Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

How To Make Word Open A Normal Blank Page*

I apologize for so many re-posts lately, but…

Today’s “quick tip” is in response to a reader question, and I think it is one of those that can be helpful to ‘everyone’.

Q: I created a newsletter using Word. I used Segoe Script sized to 16. Now whenever I want to write a new Word document, it is stuck on that setting, and I have to tell it to use Times New Roman, and change the size each time. MS Word document icon
It never used to do that. How do I make it like it was before?

A: The answer lies in the fact that when you create a new Word document (File > New > Blank document), Word uses its default “style template”– which is known as Normal.dot (note the “t”, for “template”.)
This “normal” template has the predefined settings we’ve all come to know and love: Times New Roman (font), 12 (pts), Left (Align), Borders, etc.

Somehow, the reader has “Saved” the style they used in the newsletter to the Normal.dot (maybe they selected “Save As”, and then “Template” ? ), or Normal.dot has just gotten corrupted.

There’s two ways (at least) to repair this behavior– the manual way and the automatic way.
1) Create a new default template:
* Open a new blank document.
* Change each setting to how you want your Word docs to look each time (such as Times, 12, Left, etc.).
* Now click “Save As”. Select “Document Template” in the File type box, and type “Normal” (no quotes) in the File name box.
* If warned that Normal already exists, do you want to overwrite the file?, answer “Yes”.
Now, whatever options you’ve selected will be what Word uses when creating a new blank document.
[note: this is how you get rid of Times New Roman for keeps, if you're a sans serif type.]

2) Automatic replace Normal.dot:
* Use the Search tool to find the Normal.dot file on your hard drive C:\. (Start >Search >Files and Folders)
* In the Results pane, right-click on Normal.dot and select “Rename”. Rename it to anything other than Normal.
* Close, and then restart Word (in some cases, a computer reboot was required)

Word will discover that there is now no Normal.dot, and it will create a new “factory fresh” one for you automatically.

Today’s free download: Foxit Reader (Ditch Adobe Reader)
” Incredibly small:  Breezing-fast: Annotation tool: Foxit Reader allows you to draw graphics, highlight text, type text and make notes and then print out or save the annotated document. Text converter: You may convert the whole PDF document into a simple text file.

* Orig post: 12/02/08

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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January 5, 2010 - Posted by | advice, computers, how to, MS Word, software, tech, troubleshooting, word processors | , , , , , , , , , ,

9 Comments »

  1. [...] Tech-for Everyone How To Make Word Open A Normal Blank Page* [...]

    Pingback by Geek Squeaks’ of the Week (#42) « What's On My PC | January 6, 2010 | Reply

  2. i went to excel and placed the table in word now it can not delete and the table spreadsheet is till there what can i do to make word blank and normal again

    Comment by Anonymous | December 11, 2011 | Reply

    • Sir or Ms,
      Uh… did you try the steps in the article?

      Comment by techpaul | December 11, 2011 | Reply

  3. actually when i open word , i can find 2 pages in one screen. i wanted to remove that . please help me out….

    Comment by ashwini | April 6, 2012 | Reply

    • ashwini,
      Look under the View menu, and change it back to “Show one page”.

      Comment by techpaul | April 6, 2012 | Reply

  4. when I open a blank document, I have a grid on it and I tried your second suggestion and it comes up “no file found” I am not familiar enough with word to use first suggestion. How and what do I create a new default since I don’t know what it should be? Tx.

    Comment by Anonymous | August 23, 2012 | Reply

    • Sir or Ms,
      You do not tell me which version of Word you are using, but you may merely have to go into the “View” menu, and uncheck “Show gridlines” (or “Show Rulers and Gridlines”).

      Or you may have to do as the article describes, and delete the normal.dot file. If you cannot locate that file.. you might try the Windows “Search” tool (Click on the Start button) then look for the Search box (and magnifying glass icon). Type in “normal.dot” (no quotes) and hit Enter. When the search tool locates it, right-click on the name normal.dot and select “delete” (or drag it to the Recycle bin).

      Comment by techpaul | August 23, 2012 | Reply

  5. when opening Word i am not getting a full page in which to create a new document, what i see is a little page in the upper left corner and i dont know how to change can you please help
    Thank you in advance.

    Comment by Denise | October 25, 2012 | Reply

    • Denise,
      Um… There are a couple of reasons that might be. But I do not know which version of Word you have so..

      Try adjusting the “magnification” slider switch (aka “Zoom”) to 100% (or “Full”) and/or changing your setting in the View menu.

      Comment by techpaul | October 25, 2012 | Reply


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