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table row drag-and-drop working oddly in Word 2013

Posted on 2014-01-03
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Last Modified: 2014-01-10
in Word 2013, when I select an entire table row and then drag it to another row location, being careful to drop it into the first column of that target row, it increases the columns width, removing the line wrap.  I want it to keep the same column widths.

Any help on removing this behavior would be appreciated.

Thanks!
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Question by:codequest
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by:DrTribos
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As a matter of curiosity - is it still a problem when you use Cut - Paste?

Is Drag - Drop essential?

Cheers,
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by:codequest
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Thanks for the question.  Cut and paste works.  Drag and drop is not essential, however, it's part of working procedures that I've used with Word for 15 years (i.e. using Word for informal action plans where the rows are moved around) so I'd very much like to have it.   ]

Plus having the column widths change on a row drop looks like a kludge or an error in the behavior of Word 2013;  why should that happen, or be a good idea to happen?
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by:DrTribos
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Hmmm... It would seem thtat the drag and drop behaviour has changed, MS seem to play this kind of trick on the rest of the world from time to time.  

In a nut shell (as far as I can see) you are stuck with 2 options:
1. Change the way you move rows
2. Use drag and Drop then fix the table

Both options can be made easier with some VBA running in the back ground.  You might also look at how you select the row for drag and drop...  

1. Test to find out if you are selecting the row.  Put cursor in row > use menus / ribbon to "Select Row" then see if you can drag and drop sucessfully...  Failing that a macro to move rows up / down might help

2. Do all your dragging and dropping then run a macro to repair the table... (option probably less desireable particularly if table has complex formatting).
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by:codequest
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Thanks for the input.  I appreciate your suggestions.

Were you able to test this on Word 2013?

I'm having a hard time believing that this behavior changed without a way to do something about it.  I figure of the 100Ms of Office users there are a few people who would use drag and drop to re-arrange Word table rows.  So I'm going to see if I can get more attention to this.
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DrTribos earned 500 total points
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OK - I just got my hands on a Word 13 PC and I think I have a solution for you.  I can confirm the behaviour HAS changed.  The PC is brand new out of the box with MS Office 13 preinstalled.  So far I am the only user.

Solution: put cursor in table and goto "Layout" tab on ribbon (in Cell Size Group).  Select the "Autofit" dropdown, select "Fixed Column Width"... Now try the drag and drop.

For me this preserved the table's column width.  

There might be a setting to make new tables default to fixed column width, but unfortunately this does look like a MS Fail.

HTH

Oh, if you have many tables you might run a macro to make each table Fixed Column Width.
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by:codequest
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Works great, and it makes sense that it's related to Autofit.  Small price to pay for the ability.

Thanks much!
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