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I have pasted some text in my document with ZERO-WIDTH-SPACEs (ZWSP, U+200B) in it, and I'd like to remove them. However, I can't seem to paste it into the Word Find and Replace box and there doesn't seem to be a special character listed for that Unicode character. How can I find and remove all instances of this character?

  • Can you find it in charmap and copy and paste from there? – AFH May 1 '18 at 16:28
  • Yes. Please post that as an answer and I'll mark it correct. @AFH – cbarth May 1 '18 at 16:31
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If you run charmap, you should be able to find the character you are trying to input.

You can then copy it and paste into Word's search box.

This will work for other obscure characters when you can't find and highlight an instance of the character in the text so as to copy from there and paste into the search box.

  • As a side note, I could find it in the document to copy it, but Word wouldn't copy the ZWSP, even when I copied surrounding chracters, so I couldn't paste it into the search box. – cbarth May 1 '18 at 18:43
  • Interesting comment. – AFH May 1 '18 at 19:59
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Zero-width spaces (U+200B) are referred to in Word's Find (but not Replace) as ^u8203, which is easier than getting it from CharMap (though for Replace I know no other way).

Actually, zero-width spaces inserted by Word 2003 and 2007 Insert Symbol are U+200C (^u8204 in Find), not U+200B. In Windows XP (where I use Word 2003), CharMap can't even find U+200B. Windows 7 CharMap describes U+200B as "Zero Width Space" and U+200C as "Zero Width Non-Joiner". Word 2007 uses the latter, same as 2003. Both characters seem to do the job.

This article has some more info: How to make URLs wordwrap in Word.

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If not working in MS Word copy a part of the text that contains the ZWS and reveal code in MS Word. Find the position of the character. Say it is the last character. Copy the complete word; then start deleting the rest of the characters but do not just press the backspace of delete for any length of time but keep deleting each character. The ZWS should not be deleted. MS word, or Excel can thus be used for finding and replacing the ZWS.

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