Restoring or Recreating AutoText Entries

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 13, 2014)


Joan ran into a problem where the Filename and Path entry seems to be gone from her AutoText list. She was wondering how to get them back so she can again use them.

This entry (Filename and Path) is built into Word; it is in the AutoText entries by default. There are two things you can try in order to recover the missing entry. The first is related to the fact that AutoText entries are stored in the template for a system. If you delete the file, Word will recreate it the next time you start the program. The missing AutoText entry will then be available. (To delete the file, get out of Word and use the Windows Search function to locate and delete the file.)

The drawback to this first approach is that also contains many (but not all) of your other customizations. Deleting the file will get rid of these, as well. If you don't want to do that, then you should use the second approach: rename the file and copy the AutoText entry into it using the Organizer. Follow these steps:

  1. Outside of Word, use the Windows Search feature to find the file.
  2. Instead of deleting the file, name it something else, such as
  3. Start Word.
  4. Choose Templates and Add-Ins from the Tools menu. Word displays the Templates and Add-ins dialog box.
  5. Click the Organizer button. Word displays the Organizer tool. Note that the left side of the dialog box contains information for the current (new) document, and the right contains information for the file.
  6. Make sure the AutoText tab is displayed.
  7. Click the Close File button under the left side of the Organizer. This closes the information for the blank document.
  8. Click Open File. Word displays a standard Open dialog box.
  9. Use the controls in the dialog box to navigate to and open the template you renamed in step 2 ( The left side of the Organizer should now contain your old template and the right side contains a fresh, new copy of
  10. In the right-hand list, scroll down and select the entry for Filename and Path.
  11. Click the Copy button to copy the entry from the right side of the dialog box to the left. You have now copied the desired entry to your old file.
  12. Click the Close button to close the Organizer.
  13. Close Word; get out of the program completely.
  14. Use the Windows Search feature to look for the file. Make sure you are not looking for the one you renamed, but again looking for
  15. If you find a new copy of, delete it. (This is the one that Word may have created when you started it and it couldn't find your old one.)
  16. Again use the Windows Search feature, this time to find the file (the one you renamed in step 2).
  17. Rename the file to its old name,

You should now be able to use Word and the AutoText entries should include the desired Filename and Path entry.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (304) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

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. ...


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What is five less than 8?

2018-02-07 16:39:57

Theresa c Juge

Sir, I have a situation that occurred with the automatic updates for Microsoft on 01/29/18 and also on 02/06/18. I have windows 10 and use office and word 16 to do my work. Over the years, I have created quite an extensive library of both autotext and autoformat entries, in the 1000s. On February 1, 2018, I started to work to find that the autotext entries that I always use were no longer there. I looked at the library and it seemed that everything that I had entered over the years had disappeared. The same went for the autoformat library. I have (had) hundreds of names and addresses stored in this library to aid my work and these, too, were gone. I looked at the building blocks library and none of the entries I put there were there any more. After unsuccessful attempt to figure a way to restore this, including a system restore back to 01/29, I gave up and started rebuilding my libraries. However, on 02/06 there was an automatic update, again, and the same exact thing happened. All of my entries that I had just entered over the last week were gone. Autotext and autoformat are still functioning but my entries are gone. I contacted Microsoft and have spent the better part of the day dealing with those people in attempt to get to the bottom of this. it is a very time consuming process to deal with them, as you know. Now they tell me I must contact another number as the techs (3 of them) that I spoke to could not help with the problem.

I have no issue in recreating the entries, although it will take me weeks to do this while working in between , but since no one has been able to give me an answer as to why the two updates caused this issue. I have had updates before and this never happened. I am fearful that after I rebuild the libraries again, another update will come along and wipe them out again. Can you provide me with any insight to this issue?

2016-08-01 16:13:21

Nanette Gordon

This did not work for me, but I know how to insert an AutoText from the menu bar.

2016-05-18 00:27:32

Ramanand goswami

I have XP, 2000, I want to upgrade to Windows 7 and Ms Word 2003 or 7. Will the autocorrect and autotext entries be deleted after upgrading? Please help me

2015-02-10 14:22:24


Hello, this doesn't work. In german office Word 2010 there is no organizer Button in Tools-Addins. It only has options - Addins with no such button(Optionen - Addins)
with best regards


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