Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007 and 2010. 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: Finding Text Not Using a Particular Font.

Finding Text Not Using a Particular Font

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated December 2, 2014)

2

Hilary notes that most of the documents their company uses are standardized on a Times Roman font. However, once in a while someone will edit a document and apply a different font to some of the text it contains. She'd like to easily find those "formatting anomalies." Hilary wonders if there is a way to search a document for text that is not using a particular font.

There are a couple of ways that you can go about finding what you need and, potentially, fixing the problem. First, you could use Find and Replace in this manner:

  1. Press Ctrl+F. Word displays the Find tab of the Find and Replace dialog box. (If you are using Word 2010, you need display the Home tab of the ribbon, click the down-arrow at the right side of the Find tool, and then choose Advanced Find.)
  2. Click the More button, if it is available.
  3. Make sure the Find What box is empty.
  4. Click Format and then choose Font. Word displays the Find Font dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  5. Figure 1. The Find Font dialog box.

  6. Use the controls in the dialog box to specify that you want to find the Times Roman font you are using. (Just choose the font. You don't have to specify any other settings unless you want to.)
  7. Click on OK. The font specifications you are looking for appear just below the Find What box.
  8. Click Reading Highlight and choose Highlight All. Word highlights in the document all instances of words that match the font you chose.
  9. Press Esc.

At this point, all instances of Times Roman in your document are highlighted. You can easily scroll through the document to see what isn't highlighted—these are the "anomalies" you are seeking.

You could also use Find and Replace to apply some stand-out formatting to text that isn't in Times Roman font. Just figure out some formatting that you are not using in the document, such as double underlines or red text. Select the whole document (Ctrl+A) and apply that formatting to the whole document. Then use Find and Replace to find all instances to Times Roman (see the steps above) and replace it with Times Roman without the stand-out formatting you previously applied. What you end up with is only the text that is not Times Roman formatted with the stand-out formatting.

If you prefer, you can use a macro to modify the font used in the document. The following is a short little macro that looks at the font used for each word in your document:

Sub FixFormatAnomalies()
    Dim aWord

    For Each aWord In ActiveDocument.Words
        If aWord.Font.Name <> "Times Roman" Then
            aWord.Font.Name = "Times Roman"
        End If
    Next aWord
End Sub

If the font used for a word doesn't match what you want, then the routine changes the font. The only thing you'll need to do to make the macro work in your case is to change the desired font name on two lines. (You'll want to use the font name exactly as it appears in the list of fonts usable by Word. Pay particular attention to capitalization.)

Another approach is to simply check each character in the document and highlight the character if it doesn't use your desired font. The following macro highlights the offending characters in yellow:

Sub HighlightOtherFonts()
    Dim iCounter As Integer
    Dim sFontName As String
    Dim sPrompt As String
    Dim sTitle As String
    Dim sDefault As String
    Dim c As Range

    ' Gets the name of the font as typed by the user
    sPrompt = "Type the name of the font that is OK to "
    sPrompt = sPrompt & "have in the document."
    sTitle = "Acceptable Font Name"
    sDefault = ActiveDocument.Styles(wdStyleNormal).Font.Name
    sFontName = InputBox(sPrompt, sTitle, sDefault)

    ' Verifies that the name of the font is valid
    For Each sFont In Application.FontNames
        If UCase(sFontName) = UCase(sFont) Then
            ' Changes the user-typed name of the font to
            ' the version recognized by the application
            ' Example: 'times new roman' (user-typed) is
            ' changed to 'Times New Roman' (application version)
            sFontName = sFont
            Exit For
        Else
            ' Terminates the loop if the name of the font is invalid
            iCounter = iCounter + 1
            If iCounter = FontNames.Count Then
                sPrompt = "The font name as typed does not match "
                sPrompt = sPrompt & "any fonts available to the "
                sPrompt = sPrompt & "application."
                sTitle = "Font Name Not Found"
                MsgBox sPrompt, vbOKOnly, sTitle
                Exit Sub
            End If
        End If
    Next sFont

    ' Checks each character in the document, highlighting
    ' if the character's font doesn't match the OK font
    For Each c In ActiveDocument.Characters
        If c.Font.Name <> sFontName Then
            ' Highlight the selected range of text in yellow
            c.FormattedText.HighlightColorIndex = wdYellow
        End If
    Next c
End Sub

One of the nice features of this macro is that it prompts you for the font that you find acceptable. It then checks to make sure that what you enter matches one of the fonts available in the system. Because the macro checks each character in the document individually, you may need to be patient while it is running. The longer the document, the longer the macro takes to complete its work.

If you simply want to find the next occurrence of a font change, then the following very short macro is quite handy:

Sub FindDifferentFont()
  Selection.SelectCurrentFont
  Selection.Collapse wdCollapseEnd
End sub

The SelectCurrentFont method extends the current selection until there is a change in either the font (typeface) or the font size. So if you start at the beginning of the document and run the macro (perhaps you could assign it to a shortcut key), then the insertion point is moved to where the current font ends and a new font begins.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (11070) applies to Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Finding Text Not Using a Particular Font.

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

Adding Table Columns to Columns with Merged Cells

Word's table editor allows you to modify the structure of tables in a wide variety of ways. If you want to add columns to a ...

Discover More

Working with Document Links

Word makes it easy to establish links between documents. Here's how to change and manage those links easily.

Discover More

Setting the Return Address Used in Word

When you create envelopes with Word, it normally displays a return address by default. If you can't get Word to retain the ...

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)

Searching for Periods Not Followed by a Space

Most periods should be followed by at least one space. What if you think there may be some errors in how your post-period ...

Discover More

Searching for Text with a Certain Format

The Find and Replace tool in Word is very powerful. You can use it to search not only for text but for the formatting that ...

Discover More

Searching for Character Formatting

Need to look for a piece of text possessing a particular formatting attribute? Here's the skinny on how this is accomplished.

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. 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 9 + 4?

2014-12-02 11:27:55

Phil Rabichow

There is one other method that can be used with Find/Replace.

In Step 8, above, don't press Esc. Instead,
8. Clear the Find & Replace boxes.
9. Place the cursor in the Find box & click Format/Highlight twice. It will now show "Not highlight" in the Find box.

Then, instead of scrolling through the document, you can now press "Find Next" & whatever isn't highlighted (the "anomolies") will be found.


2011-12-04 09:43:35

Rod Grealish

If all you want to do is change text that is not Times Roman into text that is Times Roman is it not simpler to select all the text and change it all to Times Roman? There is no need to look for formatting anomalies.


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.