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Barry MacDonnell's
Toolbox for WordPerfect

Macros, tips, and templates for Corel® WordPerfect® for Windows®
© Copyright 1996-2022 by Barry MacDonnell. All Rights Reserved.

Page updated Apr 28, 2021

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See also -

Miscellaneous tips for using QuickWords
(below in next column)

Managing and troubleshooting your QuickWords (
below in next column; includes methods to find and repair the QuickWords file, how to migrate QuickWords to another version of WordPerfect, etc.)

, QuickMacros and other boilerplate methods


  In WordPerfect 8 (c.1997) and later versions, you can use a QuickWord (on the Tools, QuickWords menu) to instantly insert material in your document.

  QuickWords are not just for words. There are many things you can insert with a QuickWord. For example, you can insert -

•  large blocks — even multiple pagesof boilerplate material
•  letterhead images, custom page margins, and other custom page settings
•  logos, photos, text boxes, and other graphic images
•  headers, footers, and watermarks
•  mailing addresses and custom envelope return addresses
•  signature blocks
•  cover sheets 
•  custom styles and preferred outlines (i.e., the format codes to create them)
•  specially formatted ...

- paragraphs (e.g., tab sets; custom indents; borders)
- tables (special sizes, filled tables)
- columns (typically created with Format, Columns) 
- character names, locations, etc., in a screenplay or novel
- document stamps ("Confidential")
... the list is almost endless. 

  QuickWords can speed up your work and help eliminate typing and formatting errors. If you need to use the same material again in the current document or in future documents, consider using QuickWords.

  Basically, a QuickWord is an abbreviated form (or abbreviation) of something you wish to insert in the document. It is composed of a few unique, easy-to-remember characters that you type into the document.

Note: Some utility programs call this abbreviation a "hotstring" i.e., a string of characters that act like a single shortcut key or "hotkey" but without the need to press (e.g.) the Ctrl key or the Alt key.

Typically the characters are preceded by a special "trigger key" or "signal key" such as a backslash (e.g., \name, \logo, etc.) or by any other rarely used character (e.g., ~joe, or `123).

Though it is not a requirement for a QuickWord to function, using a trigger key is strongly recommended.

Using a leading character symbol or number, for example, helps prevent the abbreviated form from being accidentally expanded if it is the same as some other normal word you might use or something that QuickCorrect might recognize, such as those used in the examples in the previous paragraph (name, logo, Joe, etc.).

In a sense, it signals WordPerfect (and you) that what follows should be treated as a QuickWord.

On the other hand, QuickCorrect does not require them and they probably should not be used in QuickCorrect since that feature is used to make automatic corrections and/or to "speed type." Using a backslash (e.g.) with QuickWords is a good way to differentiate between these two program features.


•  QuickWords are not case sensitive, so the same upper- or lower-case characters used as a QuickWord abbreviation will be be treated the same. Hence (for example) an abbreviation can be typed as ~joe, ~JOE, ~Joe, or any upper/lower case combination of the letters.

•  QuickWrods cannot natively handle possessives (e.g., Smith's) the way QuickCorrect can (using the trick here], but if you need to use them you can simply create a second version of the QuickWord with a similar abbreviation — e.g., ~joe and ~joes, where the "s" version will expand to the possessive form.

  QuickWords expand automatically into whatever you have previously assigned to the QuickWord. When you type the QuickWord into a document and follow it with either a space, a tab, or a hard return (i.e., <Enter> key) — sometimes called the activation key the assigned material is immediately and quickly inserted as a block (i.e., not character-by-character) at the cursor location, similar to WordPerfect's Insert, File feature.
Note: This assumes you have enabled the QuickWord feature.
See "How to create, use, and revise QuickWords" below.

Tip: You can optionally expand all QuickWord abbreviations in the document at once at a later time with a Corel shipping macro; see here. Or you can expand just a single QuickWord using a macro assigned to a menu, toolbar button, or shortcut key (explained here); to record such a macro see here, or see the one-line macro example in the Notes below.
  QuickWords are stored in their own special QuickWords template, so they are available in any document. Each WordPerfect version has its own QuickWords template. See "Managing and Troubleshooting your QuickWords" below for more on where the Quickwords template is stored so you can back it up, migrate its entries, fix it, etc.

  Finally:  QuickWords are similar to — but for some tasks more powerful than — the QuickCorrect feature. Each has advantages and disadvantages, and you might want to compare them to each other and to other methods of inserting boilerplate material.

How to create, use, and revise QuickWords

To create a QuickWord . . .

[This is easier to do than it might appear from the steps below.]

(1)  Set up or otherwise display the material you wish to quickly insert later in the current (or future) document.

This typically includes a contiguous block of text — even several long paragraphs or several pages — along with any desired WordPerfect formatting or graphics, but it can be just a formatting element such as the codes for a special watermark, footer, table, etc.

This is the material the QuickWord will insert in a document any time you need it.

Tip: It is sometimes useful to do this in a new, blank document (unless you also want to also "capture" some material in the current document). For example, you could type several "boilerplate" paragraphs, complete with formatting. Or you could set up your letter's entire closing (even with a scanned graphic signature "anchored" to the closing's paragraph; see the tip below). Use any styles or other formatting you wish, even tables or columns.

