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  1. #1
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    Track Changes Question (Word 97/SR2)

    I don't know Track Changes too well, so excuse me if I'm asking an obvious question. I have a document that I received that had edits in it already. The editor's additons are in red and his deletions are struckthrough and blue. I would like to make my own changes (additions and deletions) - however I'd like them to be a different color so that one can easily differentiate between the two. Is this possible?

  2. #2
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    Re: Track Changes Question (Word 97/SR2)

    Okay - answering my own question - I suppose that the By Author option is the answer. However, does anyone know how to set WHICH COLOR appears for which author...or is it a random thing?

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    Re: Track Changes Question (Word 97/SR2)

    Yes, By Author is the way (unless you and the other author have the same name and initials set in Tools > Options > User Information).

    Word automatically assigns the colors for the different authors via some internal process, the workings of which are hidden from we mere users - can't get to it via VBA either.

  4. #4
    Russell
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    Re: Track Changes Question (Word 97/SR2)

    Hi Gary,
    Karen Wright here on a training session and this very question has just come up. We have been changing the colours (under options) and this appears to work for each user on their own pcs. However, if another user then opens the file, the colours show as that particular user's and not the person who actually made the changes (except for one user!). We are on a network here, running Word2K, on Windows 2000.
    If we leave it as By Author - all the colours for each user are the same!

    The other problem we are having is when you have automatically numbered paragraphs and there are inserts and deletes within the paragraph. If the paragraph number has changed (because of inserting or deleting other numbered paragraphs), then Word finds that change as a whole paragraph and doesn't go to the changes within the paragraph. We appear to have to click on each change manually and select accept or reject, and not use the find next/previous. Have you had experience with this?

    Cheers,
    <img src=/S/headthrob.gif border=0 alt=headthrob width=15 height=15><font color=red>Karen</font color=red>

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    Re: Track Changes Question (Word 97/SR2)

    Hi Karen,

    If each user is setting the colors for themselves, then those settings "live" in the user's session and not in the document - so the colors will potentially be different for each user.

    A typical example of the problems this causes: at our firm we try to standardize the track changes highlight colors that are used (by those of our users who insist on using track changes!). The user then sends the track change document out to the client. The client then contacts our user to ask why the track change colors are not what they expected. Our user contacts Help Desk, Help Desk tells the user that they need to instruct the client to change the track change highlight colors on their machine! - what a travesty! (I forget whether this is "Why I hate track changes Reason #3 or #4 <img src=/S/laugh.gif border=0 alt=laugh width=15 height=15>)

    If you are setting it By Author, you still can get all the same colors for every user - if every user's identity information is set the same (look in Tools > Options > User Information). It is possible on a network for every user to have the same information there.

    Regarding track changes and automatically numbered paragraphs, well that is Reason #1 or #2 - track changes and autonumbering just don't get along. I've seen every kind of problem when these two are mixed - it's pretty much a crapshoot trying to get that to work right.

    Regards to Russell,

    Gary

  6. #6
    PWyatt1
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    Re: Track Changes Question (Word 97/SR2)

    Along these lines, I received a Word document with loads of edits and comments and is very confusing. Is there any way I can generate a clean document with all the changes incorporated?

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    Re: Track Changes Question (Word 97/SR2)

    The easiest way to produce a "clean" readable copy is, go to Tools (menu), Track Changes, Highlight Changes..., and uncheck Highlight Changes on Screen.

    If you want the changes to be permanent (versus simply hidden), choose Tools (menu), Track Changes, Accept or Reject Changes..., then click Accept All and OK the warning (you may wish to do this to a copy of the document, not the original).

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    Re: Track Changes Question (Word 97/SR2)

    If you are careful, you can toggle track changes on and off as you edit, to account for the pain-in-the-rear side-effects of strict application of the feature. When I use track changes, I try to use it "intelligently", to track important/meaningful changes, not all changes. This takes some practice, but it is worth a little effort.

    In the case of paragraph numbering, try this (please be careful though, I haven't tried it myself, so there may be some side effect of which I am not aware):

    1) Turn off track changes
    2) Remove automatic paragraph numbering format from numbered paragraphs
    3) Turn track changes on
    4) Make the changes
    5) Turn track changes off
    6) Reapply the paragraph numbers
    7) Save document

    This may not be so easy if the numbered paragraphs are scattered amongst non-numbered paragraphs.

    Toggling track changes is very easy - just double-click the TRK item in the status bar.

    Other situations where it is worthwhile (in my opinion) turning track changes off:

    * When you update fields in the document, especially tables of contents.
    * When you move entire paragraphs by dragging the paragraph handle in outline view (which track changes treats as a delete-and-insert, as it should).

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