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  1. #1
    Lounger
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    Diet tips for lean Word docs (2003)

    Argh! Did a spell check & lost my whole post.

    I'm converting documents to Word to be generated by end users through our software, at remove locations. Thus the Word template file sizes need to be as small as possible. I've become obsessed with this. It's so satisfying to see file sizes get smaller & smaller through tweaking. I think it's a new variety of eating disorder.

    I've learned a few tricks to keep file sizes small:
    - NO direct formatting. We know this. Very fattening. Use styles instead.
    - No empty paragraph marks.
    - Use Word's built-in styles rather than custom whenever possible.
    - Deletea doc's all unused custom styles.
    - Use Formatting in use (from task pane) when others have worked on a document, to reveal direct formatting. When something has been employed multiple times, create a style for it.
    - If a document remains bloated even though you've employed the above methods, it might need a forced diet. Send it through the Save as Web Page boot camp to remove any corruptions present & reduce the file size. (Save as Web Page. Quit all instances of Word. Relaunch Word. Open the web page & save again as Word doc.)

    Does anyone know any other size tricks?

    Is there a way to easily distinguish between used and unused custom styles? (instead of going through the list one-by-one?)

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Diet tips for lean Word docs (2003)

    See <post#=446,179>post 446,179</post: > for some macros that remove unused styles from a document.

    BTW, it can be fun to try to reduce the size of documents, but I doubt it's really worthwhile to spend much time on it. Disk space is extremely cheap nowadays. Your tips are very valid and useful, nonetheless.

  3. #3
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    Re: Diet tips for lean Word docs (2003)

    Hans, you're right about cheap disk space. However it's still important for us since the files are generated thru our software, across some distance to end-users. There's also the factor of accessing the data from our database. So that combined w/ the doc size adds up.

    I'm also a little geeky about this. b/c my web background made me obsessed with small file size & quick load time.

  4. #4
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Diet tips for lean Word docs (2003)

    Welcome to the Lounge Barbie. I have come across the issue of document portability before, where the problem has been recipients who may or may not have the custom document template (or its current version) on their own system. In some cases, it has been appropriate/ worthwhile to offer the author the option of saving a distribution copy in "Normal" format (i.e. attached to the Normal.dot template, which everyone has).

    I really couldn't say how this would affect file size - I suspect your mileage may vary, depending on a lot of factors. The prime aim was universal readability/ compatability in the cases I cite. This "trick" does require the use of custom VBA macros though, so it may not suit.

    Alan

    BTW, I always do a Select All -> Copy before I preview or spell check a post... trust nothing/ nobody!

  5. #5
    2 Star Lounger
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    Re: Diet tips for lean Word docs (2003)

    If your documents incorporate images, (which may not be the case, since you mentioned DB's but then, what do I know?) you may want to experiment with compression related options for images. To get to that dialog, right-click an image, then choose Format Picture | Size | Compression. I've used those options with marginal success in some image-heavy documents... but be aware that it is a one-way trip.

    HTH,
    Arianna

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