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Controlling Forms made in word .doc, excel .xls, and lotus

KIDDO

Involved In Discussions
#1
Good day all;

Does anyone know how to control forms made in word, excel, lotus so that users can use the form on their computers but not be able to change the form itself?

The users rather type in the information, say on a receiving log, than write on the actual form.

Thanks:bigwave:
KIDDO
 
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#2
You may need to use Adobe......

Acrobat to accomplish this. I believe there's a function in Adobe that you can define forms and allow fields to have data entered for later analysis. I've never seen this done with any MS product, but I may be just incompetent :eek:

Anyone?

Andy
 
R

Rob Nix

#3
Yes, on MS Word most of our controlled forms are created (in Yoda-like syntax). First, create the look of the form - tables often work best - then add the fields you want (view "Forms" toolbar, and click on "Text Form Field" icon for all needed fields). After the form and fields are complete, go to Tools, Protect Document, select radio button "forms", and give it a password. When others open the form, they will click "read only", fill out the form, and print it or "save as" some other name. Your original form will remain intact.

There is much more to it than that, but it's a start.
 
#4
My major concern is why users want to modify forms. There may be a culture issue at work, or perhaps the forms are not doing the job (from the users eyes). Protecting the forms is a bandaid solution. Try to find the root cause.
 
R

ralphsulser

#5
db said:
My major concern is why users want to modify forms. There may be a culture issue at work, or perhaps the forms are not doing the job (from the users eyes). Protecting the forms is a bandaid solution. Try to find the root cause.
The same reason operators on different shifts want to make adjustments to the equipment when they first come in each day. Even though the operation has been running without problems all day, they still have to turn knobs and adjust dials to suit their "own" preferences.
We called this "machine molestation", and had to set the job up correctly, then weld the knobs. One place I heard of put dummy knobs on the equipment
just so the operators could turn them, and felt like they did something for their own benefit.:rolleyes:
 
L

Laura M

#6
In Excel, select the cell you want them to be allowed to type in. go to Format Cell, protection and uncheck 'locked' (usual default). Then in Tools, Protection - Allow users to select - check 'unlocked' cells. Uncheck 'locked cells'

This allows the users to tab from cell to cell that they need to put data into.
 
J

jmp4429

#7
db said:
My major concern is why users want to modify forms. There may be a culture issue at work, or perhaps the forms are not doing the job (from the users eyes). Protecting the forms is a bandaid solution. Try to find the root cause.
I don't think the OP said anything about users wanting to change the forms (not saying they don't, just saying I didn't get that from the post).

I can’t say how many times I’ve meant to save a copy of the form once I’d filled it out, and accidentally saved it to the original form name. Of course, we password protect our form files to prevent it, but I make the forms, so I have the password and often type it in without thinking.

Not the end of the world, but the next user has to go back and delete all the entries before they can use the form.
 
L

Laura M

#8
jmp4429 said:
I can’t say how many times I’ve meant to save a copy of the form once I’d filled it out, and accidentally saved it to the original form name. Of course, we password protect our form files to prevent it, but I make the forms, so I have the password and often type it in without thinking.

Not the end of the world, but the next user has to go back and delete all the entries before they can use the form.
Oh - I forgot - save it as a .xlt (a template) and any 'save' automatically prompts a 'save as.' Then no saving onto the master.
 
G

Graeme

#9
KIDDO said:
Does anyone know how to control forms made in word, excel, lotus so that users can use the form on their computers but not be able to change the form itself?

The users rather type in the information, say on a receiving log, than write on the actual form.
Something I saw at the local mega-warehouse-store last night: ScanSoft PDF Converter Professional. It will convert any document to PDF as easily as printing it, and you can make that or any other PDF file into an online fill-in-the-blanks form. And it's list price is about 20% of the cost of Adobe Acrobat (and the price at Sam's was even lower.) I still have an older version of Acrobat that still works, so I do not have that product. [I did see another one for my list, though!]

Note that (what was) the Scansoft website says that the company name has recently changed to Nuance.
 
B

Brian Myers

#10
Word "forms" and locking them down...

In MS Word (later versions are the best yet) you can creat your document, using the normal tools for tables, formatting, etc. Then where you want the user to be able to enter data, simpy add a "Text Form Field".

Here is how...

Goto the View Menu
Click on Toolbars to open up the selection of tool bars
Choose Forms (A small "floating" tool bar will show up with about 10 buttons)

Go to the space you wish place a user-field (place your cursor at the first space you want them to use) and click on the "Text Form Field" Button (all the way to the left - looks like "ab|"). This will insert a 5 space field.

It should also shade the area, if it does not, there is a button in the same tool bar for shading, just click on it to toggle the shading on and off.

Once you have all of your user fields in the document, you can protect the entire document using the password feature (don't forget your pasword) or simply click on the padlock icon in the Forms Toolbar (this should lock it and unlock it for the creator only without a password). The 5space field given by Word is enough, it will expand as the user types, so there is no need to guess at the length of entry to allow.

Hope this helps,
Brian
 
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