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How to open multiple word documents at once

I select multiple files (say 5) with different extensions (e.g. docx, xlsx, jpg, pdf) and then hit Enter to open all of them at once. And nothing happens. It’s a basic think in Windows XP – Explorer, buy in Windows 10 File Explorer it seems it doesn’t work. I must do something wrong, I just cannot believe that a basic action in XP is imposibile to do in W10.

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I realize the inconvenience you are facing. Let me help you in resolving the issue.

I appreciate if you can provide us the following information to help us understand the issue better.

  • Which is the program you are using to view the file?
  • Did you try adding programs to the default list?
  • If yes, did you get any error code/error message while adding the programs?

Two conditions must be met for a program to appear in the default list:

The program must have registered itself as being capable of handling at least one file type.

At least one or the other program must have registered itself of being capable of handling at least one of those same file type(s).

Method 1: Follow the steps below to set the default programs and check if the issue is resolved.

Press Windows logo key on the keyboard, type Default programs and select the top most search result.

Click on Set your Default programs and select the programs listed in the left side panel of the window to set defaults.

Follow the on-screen instructions.

Close the window after setting the programs and check if the changes are effective.

Method 2: If the issue persists, follow the steps below and check if the issue is resolved.

Press Windows logo key on the keyboard, type Default programs and select the top most search result.

Click on Associate a file type or protocol with a program option from the window.

Click on the file type or protocol that you want to change and click on Change program.

Follow the on-screen instructions.

Close the window after setting the programs defaults and check if the changes are effective.

Write to us with the answers to the above questions and the status of the issue on the same post for further assistance. Your reply is most important for us to ensure we assist you accordingly.

How to open multiple word documents at once

If you’re working on multiple Word documents, it may be helpful to view some or all of them at once. There are a couple of different ways you can view multiple documents and even a way to view different parts of the same document at the same time.

To view multiple documents, open the documents you want to view and click the “View” tab. For this example, we opened two documents.

How to open multiple word documents at once

In the “Window” section of the “View” tab, click “View Side by Side”.

How to open multiple word documents at once

The two document windows are resized and positioned next to each other.

How to open multiple word documents at once

NOTE: You can only view two documents side by side. If you have more than two documents open, the “Compare Side by Side” dialog box displays. Select one document from the list that you want to view in addition to the current document and click “OK”.

How to open multiple word documents at once

If you want to scroll through both documents at the same time, click the “Synchronous Scrolling” button in the “Window” section of the “View” tab in one of the two documents. When you scroll in one document, the other document also scrolls.

How to open multiple word documents at once

To go back to the original size and placement of the two document windows, click the “View Side by Side” button in the “Window” section of one of the two document windows.

If you have more than two documents you want to view, you can stack your open windows to see them all at once.

NOTE: Depending on the size of your monitor, it might be difficult to view more than three or four documents.

To view multiple documents, open all the documents you want to view, click the “View” tab (if it’s not already active), and click “Arrange All” in the “Window” section.

How to open multiple word documents at once

The document windows are resized and stacked vertically. You can view all the documents at once, but you can scroll through and edit only one document at a time.

NOTE: The “Arrange All” feature cannot be “turned off” like the “View Side by Side” feature. To put the document windows back the way they were, you must manually resize them by dragging the edges and move them by dragging the title bars.

Word doesn’t arrange any document windows that are minimized. In addition, you may notice the ribbon disappearing if you try to arrange too many documents and the windows get too small.

How to open multiple word documents at once

You can click the “Maximize” button on a document window to resize it to full screen.

How to open multiple word documents at once

When the window is maximized, the “Maximize” button becomes the “Restore Down” button. Click the “Restore Down” button to return the window to its previous size.

How to open multiple word documents at once

You can even view two parts of the same document. To do this, click on the Word window for the document you want to view and click “Split” in the “Window” section of the “View” tab.

How to open multiple word documents at once

The current document is split into two parts of the window in which you can scroll and edit different parts of the document separately.

How to open multiple word documents at once

You can resize the split window by moving your cursor over the double line separating the two parts of the document until it turns into a double line with a double arrow. Click and drag the double line border up or down to resize the parts of the window.

