AutoText Entries Don't Stick

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated June 8, 2019)
This tip applies to Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


Linda reports that when she puts a word into AutoText it works just fine, but only while she's in that document. When she closes and re-opens the document, all her added AutoText words are gone and she has to re-enter them.

There are several possible reasons why this would occur. AutoText entries are saved in templates, not in documents, so the cause must somehow be related to what Word is doing with your templates. It may be that the template associated with this particular document is read-only, and therefore cannot be updated with the AutoText information. (Theoretically, however, you should get an error message when Word tries to save the AutoText info to the read-only template.)

If you are on a network, it may be that the template is not available when you reopen the document. You can check in Word to see what template is associated with the document once you reopen it, and verify that it is the correct template that should be associated with it. If the template in which you previously saved your AutoText is not available the next time you open the document, Word will attach the Normal.dot template by default. In any case, you should check with your network administrator to see if there is something funny going on with your templates as they are stored on the network.

Finally, it could be that the problem is related to a known bug associated with several Adobe products interacting with Office. You can find more info about the bug at this Knowledge Base page:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/906899

Basically, the bug is caused by a problem in an add-on installed by several different versions of Adobe Acrobat. It affects Word in that some changes (including AutoText changes) are not saved properly. The Knowledge Base article lists several different ways you can cure the problem. (The best one is to update your Acrobat to a newer version. The update should be free from Adobe.)

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (515) 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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