Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Word Quickie: Document Properties

When creating Office Documents, is'a good idea to fill in Document Properties. This metadata (like Title, Subject, Category, Keywords, ...) not only describes the document better, but it also will make it easier to find the document afterwards, as most desktop search programs will use the metadata to index the document.

In Office 2003, you could get to the Document Properties by selecting the Properties... from the File menu. In Office 2007, I expected it to be in the View or Review tab of the Ribbon, but it is somewhere else: you need to click the Microsoft Office button and select Prepare:

The idea behind the Prepare button is to consolidate all actions you might want to take when a document is ready to be published. There's some logic to putting the Document Properties there, although I would recommend starting with defining the Properties when creating a new document, rather than filling them in when the document is final, almost like an afterthought.

When selecting Properties, you get a pane at the top of the document for the common properties:If you need custom properties, you click the Document Properties button, to get to the Advanced Properties:
This will open a dialog box that looks very much like the Office 2003 one, with a custom tab for custom properties, but also other information like Statistics:

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