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 Track Changes Off for Selected Areas.

Turning Track Changes Off for Selected Areas

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 3, 2016)

Carl's office makes extensive use of the Track Changes feature in Word, with the documents going through multiple individuals and multiple revisions prior to finalization. The Track Changes feature works very well for this purpose, with one exception: the document includes, in the footer, a date field (saved date), and each time the document is saved, Track Changes automatically strikes out the existing date and inserts a new last-saved date. This quickly results in a multi-line footer of revised last-saved date fields. Carl wondered if there is a way to tell Word to "ignore" the footer (or a specified field, block of text, section, etc.) when using Track Changes.

The short answer is that no, there isn't any way to do this. The Track Changes feature is either on or off for the entire document. This means that you have only a couple of options. The first option is to make the date in the footer static, so that it doesn't change. You could replace it with text (instead of using a field) and then simply remember to update the date as one of the last steps before finishing or printing the document.

Another option is to always accept the change to the footer whenever you open the file in Word. Simply right-click the date in the footer and then choose to Accept Change.

Still another option is to use a macro to actually save your document (if this is the point where the footer is being updated). The following macro accomplishes several things, and can be assigned to a toolbar button for ease of use. First, it steps through all the footers in the document and updates all the fields in the footers. It then accepts any revisions in those footers. Finally, it saves the document.

Sub Save_NoFooterRevisions()
    Dim rFooter As Range
    Dim iSectCount As Integer
    Dim j As Integer

    iSectCount = ActiveDocument.Sections.Count

    For j = 1 To iSectCount
        Set rFooter = ActiveDocument.Sections(j) _
          .Footers(wdHeaderFooterPrimary).Range
        With rFooter
            .Fields.Update
            .Revisions.AcceptAll
        End With
        Set rFooter = ActiveDocument.Sections(j) _
          .Footers(wdHeaderFooterEvenPages).Range
        With rFooter
            .Fields.Update
            .Revisions.AcceptAll
        End With
        Set rFooter = ActiveDocument.Sections(j) _
          .Footers(wdHeaderFooterFirstPage).Range
        With rFooter
            .Fields.Update
            .Revisions.AcceptAll
        End With
    Next j
    ActiveDocument.Save
End Sub

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (426) 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 Track Changes Off for Selected Areas.

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

Allowing Only Comments In a Document

Develop a document that is to be reviewed by a group of people, and you may want to protect it in some way. One way you can ...

Discover More

Displaying the Outlining Toolbar by Default

The Outlining toolbar contains tools that are helpful to use, even if you aren't working on your document's outline. This tip ...

Discover More

Word's Object Model

Understanding Word's Object Model and how it relates to macros in VBA.

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

MORE WORDTIPS (MENU)

Printing Only Changed Pages

Turn Track Changes on, and you can easily see where you've made changes throughout a document. If you want to print only ...

Discover More

Multiple Document Users

If you have a group of people working on a single document, you may wonder what tools are available in Word to facilitate the ...

Discover More

Changing How Changes are Noted in Word

Do you want to modify how Word marks changes in your document? It's easy to do, depending on your version of Word.

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 for this tip:

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)

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.

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.

Links and Sharing
Share