DetailPage-MSS-KB

Microsoft small business knowledge base

Article ID: 286310 - Last Review: March 30, 2007 - Revision: 5.1

This article was previously published under Q286310

SUMMARY

You can use the AutoExec and AutoOpen macros in Word to establish default paths, styles, links, environment conditions, and so on at the time Word opens a new document or opens an existing document. This article discusses how these macros work and how they behave in various situations.

MORE INFORMATION

AutoExec

An AutoExec macro runs when Word starts if the AutoExec macro is saved as part of the default (Normal.dot) template, or if it is saved as part of a global add-in. By using an AutoExec macro, you can make adjustments when Word starts but before a document is created or loaded. For example, you can use an AutoExec macro to change the default directory when Word starts.

You can suppress the AutoExec macro in several ways. One way is to start Word from the command line by using either the /m or the /embedding switch. To use these switches, click Start, click Run, type either winword /m or winword /embedding, and then click OK.

Another method you may use to suppress an AutoExec macro is to press the Shift key while Word starts. AutoExec macros are also suppressed when Word is started from an Automation client.

AutoOpen

The AutoOpen macro runs after you open a new document. AutoOpen runs when you open a document in the following ways:
  • Use the Open command on the File menu.
  • Use the FileOpen or FileFind commands.
  • Select a document from the Most Recently Used (MRU) list on the File menu.
When a document is opened, an AutoOpen macro runs if the AutoOpen macro is saved as part of that document or if the macro is saved as part of the template on which the document is based. An AutoOpen macro does not run when it saved as part of a global add-in.

You may prevent an AutoOpen macro from running by holding down the Shift key when you open a document.

Create an AutoExec Macro and an AutoOpen Macro

Word 2002 or Word 2003
  1. Create a new blank document in Word.
  2. On the Tools menu, point to Macro and then click Security.
  3. In the Security dialog box, click the Security Level tab and then select Medium. Click the Trusted Sources tab, select Trust all installed Add-ins and Templates, and then click OK.
  4. Create an AutoExec macro. To do this, follow these steps:
    1. On the Tools menu, point to Macro and then click Record New Macro.
    2. In the Record Macro dialog box, type AutoExec under Macro name, and then click OK. By default, the macro is saved in the Normal template. A small two-button command bar appears on your Word document or elsewhere on the Word desktop. Find the command bar and then click the square (Stop Recording) button to stop recording.
    3. On the Tools menu, point to Macro and then click Macros. Select AutoExec in the list of macros and then click Edit.
    4. Add the following code to the AutoExec macro:
      MsgBox "You're seeing the AutoExec macro in action", vbMsgBoxSetForeground
      						
    5. On the File menu in the Microsoft Visual Basic Editor, click Save Normal, and then close the Visual Basic Editor.
  5. Follow the same steps that you used for the AutoExec macro to create an AutoOpen macro. This time, use the AutoOpen expression to replace the AutoExec expression in each step.
  6. Save the document as C:\Yourfile.doc, close the document, and then exit Word.
  7. Open the document in Word by using the different methods that are described in the table below. Observe when the macros run and when the macros do not run.
Word 2007
  1. Create a new blank document in Word.
  2. Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Word Options.
  3. Click Trust Center, click Trust Center Settings, and then click Trusted Locations.
  4. Add the trusted locations that you want, and then click OK two times.
  5. Create an AutoExec macro. To do this, follow these steps:
    1. Click the Developer tab, and then click Record Macro in the Code group.
    2. In the Record Macro dialog box, type AutoExec under Macro name, and then click OK. By default, the macro is saved in the Normal template. Click Stop Recording in the Code group.
    3. On the Developer tab, click Macros in the Code group. Select AutoExec in the list of macros, and then click Edit.
    4. Add the following code to the AutoExec macro:
      MsgBox "You're seeing the AutoExec macro in action", vbMsgBoxSetForeground
      						
    5. In Microsoft Visual Basic Editor, click Save Normal on the File menu, and then close Visual Basic Editor.
  6. Follow the same steps that you used for the AutoExec macro to create an AutoOpen macro. This time, use the AutoOpen expression to replace the AutoExec expression in each step.
  7. Save the document as C:\Yourfile.doc, close the document, and then exit Word.
  8. Open the document in Word by using the different methods that are described in the table in the "Macro Behaviors in Different Situations" section. Notice when the macros run and when the macros do not run.

Macro Behaviors in Different Situations

The following table summarizes the behavior of these two macros when Word is started, or when a document is opened by various means:
Action                                          AutoExec       AutoOpen
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
Start Word with a blank document by typing      Runs           Does not run
the following at a command prompt:
Winword.exe 

Start Word with a saved document by typing      Runs           Runs
the following at a command prompt:
Winword.exe C:\<Yourfile>.doc 

Embed a Word document in an OLE container       Does not run   Runs
by typing the following at a command 
prompt:
WinWord.exe /embedding C:\<Yourfile>.doc

Use code to automate Word and open              Does not run   Runs 
C:\<Yourfile>.doc by using the following 
code:
Set oWord = CreateObject("Word.Application")
oWord.Visible = True
oWord.Documents.Open "C:\YourFile.doc"

Browse to the document in Internet Explorer     Does not run   Runs
or the WebBrowser control
				

REFERENCES

For additional information about Auto macros in Word, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
211659  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/211659/ ) WD2000: Auto Macros in Word
210565  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/210565/ ) WD: Word Startup (Command-Line) Switches and Their Purpose
(c) Microsoft Corporation 2001, All Rights Reserved. Contributions by Chris Jensen, Microsoft Corporation.


APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Office Word 2007
  • Microsoft Office Word 2003
  • Microsoft Word 2002
Keywords: 
kbhowto KB286310
Share
Additional support options
Ask The Microsoft Small Business Support Community
Contact Microsoft Small Business Support
Find Microsoft Small Business Support Certified Partner
Find a Microsoft Store For In-Person Small Business Support