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: Working with E-mailed Documents.

Working with E-mailed Documents

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated January 14, 2019)

1

It is quite common, in this electronic age, for Word documents to be sent around the globe as e-mail attachments. The ease with which this is done is astounding to those of us who remember the "old days" of personal computing. If you receive a Word document as an e-mail attachment, there are a couple of things that you should keep in mind.

First, if the document is from an untrusted source, make sure you have some sort of virus protection in place. The attachment you think is a document may not, in fact, be a real document. It could be virus or worm programs that execute directly if you double-click the attachment. It is also possible that the document itself could contain a macro or two that may be hazardous to your system.

Second, if you plan on making changes to the received document, make sure you save the document as a regular file before you make changes to it. In other words, don't double-click on the attachment and then make changes. Here's why: When you double-click on the attachment, most e-mail programs save the file in a temporary directory and then use Word to open it. When you close the document, any changes you made are saved to the file in the temporary directory, they are not saved to the attachment itself. It is even possible that the e-mail program simply throws away the temporary file in the temporary directory. In this case, all your changes are completely lost.

The best bet is to explicitly save the attachment as a file. Then, outside of the e-mail program, you can use Word to load the file and make changes. In this case the received file acts as you would expect it to. If you then want to send the changed file to a different person, all you need to do is attach it to a different e-mail message and send it on its way.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (160) 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: Working with E-mailed Documents.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Inserting the User's Address

If you enter your address into Word, you can insert that address anywhere you want in a document by using a single field. ...

Discover More

Finding the Date Associated with a Negative Value

When working with data taken from the real world, you often have to determine which certain conditions were met, such as ...

Discover More

Examining Styles and Macros in a Template

Templates are very powerful with the ability to contain both styles and macros. If you want to see what styles and macros ...

Discover More

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!

More WordTips (menu)

Making Backup Copies

When you save your documents, Word doesn't normally make backups of your files. If you want the program to do that, it ...

Discover More

Cannot Open Multiple Word Documents

What are you to do if you try to open a document and Word automatically closes your previous document? Word is not ...

Discover More

Opening Multiple Documents at Once

Word's Open dialog box provides many of the same file management functions as Windows Explorer does. One of the functions ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 7 + 9?

2014-01-24 11:13:31

Malcolm

You can also use a free attachment remover for Outlook, available at:
http://www.kopf.com.br/outlook/
This allows you to cut any attachment and paste it into any folder you choose. And it leaves a link behind in the email. Used on all attachments it dramatically reduces the size of Outlook's PST file while making attachments much more quickly (and independently) available.


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.