Affinity Consulting Blog


Every Word user knows that CTRL+S is the keyboard shortcut to save the currently open document. Those of us old enough to remember PC's that crashed without warning (basically anything before Windows XP) hit that keystroke combination habitually every few minutes.

Fortunately, PC's and operating systems are more reliable now. But it never hurts to be cautious. Fortunately Word has a built-in AutoRecover feature that automatically saves a backup copy of your files. This month we show you how to enable and use it.

First, click on the File tab in Word. Go to Options, then Save. That will get you to your AutoRecover options.

The defauilt AutoRecover save interval is 10 minutes. I set mine to 2 minutes because I am still paranoid from using Word on Windows 95 and ME systems. It may not be necessary, but it means at most I will lose two minutes of work if something goes wrong.

Once you've made your selections, click OK in the Word Options dialog box to save your AutoRecover settings.

If the power goes out and you don't have an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) - you should get one, of course - or if you closed Word and forgot to save your changes, you can recover the latest changes to your document. Once you've rebooted or reopened Word, open the file in question and click the File tab. On the Info screen, Click Versions, then Recover Unsaved Documents.

This will open the folder where the unsaved documents are saved. The easiest way to find your document (especially if you didn’t name it) is to sort the documents by date and then click the newest file:

The AutoRecover version of an unsaved file will open in Read-Only mode. You can tell because there is a yellow bar at the top of the window saying this is a temporary, recovered file.

If you want to restore this version of the recovered document, click Save As on the bar.

The recover unsaved documents can be a life saver. Be sure your options are correctly set!

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