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: Using Non-Printing Notes.

Using Non-Printing Notes

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated January 10, 2015)

3

Word has a text attribute that has been around since the early days of Word for DOS. Hidden text is an attribute that allows you to enter information that you can easily suppress. You can turn it off so it does not appear on the screen, or you can turn it off so it doesn't print. To format text as hidden, follow these steps:
  1. Select the text you want hidden.
  2. Select Font from the Format menu. Word displays the Font dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Font tab of the Font dialog box.

  4. Click on the Hidden check box. (The check box isn't hidden; it is named "Hidden.")
  5. Click on OK.
Hidden text shows on the screen with a dotted underline. Unfortunately, this is easy to miss as you are reading the document on the screen, so it is a good idea to use a text color to highlight your hidden text. For instance, it could be green as well as hidden. In this way, your notes and messages are much harder to miss. You can even define a character or paragraph style that has the hidden attribute set, along with the color attribute to make the text more noticeable. You can control whether hidden text is displayed or printed. To control the display of hidden text on the screen, follow these steps:
  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu. Word displays the Options dialog box.
  2. Make sure the View tab is selected. (See Figure 2.)
  3. Figure 2. The View tab of the Options dialog box.

  4. Clear the Hidden Text check box if you don't want it displayed, select the check box if you do want it displayed.
  5. Click on OK.
Controlling the printing of hidden text is an entirely different matter. Word allows you to control whether hidden text is printed with your document. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Select Options from the Tools menu. Word displays the Options dialog box.
  2. Make sure Print tab is selected. (See Figure 3.)
  3. Figure 3. The Print tab of the Options dialog box.

  4. Click on the Hidden Text check box. If the check box is selected Word prints hidden text.
  5. 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 (1135) 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: Using Non-Printing Notes.

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

Repeating Rows at the Bottom of a Page

Excel allows you to repeat rows at the top of every page of a printout. If you want to repeat rows at the bottom of every ...

Discover More

Reversing Integer Values

Do you need to reverse a series of integer values, such as 5 becomes 1, 4 becomes 2, etc.? There are several ways you can ...

Discover More

Making Sure a Document Always Has an Even Number of Pages

For some documents, you may want to make sure that a printout always has an even number of pages. Word has no intrinsic way ...

Discover More

Learning Made Easy! Quickly teach yourself how to format, publish, and share your content using Word 2013. With Step by Step, you set the pace, building and practicing the skills you need, just when you need them! Check out Microsoft Word 2013 Step by Step today!

More WordTips (menu)

Changing Character Color

Need to easily change the color of some selected text? A quick way to do it is with a custom macro that sets just the hue ...

Discover More

Changing Font Size Using a Shortcut Key

When you need to change the font size of a text selection, using the shortcut described in this tip is a great technique. ...

Discover More

Understanding Monospace Fonts

Monospace fonts allow you to easily achieve a specific "look" with your text or to line up information in a certain way. This ...

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

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. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. 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 nine minus 3?

2016-01-29 22:18:49

Olalekan Benjamin

I want to be updated on MS word


2015-09-24 04:08:46

GeordieLad

Despite following the procedure detailed above I have a problem with a Word 2000 document which contains symbols. Those I need are shown and printed correctly but there are occasional unwanted ones (notably Alt+196, a line drawing character) which appear in my HP LJ1100 printout but do not show on screen, regardless of the Hidden settings. Try as I may, I've been unable to remove these unwanted characters - or see them onscreen! Can anyone help?


2015-09-22 10:42:46

Wes

Thank you!


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.

Newest Tips
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.