Restoring or Recreating AutoText Entries

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 13, 2014)

3

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 Normal.dot template for a system. If you delete the Normal.dot 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 Normal.dot 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 Normal.dot 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 Normal.dot file.
  2. Instead of deleting the file, name it something else, such as OldNormal.dot.
  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 Normal.dot 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 (OldNormal.dot). The left side of the Organizer should now contain your old Normal.dot template and the right side contains a fresh, new copy of Normal.dot.
  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 Normal.dot 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 Normal.dot file. Make sure you are not looking for the one you renamed, but again looking for Normal.dot.
  15. If you find a new copy of Normal.dot, 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 OldNormal.dot file (the one you renamed in step 2).
  17. Rename the OldNormal.dot file to its old name, Normal.dot.

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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Comments for this tip:

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. 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 three minus 1?

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

Heiko MARTIN

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

H. MARTIN


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