How to open multiple word documents at once

To undo the split and go back to a single view of your document, click “Remove Split” button (which was the “Split” button before).

How to open multiple word documents at once

Remember that although you can view more than one document at a time, you can only edit one document at a time. The currently active document that can be edited is the one with the file name on the title bar that is NOT grayed out.

Save multiple Word documents instantaneously

Microsoft Word allows users to save multiple Word documents at once, then close them in one click. If you make changes to multiple open documents and then want to quickly save and close all of them, this can be achieved with very little effort.

In previous versions of Word 2003 or earlier, when holding the “Shift” key and clicking the “File” menu, the “Save” command would change to “Save All” and the “Close” command changed to “Close All.” That feature no longer applies to version 2007 through the current version of Microsoft Word 2016.

This change took place when the menu bar in Word 2007 was replaced by the ribbon; however, these commands are still available in all versions of Word. The steps below will show you how to add the “Save All” and “Close All” commands to the “Quick Access Toolbar” using version 2007 or later.

How to Add the “Save All” command to the Quick Access Toolbar

  1. Click the File menu
  2. Go to Options
  3. Click the Quick Access Toolbar from within in the left panel to reveal the Customize the Quick Access Toolbar options
  4. Choose Commands Not in the Ribbon from the “Choose commands from:” drop down menu
  5. Scroll down to select the Close All command
  6. Click Add to add the “Close All” command to the Quick Access Toolbar
  7. Go back and scroll down further to select the Save All command
  8. Click Add to add the “Save All” command to the Quick Access Toolbar
    How to open multiple word documents at once

When you’ve finished making your changes, click “OK” to accept them and close the “Word Options” dialog box. Now you can select the Save All or Close All button in your Quick Access Toolbar to save or close all open Word documents at once.

This topic presents the detailed step-by-step instructions how to update text (which is usually referred to as “search and replace”) in many Microsoft Word files.

1. Set the Files to Process

  1. Select the Microsoft Word Files tab.
  2. Now you have two options:
    • process only the files you select, or
    • process all files in a directory of your choice.

The latter option is more for the power users. If you are reading this topic then an assumption of you being a novice user is more than fair, so let’s focus on the files.

Click Add Files. :

How to open multiple word documents at once

The standard Windows file open dialog will show up. Select one or more files and click Open.

The files are now added to the files-to-process view:

How to open multiple word documents at once

  • There is one important thing to mention. The checkboxes you see on the right: are used with folders only, to denote that the folder’s subfolders are also to be scanned for files:How to open multiple word documents at onceWith files, these checkboxes are inactive and have no effect.
  • 2. Set Text to Find and Replace

    1. Now set the find and replace strings. Assume your company is moving from Nevada to Colorado, and your CEO is also changed.
    2. When you start the program for the first time, a sample row is automatically added to help you get started. If you deleted all the rows form the search/replace grid, add one by clicking on the left.
    3. So, in the text grid, click the first cell in the Find Text column. The cell will miraculously turn into a small text editor. Type “a Nevada Corporation” here: How to open multiple word documents at once
    4. Hit Enter to confirm entry. The editor will move to the Replace Text cell:
    5. Hit Enter again. This will move to the next row’s find text, or add a new row if required:
    6. To select areas in which the text of the current row will be searched for, you can click the third cell (in the Options column). Here, we have selected to search for the corporation and CEO names in the document body.
    7. Add more search and text as required.
    8. Here’s the final setup: How to open multiple word documents at onceWe have added a third row just for the purpose of this demo.

    Notice that you can change the search areas for more than one text row at a time: just select the rows and use the checkboxes in Select Microsoft Word Document Areas for Selected Rows group.

  • Now, click Replace to perform actual replacements, or Just Find to locate the documents containing the text: How to open multiple word documents at once
  • That’s all! Now you can use up the time you’ve just saved for something useful like playing Solitaire.
  • In this course:

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    When someone shares a Word document with you, the email you receive includes a link that opens the document in your web browser: in Word for the web. Select Edit Document > Edit in Browser.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    If anyone else is working on the document, you’ll see their presence and the changes they’re making. We call this coauthoring, or real-time collaboration.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    From here, if you’d rather work in your Word app, switch from Editing to Open in Desktop App, near the top of the window.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    Want a guided tour? Download this Collaborate in Word learning guide, or type Collaborate in the search box in File > New in Word (works best in versions 2016 and later for Windows).

