Software

Turn off (or customize) Word's Smart Cut and Paste

Sometimes, the text you paste doesn't look like the text you copied because Word's Smart Cut and Paste feature interferes. See how you can disable or customize this feature to maintain control.

Have you ever carefully selected a block of text to copy somewhere else and been disappointed with the results? Perhaps you lost leading or trailing spaces or paragraph spacing. If so, you're a victim of Word's Smart Cut and Paste feature. This feature enables Word to automatically adjust formatting when you paste text. The problem is, you might not want Word to adjust a thing. This feature is enabled by default, and it works well for most people, most of the time. However, if you're very specific with your editing, you might find this feature annoying. If that's the case, simply turn it off —  or better yet, customize it. To disable this feature, do the following:

  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu.
  2. Click the Edit tab.
  3. Uncheck Smart Cut And Paste in the Cut And Paste section.
By disabling this feature, you'll lose its good points as well as its bad. That's why customizing it might be more efficient. Instead of unchecking the Smart Cut And Paste option in step 3, click the Settings button to display the options you can control. Then, uncheck the behaviors you want to lose and check those you want to keep. For instance, if you don't want to lose leading or trailing spaces, just uncheck the Adjust Sentence And Word Spacing Automatically option.

About Susan Harkins

Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.

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