Friday, March 19, 2010

Using Formatting and Editing Restrictions in Micrsoft Word 2007

Although a variety of Web sites, including the Microsoft Office site, describe various aspects of using formatting and editing restrictions in Word 2007, I've been unable to discover a discussion of the precise task I was trying to accomplish.

Task:

Create a Word document that restricts users to edit only a portion of the document and to use only restricted styles.

What I wanted to do:
  • I wanted a document so simple that users without a lot of Word experience could work with it.
  • I wanted to create a Word 2007 document that another group would use as a template to create training guides.
  • I didn't want them using or creating their own styles.
  • I did not want them to manually edit the document's title page or headers and footers.
  • I wanted them to be able to change the document title and subtitle.

What I wanted to avoid:
  • I wanted to avoid use of section breaks, although it wasn't a requirement.
  • I did not want to create a template file because most of the users would not have that degree of understanding of Word.

Here's how I did it:
  1. Start with a blank document.
  2. Set the margins and save it as a Word 2007 DOCX file.
  3. Create the various styles for use in the document. Optionally, you can use Word's style organizer to copy styles from an existing document.
  4. Add the template components, such as title page, copyright info., and copy and paste items such as special table formats, etc. that you want available to users.
  5. On the title page, click where you want the document title to go.
  6. From the Insert ribbon, click Quick Parts and Document Property Title to set the title.
  7. Repeat steps 5 and 6 for the subtitle, which uses the Subject field.
    Note: You can access Document Properties via Office button>Prepare>Properties, where you can include initial vales, as shown below.
  8. From the Developer tab, click Protect Document and then Restrict Formatting and Editing.
  9. From the Restrict Formatting and Editing pane, click Settings.
    The Formatting Restrictions dialog box appears.
  10. Click to insert a check mark beside Limit formatting to a selection of styles.
  11. Select the styles to be allowed, and click OK.
  12. Turn on the display of paragraphs marks in the document.
  13. Select the region of the document you want users to be able to edit. Be sure to select the first and last paragraph marks you want users to edit.
  14. Select the settings in the Restrict Formatting and Editing pane as shown.
  15. Click Yes, Start Enforcing Protection.
    The Start Enforcing Protection dialog box appears.
  16. Enter and reenter an optional password and click OK.
  17. Save the document.
When users open the document, they will see the following options in the Restrict Formatting and Editing pane. Highlighting the regions they can edit is optional but may be helpful the first few times users are exposed to the document. If you open the Word Styles pane, you will see only the styles you selected for use. You will notice that most formatting functions on the Home ribbon are disabled as are the formatting keyboard shortcuts also.