Word 2003 page setup defaults



I operate in Windows XP and use Word 2003

My blank document paper size default is Letter (8.5x11in), presumably this
is the normal.dot template paper size, and I want to change it to A4. Is it
possible to do this? Everything tried thus far has been unsuccessful.

I first tried with new blank document choosing File - Page Setup - Paper
Size then selecting A4 from the drop-down menu, clicking Default button, and
answering Yes. This paper size retained in that session of Word, but after
closing and reopening Word paper size is back to Letter (8.5x11in).

Secondly located normal.dot in Windows Explorer (C:\Docs &
Settings\User\Application Data\Microsoft\Templates) and right click opened it
from there, then performed procedure as above, then Save. Close Word and
reopen. Paper size of blank new doc was back at Letter (8.5x11in).

Where am I going wrong, or is it just not possible to change default paper
size for all new blank documents, ie, change the paper size of normal.dot? Do
I need to create a new template named, say, A4template.dot and set that as my

Have incidentally tried deleting normal.dot so that Word would create a
fresh version after shut-down and re-opening, but there is no sign of a
recreated normal.dot in c:\ ..........................\Templates. However,
the same 8.5x11in blank document appears as soon as Word is opened.

Suzanne S. Barnhill

What you are doing *should* work. The fact that it doesn't suggests that (if
you are on a corporate network), your Normal.dot is being "refreshed" at
startup (though that should only be at Windows bootup, not Word startup, so
I'm not sure about that explanation).

Another possibility is that (a) the first technique didn't work because you
have an add-in (such as Acrobat) that is preventing Normal.dot from being
saved, and (b) the second technique didn't work because you opened and
modified the wrong Normal.dot. But all of that is really a long shot.

In any case, what *might* work is to open the printer Properties for your
Windows default printer and select A4 there.

Suzanne S. Barnhill
Microsoft MVP (Word)
Words into Type
Fairhope, Alabama USA

Terry Farrell

Look in Tools, Options File Locations to see where the User Templates are
located. That is where normal.dot should be located. Make sure that you have
hidden files and folders enabled in Windows Explorer options otherwise you
may not see normal.dot.

Are you able to locate it now? Also make sure that in the Word Startup
folder that no one has placed a normal.dot in there.

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