If you do this while editing a custom template (.wpt), and proceed with the next steps to create the QuickWord, the QuickWord will be stored in that template, not in the special QuickWords template. Thus it will not be available in other documents created from different templates, such as the standard default template. While storing QuickWords in a custom template might be useful in certain circumstances, such as in an automated template, most users probably should set up the QuickWord material in an ordinary document or in a blank document, not inside a custom template, and proceed with the next steps. (If you want to do it anyway, see the tip below.)

(2)  Select the text, graphics, and any related format codes to ensure you capture everything for the new QuickWord.


•  Selection may be easier using Reveal Codes and placing the insertion cursor just to the immediate left (or right) of the material
particularly any relevant format codes — and then hold down the <Shift> key while pressing the <RightArrow> (or <LeftArrow>) key to "paint" the material.

Some users find this easier and more accurate than using a mouse to select text with adjacent codes
and especially when selecting just codes.

Note that you can also select the material either from left to right or from right to left on a line. Also, for larger blocks of material, from either top to bottom or bottom to top.

•  While you can also select a sentence (or paragraph) by clicking (or double clicking) in the immediately adjacent left margin, this can sometimes add a hard return ([HRt]) to the end of the expanded QuickWord even when the original material does not end with a hard return. Hence, it might be better to use the aforementioned selection method (i.e., to "paint" the material with keys or mouse) when creating a QuickWord.

If you are selecting format codes, you may need to include any "Off" codes as well as "On" codes. Some formatting in WordPerfect is achieved by bracketing the material by an On/Off code-pair. Bold, Italics, Highlighting, and similar formatting are examples of this. Be sure to select both parts of the code-pair.

(3)  Click on Tools, QuickWords to open the QuickWords tab on the QuickCorrect dialog:

QuickWords dialog

Type the new QuickWord name in the "Abbreviated form..." field (just above the list of any existing QuickWords in Figure 1).

You should get in the habit of preceding the QuickWord's name (technically, an abbreviated form or abbreviation) with a backslash (e.g., \draft or \copy) or other unique and little-used character such as a tilde, (e.g., ~draft) to help prevent possible confusion with the same characters used elsewhere in the document, when you type the QuickWord.

(While preceding characters are not required they are highly recommended.)

(4)  Click the Options button (Fig. 1) and choose "Expand as text with Formatting" from the list of options that appears.

From WordPerfect's Help:

"When you expand text as plain text, you can insert a QuickWord in a document other than the one where it was created, and the QuickWord text will look the same as the other text in that document.
When you expand text as formatted text [as recommended here], you can insert a QuickWord in a document and include the formatting and graphics that appeared with the QuickWord when you created it."
[Emphasis added.]

Important tip - WordPerct 10 or later versions:

When you choose the "Expand as plain text" option be sure to aslo enable the feature in Tools, Settings, Environment, "Use WordPerfect 9 text selection."
If this setting is disabled (i.e., not ticked) during QuickWord creation you might find that some of your newly created QuickWords expand with an extra hard return in them. If this happens, see Footnote 2 here about this issue and how to work around it.

(5)  If you want the QuickWord to expand as you type it (the typical case) make sure the "Expand QuickWords when you type them" box is checked (ticked) at the bottom of the dialog box (Fig. 1).

(6)  Click on the Add Entry button (Fig. 1) to add the QuickWord to the list and close the dialog. When you next open that dialog you should see the QuickWord abbreviation in the scrollable list on the left side of the dialog.

Whenever that dialog is open you can choose any existing QuickWord from the list
and then click the Insert in text button. This immediately expands and inserts the QuickWord material into the current document at the cursor location.

But see the more typical method (next section) to use a QuickWord by typing it in the document.

To use a QuickWord when typing . . .
Type the QuickWord abbreviation — plus a <space> character, or press the <Tab> key, or press <Enter> — on the page where you want it to begin. The abbreviation should expand in place. (If it doesn't, see the Notes and tips below.)

In some cases you might want to delete the extra space, tab, or hard return ([HRt] code) that was used to expand the QuickWord. See the Notes and tips section below for a simple macro that can simultaneously insert the QuickWord abbreviation and expand it, without also inserting these activation keys.
To revise a QuickWord . . .
(1)  First, either
make revisions directly in the same document that has the expanded QuickWord;

open a new blank document and type the QuickWord; when it expands, make your revisions to the expanded material. (Reveal Codes can help in either scenario.)

Tip: This second option might be easier to work with if you have a complex QuickWord, since it isolates the material from any other surrounding text and format codes.

(2)  Then, either

delete the old QuickWord in Tools, QuickWords by choosing the QuickWord entry from the list (Fig. 1) and clicking the Delete Entry button;


skip this step and just create a new QuickWord abbreviation (next step); be sure to use a different abbreviation if you want to keep the old one.

(3)  Finally (back in the document), select the entire block of revised material and create a new QuickWord from it. (Again, Reveal Codes can help here.)
Why don't my QuickWords work?
If you have not checked (i.e., ticked) the "Expand QuickWords when you type them" box at the bottom of the QuickWord dialog (Fig. 1), the QuickWords won't expand.

