How to remove the comments and tracked changes from a Word 2007 document

Every couple of months or so, we have to collaborate at work on a Microsoft Word document and submit it without all the distracting markup in it. And it always takes four of us half an hour to re-figure out how to remove the comments and tracked changes from a Word 2007 document. (This also applies to newer versions of Word.)

Sometimes I also find the tracked changes and other markup causes weird problems, and the fastest way to make them go away is to get rid of the markup.

So I figured it might help someone. This is something that either takes you 30 seconds or 30 minutes. This is for those of you who can’t do it in less than 30 minutes.

To accept all the changes in a document

Click the word Review in the upper portion of the ribbon. In the Changes section, on the lower portion of the ribbon, hover your mouse over the lower half of the Accept icon, where the little down arrow is. Click on that little arrow, then select Accept all Changes in Document.

Look at the Track Changes icon in the Tracking section. If that icon is highlighted in yellow, click it once so Word doesn’t track any further new changes you make.

To remove all comments in a document

First, click on a comment in the document. Any comment will do. Click the word Review in the upper portion of the ribbon. In the Comments section, on the lower portion of the ribbon, hover your mouse over the lower half of the Delete icon, where the little down arrow is. Click on that little arrow, then select Delete all Comments in Document.

Optional (possible) time saver

If you want these two commands in the quick access toolbar, on the top part of the screen, click the little down arrow and select More Commands. In the heading labeled Choose Commands From, select All Commands. Now you can scroll down to Accept all Changes in Document. Highlight that and click Add. You’ll see a little green orb appear on the far right of the toolbar. Scroll down to Delete Comments. Highlight that and click Add. You’ll see a little comments icon appear on the far right of the toolbar. Clicking the little down arrow on it will allow you to choose Delete all Comments in Document.

That should make it easier to remove the comments and tracked changes from a Word 2007 document then next time you need to.

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