Pagination in Microsoft Word Documents

michellemmm

Quest For Quality
#1
I need help! My customer is very picky about pagination.
I use Microsoft 2003 at work and 2007 on my laptop. Somehow when a document is opened in different PCs (including PCs with 2003 version), the section breaks, margins, page numbering, header and footer change and the diagrams migrate to a new page. The problem magnifies when the document is printed to a PDF. I cannot change the default setting on every PC. I am tiered of inspection....

Is there a solution to this issue? I am sick and tiered of customer complaint about page numbering and table of content problems.

Please HELP!!!!
 
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howste

Thaumaturge
Trusted Information Resource
#2
Re: Need help; microsoft word document

Can you print the files to PDF yourself? Once you do that, the format won't change no matter what computer it's opened on. You can also send the Word document as backup for future editability.
 

Jim Wynne

Leader
Admin
#3
Re: Need help; microsoft word document

I need help! My customer is very picky about pagination.
I use Microsoft 2003 at work and 2007 on my laptop. Somehow when a document is opened in different PCs (including PCs with 2003 version), the section breaks, margins, page numbering, header and footer change and the diagrams migrate to a new page. The problem magnifies when the document is printed to a PDF. I cannot change the default setting on every PC. I am tiered of inspection....

Is there a solution to this issue? I am sick and tiered of customer complaint about page numbering and table of content problems.

Please HELP!!!!
These issues can be a little hairy to resolve because they might have to do with compatibility between newer and older versions of Word or just the way a document has been formatted. It can also be a combination of the two.

First, MS has devised a Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel and Powerpoint that might help. Anyone who is using any of those programs and might need to deal with old/new version issues should download and install it.

If you already have a older version of the Compatibility Pack installed, you should look at this MS KB article. Your version might need to be updated.
 

Wes Bucey

Prophet of Profit
#4
Re: Need help; microsoft word document

These issues can be a little hairy to resolve because they might have to do with compatibility between newer and older versions of Word or just the way a document has been formatted. It can also be a combination of the two.

First, MS has devised a Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel and Powerpoint that might help. Anyone who is using any of those programs and might need to deal with old/new version issues should download and install it.

If you already have a older version of the Compatibility Pack installed, you should look at this MS KB article. Your version might need to be updated.
Jim has offered a workable course of action if you are forced to maintain the disparity between version 2003 and 2007.

Is there a valid reason your company can't make a simple move to accommodate both you and the picky customer by upgrading to the 2007 version or even springing for the money to bring you all up to parity with upgrades to the 2010 version?

Depending on how much profit this customer is worth to your company and the cost of your time in bollixing when switching from one version to another, it seems such a solution is more permanent and sure rather than scratching around trying to "fix" something when Mickey Soft has a track record of abandoning fixes for older versions of its software to make them compatible with newer versions. Publisher is a major case in point!

Obviously, another solution (not perfect) lies in switching over to free word processor and Office Compatible software like Open Office.

I use both Mickey Soft Office and Open Office in my multiple machines in my home office. For 90% of what I (a low grade power user) do, Open Office is perfectly workable.

No matter what, I would only issue locked pdf copies to users, keeping the word processed documents as archives - that way, you can be sure there will be no displacement of pagination or images if someone does not have a compatible Word version.
 
P

pldey42

#5
Hi michellemmm,

The good thing about Word is that it's intelligent. The bad thing about Word is that it's intelligent - or thinks it is. If a writer uses a Word feature in a way it doesn't expect, its intelligence becomes an annoyance - and that seems to be what's happening here.

I've used Word since it was a DOS baby and have never seen it behave quite as you describe.

Since your post mentions "including PCs with 2003 version", it would appear not to be an issue of compatibility between different versions of Word. More likely, the document relies upon something on your local machine that's different on the others.

First: it's changing the page layout. Is it doing that to match the printer and paper settings on the other machines? Is the problem that everything moves around, or that when it does, the page numbers in the table of contents are wrong? If it's this, IIRC there's a setting somewhere that makes it recalculate page numbers for the table of contents when you open the document.

If it's not different paper sizes, the next most likely reason IMHO for this might be the use of non-standard fonts, special fonts that are not part of the standard MS Office set, specially installed either on your machine, or on the machine of another writer of part of the document. This happens when, e.g. marketing use special fancy fonts for corporate identity. Fonts can be of different sizes, even when they're the same number of points, and cause page layouts to shift. If it's this, then IIRC there's a way of saving the fancy fonts within the document - default is not to do so.