However, you can expand all QuickWords at once by playing the EXPNDALL.WCM shipping macro, usually located in your default or supplemental macro folder (see Tools, Settings, Files, Merge/Macro for these locations). [Note: You can assign a macro to a menu, toolbar, or shortcut key for quick and easy access: see here.]

QuickWords will not normally expand if you have a macro toolbar or a merge toolbar showing on any open document (even if the document is empty).


[1] You can run the shipping macro macro Abbrev.wcm to force a QuickWord expansion immediately.

[2] You can also use the EXPNDALL.WCM macro to expand all QuickWords later (e.g., after the merge has finished).

[3] Update: You can use a simple one-line macro to expand the abbreviation even when a macro or merge toolbar is open. See the next item below.


You can assign a macro to a menu, toolbar, or shortcut key for quick and easy access: see here.

QuickWords (specifically, their abbreviated forms) are considered "words" and therefore need to be separated from preceding characters with a space, tab, indent, etc.

Otherwise they will be seen by the program to be part of the preceding character(s).

Thus they will not not normally expand even when you follow the QuickWord with a space, tab, or hard return.

, you can work around this if you need to produce a QuickWord expansion in the middle of a string of characters, such as in a mathematical formula.

To do this you will need to -

[1] create the QuickWord as described above (using the "Expand as text with Formatting" option), then -

[2] create a one-line macro with this command in it (see here for how to copy the command into WordPerfect and create the macro) -

AbbreviationExpand (AbbreviationName: "\2"; Template: QuickWords!)

Notes and tips

•  This particular example assumes the QuickWord abbreviation "\2" was previously created (but without quotes) to produce (e.g.) a superscripted number 2.

•  You can, of course, use any QuickWord abbreviation in the macro command, as long as you use the syntax shown above and specify the QuickWord abbreviation's name in quotes.

•  To copy this macro code to your WordPerfect program, see here. You can then assign this macro to a keystroke combination, toolbar button, or menu, as described here. This will make it very easy to use in a document.

•  For additional macro code to automatically delete any "bracketing" [Font] and [Font Size] codes that might be imported with the QuickWord (and thereby conflict with the current font and size in effect at that location, see Footnote 1 below.

•  See also the tip below which uses a more robust macro (ReplWithQW) to expand multiple instances of a QuickWord in a document, after the final draft is completed.

All your QuickWords are stored in their own special template for use when editing any document.


QuickWords are
not stored in the document (.wpd) you are working on at the moment. And they are not stored in the Default template. Rather, they are added to the special QuickWord template
(see below) when you exit the program.

Back it up! Like any computer file, this file can become damaged so it's a good idea to back it up frequently.
(See "Managing and troubleshooting your QuickWords" below.)

Automatic generation: If the QuickWord template file is deleted or it is not in the expected location (see below), a new virgin copy will be generated when you next load WordPerfect.

Miscellaneous tips for using QuickWords

Quick links -

See also "Managing and troubleshooting your QuickWords" below.

* * *

Red checkmarkUse a leading (or following) "special character" in QuickWord abbreviations

If you click on Tools>QuickWords, you will see that the samples shipped with some versions of WordPerfect are preceded by a backslash [\]. This is not essential, but if there is any chance that your QuickWord abbreviation may also be acceptable as a word or something that QuickCorrect might recognize, you are advised to use a leading \ (or similar character, such as the tilde [~]) to avoid expansion of the abbreviation.

For example, don't use BP as the QuickWord for "The patient's BP was normal" [since BP could also mean the oil and gas company!]. But you could use ~BP or even PBP, if it is an abbreviation that is unlikely to be automatically corrected by QuickCorrect. [Thanks to Charles Rossiter for this tip.]

You can, of course, use a following trigger character (e.g., BP~) but the pattern of using a leading character plus an abbreviation might be easier to remember.

Red checkmarkRecord a macro to insert and expand a QuickWord

  • Click on Tools, Macro, Record;
  • give the macro a name;
  • position the cursor in the document where you want the QuickWord to expand (assuming you have set QuickWords to expand as explained above, under "How to create and use QuickWords");
  • select the QuickWord with Tools, QuickWords;
  • click Insert in Text (you need to insert it at least once during recording);
  • stop the macro recording with the Stop button on the macro toolbar.
  • The macro can then be assigned to a menu, toolbar button, or shortcut key as explained here, and used again at any document location.
  • Related tip: Such simple macros can be written and saved, then assigned to a menu, toolbar, etc. See the example above.

Red checkmarkCreate matching envelopes for your letterhead but with different return addresses

If you have WordPerfect Suite 8 (ca. 1997) and later, you can use a QuickWord to insert your custom return address (including different font sizes and a graphic logo) directly in the Format, Envelope dialog. See here.

Red checkmarkUse a QuickWord to stamp a document with DRAFT, COPY, etc.

