Changing the Default Document Format

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated January 5, 2013)

Normally, Word saves your documents in what is known as "Word format." In Word 2007 and Word 2010 that means that the documents are stored in a format based on XML. This format may not be easily understood by other versions of Word, nor by other programs.

If you do a lot of work creating documents for other versions of Word or other programs, you may want to specify a different default file format for your documents. Word makes this easy by following these steps:

  1. Display the Word Options dialog box. (In Word 2007 click the Office button and then click Word Options. In Word 2010 display the File tab of the ribbon and then click Options.)
  2. Click the Save option at the left side of the dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Save option of the Word Options dialog box.

  4. Use the Save Files In This Format drop-down list to select a default file format.
  5. Click on OK.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (5983) applies to Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010.

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

Calculating Week-Ending Dates

When working with dates, you may need to figure out all the dates on which weeks end in a given year. There are several ...

Discover More

Automatically Adding Tabs in Footnotes

When you add a footnote to a document, Word's normal formatting adds a space after the footnote number and before the ...

Discover More

Specifying a Browser in a Hyperlink

Excel allows you to easily add hyperlinks to a worksheet. Click on it, and the target of the link is opened in a browser ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Saving All Open Documents

Got a lot of open documents you are working with? You can save them all at one time by adding a handy tool to your Quick ...

Discover More

Saving Everything

Need to force users to save their work? It may be as simple as implementing a couple of macros that get a bit more ...

Discover More

Using Tags with Document Files

Tags are a way for you to store keywords or metadata with your document files. They can be helpful when you are trying to ...

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 one more than 5?

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.