My girlfriend has the absolute worst luck in using Word 2007, and it's very frustrating for her (and me, hearing: "OMG I LOST 3 HOURS OF WORK WHAT THE ####" every other day...).
Basically, a lot of the documents she opens through email and online end up being either "read-only" or "compatibility-mode", and Word fails silently when you try to save them (from what she tells me). I don't know if this is normal behavior. She's doing Ctrl+S every 5 seconds with no indication that it's actually saving, then closes the document (with no "you have unsaved changes" prompt), assumes it saves... and it didn't.
Word puts the mode in the title bar, but this is a terrible way to tell the user what mode it is, especially in Windows 7, where the font color is the same color as the title bar (but it has a faded highlight to it).
Is there a way to make word pop up a really annoying, large, obnoxious honking dialog box if the document failed to save for any reason whatsoever? Be it mode, filename, file size, etc?
Is there a way to make the current mode of the document (readonly, compatibility, etc) more obvious to the user instead of obscuring it in the title bar where few users would think to look?
I mean, I could give her tips like, "check the mode before you edit," "save it somewhere else," "save frequently," "don't close it until you're sure it's saved," and so on and so forth, but this is not intuitive, and any normal or avid user of Word will assume that if they're hitting Ctrl+S every 5 seconds (I've watched her do this), with no indication of any error, then presumably your file is safe.
I, myself, have been a victim of this, but only for a small document and certainly not as frequently as her. Then again, she's an english major and does notes on her laptop, so she's using Word for a good part of every day. I only use it occasionally.