    You’ll still be coauthoring, as long as you’re a Microsoft 365 subscriber, using one of these versions of Word:

    Word 2016 for Windows

    Word 2016 for Mac

    Word on a mobile device (Android, iOS, or Windows)

    If you’re using an older version of Word, or if you’re not a subscriber, you can still edit the document at the same time others are working in it, but you won’t have real-time collaboration. To see others’ changes and share yours, you’ll have to save the document from time to time.

    Documents with Macros (.docm)

    If your document contains macros (.docm), you can still edit and collaborate. You can open and edit the content like any other document, including running macros. If you need to edit the macro code, simply check out the file, edit the code, and check it back in.

    Microsoft Word is the world’s most widely-used document creation and processing program, with a market share of 42%, followed by Google Docs and Microsoft PowerPoint. The main file formats of Word documents are docx and doc.

    When you work with a large number of Word documents, finding specific text among them becomes quite difficult, unless you use special software. In Windows 10, you can use the capabilities of File Explorer, but searching with tool has a lot of inconveniences.

    Let’s look at the top 5 options for searching text in multiple Word documents.

    1. SeekFast

    The easiest and most convenient tool for searching text in multiple Word files is SeekFast. With this tool, you can quickly and efficiently search for a combination of words or phrases in your documents, and the results are sorted by relevance, similar to search on Google, Bing, and other search engines.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    SeekFast has a free and paid version. With the free version you can search in up to 50 files, and with the paid version up to 20,000 files at a time. The personal license for the paid version of SeekFast costs $47.

    Downloading and installing SeekFast from the Download page takes only a few seconds.

    You can see how to use SeekFast directly from File Explorer from the screenshot below.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    The biggest advantages of the program are:

    • You can search thousands of documents in just seconds.
    • You can search for combinations of words that are not next to each other in the text, similar to search engines.
    • The most relevant results are displayed first.
    • You can see all documents and sentences that contain the searched words.
    • You can view the text of the document without opening the file itself by clicking on the sentence in the results list.
    • You can open the document with one click.
    • You can start SeekFast directly from File Explorer
    • It supports all widely used document types, including MS Word, Excel, PDF, OpenOffice, LibreOffice, LaTeX, RTF, and text files.
    • It supports files of all popular programming languages ​​such as C, C ++, C #, Java, PHP, Python, Perl, JavaScript, and many more.

    Disadvantages of SeekFast:

    • In the free version you can search in up to 50 files at a time (up to 20,000 files in the paid version).

    2. File Explorer

    File Explorer is the built-in Windows program for working with files. The File Explorer search engine is primarily designed to search in file and folder names, and the search in texts of the documents is limited to certain file types and must be set up in the settings.

    To make the necessary settings to search in the text of the files, follow these steps:

    1. Open the folder you want to search in File Explorer, select the View menu and click the Options button

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    2. In the window that opens, click on the Search tab, select “Always search file names and contents” and click “OK”

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    After adjusting this setting, Windows will start indexing the texts of the documents in the folder you selected and its subfolders. When the indexing is complete, you will be able to search by typing the search words in the upper right corner of File Explorer.

    Keep in mind that searching the contents of your Word documents with File Explorer is at a very basic level and has some drawbacks:

    • You do not see the text found.
    • You cannot search for combinations of words.
    • You cannot sort the results by relevance.
    • The search is very slow when you have a large number of files.

    3. PowerGrep

    PowerGrep is a popular document search program developed by the Thai company Just Great Software. As the name of the program itself suggests, it has features similar to the grep command in Linux. This means that along with searching by words and phrases, you can also use regular expressions. PowerGrep supports various document types such as Word, Excel, PDF, OpenOffice, and more.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    PowerGrep does not have a free version. A license to use the program costs about $170 (139 EUR).

    The most significant advantages of the program are:

    • You can use regular expressions.
    • You see the sentences containing the searched words.
    • Wide range of search options.

