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How to convert automatic numbering to normal text in Word?

by ctronvig / January 13, 2008 11:27 AM PST

I have a Word document with a lot of automatic numbering, and I'd like to covert all the numbers to regular text. So, how would you do that in Word? If not directly in Word, could you convert the Word doc to some other format that would retain the general formatting and the numbers but forget about the automatic numbering thing?

Thanks for any help,

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by Papa Echo / January 13, 2008 1:43 PM PST

...Tools>Auto Correct Options>Auto Format As You Type.
Under ?Apply As You Type", uncheck ?Automatic Numbered List?.
Check or uncheck others as you like. Stay around there. You may find it interesting to find Word's many, plenty options!

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Re: converting automatic to manual numbering.
by Kees Bakker / January 13, 2008 5:03 PM PST

Select the automatically numbered block. Unclick the icon on the toolbar. Then edit manually.

Lot of work when lot of text. Writing a macro isn't very easy either, I'm afraid.


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Re: converting automatic to manual numbering
by ctronvig / January 14, 2008 4:40 AM PST

Yeah, at this point I'm just typing in numbers to match the automatic numbers and then turning off numbering. Is there a way, in a macro, to actually pick up the automatically generated number for a particular paragraph?


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I think there is.
by Kees Bakker / January 14, 2008 4:55 AM PST

But I can't tell you the exact VBA-code (which method or property of which object).


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I'll look it up
by ctronvig / January 14, 2008 5:07 AM PST
In reply to: I think there is.

Do you have some idea of what term I would search for to find that?


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This link might be a good starting point.
by Kees Bakker / January 14, 2008 5:17 AM PST
In reply to: I'll look it up
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(NT) Excellent, Thanks
by ctronvig / January 14, 2008 5:25 AM PST
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Cut and paste should do the trick
by carlvincent / January 18, 2008 4:30 AM PST

Try this: select the paragraphs you want to convert, cut, then paste special as unformatted text.

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Solution for converting automatic numbering to text in Word
by vanCarnisse / February 17, 2009 8:31 AM PST

This thread is more then a year old, but maybe someone will find this posting still.
We had the same problem with unwanted automatic paragraph numbering in Word. Especially with scanned text and OCR it's a nuisance.
See this nice little addin:
It costs $29,50 or so. It works and even gives several options.

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How to convert automatic numbering to normal text in Word?
by wj shack / June 14, 2009 9:36 AM PDT

This macro does this.

Sub Auto_Format_convert_list_numbers()
' convert_list_numbers Macro
' Macro created 10/8/08 by WJ Shack
End Sub

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by PeterCoulson / July 24, 2009 3:35 AM PDT

This was very helpful, saved tons of time.
Many thanks for keeping this old thread going Happy

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by raphaelfreeman / July 28, 2013 12:56 AM PDT
In reply to: Thanks

Not much to say, except THANK YOU!

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Thanks for an elegant solution!
by lengoldstein / July 29, 2010 1:24 AM PDT

I was copying and special-pasting the lists into Excel as text, then copying them back again into Word. This is so much better--thanks a lot!

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This can also be done in the immediate window
by gardoglee / May 5, 2011 1:48 AM PDT

If you do not wish to save the macro in your document (or if you ahve a shop standard which does not allow macros) you can accomplish the same thing by opening the VBA editor (Alt-F11), and then the Immediate Window (Ctrl-G), type in the statement ActiveDocument.ConvertNumbersToText, and hit <Enter>. I have done this successfully. However, I would caution taht for some reason I find that all the numbers do not always convert. In a large document with a few hundred outline numbered headers I always seem to get a dozen or so random headers which did not convert. Still, it is a great time saver.

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by thewordofmona / April 20, 2012 5:12 AM PDT

This worked a charm, Gardoglee! Thank you.

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help for illitterate mac user
by pietroghezzi / April 25, 2012 8:24 PM PDT

That would be something I would need but I am on a mac.

Do you know how I could create this macro on a mac? Bearing in mind I hardly know the meaning of the word "macro"....

Offine 2008 UK
Mac Os 10.7.3

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If I'm understanding you correctly, this will work.
by freesetech / April 22, 2012 3:55 AM PDT

I think was your asking is how to you take a cell that is calculating if your budget is positive or negative balance and depending on the value you want it to give a "text" answer instead of red and green number. Is that the idea?
If so you're looking for the if=(logical_test, [value_if_"true"], [value_if_"false"]

there are a lot of ways to use this command and I recently used it for a client who wanted spread sheet that based on 3 input values it would determine if it met the tolerance, weight, calibration, and mapped out what the results should be for different amounts. It took forever to put together but is really cool.

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No Macro
by KoolThink / April 18, 2013 10:22 AM PDT

Macros are not needed. Just copy and paste the selected automatically numbered text as below.

If your selection includes a bulleted or numbered list, the Keep Text Only option may discard the bullets or numbering, depending on the default setting for pasting text in Word.

To preserve the bullet and number characters, you can convert the bulleted or numbered list formatting to paragraphs that begin with bullet or number characters.
1.Click the Microsoft Office Button , and then click Word Options.
2.Click Advanced, and then scroll down to the Cut, copy, and paste section.
3.Select the Keep bullets and numbers when pasting text with Keep Text Only option check box.

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