The one where I break Word

I was editing a template today and trying to get some Quick Parts in Word 2013 to automatically update and populate data from the document properties – this ensures that certain fields would automatically be filled in when creating a new document based on this template, which works really well for fields that need to be filled in like Author, Date, Client name, and so forth.

At any rate, I was messing around trying to get these fields to update from the document properties on a SharePoint library without having to close and re-open the document, and all of a sudden, my document fields were replaced with curly braces and a bunch of weird code… like this:

I restored a previous version of the document, I rebooted, I even did a repair of Office but nothing would fix it… I broke Word! Thankfully, all was not lost – if you’re reading this and you’re in the same spot as me – here’s the answer:

Hit Alt-F9!

Turns out there is a key combination that shows the code view in a Word document, and I found it… boy, did I find it! Just press Alt-F9 again, and all is right with the world once more.

That will teach me to try random key combinations to see if I can auto refresh a quick part field!

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