

Penny has a document that has some comments within it; on some pages there are quite a few comments. She also has a color printer, so when she prints the document, the comments are printed in color. She would rather that the comments did not print in color, as printing them in color is rather expensive. Penny wonders if there is a way to turn off the color of the comments when they are printed.

The approach you take depends on whether there are other color items in your document that you do want printed. If there are not, then the best solution is to look to the printer itself for the answer. Most modern printers have some way to turn the color off, meaning that the document is printed in gray scale instead of color. There may be a control on the printer itself or you can click Properties to the right of the printer name in the Print dialog box to find a control there.

If you can't find such a setting for your printer, then you can instruct Word to try printing in black and white. Follow these steps:

  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu. Word displays the Options dialog box.
  2. Select the Compatibility tab. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Compatibility tab of the Options dialog box.

  4. Make sure the Print Colors as Black on Noncolor Printers option is selected. (You'll need to scroll down in the list of options to find this one.)
  5. Click on OK.

Another approach is to try changing the actual color used in the comments. This may take some experimenting, as the results will depend on your printer and its capabilities. Follow these steps:

  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu. Word displays the Options dialog box.
  2. Select the Track Changes tab. (See Figure 2.)
  3. Figure 2. The Track Changes tab of the Options dialog box.

  4. Use the Comments Color drop-down list to choose White.
  5. Click OK.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (7299) 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: Turning Off Comment Color when Printing.

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