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I have inserted personal comments into a Word document, which I am distributing to other authors. How do I send them the file without them being able to see my comments? I can "hide" comments by going to the Review ribbon and deselecting Comments under Show Markup, but then when I close and reopen the file, the comment reappears. The same thing happens when I choose Final instead of Final Showing Markup.

Is there a way to make comments only visible to the author by whom they were written?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

The only way to achieve your desired result is to simply save a version of the finished document with the comments removed. Even better is that the document can be saved very quickly and easily as a new file by pressing F12 to bring up the 'Save As...' dialog box.

I hope this helps.


To remove all comments at once:

Word 2007:

  • Select the Review tab from the ribbon;
  • From the Comments group, click the small arrow to the right of the Delete button;
  • Next, select Delete All Comments in Document

With regards to file space, it would not take up twice as much space as you will have removed portions of the revised document, hence technically making it smaller; consider it to be marginally smaller than the original version with comments. However, it will certainly take up more space on your hard drive (or cloud drive) as you will be saving two documents. With respect, today's storage mediums are more than capable of storing truly phenomenal amounts of data, so I wouldn't imagine that it would cause any problems. Even the most basic memory sticks and the like store around 1GB of data, which is plenty to accommodate two MS Word documents.

I hope that this has made your task a little easier.

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How would I save as a new document with comments removed? Would I have to delete each and every one? Wouldn't that take up twice as much file space? – chharvey Nov 9 '12 at 5:41
Please see my updated answer above. – SnookerFan Nov 9 '12 at 8:51
Thanks. I'm concerned with the file space not because of just 2 documents, but imagine saving two versions of hundreds of word docs. Just not practical. – chharvey Nov 9 '12 at 11:49
I understand; your initial question implies that you are dealing with a single document, hence my suggestion. However, this does appear to be the only way to proceed with this problem. Furthermore, you could always create duplicates, send them to people, and then delete them from your hard drive once sent, thus freeing up the space again. When people respond to you, they will likely attach the same document again, you can merely save it locally and view the changes, etc. Although, the documents will exist in your Sent Items folder and how you handle this is entirely at your discretion. – SnookerFan Nov 9 '12 at 15:05

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