    Disadvantages of the program include:

    • No free version.
    • You cannot search for combinations of words.
    • Complex interface.
    • Slow search in folders with large number of files.
    • You cannot open the files directly from the results screen.
    • You cannot see the context of the sentences found.

    4. Agent Ransack

    One of the oldest tools for searching text in documents is Agent Ransack, created in 2000 by the British company Mythicsoft. The program supports office documents such as Word, Excel, and OpenOffice. There is a free Lite version with limited functionality and a paid version. A standard license for the paid version costs $60.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    Advantages of Agent Ransack:

    • Simple and easy to use interface.
    • There is a free version.
    • Supports regular and Boolean expressions.
    • Displays sentences containing the searched words.

    The main disadvantages are:

    • Does not support word combinations – you can only search for single words.
    • Searching is slow and time consuming for folders with many files.
    • You must click on each file in the result windows to see the sentences containing the searched words.

    5. DocFetcher

    The last alternative we will introduce is DocFetcher – a free open source program that also has a paid version – DocFetcher Pro. This tool also has different filters – you can search by file format, maximum or minimum document size, and location.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    Although it has a large set of customizations, DocFetcher is similar to File Explorer.

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    Tip / Trick

    In MS Word, one would usually open one document at a time. Plus, there are different ways to open or load a document in Word. You can open a document right within the folder where it’s located or you can simply open the document right within Word. The thing is what if you want to open multiple documents in Word at the same time? Is that possible?

    Well, it is. If you still don’t know how to do it, just read and follow the instructions listed below.

    How to open multiple documents at once in Word

    • On your computer, launch Microsoft Office Word. Click “Start” then go to “All Programs”. Find the Microsoft Office folder and then click Microsoft Office Word.
    • Once you’re in Word, click the Office button at the top-left corner right above the ribbon then select “Open”.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    • On the open dialog box, go to the folder where your documents are located.
    • To select multiple files, just press and hold the “Ctrl” key on your keyboard and while doing so, select all of the files that you wish to open.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    • Click “Open” to confirm.
    • Now, if you wish to select multiple files or documents in one click, you may use the “Shift” key. However, this is only applicable if you want to open sequential files. So if you want to select ten sequential files, just press the “Shift” key and then click the last or tenth item. After that, all of the preceding documents will be automatically selected.
    • So that’s it. Just wait for the documents to be loaded in separate windows in Word and you’re all set.

    It is sometimes beneficial to view two different parts of the same document or multiple documents at the same time. You can accomplish this by working with multiple windows. The following steps will show you how to split the window the document is in, add a new window and then arrange the windows such that you can view them side by side, and arrange windows to view multiple different documents simultaneously.

    This feature works the same in all modern versions of Microsoft Word: 2010, 2013, and 2016.

    Splitting a Window to View Different Parts of One Document in One Window

    Splitting a window enables you to view different parts of one document at one time. To split a window:

    1. From the VIEW tab in the Window group, click Split .
    2. The split line will appear in the center of your document. Click your mouse to accept that position or move your mouse up or down before clicking to change the location.
    3. Place your cursor above and below the split line and experiment with scrolling each section independently.
    4. Click Remove Split to get rid of the split line.

    Open a Second Window to View One Document in Two Windows

    It is possible to have the same document open in two different windows at the same time. You can then view them side by side, which makes it easy to see different parts of the document at the same time. Depending on what you are trying to accomplish, this is often more efficient than splitting the document. To view your document in two windows simultaneously:

    1. From the VIEW tab in the Window group, click New Window .
      How to open multiple word documents at once
    2. To view the two windows side by side, click View Side by Side .
      How to open multiple word documents at once
    3. Changes you make in either window will also appear in the other window. To get back to one window, simply close one of the windows.

    Arranging Windows such that All Open Windows get Equal Screen Space

    If you have multiple documents or windows of one document open and want to view all at the same time, you can easily do so.

    1. From the VIEW tab in the Window group, click Arrange All .
      How to open multiple word documents at once
    2. To maximize one of the windows, simply click the Maximize box in the upper right corner of the window.
    3. To change the way the windows are laid out on your screen, simply drag the windows to the size you want.

