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How do I copy building blocks/auto text entries from one template to another?

I have a number of auto text and building block entries in Template 1. I want to copy the entries to Template 2. This way I can distribute the template to others, and they will have access to the entries.

I have searched for a suitable method to do so with no luck. I have read a number of articles about methods that can be used to deploy the entries in the BuildingBlocks.dotx file or other similarly named file. In short fashion, the deployment methods will not work for my needs. The users that I need to share the templates with travel, which means they typically dont have access to a shared directory on a server. Its also not feasible to explain to a large number of users how to utilize a shared template with the building blocks. Its not feasible to expect the users to use a custom BuildingBlocks.dotx file on their computers.

The best method for sharing entries for my needs is to provide the users with a template that contains the entries. That is, when I create the building blocks (reuse auto text from templates created in Word 2003), I save them in a specific template not BuildingBlocks.dotx. This makes it possible to use the template and entries while not connected to the network.

In Word 2003, I used Tools>Templates and Add Ins>Organizer to copy auto text entries, macros, and styles between templates, i.e., from Template 1 to Template 2.

It appears this is another TAKE AWAY  thank you Microsoft for Office 2007.

In Word 2007, the Developer>Macros>Organizer dialog box has Style and Macro Project Items tabs, but there is no longer an Auto Text tab.

I have tried these steps using Building Blocks Organizer.

Open Template 1  the source.
Open Template 2  the target.
In Template 1, open Building Blocks Organizer.
Select an entry.
Click Edit Properties.
In the Modify Building Block dialog box, attempt to save the entry in Template 2.
The Save in list does not contain the name of Template 2.

I can do this.

Open Template 1.
Insert the entry.
Copy and paste the entry in Template 2.
Create a new building block entry and save it in Template 2.

I have several target templates and several entries that need to be available in all. Repeating the steps above will be labor intensive to say the least.
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1 Solution
Joanne M. OrzechManager, Document Services CenterCommented:
Would it be possible to have one template with all the autotext entries you need, and then attach that template to your other documents?  Is that feasible?
Joanne M. OrzechManager, Document Services CenterCommented:

Save In   Building Blocks can only be saved in templates. You can save Building Blocks in Building Blocks.dotx (selected by default), Normal.dotm, or a global template so that they are available to all open documents. They can also be saved in a document template that makes the Building Blocks available only to documents using that template. The Save In list contains Building Blocks.dotx, Normal.dotm, loaded global templates, the attached document template for the active document if it's a template other than Normal.dotm, and any saved template provided that it is open and the current file. If you are creating Building Blocks to share with others, you want to save your Building Blocks in a separate template so you can distribute them.
wilsonccAuthor Commented:
Thanks for trying to help.

I understand the concept of saving all the entries in one template and attaching that (primary) template to all other (secondary) templates. Unless I am missing something, this means that I would have to share the primary template with the entries with all the users. Then the users would have to attach the template to all the secondary templates. This is not feasible because I would have to explain to others here how to attach templates and trust that they do so. I don't think they will take the time to read the instructions and attach the templates. It's sometimes difficult to get them to use auto text (building blocks) in a template when all they have to do is select from a list.

I understand the steps for saving entries in different templates. But rather than opening each template, inserting the building block and going through the save process, I am looking for an easier way to copy the blocks from template to another. That is, I would like to be able to use an organizer to copy blocks in the same manner that I can copy styles and macros from one template to another.

Thanks again.
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Joanne M. OrzechManager, Document Services CenterCommented:
No one would have to attach anything - that's your job..... but what I'm suggesting is pushing a global template that contains all the building blocks - call it "YourCompany.dotx" or whatever.... and put it in their startup folder.  Then the building blocks will be available in all documents.... with no need to copy or attach anything.
wilsonccAuthor Commented:
I have a better understanding of your original suggestion now.  Your idea of a global template would work if we only used one template, However, we use multiple templates, and some of the templates share the same blocks but differ in styles, formatting, layout, etc.

In the past I have created the blocks in Normal.dot so that they are always available for my needs in all documents created (based) on the Normal template. Then I would copy the blocks to other templates as needed, e.g., Template_1.dot and Template_2.dot.
Joanne M. OrzechManager, Document Services CenterCommented:
It really shouldn't matter at all about styles.... if you have the style already applied in the Word document, let's say - Heading 2, then insert your Building Block, it will take on Heading 2 style - essentially, there is not need to worry about the formatting of your building blocks .... so maybe I'm not understanding just how different these building blocks are...?

wilsonccAuthor Commented:
Sorry to mislead you regarding the styles. You are right the styles really don't matter. I also mentioned layout and formatting only to say the templates are different.