Red checkmarkAutomatically add your scanned signature to a .WPD document

  • Scan a printed document that contains your signature. Use a high resolution for the scan.
  • Clip ("crop") just the signature from the scanned image (probably a .BMP or .JPG image) with any graphics program (WordPerfect Office's Presentations should do the job, or use something like PaintShopPro), then insert it between previously typed closing lines of text ("Sincerely...").
  • Position the graphic signature, and then anchor it to "Character" or "Paragraph" (not "Page") by right-clicking the image and choosing Position. (It will then move with the closing if you add or delete text later.) Right-click again and choose Wrap, Behind text. You can make final adjustments by right-clicking the image and choosing Select Box, then use the mouse to drag the image; or you can right-click the box and use the Position choice to enter numeric values. When finished positioning the box, click outside it to deselect it.
  • In Reveal Codes, select both the closing lines of text and the signature's graphic code, and create a QuickWord from them, as described above.
  • From that point on, typing the QuickWord will insert both the closing and the signature — all in one step.

Red checkmarkSet repeating tabs with a QuickWord

  • For example, to quickly set all tabs 0.25 inches apart, click Format, Line, Tab Set.
  • In the Tab Set dialog, set the Tab type (usually, Left), the Tab position (0.25" from the left margin), and check the Repeat box and set it to every 0.25". Click on Set to return to the document.
    • (Alternatively, you can also record these first two steps in a macro and assign the macro to a toolbar button, menu, or keystroke: see here.)
  • Finally, follow the directions above to select the new [Tab Set] code in the Reveal Codes window and assign it to a QuickWord, such as "\25".
  • Whenever you need the new settings, simply type "\25" (without quotes) followed by a space and the new tabs will be set. Backspace to delete the extra space.
  • See also TabSet25, a macro that sets left tabs every 0.25 inches, out to 9.75 inches (the WordPerfect limit).

Red checkmarkUse text and counters with a QuickWord

[For more on counters see here.]

You can automatically and sequentially number items at the end of a phrase — and you can even insert a second type of sequentially numbered list (dark red items below) into the first list (dark blue items below). This technique works like an outline, where deleted or inserted items cause automatic renumbering of subsequent items. WordPerfect will keep the lists properly — and separately — numbered.

For example -

Interrogatory No. 1.
Did you ever ....

Interrogatory No. 2.
List the people within your division who ...

Interrogatory No. 3.
State where the manager told ....

Production Request No. 1.
Produce all records in the ...

Interrogatory No. 4.
Do you claim that Mr. X never ...

Production Request No. 2.
If your answer is yes ...

And so forth.

Here's how:

1. Open a new, blank document. Create a single-level counter for each list item (e.g., one for Interrogatory items and one for Production items) with Insert, Other, Counter, Create. Enter a name for the counter in the Create Counter Definition dialog that pops up, and click OK. When finished creating all counters, click Close to exit from the Counter Numbering dialog.

2. Then, in the main body of the document, type the leading text phrase and a space ("Interrogatory... "), then click Insert, Other, Counter. Choose the new, appropriate counter from the list and then click Display in Document. This takes you back to the main document. Make sure the insertion point is to the right of the new code in Reveal Codes. Then click Insert, Other, Counter, Increase.

You should now have two codes in the document,

   [Count Disp][Count Inc] — in that order.

The idea is to make WordPerfect display the number, then (internally) increment it for any counter number that may follow later in the document.

Add a space, colon, hard left indent, etc., as desired to separate and/or format the text that will follow the two counter codes.

3. Here's the part that automates everything:

Make a QuickWord out of the text phrase and the two codes (and any following spaces or codes) by using Reveal Codes to place the cursor just in front of (i.e., to the left of) the text phrase, and then use <Shift>+<RightArrow> keys to move the cursor to just after (to the right of) the end of the phrase and codes.

Now, with the phrase and counter codes and any formatting codes selected, click on Tools, QuickWords. Give the QW an easy-to-remember abbreviation, such as "\Int" (without quotes) for "Interrogatory."

4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 for the other list item. Use the other counter, of course, and give the QuickWord a different name (e.g., "\Prod" [without quotes]).

Note that when you create QuickWords, you should make sure that the "Expand QuickWords when you type them" box is enabled, and the Option button's "Expand as text with formatting" is selected.

Now, when you need the items, just type the QuickWord for them, plus a space, tab, or hard return. The QW will expand and the counter will number the item. You can add or delete a counter item, or insert a counter of the second type between a sequence of the first type, and WordPerfect will keep them properly — and separately — numbered.

Red checkmarkGlobally replace text or symbols with QuickWords, then expand them as needed

Assuming you have disabled (un-ticked) the box, "Expand QuickWords when you type them" in Tools, QuickWords, you can use the shipping macro, EXPNDALL.WCM, to expand them all at once. (You should find this macro in one of the folders listed in Tools, Settings, Files, Merge/Macro. If it is located there, simply type "EXPNDALL" in the File name field in the dialog box that appears when you click on Tools, Macro, Play.)

Related tips:

Using Edit, Find and Replace you can first replace an existing character, word, or symbol anywhere in a document with a QuickWord abbreviation (e.g., \MyLogo), then expand all the QuickWord abbreviations throughout the document with EXPNDALL.WCM.

