Word and read-only network problem?

Subject: Word and read-only network problem?
From: "Hart, Geoff" <Geoff-H -at- MTL -dot- FERIC -dot- CA>
To: "Techwr-L (E-mail)" <TECHWR-L -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>, "'bdoonan -at- coreco -dot- com'" <bdoonan -at- coreco -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 11 Oct 2000 13:22:57 -0400

Brian Doonan is <<using Word97 on a network where others have access to the
Word documents I write. I just came back from vacation and found that one of
the manuals on the network is now in read-only format. However, when I
checked, the read-only feature wasn't selected. In other words, this manual
shouldn't be in read-only format. I suspect that this problem is a
corruption due to someone opening the manual on the network. Everyone denies
opening it and I need to start working on it immediately. Can someone inform
me about possible solutions to this problem so that I can get it out of
read-only format?>>

This most often happens because someone else has the file open (and probably
crashed Word so that the software couldn't mark the file as ready for
editing again). That's not an actual file corruption problem, fortunately.
If that's what happened, the easiest way to get it out of read-only format
is to open the file, then do a "save as". To be safe, choose a new file name
(so if your computer dies while doing the save, you can still try again
using the old "read only" version of the file). The file should now be
editable. Delete the old file once you're sure you succeeded, and rename the
new file appropriately.

It's also possible that the file has been set to "read only" from within
Word ("Protect document" under the Tools menu), in which case you may have
to copy and paste the text into a clean new document to get around the
problem. I recall reading somewhere (but haven't tried) that you can also do
a "save as" on any Word file that you're able to open, and that this will
defeat the "protect document" feature. A quick test should reveal whether
that's true.

--Geoff Hart, FERIC, Pointe-Claire, Quebec
geoff-h -at- mtl -dot- feric -dot- ca

"Technical writing... requires understanding the audience, understanding
what activities the user wants to accomplish, and translating the often
idiosyncratic and unplanned design into something that appears to make
sense."--Donald Norman, The Invisible Computer

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