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How to turn off annoying MS Word Features
UPDATE 10/20/2006 Added turning off Personalized Menus Here's my list of things to turn off. Man, they are annoying. Enjoy.

1. Creating New Styles for Every Format Change
Problem Someone at Microsoft thought it would be helpful to create a feature called "Keep track of formatting" that would create and modify styles as you edited your Word document. A style named "Heading 1" would be recreated and named "Heading 1 + 11 pt" once you modified the font size of some text already under the "Heading 1" style. As text is changed, more and more styles are created by Word until your Styles and Formatting pane looks like the thing to the right. Solution Tools > Options > Edit tab > uncheck "Keep track of formatting"

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two or three . net: How to turn off annoying MS Word Features

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2. Opening Docs in Reading Layout
Problem This feature hides all toolbars and puts two pages side-by-side on your screen, and is the new default layout when you open docs from Outlook. This annoying feature must be turned off! Solution Tools > Options > General tab > uncheck "Allow starting in Reading Layout."

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two or three . net: How to turn off annoying MS Word Features

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3. AutoFormatting
Problem Some of Microsoft Word's auto formatting is helpful, but there are four particular formats that are not. Replacing Replacing Replacing Replacing regular quotation marks with "smart quotes" ordinals (1st) with superscript fractions with a fraction character (1/2) hyphens with dashes (-)

While using Microsoft Word, the auto formatting happens while you type. Most people don't even notice it. The problem is that when you cut-n-paste some text from Microsoft Word into a plain text editor such as a message board or weblog entry form, the text editors do not recognize Word's formatted version of these characters. Depending on the type of text editor you're using, a pair of quotation marks could end up giving you characters like à ¿½. This is a real example. Microsoft Word's auto formatting should be left inside Word, but even then, it's not that helpful.

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two or three . net: How to turn off annoying MS Word Features

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Solution Tools > AutoCorrect Options > AutoFormat As You Type tab > uncheck the appropriate checkboxes.

4. Paste Options widget
Problem When you paste into Word, a little control pops up to give you paste options. And it stays in your way! Solution Tools > Options > Edit Tab > deselect "Show Paste Options button"

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two or three . net: How to turn off annoying MS Word Features

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5. Show inserted fields as shaded ALWAYS
Problem When you insert a field into a document, it is nice to be able to see it as different from surrounding text. Solution Tools > Options > View TAB > change Field Shading dropdown to "Always"

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two or three . net: How to turn off annoying MS Word Features

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6. Change Default for "Show Markup" Box
Problem When Word opens up a document, the default setting for the "Show Markup Box" is "Final Showing Markup", which means you always start in a view which shows you all of the tracked changes. We want the default to be "Final." Solution Tools > Options > Security Tab > deselect "Make hidden markup visible when opening or saving"

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two or three . net: How to turn off annoying MS Word Features

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7. Turning Off Personalized Menus
Problem The default setting for MS Word is to only show you partial menus initially, and if you click the double arrow or wait a few seconds, it then reveals the rest of the menu. This is helpful if you only use a few menu items regularly (it shows the most used), but if you use many, it's just an annoyance, fit to be turned off. Solution Tools > Customize > Options Tab > select "Always show full menus"

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two or three . net: How to turn off annoying MS Word Features

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Posted at 05:02 PM in Science and Technology | Permalink TrackBack

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Comments

Is this useful to anyone?
Posted by: seeker | 20 October 2006 at 03:53 PM

I admit I am ignorant of these Word features. When I use Word I normally don't thing about these.
Posted by: Cineaste | 20 October 2006 at 04:20 PM

Actually yes, it was... that show paste options button always has annoyed me in my newer version of Word. :) Thanks!
Posted by: Lawanda | 21 October 2006 at 10:54 AM

Great. Dugg!

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two or three . net: How to turn off annoying MS Word Features

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(http://digg.com/microsoft/Turn_off_MSWord_annoyances_7_tips)
Posted by: Rutje | 13 April 2007 at 06:37 AM

The Reading Layout tips is a godsend. I've hated that feature ever since they put Office 2003 on my machine.
Posted by: Charlie | 13 April 2007 at 07:42 AM

This is exactly what I've been looking for. I hate those annoying assumptions Microsoft made about my documents.
Posted by: Bwobby | 13 April 2007 at 07:43 AM

I have to say that I disagree with the first point. If you're trying to apply consistent formatting across and entire document, using the default setting to create a new style, in conjunction with the "Formatting in Use" view on the Styles and Formatting pane, quickly shows the harried layout editor what the writers have gotten up to. Easy to select all text with bold + underline and reformat it to something in the conventional style sheet.
Posted by: Malcolm | 13 April 2007 at 08:27 AM Post a comment

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