Is there a way in Office 2010 Pro, to always open the document as read-only when I open it?

At work we store documents on a shared drive. The problem is, quite often someone may need to edit it, but I have it open because I am viewing it. So they need to ask me to close it, just so they can edit it.

  • While waiting for better answers, you could always copy the file to your local drive and view it from there. It's a good practice when working with others on a shared drive anyway. – Jin Oct 6 '11 at 13:53

While Saving as... Choose under Tools, General Options and check the Read-only recommended checkbox. This will not put the document always in read-only but when it is opened, the user is prompted to answer with which state to open the document.

This is the way I prefer to save my documents in a shared folder. Doing so, someone can open the document without locking it for the others.

  • Where is the tools menu in 2010? – b01 Oct 6 '11 at 16:09
  • Not sure in 2010, but under 2003 and 2007, when choosing File... Save as... It appears in the dialog box – Benoit Kack Oct 6 '11 at 17:19
  • OK, yeah that is where it is, and this is exactly what we need until we get SharePoint in place. – b01 Oct 6 '11 at 18:49
  • This technique is also viable for Excel documents. – kbulgrien Feb 7 '13 at 14:59
  • I just checked those steps to select read or edit rights, in Word/Office 2007. In our environment you have the choice of listing people OR selecting ALL in both enironments. – user210351 Mar 25 '13 at 19:53

Consider using a service like Google Documents or SharePoint. Both allow for real-time collaboration.

Alternatively, you could change the document properties:

  1. Open your document. Click Review then choose Protect. Click Restrict Editing.

  2. Select Editing Restrictions. Choose Read Only.

  3. Click Yes to protect the document and make it read-only.

  • Will stepa 1-3 make it read-only just for me or everyone? Also, your're right, I'm looking into share point now. I'm thinking I will need to setup a server for anyone who access documents on that share, but I'm not sure yet. – b01 Oct 6 '11 at 14:01
  • Everyone. I don't think there is a way to open all .docx files as read only. You really, really should consider using Google Docs. Its 100% free. It was made for your exact problem. – wizlog Oct 6 '11 at 14:02
  • I'm going with Sharepoint, these are company docs, which they are paranoid with letting anyone outside the company see. They don't trust Google like that. I can agree with them on this. – b01 Oct 6 '11 at 14:05
  • 1
    I hate people who keep pushing a solution that the people clearly don't trust. It's just arrogant. – surfasb Oct 6 '11 at 16:08
  • 1
    @wizlog, We use googles stuff, so we trust them, we just don't want company docs out on the net. – b01 Oct 6 '11 at 18:50

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