Saving and Sharing Documents

Save and share Microsoft Word 2016 documents to your computer or OneDrive account. Use the export as PDF Word function as well.

Introduction

Video: Saving and Sharing Documents

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When you create a new document in Word, you'll need to know how to save it so you can access and edit it later. As with previous versions of Word, you can save files to your computer. If you prefer, you can also save files to the cloud using OneDrive. You can even export and share documents directly from Word.

OneDrive was previously called SkyDrive. There's nothing fundamentally different about the way OneDrive works; it's just a new name for an existing service. Over the next few months, you may still see SkyDrive in some Microsoft products.

Save and Save As

Word offers two ways to save a file: Save and Save As. These options work in similar ways, with a few important differences:

To save a document:

It's important to save your document whenever you start a new project or make changes to an existing one. Saving early and often can prevent your work from being lost. You'll also need to pay close attention to where you save the document so it will be easy to find later.

  1. Locate and select the Save command on the Quick Access toolbar.
    Screenshot of Word 2013Clicking the Save command
  2. If you're saving the file for the first time, the Save As pane will appear in Backstage view.
  3. You'll then need to choose where to save the file and give it a file name. To save the document to your computer, select Computer, then click Browse. Alternatively, you can click OneDrive to save the file to your OneDrive.
    Screenshot of Word 2013Clicking Browse
  4. The Save As dialog box will appear. Select the location where you want to save the document.
  5. Enter a file name for the document, then click Save.
    Screenshot of Word 2013Saving a document
  6. The document will be saved. You can click the Save command again to save your changes as you modify the document.

You can also access the Save command by pressing Ctrl+S on your keyboard.

Using Save As to make a copy

If you want to save a different version of a document while keeping the original, you can create a copy. For example, if you have a file named Sales Report, you could save it as Sales Report 2 so you'll be able to edit the new file and still refer back to the original version.

To do this, you'll click the Save As command in Backstage view. Just like when saving a file for the first time, you'll need to choose where to save the file and give it a new file name.

Screenshot of Word 2013Clicking Save As

To change the default save location:

If you don't want to use OneDrive, you may be frustrated that OneDrive is selected as the default location when saving. If you find it inconvenient to select Computer each time, you can change the default save location so Computer is selected by default.

  1. Click the File tab to access Backstage view.
    Screenshot of Word 2013Clicking the File tab
  2. Click Options.


    Screenshot of Word 2013Clicking Options
  3. The Word Options dialog box will appear. Select Save, check the box next to Save to Computer by default, then click OK. The default save location will be changed.
    Screenshot of Word 2013Changing the default save location

AutoRecover

Word automatically saves your documents to a temporary folder while you are working on them. If you forget to save your changes or if Word crashes, you can restore the file using AutoRecover.

To use AutoRecover:

  1. Open Word 2013. If autosaved versions of a file are found, the Document Recovery pane will appear.
  2. Click to open an available file. The document will be recovered.


    Screenshot of Word 2013The Document Recovery pane

By default, Word autosaves every 10 minutes. If you are editing a document for less than 10 minutes, Word may not create an autosaved version.

If you don't see the file you need, you can browse all autosaved files from Backstage view. Select the File tab, click Manage Versions, then choose Recover Unsaved Documents.

Screenshot of Word 2013Accessing all auto-saved files

Exporting documents

Be default, Word documents are saved in the .docx file type. However, there may be times when you need to use another file type, such as a PDF or Word 97-2003 document. It's easy to export your document from Word in a variety of file types.

To export a document as a PDF file:

Exporting your document as an Adobe Acrobat document, commonly known as a PDF file, can be especially useful if you're sharing a document with someone who does not have Word. A PDF file will make it possible for recipients to view—but not edit—the content of your document.

  1. Click the File tab to access Backstage view.
  2. Click Export, then select Create PDF/XPS.


    Screenshot of Word 2013Exporting a PDF file
  3. The Save As dialog box will appear. Select the location where you want to export the document, enter a file name, then click Publish.


    Screenshot of Word 2013Exporting a PDF file

By default, Word will export all of the pages in the document. If you want to export only the current page, click Options in the Save as dialog box. The Options dialog box will appear. Select Current page, then click OK.

Screenshot of Word 2013Exporting the current page

If you need to edit a PDF file, Word allows you to convert a PDF file into an editable document. Read our guide on Editing PDF Files for more information.

To export a document in other file types:

You may also find it helpful to export your document in other file types, such as a Word 97-2003 Document if you need to share with people using an older version of Word, or a .txt file if you need a plain text version of your document.

  1. Click the File tab to access Backstage view.
  2. Click Export, then select Change File Type.


    Screenshot of Word 2013Clicking Change File Type
  3. Select a file type, then click Save As.


    Screenshot of Word 2013Choosing another file type
  4. The Save As dialog box will appear. Select the location where you want to export the document, enter a file name, then click Save.
    Screenshot of Word 2013Saving as a Word 97-2003 document

You can also use the Save as type: drop-down menu in the Save As dialog box to save documents in a variety of file types.

Screenshot of Word 2013Using the Save As type menu to choose a file type

Sharing documents

Word 2013 makes it easy to share and collaborate on documents using OneDrive. In the past, if you wanted to share a file with someone you could send it as an email attachment. While convenient, this system also creates multiple versions of the same file, which can be difficult to organize.

When you share a document from Word 2013, you're actually giving others access to the exact same file. This lets you and the people you share with edit the same document without having to keep track of multiple versions.

In order to share a document, it must first be saved to your OneDrive.

To share a document:

  1. Click the File tab to access Backstage view, then click Share.
    Screenshot of Word 2013Clicking Share
  2. The Share pane will appear.

Click the buttons in the interactive below to learn more about different ways to share a document.

labeled graphic

Post to Blog

From here, you can use Word to post entries directly to your blog if you use one of the supported blogging sites such as SharePoint Blog, WordPress, or Blogger.

Present Online

From here, you can share your document online as a live presentation. This may be especially helpful during conference calls.

Word will generate a link others can open in their web browser. You can pause to make changes to the document and then resume the presentation.

Email

From here, you can share your document directly through Microsoft Outlook 2013.

Post to Social Networks

From here, you can post a link to your document on any social network you've connected with your Microsoft account, such as Facebook or LinkedIn. You'll also have the option to include a personal message and set editing permissions.

Get a Sharing LInk

From here, you can obtain a link you can use to share your document. For example, you could post the link on your blog or email it to a larger group of people. You can decide if the link allows people to edit or simply view the document.

Invite People

From here, you'll be able to invite others to view or edit a document. We recommend using this option most of the time because it gives you the greatest level of control and privacy when sharing a document.

This option is selected by default whenever you access the Share pane.

Share Options

This pane will change depending on which sharing method you select. You'll be able to choose various options to control how you share your presentation.

For example, you can decide if the people you share with will have permissions to edit or simply view the document.

Challenge!

  1. Create a new blank document.
  2. Use the Save command to save the document to your desktop.
  3. Save the document to OneDrive and invite someone else to view it.
  4. Export the document as a PDF file.