Formatting marks are used to assist with text layout in your documents. You might find them more useful when you are designing content with a specific look — or layout — in mind.
This topic shows how to use formatting marks, like dots (for spaces) or arrows (for tab characters), in Microsoft Word or Publisher.
Turn formatting marks on or off
To show formatting marks, choose Home > Show/Hide.
To hide them, choose Home > Show/Hide again.
Turn on or off selected formatting marks in Word
You can decide which formatting marks you want the Show/Hide button to hide. For example, you can hide tab characters and hidden text when Show/Hide is turned off, but display paragraphs and spaces at all times.
In Word, click File > Options > Display.
Under Always show these formatting marks on the screen, check the boxes for any formatting marks you want to see even when Show/Hide is turned off.
Turn off squiggly lines
The red squiggly lines in Word or Publisher indicate potential spelling or grammar errors. The blue squiggly lines indicate words that might be incorrect in their context—a “pear” of shoes versus a “pair” of shoes, or “there” report versus “their” report.
To turn off the squiggly lines, do the following:
Click File > Options > Proofing.
Under When correcting spelling and grammar in Word, or When correcting spelling in Publisher, or uncheck the boxes for the items you want to turn off.