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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Can't update Word templates in shared folder (Win XP Pro, Word 2003)

    I am working in a group of 5 technical writers supporting a about 100 developers on a software project. We have developed a number of Word templates for the developers to use, and placed them in a shared network folder. The only users who have Write access to this folder are the tech writers. The developers only have Read access.

    I needed to update some of our templates, so I first made sure that none of the other writers was using a template or a document based on a template (I asked them all to stop using Word completely for a few minutes just to make sure.)

    I was not able to save changes on some of the templates because Word reported that they were "in use". I tried to use Windows Explorer to rename or delete the templates concerned, but Windows did not allow this because the templates were "in use by another person or program".

    Does this mean I can't update a template if any one at all (not just someone with Write access) is using a document based on a template? If this is true, how can I update the templates when I need to?

    Thanks very much,
    David Farbey,
    London UK

  2. #2
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Can't update Word templates in shared folder (

    Hi David:
    One thing I would do is to close Word & delete all your temp files, as it may be that the "owner" files are there after a crash. See the first step in <post#=197827>post 197827</post#>. Post back. There are people on this board more familiar with network problems than I.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: Can't update Word templates in shared folder (

    I think it is true that when a document based on a shared template is open, Word will lock the template to prevent changes from being saved by subsequent users. I don't know of any solution to that, but you could adopt a workflow that works around it. Put your new templates in a subdirectory (e.g., NewVersions) and create a scheduled job on the server to move those new DOT files into the main folder in the middle of the night. Hopefully everyone will have closed their documents before leaving.

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