Microsoft Word Q and A

While Microsoft Word is often assumed to be one of the easiest and one fo the most commonly used programs on the PC, problems still arise to frustrate and perplex even the most technically savvy computer users. But, never fear, YOURLifeChoices has heard the call and responded with the most common questions and issues the typical Microsoft Word user may face, and their simple solutions.

Why won’t it open?

Q. Patsy
Why can’t I open a Microsoft Office document on my computer? It was sent from my friend but it does not seem to want to open.

A. Although I cannot see what system you are running, this is a very common problem with Microsoft Word. Many computer users run a version of Microsoft Office from 1998 to 2003; however some have upgraded to a Windows XP or Vista version of Microsoft. These XP and Vista versions save Microsoft files in a ‘.docx’ format, which makes them incompatible with the standard ‘.doc’ format. However, this can be fixed. Windows XP and Vista can run the ‘docx.’ versions of word files, and they can also save files in standard ‘docx.’ formats as well. To save a file in a ‘docx.’ format, go to File ‘save as’ and in the drop down menu ‘save as type’. Then select the ‘.doc’ format and you are done! Some versions of Microsoft Word also have a ‘save in compatibility mode’ which is an even simpler way of ensuring your files can be accessed by all computers. So, Patsy, get your friend to save the file in a ‘.doc’ format and resend it to you and you should have no issue accessing it on your computer.

How do you type at both ends of the line?

Q. Jeff
In Microsoft Word, how do I create text at the start of a line, a space in between the text and another bit of text at the end, aligned with the margin? This formatting problem is giving me a headache.


This problem has a fairly simple solution. Firstly, type the text you wish to appear at the beginning of the line. Secondly, use your mouse to double click at the end of the line so an insertion point appears on the screen. Start typing again and you will see that this text will be aligned with the margin; in fact, as you type, the text will move backwards across the page so it actually stays lined up with said margin. When you are satisfied with your text alignment, simply press enter to move onto a new line.

Deleted files!

Q. Paul
I have an issue with Microsoft Word. Can long-deleted files ever be found? Is it just auto recovery that saves deleted files or is there another way to recover my lost work?

The first place to look is your computer’s ‘Recycle Bin’. That’s the normal place deleted files go. For the rest of this reply I’ll assume you’re talking about “properly” deleted files. Generally, the answer is no. When a file is deleted the space it occupied is immediately available for new files to be saved over, and when that happens the file is forever erased (for all practical purposes). The longer a file has been deleted, the more likely it is to have been overwritten and lost for good. Unfortunately, in this case, you may just be out of luck!

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