Create a document to be used by previous versions of Word

You might sometimes want to share your documents with people who are using earlier of versions of Word.

Word 2007 and Word 2010 can open .docx files created with Word 2013. Word 2003 users who have installed Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint 2007 File Formats can also open Word 2013 documents.

If you aren't sure which earlier version they're using, save the documents in the Word 97 – 2003 (.doc) file format.

Note: To find out which content and features aren't available for editing in earlier versions, see Features that behave differently in earlier versions.

Create a new document in Word 97 – 2003 format

To create a new document in Word 2013 that someone using an older version of Word can review and edit, save it in Word 97-2003 format.

  1. Click File, and then click New.

  2. Open a new document by clicking Blank document.

  3. Click File, click Save As, and then choose a location to save your file.

  4. In the Save As dialog box, type a name for the document in the File name box.

  5. In the Save as type list, click Word 97-2003 Document. This changes the file format from .docx to .doc.

  6. Click Save.

Features that behave differently when you use the Word 97 – 2003 document format

These tables include document elements that behave differently and document elements that aren't available when you edit .doc files.

Word 2013

Change when using the Word 97 – 2003 (.doc) file format

Apps for Office

Permanently removed from the document.

Web Video

Permanently converted to a picture with a hyperlink to the web video.

Comment reply/”done” information

Comment replies will become top-level individual comments, and all comments marked “done” are reset.

Collapsed by default headings

Headings are expanded by default; the property is permanently lost.

New Word 2010 numbering formats

Uppercase Turkish (Latin) {A, B, C, Ç, D, …}
Lowercase Turkish (Latin) {a, b, c, ç, d, …}
Uppercase Bulgarian (Cyrillic) {А,Б,В,Г,Д, …}
Lowercase Bulgarian (Cyrillic) {а, б, в, г, д, …}
Uppercase Greek

{Α, Β, Γ, Δ, Ε, …}
Lowercase Greek

{α, β, γ, δ, ε,…}
3-digit fixed format {001…NNN}
4-digit fixed format {0001…NNNN}
5-digit fixed format {00001…NNNNN}

New numbering formats are converted to Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, 4, ...).

New shape and text box effects

Shapes and text boxes are converted to effects available in the .doc file format.

Text effects

Effects on text are permanently removed.

Alternative text on tables

Tables lose alternative-text information.

OpenType features

OpenType features are permanently removed from text.

Blocking authors

Locks applied to regions of the document are removed.

New WordArt effects

Effects on text are permanently removed.

Content controls

Content controls are converted to static content.

Themes

Permanently converted to styles.

Major/minor fonts

Permanently converted to direct formatting of the fonts.

Tracked moves

Permanently converted to insertions and deletions.

Alignment tabs

Permanently converted to traditional tabs.

SmartArt graphics

Converted to a single image; if no changes are made in Word 2003, the SmartArt can be recreated by opening in Word 2013 and upgrading the document to the Open XML file format.

Charts and diagrams

Converted to a single image; if no changes are made in Word 2003, the chart can be recreated by opening in Word 2013 and upgrading the document to the Open XML file format. All data beyond the limits supported by Excel 2003 is permanently removed.

Open XML Embedded objects

No change.

Building blocks

Building blocks and AutoText entries might lose some information.

Bibliography

Permanently converted to static text.

Citations

Permanently converted to static text.

Equations

Converted to a single image; if no changes are made in Word 2003, the equation can be recreated by opening in Word 2013 and upgrading the document to the Open XML file format.

Relative text boxes (Text boxes sized to a percentage of page width or height)

Relative measurements are permanently converted to absolute positioning.

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