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Which Version Do You Want?

Friday, July 7th, 2006 by | Filed Under: MS Office Help, MS Word

Which Version Do You Want?

Do you have an MS Word document that you’re constantly revising?

Do you find yourself wishing you still had an earlier draft of the document somewhere?

Maybe, at one time you did, so now your solution is to continually save the file under a different name each time you revise.

This is a solution that certainly provides you with the ability to return to an earlier version, but what a potential nightmare when it comes to keeping track of all those files!

Why bother with all that?

Wish you had a way to save different versions of your document within the same file?


Well, then here’s your good news of the day. There is a way. Yeah!

What you’re looking for is MS Word’s Versions feature.

(Yep, it’s actually called “Versions.” Couldn’t get any easier to remember, could it?)

Versions is a feature that will save and help you manage all those different drafts of your document. It allows you to save the different versions, open, print and delete them as necessary.

Interested in more?

Yes? Good, then continue on for the “how to” of MS Word’s Versions feature.

When you have your document to a point where you’re ready to save it as a version, go to the File menu, Versions choice.

The Versions window will open.

At the top of the window, you’ll find the Save Now button.

Clicking this will open the Save Version window where you can enter comments pertaining to this particular version of the document.

Make it something good, because other than the date and time of the save, this is the only identifying information listed in the Versions window.

When you’ve finished with your comments, click OK.

Voila! The current file is saved as a version. Now it’s something you can go back to even after you’ve continued modifying the file!

Now, let’s take a trip back to the Versions window and examine the rest of our choices. (File menu, Versions choice).

You may have already noticed the other item at the top of the window; specifically the “Automatically save a version on close” checkbox.

When you check this box, Word will save a version, only labeled with the date and time (no comments) every time you close the file.

Be careful with this one. You could accidentally end up with a huge list of versions with no way to distinguish between them beyond the saved date and time.

Another point to consider: all of those versions will make the file size grow rapidly. So, as I said, be careful and deliberate with this choice.

Moving on, the center lists any versions you’ve previously saved for this file.

If you select one, you can then choose among the bottom buttons of Open, Delete or View Comments.

Should you choose Open, you’ll have both the current file and the chosen version opened side by side. This allows for comparison, printing, copy / paste, etc.

The Delete button will allow you to clean the list up. When this button is clicked, any highlighted versions will be deleted from the list after you confirm your decision.

The View Comments will return you to the View Comments window where you can see the comments in their entirety.

When you’re done in the Versions window, simply click Close and you’ll be returned to the current document.

And it’s that simple.

You can stop all the “multiple file” madness and keep all your versions in one easy to use place!

~ April

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