Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Blocking the First Sentence from File Info.

Blocking the First Sentence from File Info

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated January 7, 2016)

1

Suppose you want to type a Word document and save it, password protected. Suppose further that you intended the first sentence to capture the intended reader's attention, but you didn't want the entire world to read it.

You chose "Save As" so that you could use the Tools dropdown and the Security Options to set a password. You notice that most of your inflammatory first sentence has been placed into the filename field by default as Word always does, so you highlight the incriminating phrase and gave your document a new, innocuous name. You save it to the desktop.

Now minimize all windows and go to the desktop. Hover the mouse pointer over the icon for your new file. Up pops a window that shows the type, author and size, and, for good measure, right there in plain text for the world to see, most of the first sentence of your document—no password required!

What you are actually seeing when you hover the mouse over the icon is the document's title. This title is displayed automatically, unless you have an older version of Windows that doesn't display information balloons about files. While you can hack the Windows registry to turn off the balloons, it is easier to just get rid of the title within Word. You do this by displaying the Properties dialog box for the document, and how you get to that dialog box differs based on the version of Word you are using.

If you are using Word 2010 or Word 2013, follow these steps:

  1. Click the File tab of the ribbon and make sure that Info is selected at the left side of the screen.
  2. Click the Properties drop-down list and choose Advanced Properties. Word displays the Properties dialog box for the document.

If you are using Word 2007, follow these steps:

  1. Click the Office button and then click Prepare and, finally, Properties. Word displays the Document Information Panel at the top of your document, just below the ribbon.
  2. Use the Document Properties drop-down list (top-left corner of the Document Information Panel) to choose Advanced Properties. Word displays the Properties dialog box for the document.

Regardless of which version of Word you are using, you can now follow these steps:

  1. Make sure the Summary tab is displayed. (See Figure 1.)
  2. Figure 1. The Summary tab of the Properties dialog box.

  3. Clear anything that is in the Title field, or replace the field contents with text you want displayed when the mouse is hovered over the document icon.
  4. Click OK.

The Title property is set automatically when you first save a document. Word puts the initial document text (up to the first punctuation mark) in the Title property, and uses the same text as a suggested file name. Changing the file name when you save the document does not result in the Title property being changed; you must do is separately, as described above.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (6268) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Blocking the First Sentence from File Info.

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. ...

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Comments

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What is five minus 4?

2016-01-07 09:12:47

Rick G.

I'm using Windows 7 & Office 2010.
Does anybody have thoughts about why:
1) When I save a file for the first time, it always leaves the title property blank by default. (It does not automatically put any part of the first sentence in the title property as Allen described.)
2) When I hover over a Word doc in Windows/File Explorer, it always shows the type, author, size, & mod date. However, it shows the title (and subject) of some of my Word docs but not others (even if all the docs have titles).
TIA


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