Graphics Marked as Changed when Comparing Documents

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated November 26, 2022)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021


3

Grainne noted that when she uses Word's reviewing tools to compare two documents, it always marks all graphics as "changed" even though they're not changes. She wonders why this happens and if there is a way to make the document comparison tool ignore graphics.

The short answer is that this is apparently the way that Microsoft coded the tool, and they don't provide a reason as to why that choice was made. So, no, there is no way to make the comparison tool ignore graphics.

This does, however, present a potential workaround. If you are strictly doing a comparison to see what changed between two versions—in other words, you won't be using the marked-up version created by the comparison as your new "master"—then you can make copies of your original documents, delete the graphics from each, and then do the comparison. Since there are no graphics in either one, then there is nothing there to mark as changed.

Obviously this won't work in all instances, but it is a workaround approach that will work for the purpose noted. You can quickly find easy ways to delete all graphics by using your favorite search engine and searching for "delete all graphics in a word document," without the quote marks.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (12630) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021.

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

Quickly Customizing the Keyboard

Want a quick way to change the shortcut key associated with a tool available on a ribbon, toolbar, or menu? Here's one ...

Discover More

Determining the Upper Bounds of an Array

When working with variables in a macro, you may need to know the upper boundary dimension for an array. This can be ...

Discover More

Printing A4 on Letter Size Paper

For those around the world using the metric system, the standard size for many documents is referred to as an A4 page. If ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Removing a Watermark

Word allows you to add watermarks to your documents. If you inherit a document that includes a watermark, you may be at a ...

Discover More

Understanding WordArt

One of the small graphical features provided with Word is the ability to apply artistic treatment to words or phrases. ...

Discover More

Inserting Multiple Graphics in a Document

Word allows you to easily place graphics in a document. Placing one or two graphics is easy, but placing many graphics in ...

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}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) 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 five more than 6?

2022-12-09 12:30:42

Arya

Thanks. I was searching for a long time for this answer


2022-11-26 11:47:00

Tomek

Further to my earlier comment, I managed to get the images identified as changed if I moved their anchors, but did not make any other changes.


2022-11-26 11:35:26

Tomek

I was trying to duplicate Grainne's observation and found that in my case the graphics were not identified as changed. May be this is a different behaviour in the newest MS365. I have the Family version.

To do that I created a file with some in-line and floating images, some pasted, others as inserted pictures. I inserted also some Word Shapes, again floating and in-line. I saved the file then changed some of the text in several places and saved the resulting document as a second file. I closed the file. Then I compared the two files. The text changes were identified properly, but the graphics were not indicated as changed.


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.

Videos
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.