Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. 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: Counting Open Document Windows.

Counting Open Document Windows

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 4, 2017)


Christine is writing a macro and needs to figure out how many document windows are open. The traditional means of doing this is to use the Windows.Count property, in the following manner:

iNumWindows = Application.Windows.Count

When executed, iNumWindows will contain the number of open document windows in Word. The problem is that it returns a count of any window that Word may consider a document, even those that contain e-mails.

As far as we can determine, there is no way around this inclusive behavior of Word. If a person is using Word as their e-mail editor, and they open an e-mail or two, those windows are considered document windows by the program. Granted, they are not documents destined for a disk file or for the printer, but they are documents nonetheless.

In addition, there is no other flag that we could locate that would allow one to differentiate between a regular document window and an e-mail message window. If such a flag were available, then someone could easily check the windows and produce their own count of documents vs. e-mail messages.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10516) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Counting Open Document Windows.

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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What is six more than 8?

2017-11-04 13:23:17

Art Osgatharp

If the user were to have one document open and then use View...New Window to open another window for that document, the windows count will be 2 even though they display the same document. Note that when you open a new window on a document, Word adds a colon + the window number to the displayed name of the document at the top of the screen, for example, "My Document.docx:2". Any macro running in that situation has to ensure it operates against the correct window, since the cursor position could be different for each window.

If your intent is to count documents rather than windows, it might be more effective to use "iNumWindows = Application.Documents.Count" instead. Word will not count an open VBA editor window as a document using this technique, whereas Application.Windows.Count will count an open VBA editor as one of the windows.

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