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: Opening a Document as Read-Only.

Opening a Document as Read-Only

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 24, 2021)

1

There may be times when you want to open a file as read-only. This means you will not be able to save any changes to the file you are loading. You can use the Save As option from the File menu in order to save the document to a different filename, however. Opening a file as read-only is self-insurance so you don't inadvertently mess up your file. To open a document as read-only, follow these steps if you are using Word 2000 or a later version:

  1. Select Open from the File menu, or click on the Open tool on the toolbar. You will see the Open dialog box.
  2. Locate the file you want to open and then click once on the file name.
  3. Click on the down-arrow at the right side of the Open button. Word displays the different ways you can open the file.
  4. Choose Open Read-Only from the drop-down menu.

If you are using Word 97, follow these steps:

  1. Select Open from the File menu, or click on the Open tool on the toolbar. You will see the Open dialog box.
  2. Locate the file you want to open and then click once on the file name.
  3. Click on the Commands and Settings button. (It is the right-most button on the toolbar in the Open dialog box.) This displays a Context menu.
  4. Choose Open Read Only from the Context menu.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1156) 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: Opening a Document as Read-Only.

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

Stopping Automatic Changes from Being Tracked

Track Changes is a great feature for keeping track of what gets changed in a document. There are some things (such as ...

Discover More

Breaking Up Variable-Length Part Numbers

Part numbers can often be long, made up of other component elements. Breaking up part numbers into individual components ...

Discover More

Reformatting a Document with Messed-Up Styles

If there are lots of hands that touch a document, there are lots of ways those hands can mess up the document. You may be ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More WordTips (menu)

Changing Information in Multiple Documents

If you need to change text in many documents at the same time, Word isn't the best tool to use. Here's some ideas on ways ...

Discover More

Document Size Changes

When you last upgraded Word, did you notice a change in the size of your document files?

Discover More

MS-DOS with Line Breaks Format in Word 2002 and Word 2003

Finding the built in functionality in Word 2002 & 2003 for saving your document as a MS-DOS format.

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 five more than 0?

2016-10-22 12:29:39

Allan

I did steps 1 and 2.
There is no Commands and Settings button shown, as said in step 3. (It is the right-most button on the toolbar in the Open dialog box.) This displays a Context menu.


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.