Once you know how to turn on Word's Track Changes feature, you may want to be able to see the document in its original state and with all the changes without having to accept or reject changes (or what I often hear referred to as a "clean" copy). Here's an easy way to do that (with some caveats):
After all, it would be convenient, wouldn't it, to be able to print the document in its "final form" without losing your redline?
Briefly, if you want to show (and print) the document in what would be its final version (without having to accept all the changes and lose your revision history), this is the choice you'd make in the Markup dropdown in the Track Changes area of the Review tab:
So what do all these options mean?
- Original - Just like it sounds: it's the document before anything was inserted, deleted, moved, reformatted, etc.
- Original: Show Markup - Shows the original document with changes marked.
- Final: Show Markup - So how is this different? It's only going to be different if you chose to display any changes in balloons (within Track Changes Options) rather than inline. In that case, Original: Show Markup will show deletions inline and insertions in balloons, while Final: Show Markup will show insertions inline with deletions in balloons. (Confusing, right?)
- Final - Again, just like it sounds: it's the document shown as if all changes were accepted.
Word 2013 & up
- Original - The document before any changes were made.
- Simple Markup - Shows the document text as if all changes have been accepted, but displays a vertical line in the left margin indicating where changes have been made. To display the actual insertion/deletion/reformatting, click on the red vertical line in the left margin.
- All Markup - Shows all revisions marked; whether they're shown inline or in balloons in the right margin depends on the options you choose.
- No Markup - Analogous to "Final" in Word 2010 (i.e., the document as if all changes have been accepted)
Here are video demonstrations for each version:
(To view either video full screen, click the bottom button second from the right.)
Caveat: Don't confuse hiding the redlining with accepting/rejecting the changes. Those are not the same thing. If you plan to email the document, please be sure that all changes have been accepted or rejected and all comments deleted. You can use Word's Document Inspector or check with your systems administrator or IT person and ask if your firm has what's called a "metadata cleaner." This will keep the document from saving any hidden changes that might prove embarrassing to you or your firm.