Note: The EXPNDALL macro only works if the QuickWords are individual items and not part of a word; that is, the QuickWord abbreviation must be separated from other text characters. Still, this is a quick way to replace, for example, a text character or number (or a symbol) with a highly formatted item — such as a math symbol in a different font and size, or a specially formatted corporate or product name — that you have previously created as a QuickWord. [Note also that EXPNDALL will not work if you are editing a macro of if the merge toolbar is open.]

Alternative: For a macro that can find an existing character, word, or symbol wherever it appears in a document and replace it with an expanded QuickWord — all in one step — see ReplWithQW. [Since QuickWords are stored in their own special template, they will be available in all documents for the same version of WordPerfect on the same system. See the next section for information on migrating your QuickWords to another version of WordPerfect.]

Red checkmarkUse a QuickWord where a macro won't work

Some things cannot be recorded in a macro, such as creating custom graphics or text box sizes. They must be hand-coded by a macro writer.

But there is an easy way to insert complicated structures (such as custom text boxes):

Open Reveal Codes and select the structure (e.g., the [Box] code) and create a QuickWord from the selected item. Typing the QuickWord abbreviation later will insert the item at the cursor location. You can even select adjacent format codes and/or text along with the structure itself. A single QuickWord can contain all of these items.

Red checkmarkQuickWords can be stored in custom templates (but...)

Typically, users want QuickWords available in all documents, so when they are created as explained above, they are stored in the user's local QuickWords template in the same folder as your currently active default template (as shown in Tools, Settings, Files, Template (tab)).

However, if you edit a custom template and create a QuickWord while editing that template, the QuickWord will be stored in that template — not in the standard location (i.e., the user's QuickWords template).


Although the QuickWord will be available when you load a document based on that custom template, it will not expand in the usual way by typing its abbreviation (at least, in recent versions of WordPerfect). You will need to insert it and expand it with either the Tools, QuickWords ... "Insert in text" button, or with a macro (or a template macro) such as this one-line macro (which assumes the QuickWord is named "\2" and it is stored in the custom template which spawns the current document):

AbbreviationExpand (AbbreviationName: "\2"; Template: CurrentDoc!)

[Note: You can assign a macro to a menu, toolbar, or shortcut key for quick and easy access: see here.]

Managing and troubleshooting your QuickWords

Quick links -

* * *

Problems with QuickWords?

First, see "Why don't my QuickWords work?" above.

Then, if your QuickWords template file might have become damaged or corrupted, here are some things you can try.

Locate the QuickWords file.

Please note that your QuickWords are typically stored in their own special template file (see next item below for the file's standard name and location), which can be renamed/backed up the same way as the standard default template. (As noted below they will be found in the same folder.)

Keep these things in mind:

•  When WordPerfect cannot "see" this special template — e.g., because it was renamed, or deleted, or is not in the expected location — it will then automatically create a new, virgin (i.e., empty) copy the next time WordPerfect is loaded.

[Renaming this file in Windows Explorer or similar file manager (see below for name and location), then reloading WordPerfect, is a quick troubleshooting method since it gives you the opportunity to test a few newly created QuickWords using a factory fresh QuickWords template file (or if not used that way, renaming will at least temporarily remove the file from possible interaction with your typing when troubleshooting various text entry problems). Later, if you wish, you can always delete the new "test" version and rename the old file back to its original name (see below).]

•  If you have set up a new location for your standard WordPerfect default template (the one shown in Tools, Settings, Files, Templates) then the currently active QuickWords template will also be stored in that location, not in the default installation location. In other words, you might have more than one QuickWords template on your system, so you should identify (next section) the active one before proceeding further.

•  If you cannot find the template file (it has a .wpt filename extension) or the Windows folder seems to be empty, this might be because of a setting in Windows itself, which often hides certain program files. See here.

Is it truly damaged? If so you can try to repair the current QuickWords template file.

First try the renaming trick above. Sometimes this can help you quickly determine if it is damaged by having the program create a factory fresh copy of the file and use it instead of you old file. If it works and you only have a small number of QuickWord entries you might simply re-create them in the new file. This might be enough to "fix" the problem.

On the other hand if you wish to use the old file — and even if renaming the old file doesn't turn up an obvious problem — you can try repairing that template in case there is some corruption, using the methods you will find on the page "Repairing WordPerfect documents and templates - How to find and fix common problems."
Look particularly there for how to use Corel's free file repair utility, WPLOOK.

An alternative (in case repairing the QuickWords template doesn't work):

Try to export/import the QuickWord entries. You might be able to export your QuickWords using the method below, then you can simply delete the QuickWords template file. (Make a back up before deleting the file. WordPerfect will then create a new, virgin one when you next load WordPerfect.) Then import the old QuickWords into the new file.

QuickWords template name and location

QuickWords are stored in their own special template file named QWnnxx.wptHere, "nn" is the WordPerfect version number (e.g., 8, 9 ... 16, 17, 18, etc.) and "xx" is the language ("EN" for all English language versions).

Important point: The QuickWords template is located in the same folder as the WordPerfect default template as shown in the Tools, Settings, Files, Template dialog. Always look in that dialog to see where the currently active default template is located on your system (there can be more than one depending on the installation). This is where you will also find your current QuickWords template.


☼  Back up your QuickWords template from time to time.

