Convert Older Documents To Word 2013

If you use Microsoft Word in an office environment, you probably work with colleagues who are using older versions of Word. In the typical company, it takes time to roll out the new version to all users. Even when everyone is using the latest release of Word, there may be documents created in previous versions still knocking around that need to be referred to and even amended.

When you open a Word 2007 document in Word 2013, for example, you will see Compatibility Mode displayed in the title.

What should you do with “legacy” documents? For example, what should you do with a document created in Word 2007 if you are using Word 2013? One option is to convert it to the Word 2013 format. Until you perform this conversion, the new features in Word 2013 will not be available for use. If you do go ahead and convert the document, just know that any features you then use that are new to Word 2013 will not be seen be users of previous versions of Word. This may or may not be a concern for you.

Converting an old document to Word 2013 is very easy. If you open an older document in Word 2013 (you will see the [Compatibility Mode] clue in the title bar), click the File tab > Info, and you will see the Compatibility Mode button at the top:

Compatibility Mode

Click on the button and your Word document will be converted. All Word 2013 features will now be available.

Another option is to save the document in the Word 2013 format: click the File tab > Save As > Computer (on the left) > the destination of the document (you’ll have to browse your computer’s hard drive), and then in the Save as type drop down selector, choose Word document (*.docx).

Save As Type .docx

You could, of course, keep older Word documents in their original version. Typically, if you open a Word 2007 document in Word 2013, when you press ctrl + s, it will save your changes in the document’s original version. This may be your best bet if everyone else is using older versions of Word.