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So, I have a Microsoft Word template (.dotx file). I want to make some changes to it, so new documents based on it will look different.

I open the template, make my changes, and hit save. Then Word prompts me for a location, because it thinks that I want to create a new Word document based on this template. I don't, so I go to Office > Save As and try to save it to the original template file...but it says I can't because I already have that file open.

I thought about saving it to a new file, then just switching file names around to get it back in the location of the original template, but I worry that documents based on this template will lose their association with the template the were based on.

There has to be a better way, and I suspect I'm missing something extremely obvious here.

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2 Answers 2

up vote 3 down vote accepted
  1. Open the Microsoft Word Template file (*.dotx)

  2. Edit it.

  3. Save it under another name.

  4. Close Microsoft Word.

  5. Delete the original and rename the new one to replace the original.

Alternatives: How to modify an existing template in Word 2007?

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4  
I read that same article, and it didn't work, but I think I found the problem. I was opening the template by just double clicking on it. That must trigger Word into a mode where it thinks you're creating a new document. But if you open a template from Office > Open, it acts differently. –  Deane Jan 29 '11 at 19:11
    
I would suggest you to save it as a different template and then rename them. –  Tom Wijsman Jan 29 '11 at 19:12

On the Review tab, in the Protect group, click Protect Document, and then click Restrict Formatting and Editing. In the Protect Document task pane, click Stop Protection. If you assigned a password to help protect the document, in the Unprotect Document dialog box, type the password. Select the parts of the document that you want to be unrestricted. For example, select a block of paragraphs, a heading, a sentence, or a word. Continue to select parts of the document and assign users permission to edit them. Under Start enforcement, click Yes, Start Enforcing Protection.

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