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Linking documents relatively in Word 2007 and exporting to pdf

Posted on 2011-10-18
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Hi,

I have a main Word document in a certain folder, from which I want to make relative links to documents in one or more subfolders. Then, I want to convert this main document to pdf.

I'll send this pdf and all files in subfolders to another person. This person should be capable of clicking in pdf links and having the proper documents opened.

I'm not getting this right now because when I create a link in Word, it has a full path beginning with file:///G:/...

How could I resolve this?

Thanks in advance,

 Eduardo
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Question by:eloureiro
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LVL 21

Expert Comment

by:Eric Fletcher
ID: 37001362
By default, the links in the field code will include the full path. However, as long as your linked files are consistently in the same relative location oto the Word document, you can edit the path names to remove all of the common parts of the path. Luckily, you can do this easily with Find and Replace.

Say for example that your Word document includes links using the path G:\Clients\B321\Report\Images, with your Word document in the G:\Clients\B321\Report directory.

1. Use Alt-F9 to toggle the view of the field codes and go to the first one
2. Copy the full path from within the field code (it will have the single \s as \\ within the field code)
3. Use Ctrl-H to bring up the Find and Replace dialog. Paste into the Find what box.
4. Press Tab to get to the Replace with box and type Images (alternatively, paste again and erase the part of the path that is shared between the Word document and the linked items)
5. Click Replace All
6. Toggle the field code view back to results (Alt-F9); select the whole document (Ctrl-A); and update your field codes (F9)

As noted, this will only work if the linked files are included with the Word document -- and are saved in the same relative path in the new user's setup.

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Author Comment

by:eloureiro
ID: 37014629
Thanks,
I'll try it soon.
Right now, I'm travelling, far from the files.

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Author Comment

by:eloureiro
ID: 37019993
Hi, Eric.

It's not working.

Using you example... when I replace "G:\Clients\B321\Report\Images" for "Images", the beginning of the link changes from "file:///G:\Clients\B321\Report\Images" to just "/Images": the "file:///" reference doesn't show up. When I click the new link, it opens my browser instead of opening the file.

Thanks,

 Eduardo

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Author Comment

by:eloureiro
ID: 37020501
Hi,

I've solved the problem with information I've found here:
http://www.wordtipsandtricks.com/how-do-i/how-to-create-absolute-and-relative-hyperlinks-in-word-20072003-documents/982/

Thanks, Eric and all!

 Eduardo
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Author Comment

by:eloureiro
ID: 37025577
I've requested that this question be closed as follows:

Accepted answer: 0 points for eloureiro's comment http:/Q_27402846.html#37020501

for the following reason:

It was just a configuration problem. I guess I thought the problem was bigger than it really was.
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LVL 21

Accepted Solution

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Eric Fletcher earned 1000 total points
ID: 37020769
Just to clarify, I assume you creating a Word document with links to PDF documents. You want to save this as a master PDF so your users can open the linked PDFs from links you've created in the master PDF.

From your description of the symptoms (and if my assumptions are correct), this sounds like a hyperlink base issue. Your document is set up to use absolute hyperlinks, so the full path is included when you create a hyperlink. The normal default setting is to use the relative hyperlinks you will need. To change this, refer to the steps for Word 2007 in this Microsoft page about creating absolute hyperlinks to learn how to reverse the setting to use relative hyperlink addresses.

I'm using Word 2010 so there may be some differences in how it operates. I used the Insert Hyperlink dialog to make a relative link to two PDF files located at the same level and within a subfolder. From Word, both open properly as PDFs within Adobe Reader as I would expect. Two other links -- one relative, and one absolute -- to JPG images in subfolders open using my browser (again, as I would expect).

However, when I then save the file as a PDF (using Word's Save As options), the resulting PDF acts a bit differently. The links cause an Adobe security warning to pop up: if I allow the file to open, it opens within a tab in my browser. This Adobe page attempts to explain the issue, but it does not explain why the option to allow for all such files is ignored, so I need to go through the dialog each time. I assume there is a setting to help manage this, but it does mean that your users will need to go through the hassle at least once if the issue comes up if you are distributing this as a PDF master file.
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LVL 21

Expert Comment

by:Eric Fletcher
ID: 37020807
Good one Eduardo! Looks like you found similar info while I had your question open in a different window. The page you found is actually more informative than the Microsoft page I provided. These configuration problems are actually often much more difficult to diagnose than just not understanding a feature.

I have no objection to closing the question.

Eric
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Author Comment

by:eloureiro
ID: 37025578
EricFletcher posted a better answer.
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Author Closing Comment

by:eloureiro
ID: 37025584
That's it, Eric. Thanks.
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