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  1. #1
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    Locking text (Word 2K)

    I don't think you can do this, but I would like to be proved wrong.
    I need to set up a document where some of the text can be amended and some of it can't and even if you save it under a different name, you should still only be allowed to amend certain text.
    I hope that makes sense,
    Thanks
    Emily

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    You can protect selected sections of a document - Tools | Protect Document..., click Forms, then Sections... If you wish, you can set a password.

  3. #3
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    Thanks Hans
    I can always count on you.
    Is there absolutley no way someone can make a version of this document (now I have password protected certian sections) that can be amended?
    Emily

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    The password protection is not very safe. If you search Google, you'll find lots of software to crack passwords, so if someone really wants to, he/she could break through the protection.
    Or someone could print the document, then scan it and use OCR software to turn it into editable text again...

  5. #5
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    Great,
    That's safe enough for me.
    Thanks again Hans.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    There actually is a very simple way to remove the protection set under Tools>Protect document, without any special software; it has been posted in the Lounge in the past.

    In some cases PDF will be more secure. With Acrobat 7, apparently you can create fill-in forms that someone with Reader 7 can not only fill in and print, but save as well. Then it could be returned to you in that format. However, I haven't tested this yet to see how well it works...

  7. #7
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    Thanks for that, I'll try to find it.
    I suggested PDF, but they didn't go for it.

  8. #8
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    It is very easy to remove formatting protection, if someone is so inclined. You'll keep someone from changing things accidentally, but don't trust it to maintain content integrity.

  9. #9
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    There is no need to distribute a Wordf document unless it is intended that the recipient edit the document.
    Docxuments can be protected by distributing PDF or images of the document.

    However, with images, OCR software could convert back to, say, RTF, so PDF may be the best choice.

    Biut then OCR software can create, say, RTF for PDF.

    It's a losing battle.

  10. #10
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    The original poster wants to allow editing of some text but not other text, so Word is a logical choice, if imperfect.

  11. #11
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    The problem is that each of our clients has a particular code which the tax office uses.
    We have set up precedents for each of our clients with this code on each document.
    I think what happened is that a secretary copied across one of the precedents for use with a different client and forgot to change to code and then sent the document to the tax office and then there was all sorts of problems.
    I am just guessing that this is what happened.
    In this case, I think that using protect document sections will work to prevent this problem from happening again (as it wasn't malicious, just a mistake).
    I will be locking the name of the client and the code amongst other things. So protecting the document will work - you couldn't accidentally unprotect the document right??

    Thanks for all the interesting discussion,
    Emily

  12. #12
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    If you set a password when you protected the document for forms, the protection can't be undone accidentally.

  13. #13
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    Thanks Hans

  14. #14
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    Looking further into protection from editing. Isn't it (still) true even with 2003 that a protected document only protects that specific one while a user can still select all of the text, copy and paste it into another Word document, all protection is now removed?

    So, it seems that you STILL cannot protect a document from someone editing the text in some way or another. Am I right or missing something?

  15. #15
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Locking text (Word 2K)

    In a document protected for forms, users cannot select text in the protected sections, except for text in form fields.

    Protecting a document for forms, even with a password, only helps to prevent users from accidentally changing text they shouldn't. Anyone sufficiently determined to do so intentionally will be able to break the protection.

    Even if you find a way to make a document 100% read-only, someone could still print it and scan it, or even take a screenshot, then use OCR to convert the result to editable text again. Or retype it! If you want to prevent this, make sure that nobody ever sees your document, or even hears about its contents. Much better: don't even create it. <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>

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