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    Webucator provides instructor-led training to students throughout the US and Canada. We have trained over 90,000 students from over 16,000 organizations on technologies such as Microsoft ASP.NET, Microsoft Office, Azure, Windows, Java, Adobe, Python, SQL, JavaScript, Angular and much more. Check out our complete course catalog.

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    Microsoft Word is a top-notch word processor using which you can save documents in .doc, .docx, and different other formats. When you need to send a document to someone who doesn’t have Office Word installed, you usually convert the document to PDF and send it.

    As you may have known, Microsoft Word lets you convert or save a document (.doc or .docx file) as a PDF file using the Save As dialog.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    Open the document, and launch the Save as dialog. Select PDF (*.pdf) from the list and save the file.

    Another option would be to use the Microsoft Print to PDF driver in Windows 10 to output the .doc or .docx file to a .pdf document. For this, you’d use the Print option (instead of Save as) to print the document to PDF.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    Pre-Windows 10 systems don’t have the Microsoft Print to PDF driver. In those systems. you can use the free CutePDF Writer or Foxit PDF Printer (part of Foxit PDF Reader software.)

    But, if you have tens or hundreds of Word documents that you want to convert to PDF, using the GUI option would be a time-consuming and tiring task.

    This article tells you how to batch convert multiple .doc or .docx files to PDF files using Windows Script and other methods.

    How to Batch Convert Word Documents into PDF Files

    Method 1: Using a custom VBScript

    Microsoft Office has automation or scripting support. Using a VBScript, you can bulk convert Word documents to PDF. Here is a simple script I wrote to do the job:

    Convert Word documents to PDF using VBScript

    1. Copy the above VBScript code to Notepad.
    2. Save the file with a .vbs extension, and in a permanent folder. — e.g., d:\scripts\doc2pdf.vbs
      How to open multiple word documents at once
    3. Close Notepad.
    4. Open File Explorer and browse the following SendTo folder:
    5. Create a shortcut to the script doc2pdf.vbs in the SendTo folder.
    6. Prefix the shortcut target with wscript.exe and then followed by a space.
      How to open multiple word documents at once
    7. Optionally, assign a nice-looking icon by clicking on the Change Icon button.
    8. Name the shortcut accordingly — e.g., Convert Word Docs to PDF

    9. Now, open the folder that contains the Word documents that you want to convert to PDF.
    10. Select the documents, right-click on the selection, and click Send to.
    11. Click Convert Word Docs to PDF in the Send to menu.
      How to open multiple word documents at onceThat’s it! Your PDF files are now ready!
      How to open multiple word documents at once

    Method 2: Using File Converter (Freeware)

    File Converter is a simple tool which allows you to convert or compress one or several files using the context menu in Explorer. This program is Freeware!

    After you install the software, all you need to do is select the .doc or .docx files you want to convert, click File Converter in the right-click menu and select To Pdf

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    It shows you the conversion status with the progress bar.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    Command-line

    To convert a .docx file to .pdf using command-line using File Converter, use this syntax:

    Note that this program can convert many file formats to different output formats. You can configure the presets and output format in the File Converter Settings window.

    How to open multiple word documents at once

    Here is the list of the input and output formats supported by File Converter.

    Supported output formats Compatible input formats
    Audio flac, aac, ogg, mp3, wav 3gp, aiff, ape, avi, bik, cda, flac, flv, m4a, mkv, mov, mp3, mp4, oga, ogg, wav, webm, wma, wmv
    Video webm, mkv, mp4, ogv, avi, gif 3gp, avi, bik, flv, gif, m4v, mkv, mp4, mpeg, mov, ogv, webm, wmv
    Image png, jpg, ico, webp bmp, exr, ico, jpg, jpeg, png, psd, svg, tiff, tga, webp, pdf, doc*, docx*, odt*, odp*, ods*, ppt*, pptx*, xls*,
    xlsx*
    Document pdf doc*, docx*, odt*, odp*, ods*, ppt*, pptx*, xls*, xlsx*, bmp, exr, ico, jpg, jpeg, png, psd, svg, tiff, tga

    * You need to have Microsoft Office installed and activated in order to convert Office documents.

    This program, as well as the VBScript method, use Microsoft Office Word automation method to convert .doc or .docx to PDF files. This means that you’ll need to have Office installed for the program to convert your Word documents.