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 Document Lines.

Counting Document Lines

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 29, 2017)

4

Word provides a tool you can use to return simple statistics about your document. One of the statistics it can provide is the number of lines in your document. In order to see how many lines there are in your document, display the Review tab of the ribbon and click the Word Count tool in the Proofing group. After a short delay (depending on the size of your document and the speed of your computer), Word displays the Word Count dialog box. (See Figure 1.)

Figure 1. The Word Count dialog box.

One of the statistics provided in the Word Count dialog box is Lines. The value returned by Word depends on several things. First, it obviously depends on the formatting of your document. For instance, if you decrease the point size of text within your document, that can affect the line count. Second, the printer driver you are using can affect the number of lines in your document. In both instances, the differences are due to the different ways in which Word "flows" your text in the document. When the point size is smaller, Word can fit more characters on each given line, thereby reducing the overall number of lines required to present the same information. Likewise, using a different printer driver could result in a slightly different rendering of a font. For instance, the same font may appear more "compressed" on one printer than on another. This, again, means different amounts of information per line and a potentially different line count.

Finally, hidden text can affect the line count returned in the Word Count dialog box. If you have the printing of hidden text turned off, Word doesn't count hidden text in the line count. If you want it to be considered, make sure you configure Word to print hidden text.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (12688) 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 Document Lines.

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 five less than 6?

2017-11-30 10:04:43

Allen

Allan, I just double-checked, and my instructions (above) do work with Word 2007. Display the Review tab of the ribbon, and over in the Proofing group is the Word Count tool. (see Figure 1 below)

Click the tool, and you'll see a line count (among other stats).

-Allen


Figure 1. Partial Word 7 screen shot - location of Word Count tool




2017-11-29 15:10:49

Allan Poe

Far be it from me to criticize Allen and his wonderful free Excel and Word nuggets. I look forward to them daily. But sometimes his suggestion does not work the same for each of these versions as his following quote says. "This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013."
Case in point is the "Counting Document Lines" in Word. The procedure outlined here does not work for Word 2007 (I found in Word 2007 you must click on the Words in the lower left hand portion of the document to view this information). I can only presume it works for 2010 and 2013 as I have 2007. My suggestion to Allen is to please be careful to be sure that each procedure works for each of the Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013 before making the statement "This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013."


2017-11-29 06:12:46

David Hamilton

OK, but an everyday need is to know how many words are in a document, without the bother of opening it. The bytes are listed but I can't find where the word count is - i.e. without opening the edocument. Silly me?


2017-05-09 09:06:00

Kees Lucassen

Word Count also works on a selection of the text.


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