Let's try this example. I have two templates. I have building blocks XYZ, DEF, HJK, and ABC in Normal.dotm. I want to copy XYZ, DEF, and ABC from Normal.dotm to Template 1 but not Template 2.  To make XYZ, DEF, and ABC available only in Template 1. I want to make DEF and HJK available in only Template 2.

To do this, I have to open each template, insert the corresponding blocks and save the templates. This is cumbersome and may be the only method. But in Word 2003, I could open the Organizer and copy auto text with fewer clicks.

We keep discussing work arounds, i.e., a way to deploy the blocks in one template. I don't think there is a suitable work around to deploy the blocks in one template. I need to be able to add the blocks to each template, which I can do using the Save In function.

The solution to the problem would be to find a way to copy the blocks from one template to another. So the questions are: Have I missed something? Is there a way to copy auto text (blocks) between templates as you could in Word 2003, i.e., is the functionality hidden in Word 2007 as so many commands are? Or, did Microsoft disable this functionality just like many other functions have been disabled.
What we do is push a copy of our Firm Building Block template to each user in their personal building blocks location. That way the template is automatically loaded as an additional template.

We deploy to C:\Documents and Settings\[UserName]\Application Data\Microsoft\Document Building Blocks\1033

Then each time Word is opened the information stored in the template is available to the user. I as the administrator make necessary changes and push the template back out.

As for copying building block objects from one template to another. Go to the Insert Tab, Select Quick Parts from the text group. Choose Building Block Organizer. Select the necessary Building Block and then choose Edit Properties. This will allow you to change where the component is Saved. Very tedious the first time through - but once you get it set to an alternate template, then it will be much easier to maintain.

Dawn Crosier-Bleuel
Word MVP
wilsonccAuthor Commented:
Thanks dlc110161. I appreciate your trying to help.

I have looked at the options you suggested.

I dont have the ability to push a template to the users in the company. I am going to talk with our Operations department. I might be able to get those folks to help. I do think there are some potential issues I will have to discuss with Operations. For example, can the template be pushed to a select group of people, as not everyone in the company needs the building blocks objects? If I dont push the template to all users and a user transfers into department using the objects, how do I push the template to one person?

I tried using the Building Blocks Organizer as you suggested by following these steps to accomplish this goal: copy (not move) Block1 that exists in Normal.dotm (the source) and put the copy in Template1.dotm (the target).

Create and save Block1 in Normal.dotm.
Open Template1.dotm.
Focus on Normal.dotm.
Open Building Blocks Organizer
Select Block1.
Click Edit Properties to open the Modify Building Block dialog box.
In the Save in list, select Template1.dotm.
Click OK.
Close both templates (saving changes when prompted).

Open Template1.dotm (or new document based on template).
Open Building Blocks Organizer.
Block1 is correctly associated with Template1.dotm.

Close Template1.dotm
Open Normal.dotm.
Open Building Blocks Organizer.
Block1 is no longer associated with Normal.dotm, i.e., it cant be inserted in documents based on Normal.dotm.

The steps above result in Block1 being moved to the target (Template1.dotm), not copied. Did I miss something? I want Block1 to be available in both Normal.dotm and Template1.dotm after the operation.

Using the Organizer shown in the attachment that was available in Word 2003, I could easily copy auto text entries from one template to another.

Of course, in Word 2007, I can open each target template, insert Block1, and save the changes. Seems this is the only viable (but labor intensive) work around, as Microsoft has seen fit to remove the copy functionality.

Unfortunately MS did not provide a method to copy the BB. I'll see what I can turn up in the way of some VBA code. (Yes, my instructions were how to move from one template to another.)

I have several BB templates all stored in my BB folder. I learned early on that messing around with the MS Bulding Blocks.dotx was a quick way to get it corrupted and then rebuilt back to MS specs. :(

Therefore, I have several BB templates in my folder. The standard one is the one I push out to the firm, while the other other one is a personal one. Everyone has thier own personal BB template.

Dawn Crosier-Bleuel
Word MVP
wilsonccAuthor Commented:
I appreciate your offer to look for a way to use VBA code. I don't really think the issue is worth that much trouble. I have a work around and can only hope that MS will see the need to return the functionality.

Let's consider the issue closed.

Thanks for all your help.
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