by Allen Wyatt
(last updated December 19, 2017)
John noted that when he double-clicked on a template file in Windows Explorer when using Windows XP and Word 2003, a new document was created, based on the template. However, using Vista and Word 2007, when John double-clicks on a template file the template file opens instead of a new document. John wonders how to configure things to open a new document based on the template instead of opening the template itself.
The default action of double-clicking a template on the desktop is to create a new document based on that template, regardless of the version of Word or Windows you are using. In fact, what happens when you double-click a file is controlled by Windows; Word has nothing to do with it. The only possible answer is that something is probably amiss with John's Vista setup.
The first thing to check is to make sure that the template is actually a template. Start Word, load the file, and then use Save As to save it specifically as a template under a new name. Get out of Word and double-click the newly saved template. If a new document is created—one based on the template—then you know that there was no problem with Windows and the problem is solved.
If the problem persists, then you should try to "reregister" Word with Windows. You do this by starting Word using this command in a command window:
WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (6615) applies to Microsoft Word 2007.
Do More in Less Time! Are you ready to harness the full power of Word 2013 to create professional documents? In this comprehensive guide you'll learn the skills and techniques for efficiently building the documents you need for your professional and your personal life. Check out Word 2013 In Depth today!
The first step in modifying templates is to find out where they are stored on your system. Here's the easiest way to ...Discover More
Templates are the basis of creating consistent documents that permit fast and easy formatting. What is the best way to ...Discover More
Limiting which styles a user can use or add to a document can be a tricky task. Fortunately Word has advanced to the ...Discover More
FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."
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.