Finally, perhaps pictures or tables rely on local files (e.g. a spreadsheet) that are not available on other machines.

As someone said, the simplest solution would be to generate a pdf locally. Open Office does this well, at no cost.

If all this fails then you'll have to (get a friendly local geek to) do some sleuthing. Just this document or all? Get two machines side by side - one that's okay, one not. Write a simple one page, one para document -- does it transport okay? Add features to it - more paras, tables, charts, pics, table of contents, etc - one at a time and check it transports. When it
fails, the last feature you added is the one causing the problem.

Hope this helps,
Pat
 
B

Brunetta

#6
I am wondering if its an issue pertaining to different normal template settings?

That might cause the issue you describe with the document changing from one computer to another running the same version of Office.
 
A

adickerson

#7
Re: Need help; microsoft word document

Can you print the files to PDF yourself? Once you do that, the format won't change no matter what computer it's opened on. You can also send the Word document as backup for future editability.
You can try Cute PDF Writer which is free for COMMERCIAL use. Basically it acts as a printer driver but instead of exporting to paper it exports to a PDF that you can save. I use this all the time.
http://www.cutepdf.com/


If you want to spend a little more time you can do a Cross-Reference in Word. This is how do do indexes/references dynamically in Word. It takes a lot more time to link everything but it is the best way to avoid the problem. Here is a into link, I am sure you can find more with a web search.
http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/inserting-cross-references-HA001186680.aspx
 
Last edited by a moderator:
B

Bogie

#8
Hi michellemmm,

The good thing about Word is that it's intelligent. The bad thing about Word is that it's intelligent - or thinks it is. If a writer uses a Word feature in a way it doesn't expect, its intelligence becomes an annoyance - and that seems to be what's happening here.

I've used Word since it was a DOS baby and have never seen it behave quite as you describe.

Since your post mentions "including PCs with 2003 version", it would appear not to be an issue of compatibility between different versions of Word. More likely, the document relies upon something on your local machine that's different on the others.

First: it's changing the page layout. Is it doing that to match the printer and paper settings on the other machines? Is the problem that everything moves around, or that when it does, the page numbers in the table of contents are wrong? If it's this, IIRC there's a setting somewhere that makes it recalculate page numbers for the table of contents when you open the document.

If it's not different paper sizes, the next most likely reason IMHO for this might be the use of non-standard fonts, special fonts that are not part of the standard MS Office set, specially installed either on your machine, or on the machine of another writer of part of the document. This happens when, e.g. marketing use special fancy fonts for corporate identity. Fonts can be of different sizes, even when they're the same number of points, and cause page layouts to shift. If it's this, then IIRC there's a way of saving the fancy fonts within the document - default is not to do so.

Finally, perhaps pictures or tables rely on local files (e.g. a spreadsheet) that are not available on other machines.

As someone said, the simplest solution would be to generate a pdf locally. Open Office does this well, at no cost.

If all this fails then you'll have to (get a friendly local geek to) do some sleuthing. Just this document or all? Get two machines side by side - one that's okay, one not. Write a simple one page, one para document -- does it transport okay? Add features to it - more paras, tables, charts, pics, table of contents, etc - one at a time and check it transports. When it
fails, the last feature you added is the one causing the problem.

Hope this helps,
Pat
I believe Pat is on the right track. Whenever I have had a like issue with word, it has been because the different computers have had diffferent default printers. For some reason, each printer has slightly different requirements for page setups, seperate from the Word Set up.

Not much help there, just as others have mentioned, a PDF is probably your best friend in this circumstance.
 

howste

Thaumaturge
Trusted Information Resource
#9
I believe Pat is on the right track. Whenever I have had a like issue with word, it has been because the different computers have had diffferent default printers. For some reason, each printer has slightly different requirements for page setups, seperate from the Word Set up.
Printer drivers usually restrict the margin sizes. If the printer is incapable of printing in some areas (usually at the bottom of the page) then Word may automatically change the margins. If this is what's happening, which I think is pretty likely, try increasing the bottom margin size. See if it's more stable after you increase the margin(s).
 

michellemmm

Quest For Quality
#10
Re: Need help; microsoft word document

Can you print the files to PDF yourself? Once you do that, the format won't change no matter what computer it's opened on. You can also send the Word document as backup for future editability.
After the document is developed or changed, it is placed on the "soft CM" temp location designated for CCB peer review, the Config Manager reviews the word version and converts it to PDF and submits it to the CM system.

I don't like to add another inspection step if I can avoid it.
 
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