Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 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: Making Live URLs Into Normal Text.

Making Live URLs Into Normal Text

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated June 29, 2019)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365


Word, being the well-connected program that it is, has a feature that automatically converts a URL into a hyperlink. While you can turn off the feature so that Word doesn't do the conversion, you may have documents that already contain the link fields. That, or you may get a file from someone else who did not disable the feature. In these instances, you may be looking for ways in which to remove the existing hyperlinks. There are several ways you can approach this problem.

The first (and easiest) way to remove the hyperlinks is to simply position the insertion point somewhere within the link and then press Ctrl+Shift+F9. This converts the field code back to regular text, without the link. In fact, if you don't use fields in your document for anything except hyperlinks, you can remove every hyperlink by simply selecting the entire document (press Ctrl+A) and then pressing Ctrl+Shift+F9. You should realize, however, that if there are other fields in your document, this action results in them being converted to plain text as well.

Another easy way to convert hyperlinks to regular text is to right-click the hyperlink you want to remove and choose Remove Hyperlink from the Context menu. If you have quite a few documents where you need to remove hyperlinks or you have quite a few hyperlinks in your document, then even this simple technique can become tedious after a while. In this instance, you may want to create a macro to do the work for you. The following macro, RemoveHyperLinks, removes all the hyperlinks in a document and makes sure that the AutoFormat feature for creating hyperlinks is turned off:

Sub RemoveHyperlinks()
    While ActiveDocument.Hyperlinks.Count > 0
        ActiveDocument.Hyperlinks(1).Delete
    Wend
    Application.Options.AutoFormatAsYouTypeReplaceHyperlinks = False
End Sub

This macro does not harm any other fields within your document. You should note, however, that it only affects hyperlinks that appear within the main portion of your document. If you have hyperlinks in other areas (such as in footnotes or endnotes), then those won't be touched. Instead, you'll need a macro that specifically looks at hyperlinks in the "story" used by those elements. Here's a macro that will work for both footnotes and endnotes, removing all the hyperlinks they may contain:

Sub RemoveFNH()
    Dim h As Hyperlink
    Dim J As Integer

    With ActiveDocument
        If .Footnotes.Count >= 1 Then
            With .StoryRanges(wdFootnotesStory)
                For J = .Hyperlinks.Count To 1 Step -1
                    .Hyperlinks(J).Delete
                Next J
            End With
        End If

        If .Endnotes.Count >= 1 Then
            With .StoryRanges(wdEndnotesStory)
                For J = .Hyperlinks.Count To 1 Step -1
                    .Hyperlinks(J).Delete
                Next J
            End With
        End If
    End With
End Sub

Note that this macro takes a different approach than the earlier one. Not only does it work in the proper stories for footnotes and endnotes, but it steps backward through the Hyperlinks collection instead of continually deleting the first hyperlink in the Hyperlinks collection.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the WordTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (8713) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Making Live URLs Into Normal Text.

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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