Compare documents 2007

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Compare documents 2007

  1. 1. Compare and merge documentsCompare and combine documents in Word 2007Compare and Combine provides enhanced options for specifying the types ofchanges you want to compare or merge, such as formatting and white space, alongwith displaying changes at the word or character level. This option can be useful ifyou want to expedite a reviewing process by sending separate copies of an originaldocument to reviewers. Then, when reviewers return the documents, you cancombine the changes into one document. At other times, you might want tocompare two versions of a document and simply look at the differences betweenthe two documents or take advantage of the new revision features for tables.Note Assume that you have a document that contains tracked changes. If youwant to see changes made to tables using the new Table revision functionality butno longer have the original document, create a copy of the document and reject allchanges. This produces an original copy of the document that you can use witheither the Compare or Combine features.Although Compare and Combine appear to provide the same functionality, there isa distinct difference between them: Compare is used when comparing thedifferences between two documents, and Combine is used when comparing two ormore documents as well as identifying who changed what in the document.Compare and Combine were available in previous versions of Word under a singlecommand, Compare and Merge Documents. Legal Blackline (Compare) was anoption in the Merge Changes dialog box. In Word 2007, the Compare andCombine commands are distinct and contain more flexibility. You can specify thetypes of changes you want to compare, such as formatting and white space, alongwith displaying changes at the word or character level. The Combine and Comparefeatures can be found on the Reviewing tab in the Compare group.Note A character-level change occurs when a change is made to a few charactersof a word, such as when only the case of the first letter is changed. At the wordlevel, the entire word is shown as a revision; at the character level, only the letteris shown as a revision.The following section describes comparing and combining documents afterchanges have been made to a document. 1
  2. 2. Comparing two versions of a document (legal blackline)Ideally, when you use Compare, the original and the revised document dontcontain tracked changes. If either document contains tracked changes, Word treatsthe documents as though the changes have been accepted and doesnt display themin the comparison document. Additionally, all revisions in the comparisondocument are attributed to a single author, and you can see what changes havebeen made to the original document regardless of whether track changes wereturned on when modifications were being made. The changes made in the reviseddocument are shown in the original as tracked changes. To compare two versionsof one document and view the differences, follow these steps: On the Review tab, click Compare, and then from the list, click Compare. The Compare Documents dialog box opens. In the Original document area, click the Folder icon to navigate to and select the original document, or select the document from the drop-down list. In the Revised document area, click the Folder icon to navigate to and select the revised document, or select the document from the drop-down list. Click More to show the Compare Documents options. Verify that New document is selected in the Show changes in area (you can also choose to show changes in the original or revised document), as shown in Figure 1. 2
  3. 3. Figure 1 The Compare Documents dialog box enables you to choose twodocuments to compare—an original and a revised version. 5. Click OK. The original and revised documents remain unaltered and a new Compared Document is created and shown automatically.Note If either (or both) of the documents being compared has tracked changes,youll see a message box stating that Word will compare the documents as if thetracked changes have been accepted. Click Yes to continue the comparingprocedure. 6. To view all three versions of the document at once, click Show Source Documents on the Review tab, and then click Show Both. In this view, the original, revised, and compared documents are displayed in the new Tri- Pane Review Panel, as shown in Figure 2. 3
  4. 4. Figure 2 The new Tri-Pane Review Panel displays the original, revised, andcomparison results on the screen at the same time.The new Compared Document displays the changed text in an unnamed documentfile. You need to save and name the file if you want to store it for future use.Combining revisions from multiple authorsIn contrast, you use Combine to combine, or merge, two or more documents. Allmodifications made to the original or revised documents become tracked changes.Unlike the Compare feature, if the revised document contains tracked changes,these changes appear as tracked changes in the combined document. All authorsare identified and their revisions are combined into one document. To use theCombine function, use the following steps: 1. On the Review tab, click Compare, and then click Combine. The Combine Documents dialog box opens, which looks similar to the Compare Documents dialog box shown in Figure 1. 2. In the Original document area, click the Folder icon to navigate to and select the original document, or select the document from the drop-down list. 3. In the Revised document area, click the Folder icon to navigate to and select the revised document (or select the document from the drop-down list) and then click OK. Figure 3 depicts a sample combination in which Original Contract.docx is combined with Modified Contract.docx, which results in the Combined Document. 4
  5. 5. Figure 3 The Original Contract.docx is combined with Modified Contract.docx,which creates a third document, Combined Document, containing the mergedchanges.Tip If you do not see the Tri-Pane Review panel, on the Review tab, click ShowSource Documents and then click Show Both.To combine additional documents, combine the resulting Combined Documentwith another document containing changes.Note At times, you might want to compare two documents side-by-side withoutmerging them. In those cases, you should adjust your view without using theCompare or Combine features.Confidential revisionsThe Compare function can also be used as a tool to keep reviewer names, dates,and times of revisions confidential. If you no longer have an original copy of adocument containing tracked changes, simply create a copy of the document,reject all changes, and use it as the original. Display the Compare dialog box andselect the original and the revised documents. In the Revised area in the LabelChanges With text box, type another name, such as Reviewer. This method doesnot allow you to change the dates and times of revisions, but all revision dates andtimes reflect the system date and time that the Compare function was used. Notethat this doesnt apply to Comments that may be contained in the documents. 5
  6. 6. Figure 3 The Original Contract.docx is combined with Modified Contract.docx,which creates a third document, Combined Document, containing the mergedchanges.Tip If you do not see the Tri-Pane Review panel, on the Review tab, click ShowSource Documents and then click Show Both.To combine additional documents, combine the resulting Combined Documentwith another document containing changes.Note At times, you might want to compare two documents side-by-side withoutmerging them. In those cases, you should adjust your view without using theCompare or Combine features.Confidential revisionsThe Compare function can also be used as a tool to keep reviewer names, dates,and times of revisions confidential. If you no longer have an original copy of adocument containing tracked changes, simply create a copy of the document,reject all changes, and use it as the original. Display the Compare dialog box andselect the original and the revised documents. In the Revised area in the LabelChanges With text box, type another name, such as Reviewer. This method doesnot allow you to change the dates and times of revisions, but all revision dates andtimes reflect the system date and time that the Compare function was used. Notethat this doesnt apply to Comments that may be contained in the documents. 5

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