Inconsistent Prompting to Save Normal Template Changes

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 26, 2016)

Cindy sometimes doesn't get the prompt to save changes to Normal.dotm when she closes Word, even though she has saved new AutoText entries and the setting is selected to always prompt me to do so. She wonders if this is a known issue in Word.

There could be several causes for this. First, you should realize that starting with Word 2007, Microsoft made a change to the default place where AutoText entries are stored. It used to be (pre-Word 2007) that they were stored in your Normal template. However, they are now stored—by default—in the Building Blocks.dotx file. Thus, if you add an AutoText entry you won't be prompted to save the Normal.dotm file when you close Word because, quite simply, the Normal.dotm file wasn't modified.

Of course, another possibility is that the document (or documents) you are working on when you close Word doesn't really rely on the Normal.dotm template. Instead, the documents could have a different template attached to them, and changes to the document templates wouldn't affect Normal.dotm at all.

If you are absolutely certain that the changes you make are being stored in Normal.dotm and you still aren't being prompted as you expect, it could be that Word is confused about what you want done when it comes to prompting. Try these steps:

  1. Display the Word Options dialog box. (In Word 2007 click the Office button and then click Word Options. In Word 2010 and later versions display the File tab of the ribbon and then click Options.)
  2. Click Advanced at the left side of the dialog box.
  3. Scroll down until you see the Save options. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The advanced options in the Word Options dialog box.

  5. Clear the Prompt Before Saving Normal Template check box.
  6. Click on Apply.
  7. Select the Prompt Before Saving Normal Template check box.
  8. Click on Apply.
  9. Click on OK.

There are more steps here than you might think necessary, but the idea is to clear the check box, commit the changes, select the check box, and commit the changes again. This should get rid of any confusion on the part of Word as to how you want changes to the Normal template handled.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (5979) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Precisely Adjusting Tab Stops

When you need to be very specific about where a tab stop is located, you'll want to become familiar with the Tabs dialog box. ...

Discover More

Pulling Initial Letters from a String

When working with names or a different series of words, you may need to pull the initial letters from each word in the ...

Discover More

Copying a Spreadsheet

There are times when you don't want to mess up a spreadsheet, but you want to try out some changes. This is when making a ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Templates and Page Setup

Templates are a great way to share styles, macros, and other settings among various documents. One thing that isn't shared ...

Discover More

Finding Where Templates Are Stored

The first step in modifying templates is to find out where they are stored on your system. Here's the easiest way to figure ...

Discover More

Determining the Template Attached to a Document

If you've opened a document in Word, that document has a template attached to it. This tip looks at what those templates do ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 7 - 0?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.