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: Protect Your Document Templates.

Protect Your Document Templates

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 25, 2014)

As you work with templates, you begin to realize that they are very valuable tools. As such, they should be protected—particularly if other people use your computer. To protect a document template from being changed or deleted, you should make the template file read-only. This is easily done from within Windows (not Word) by following these steps:

  1. Make sure you don't have the document template open in Word. (If there is any doubt, simply close Word.)
  2. Use My Computer to locate the template file you want to protect.
  3. Right-click on the name of the template file you want to protect. Word displays a Context menu.
  4. Choose Properties from the Context menu. Word displays a Properties dialog box for the file.
  5. Click your mouse on the General tab, if necessary. (See Figure 1.)
  6. Figure 1. The General tab of the Properties dialog box.

  7. Make sure the Read-only check box is selected.
  8. Click on OK.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (504) 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: Protect Your Document Templates.

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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