☼  Note that if you specify a different folder for the WordPerfect default template (which is the one used to create new, blank documents) in Tools, Settings, Files, Template, then WordPerfect will use that new folder for the QuickWords template, too. If the QuickWords template does not exist in that folder, WordPerfect will create a new, virgin (empty) copy of the QW template the next time WordPerfect is opened. (It will also do this for a missing WordPerfect default template.) You can replace the new virgin, copy with the older version, but it must be named exactly the same.

☼  You can copy this file to another computer that is using the same version and language edition of WordPerfect, for use on that computer. Both the version number in the QuickWord template's file name (e.g., 15) and the language code (e.g., US, UK, etc.) must match the new WordPerfect program.

☼  You can migrate this file to a different version of WordPerfect. See the next tip, which shows how to preserve the older version's entries by migrating this file.

☼  If you cannot find the file or the folder seems to be empty, this might be because of a setting in Windows itself. See here.

☼  [Arcane tip:] QuickWords can also (but not typically) be stored in a custom template as explained here. But this is something users must deliberately set up.

How to migrate your QuickWords to a different installation of WordPerfect

First, please review the previous two sections on managing QuickWords.

[If you want to back up and migrate other program cusomizations, see the main Tips page section on Updating, upgrading, or reinstalling WordPerfect here.]

There are several methods you can use to migrate one WordPerfect installation's QuickWords (the "source") into another WordPerfect installation (the "target").

•  Method A

If your target WordPerfect program is a new or different version number (or different language edition) from the source program the 6 steps below are quick and easy, since they simply use Windows to rename the QuickWords template files.

In effect, the method "clones" and renames your source's QuickWords template file so it can be used in the new/different target program in place of its factory-shipped (and typically empty) QuickWords template file.

Since the method creates an identical copy of the source template, all QuickWords in that file become the new "data store" of QuickWords for the target program. Be aware that if the original target template had any QuickWords they will be gone following the migration (the copied file is now a different data store from the one it replaced).

- See the Method A/B procedure in the next section.
- See Method C below to migrate individual QuickWords.
- See Method D below for the automated method used during new installations.

•  Method B

If your target WordPerfect program is the same version number and language edition as the source (but just a new installation of it) you can also use the 6 steps below to replace the target's QuickWords template file with the source file, since the template file's name will be exactly the same.

Note in this case you would skip over step 5 (which renames the old QuickWords template — but it might be a good idea to back up that template first for safekeeping, or to restore QuickWords from that file similar to using Method A.).

- See Method A/B procedure in the next section.
- See Method C below to migrate individual QuickWords.

•  Method C

If you need finer control over which QuickWords are migrated from inside an existing QuickWords template, there's an old method you can use to import (i.e., copy) one, several, or all of the source version's QuickWords into a newer/different QuickWords template.

See the actual Method C procedure in Footnote 2 below.

•  Method D

Automated migration: Starting with Wordperfect X6 (a.k.a. version 16) you can have the program installation routine migrate a previous version of this item (i.e., all existing QuickWords) for you.

Tip: You still might want to make a backup copy of the older QuickWords file to a separate folder, just in case.
Procedure for Methods A or B  (Method C is in Footnote 2 below)

Step 1. The QuickWords template is normally found in the same folder as the standard WordPerfect Default template, so open the new installation of WordPerfect click on Tools, Settings, Files, Templates (tab) and make a note of this exact location on your computer.

This folder holds your currently active Default template (i.e., the one WordPerfect uses to create new, blank documents). It will also be the new "target" folder for the old QuickWords template file that you wish to migrate.

Step 2. Close WordPerfect and use Windows Explorer (or File Explorer or any file manager) navigate to the location of the new QuickWords template file (noted in step #1).

•  If you cannot find this file, or the folder seems to be empty, this might be caused by a setting in Windows itself. See here.

•  Important: If you have set a different location for your standard Default template (as shown in Tools, Settings, Files, Templates) then the QuickWords template will be stored in that location as well.

•  Arcane tip: QuickWords can also (but not typically) be stored in a custom template as explained here. But this is not done automatically by the program; rather it is something users must deliberately set up.

Step 3. Back up the new installation's QuickWords template by renaming it:

Right click on this new QuickWords file and select Rename. (For example, if your new version is WordPerfect X9 the file probably will be QW19EN.WPT for English versions. See the previous section on template names for various editions.)

At the end of the file's name add -NEW (actually, any characters) and press Enter to rename the file. (For example: QW19EN-NEW.WPT.)

This will preserve the new version, which might contain some of your newer QuickWords, so that you can restore it later if desired by simply removing the -NEW filename suffix.)

Step 4. Next, find the old QuickWords template (e.g., QW15EN.WPT for WordPerfect X5) and copy this file into the same folder that contains the new version of QuickWords.

If the old file is located on a different computer or in a non-standard folder, use the same techniques in Step 1 and Step 2 on that computer to locate and navigate to that old version of QuickWords, so that you can copy it.

Step 5. (Skip this step if using Method B) Now you need to rename the old (copied) file so that the new version of WordPerfect can recognize it:

Right click on the old QuickWords file (e.g., QW15EN.WPT) and select Rename.

