Microsoft Office 2003 Making a Template & Locking

  AFoxyLady 18:21 29 Jan 2007

I need to make a document for an "Examination of Lifting Equipment". The document needs to have information inserted into titled boxes, and also to have "tick" boxes where an X can be inserted to indicate a Yes or No answer. I need the template to be locked, but the paragraphs where information needs to be added each time there is a different examination made, to be accesible. Is it best to use Word, or even Excel, and how to I protect the separate elements of the document.

  Forum Editor 19:53 29 Jan 2007

is create a form template, and here's how you do it in Word 2003:-

1. The heart of the form is the fields that you create for subsequent data entry. These take the place of the blanks on a pen-and-paper form, and come in several different types.

Text fields

These are basic data fields. They allow your users to enter text, which includes letters, numbers and symbols. You can control the length of these fields (the default length is unlimited) as well as the format of the text. You can force the text to be uppercase, lowercase, etc. Text fields can also contain numbers, and can even perform calculations with the numbers. They can also be set to contain the date or time.

Check box fields

To be used to mark a selection.

Drop-down form fields

These are drop-down boxes that allow you to give the user a list to choose from. They are limited to 25 entries.

2. The Forms toolbar

This has the buttons you need to create a form. To view it, go to the View menu, and select 'Toolbars' and then 'Forms'. You'll see(from left to right):

a) Insert text field

b) Insert check box

c) Insert drop-down box

d) Edit field options

e) Draw table

f) Insert table

g) Insert frame

h) Turn field shading on or off (This only affects what you see while working on the form; the fields are not shaded when you print)

i) Reset form fields

j) Lock form

3.Once the Forms toolbar is open, you can start placing form fields into the document.

4.It's a good idea to protect your form as you go along. Go to Tools and choose 'Protect document' On the menu on the right, click the “Allow only this type of editing” checkbox and choose “Filling in forms” from the drop-down menu. Click on the “Yes, Start Enforcing Protection” button.

5.When you've finished creating your form don't forget top save it. Make sure that it's locked, and then go to File and then choose 'Save As' Save your document as a template, which has a .dot extension. Make sure to save it in the same directory as your other templates. Whatever you do, don't inadvertantly name the file '' or Word will cease working properly.

6.To create a form from your template, go to File and choose 'New'. This will offer you a menu. Under Templates, click “On my computer”. That will offer you a list of your templates. Choose the one you just saved, and your form will be generated. It will be protected, so nobody can alter the formatting, and it will open with the cursor in the first field, ready for data entry.

Is that what you wanted?

  AFoxyLady 21:26 29 Jan 2007

Many thanks for your prompt reply - I will have a go tomorrow.

  Bramblerose 22:16 29 Jan 2007

I am also looking at designing a form but need to go a step further.

I need to create set sizes of text boxes for the information to be inputted rather than text fields, as when you press enter in a "normal" form, a new line is added and I want to keep the form to a set size. I know the users of this form will use the enter key instead of the tab key

I tried to use the control toolbox but when I protected and saved my form, I couldn't input text into the text boxes. I think I need to use some VBA code but I am stuck!

  woodchip 22:23 29 Jan 2007

Have a look hear click here

  Bramblerose 22:40 29 Jan 2007

But I would like to use Office if possible to create the form rather than downloading different programmes.

  Burpie 23:06 29 Jan 2007

You need to create a table and then put a text box into the parts of the table you want to use for data input.

It's a long time since I did this and I can't remember the exact steps I took, but it goes something like this:

Use the table toolbar to draw one cell of a table.

Right click it and use the various options to lock the height and width of the cell.

Now place the cursor inside the cell and on the Forms toolbar click the textbox option to place a textbox into the cell.

Right click, select Properties, and limit the text input to the maximum number of characters you want entered.

Press the padlock on the Forms toolbar to lock the form.

Now, when you press Enter, a new line shouldn't be added.

Experiment with one cell until you've got it to do what you want and then expand the table/textbox into a form.

As I say, it's a long time since I had to play around with this, but I got it to work well in the end.

  AFoxyLady 18:39 30 Jan 2007

I'd just like to say a Big Thanks to FE for the help provided. I have never used Forms at all, and to start with a blank sheet of paper and come up with what I needed has not been easy. However, I can now say I have achieved it, and I am well pleased, and secretly a bit proud!. I think the users of my template might be tempted to just hit the return button instead of TAB, but I am going to issue a set of full instructions, and hopefully this will work. Once again, THANKS.

  Forum Editor 19:21 30 Jan 2007

I'm pleased you have your form. Don't forget to back it up to a CD or some other external media, so that if something goes horribly wrong one day, and you have to start again, you will have the form safe and sound.

  Forum Editor 19:47 30 Jan 2007

You can set a limit to the number of characters permitted in a form field, so it won't increase in size. Just double click on the grey shaded area of the form field and you'll get a properties dialogue box, in which you can specify the maximum number of characters.

  Bramblerose 21:15 30 Jan 2007

Why did I not think of using tables!!

Thanks to Burpie for the idea. It seems to work fine.

Also, well done to AFoxyLady

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