Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. 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: Opening a Word Document when Starting the Computer.

Opening a Word Document when Starting the Computer

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 15, 2019)

Lou has a Word document that she would like to open automatically when she starts up her computer and was wondering if that was even possible to do.

Actually, it is relatively easy to do. When you start your computer, one of the things that Windows does is to open all the files contained in your system's Startup folder. If it is a program contained in the folder, then the program is run. If it is a document (such as a Word document), then the document is opened, which also means that Word is started.

In order to have Windows start Word and open a particular document upon booting, follow these general steps:

  1. Outside of Word (within Windows), locate the document that you want opened. (Use whatever method of locating the document you want; there are several within Windows.)
  2. Select the document file by clicking on it once, and then press Ctrl+C. This copies the document to the Clipboard.
  3. Open the Startup folder used by Windows. You do this in Vista, and Windows 7 by clicking the Start menu, clicking All Programs, right-clicking Startup, and then choosing Open.
  4. Right-click within the Startup folder. Windows displays a Context menu from which you should choose Paste Shortcut. Windows creates a shortcut, in the Startup folder, to your document.

It requires a bit more work to find the Startup folder in Windows 8 and Windows 10. It is important to note there are actually two Startup Folder locations in newer versions of Windows, one that applies to All Users accounts, and one that is unique to the Current User account. These two folders work together when determining which applications will launch when a user logs in. You can navigate to both of the Startup folders via File Explorer or navigate directly to the startup folders via the Run dialog box. Follow these steps to easily access the startup folders in Windows 8 and Windows 10:

  1. Open the Run dialog box by pressing Windows key+R on the keyboard.
  2. Type shell:common startup (All Users account) or type shell:startup ( Current User account). A new File Explorer Window will open displaying the desired Startup folder.
  3. You are now ready to follow the above steps to open a particular document upon booting.

That's it. From now on, whenever you start your computer, the document will be opened automatically.

There is one caution to doing this, however: If Word has problems opening due to a corrupt Normal.dot file, corrupt printer driver, or corrupt document, it is possible that by making the document a part of your system startup, you could make your system unstable. It may be a better idea to paste the shortcut on your desktop, instead of in your Startup folder. Then, after starting Windows, it only takes a double-click to open the document.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (8301) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Opening a Word Document when Starting the Computer.

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

Wrapping Spaces

Add more than one space after the end of a sentence, and you may find that the extra spaces wrap to the start of new ...

Discover More

Professional Looking Fractions

Professional typesetting has, in many ways, spoiled us. One way this is evident is in the preference we show for making ...

Discover More

AutoFormat within Form Fields

When entering information into protected form fields, Word doesn't apply the formatting inherent in the AutoFormat As You ...

Discover More

Learning Made Easy! Quickly teach yourself how to format, publish, and share your content using Word 2013. With Step by Step, you set the pace, building and practicing the skills you need, just when you need them! Check out Microsoft Word 2013 Step by Step today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Read-Only Documents without a Password

Want to protect your document so it cannot be changed? There are a couple of ways you can do it, and not all of them ...

Discover More

Creating Multiple Blank Documents in One Step

Word makes it easy to create a new, blank document. What if you want to create more than one document at a time, however? ...

Discover More

Multiple Users Using a Word Document

Want to collaborate with others on creating your literary masterpiece? It may be easier than you think, depending on the ...

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 seven more than 1?

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.