Type the new version file name of the QuickWords file and hit Enter to rename the file. (For example, if your new program version is the English edition of WordPerfect X9 you would type: QW19EN.WPT.)

Step 6. Launch the new version/installation of WordPerfect. When it opens click on the Tools menu and select QuickWords to confirm that your QuickWords were migrated to the new version.

Tip: Verify you have checked the "Expand QuickWords when you type them" box at the bottom of the QuickWord dialog; otherwise the QuickWords won't expand automatically.

Use a macro to export / import QuickWords

See Charles Rossiter's QWManage.wcm macro, downloadable from the Other Authors page here.)

It is designed to -

"A. Create a 2 column table listing all QuickWords abbreviations and their expansions defined in the current QuickWords templates.

B. Restore QuickWords and their expansions from the output of option A created in a table with 2 columns of abbreviations and expansions."

For those on a network who wish to "roll out" a master list of QuickWords to each user:

Each user has their own QuickWords template on their own system. So —

[Quoted from a post by Charles Rossiter, replying to a user who needed to replicate a master list of 50 QuickWords on several networked computers:]

"When you run the [QWManage] macro, it creates a 2 [column] table of QuickWord abbreviations and their expansions. You could create such a table for your 50 desired QuickWords. If you now copy your master QuickWords table to the users' default template folders, then you can run QWManage.wcm and all your 50 desired QuickWords will be added to those already available to each user personally. If it happens that a user has a QuickWord with the same abbreviation as one of your set of 50, then you will be warned to choose to save the original or the new QuickWord."


Since the QWManage.wcm macro creates a list of your Quickwords and their expanded abbreviations inside a WordPerfect table in a new document, any formatting codes in the expansions will be active in that new table (and thus in that document).

This can sometimes create a list document that is oddly formatted due to unwanted or conflicting format codes in the list that was created by the macro.

Hence the QWManage.wcm macro is best used where your QuickWords template contains all (or mostly all) expansions that are made up of plain text characters (i.e., not things like watermarks, text boxes, columns, margin settings, tables, etc.).

You can save all your QuickWord expansions as plain text. See next tip.

How to save your QuickWords to a text file

Extracting your QuickWords as plain text probably is a "better than nothing" method.

[Tip: If you think the QuickWords template file is damaged tou can also try repairing it either by renaming it (see above) or by using WPLOOK (below in this section). The QuickWords template file is in the same location as the program's currently active default template; see above for how to locate that folder on your computer.]

First - Get the Corel free file repair utility, WPLOOK.EXE.
See here.)

▸ Note that WPLOOK.EXE is a standalone program — it doesn't need to be installed; just double click its filename. It works on WordPerfect 6.x files and newer.

For more on effectively using this handy utility to repair WordPerfect files, see here.

Then -

[1] Open WPLOOK.

WPLOOK dialog

[2] Click on the File menu and choose Open.

[3] Navigate to the location of your QuickWords template file (see above for how to find that location) and select it. The name should then appear in the Original File and New File fields.

[4] Click on the Edit menu and choose Extract text from document. The Extract Text dialog opens.

[5] In the Extract Text dialog you can designate a new Output file name and location (which is recommended; otherwise, the text file will be placed in the same folder as the QuickWords template).

[6] Click the Extract Text button.

[7] Close the file with File, Close. Then exit
WPLOOK with File, Exit. You can then open the text file with WordPerfect or any text editor.

Done. Note that all items are rendered as plain text, but at least you can salvage some information from the .TXT file.

(Historical note: The above method is basically the same as this procedure from Corel's old KnowledgeBase.)
Save the [WPLOOK.EXE] file to a location you can easily find, for example the desktop.
Once the file is downloaded, click Start, Search [in Windows].
Click "All files and folders".
In "Named" type in one of the following files depending on your version of WordPerfect: QW9EN.WPT (WordPerfect 9), QW10EN.WPT (WordPerfect 10) or QW11EN.WPT (WordPerfect 11).
In "Look In" select "Local Hard Drive(s)".
Once the file is found, right click on it, select copy.
Close the Search window, go back to the desktop, right click an empty spot, select paste.
Open the WPLOOK program that was downloaded in step 1.
Click File, Open.
Select the QuickWords file that was copied to the Desktop in step 8, click open.
Click Edit, Extract text from document.
Click Extract Text.
A new file will be created on the Desktop called: QW9EN.txt (for WordPerfect 9), QW10EN.txt (for WordPerfect 10) or QW11EN.txt (for WordPerfect 11). This file has all the ... information in text file format.

Page Top

Footnote 1

As explained in the Notes above, a simple macro can automatically expand an existing QuickWord.

Using a similar command to the one in the Notes example and adding some code to it, we get a macro that should do the job of removing any "bracketing" [Font] and [Font Size] codes that might be imported by the expanded QuickWord, thereby conflicting with the current font and size in effect at that location. (Other format codes inside the expanded QuickWords should not be affected.)

