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Replacing All AutoCorrect Entries

Harold has a need for multiple AutoCorrect lists for different writing purposes. He would like a way to "swap out" one complete set of AutoCorrect entries for another, and wonders if it is possible to do this.

Word stores AutoCorrect entries in two places. Formatted entries are stored in the Normal template. Unformatted entries are stored in a file that ends with the extension .ACL. You can use the search capability of Windows to find all the files that end with this extension; the first part of the file name consists of the letters MSO followed by a language code. For English language installations of Word the full file name is MSO1033.acl.

The easiest way to swap out AutoCorrect entries is to simply keep multiple copies of these two files. Copy the desired files into the locations expected by Word, prior to starting the program, and then you can use the different sets of AutoCorrect entries that you need.

A simpler way to manage your AutoCorrect entries (at least if you are using Word 2007) is to simply rely on the AutoCorrect Utility, provided as part of a special template called Support.dot. This template is installed automatically if you do a complete Word install of all options. If it is not available on your system, you can find installation instructions in this Knowledge Base article:


To create your AutoCorrect list, load the template, click the AutoCorrect Backup button, and then click Backup. You can then specify where the list should be saved and the name under which it should be saved. The backup contains all the AutoCorrect entries in a regular Word table, with the trigger word in the left column, the replacement word in the middle column, and an indicator of whether the entry is formatted or not in the right column. You can make changes to the entries in the table, as desired. When you want to use them, simply load the Support.dot template and again click the AutoCorrect Backup button and click Restore.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10019) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

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