Tech Tip: Word style changes/Prevent Excel overwriting/Access AutoFormat standardization

Word: Make style changes to similarly formatted noncontiguous text

Before Word 2002, if you wanted to change the format of 10 chapter headings scattered throughout your document, you would have to find and change each one individually. Using Word 2002's Select Text With Similar Formatting feature, you can select and change them all at once.

For example, to change all chapter headings in Heading 1 style to blue, follow these steps:

  1. Right-click one chapter heading.
  2. Click Select Text With Similar Formatting from the shortcut menu.
  3. On the Formatting toolbar, click the Font Color drop-down list and select blue.

To change headings from Heading 1 style to another style, follow the procedure above, but in Step 3 hold down [Shift] and click the Formatting toolbar's Style drop-down list and choose a new style.

Excel: Lock cells to prevent overwriting

You can prevent users from overwriting formulas or inadvertently changing labels or formats by protecting those cells. Follow these steps:

  1. Select the cells that users will modify during data entry.
  2. Go to Format | Cells, deselect the Locked checkbox on the Protection tab, and click OK.
  3. Go to Tools | Protection | Protect Sheet, and click OK.

Now users will be able to alter only the cells that are unlocked. If users attempt to alter any other cells, they will receive a message saying they must unprotect the cells to modify them.

In Step 3, you may wish to add a password to prevent unauthorized users from changing a cell's protection level, rather than accepting the default settings.

Access: Standardize forms with AutoFormat

AutoFormat automatically applies an organization's standard formatting styles to a form. To use AutoFormat, add a customized format to the Form AutoFormats list.

Follow these steps:

  1. Create a form that uses your organization's standard fonts, colors, borders, background bitmaps, and control properties.
  2. With the form open in Design view, go to Format | AutoFormat, and click Customize.
  3. Under Customize options in the Customize AutoFormat dialog box, select Create A New AutoFormat Based On The Form and click OK.
  4. Enter a name for the standard style in the New Style Name dialog box, and click OK.
  5. Click Close.

When you want to apply the standard formats to a form, open the form in Design view, go to Format | AutoFormat, select your organization's style from the Form AutoFormats list, and click OK.

If you need to update your organization's standard style, create a form that includes the changes, go to Format | AutoFormat, and select the style you want to update from the Form AutoFormats list. Click Customize, and select the update option under Customize Options. Click OK twice.

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