UPDATE (Jul 2, 2009): A user on WordPerfect Universe ("Jomomma") reported that this problem can be eliminated by using custom styles inside QuickWords:

    "...Basically, you can park the text in a style that doesn't include font or font size codes, then store [i.e., create] the style as a QuickWord. Other formatting can be included in the style, e.g., hyperlinks, text attributes, any formatting that the Style Editor allows.
   Done that way, the text stored in the style takes whatever font and font size that is applicable at the insertion point [where the QuickWord expands]. And because the style is stored in the QuickWords template file, you can delete it afterward from the available styles list in the Styles dialog so you have fewer style names to traverse to find the one you want.
   Tested and works in X4 and X3...."

[If this doesn't work for you, or you are curious about using a small macro to solve this problem, see the rest of this Footnote.]


This macro assumes a QuickWord abbreviation exists, named (here) "\abc."

You can substitute any existing QuickWord abbreviation for your own purposes (but be sure to retain the double quote marks).

To copy this macro code into your WordPerfect program, see here.

// Macro begins

// keep the double quote marks):

AbbreviationExpand (AbbreviationName: "\abc"; Template: QuickWords!)

// Next: Remove any "bracketing" [Font] and [Font Size] codes that
// might be imported by the expanded QuickWord:

// Move cursor as though Reveal Codes is on (even if off):
WP51CursorMovement (On!)
// Set a temporary bookmark at the cursor location:
// While there's a code or space on the left:
While(?LeftCode>0 or ?LeftChar=" ")
    // While the code is a [Font] or [FontSize] code:
    While(?LeftCode=6868 or ?LeftCode=7124)
        DeleteCharPrevious // (delete the code)
WP51CursorMovement (Off!)

// Macro ends

Footnote 2
[...continued from above:]

How to import one, several, or all QuickWords from a different WordPerfect version.


Suppose you want to import one ore more QuickWords from
a previous installation of WordPerfect X5 (the "source") to
WordPerfect X9 (the "destination" or "target").

1. Start Windows Explorer [or File Explorer or similar file manager] and locate the source program's QuickWords template file — in this example, something like QW15EN.WPT — on your computer.

QW = QuickWords template
15 = WordPerfect version X5
EN = your language version (e.g.,ENglish]

Tip: The QuickWords template for each version of WordPerfect is always found in the same folder as the program's default template. You can determine this location when any version of WordPerfect is open: Go to Tools, Settings, Files, Template (tab) and note the Windows path to the Default template folder.

2. Make backups!

•  Back up the source QuickWords template file described in Step 1: Copy the QW15EN.WPT template file and rename it — keeping the WPT extension. [Using this example, the new name for the WordPerfect X5 QuickWords template might be QW15EN-OLD.WPT.] You need to rename it and keep the WPT extension so that the target WordPerfect program can see it in step 6.

•  Back up the target QuickWords template file to preserve any QuickWords created in that version: Just copy the QW19EN.WPT template file into a different folder. This copy can be used to restore the target program's QuickWords if needed in the future: Just move it back to its original location, over-writing the existing version.
(Tip: Making a copy of this important template file periodically is also good practice, since any disk file can be accidentally deleted or become damaged.)

3. Start the target program, WordPerfect X9. Then go to Tools, Settings, Files, Template tab and write down the location of the program's Default template folder (do not change it); then exit this menu with Cancel, then Close.

4. Exit from WordPerfect. Use Windows Explorer
[or File Explorer or similar file manager] to copy the renamed source template QW15EN-OLD.WPT (see step 2) into the target ("destination") program's default template folder location you just wrote down in step 3.

5. Launch the target WordPerfect program again (here, WordPerfect X9) and click on File, New from Project, "Create new" [tab].

6. Select the Custom WP Templates category.
You should see two items in the list with the same name: <WP Quickwords File>. One item is your new (target) WordPerfect version's Quickwords list, the other is the old (source) WordPerfect version's Quickwords list.

7. To find out which list is which, select (click) either entry and choose Options, Project Properties. In the "Modify a Project" dialog that opens, click inside the "Project filename" field. Press the End key to go to the end of that string and verify the entry's file name.

If the selected entry is your QW15EN-OLD.WPT source file, click Cancel and select the other "<WP Quickwords File>" — which then should belong to your target WordPerfect version: QW19EN.WPT. This is the one you need to edit.

9. After selecting the target version's "<WP Quickwords File>" — here,  QW19EN.WPT — choose Options, Edit WP Template. The target QuickWords template file opens for editing.

10. Click on the Copy/Remove Object... button on the Template Property bar. The
Copy/Remove Template Objects dialog opens.

11. Select the source template
QW15EN-OLD from "Templates to copy from:" drop-down menu (upper left side of dialog). Note that you must browse this alphabetical list to find it that template.

12. Next, select QuickWords from the "Object type:" drop-down menu (left side of dialog).

13. Highlight (click) the desired item in the Source:...QuickWords list (bottom left side of dialog) to be copied and -

- click Copy >> (repeat for other items, as desired); or
- click Copy All >> if all the source QuickWords should be transferred to the destination (target) template.

Note that if any same-named QuickWords exist in the target template (right side of dialog) a message will appear and ask for your confirmation to replace the target's item.

14. Click Close when finished.

15. Save your changes and exit the template: Either click the Close property bar button or click File, Close. Then answer Yes to the "Save changes to...?" prompt.

[- After a post by "Martin," Administrator on WordPerfect Universe, here].