4 Easy Ways to Find Hidden Texts in Your Word Document

In this article, we are glad to provide you with 4 easy ways to find hidden texts in your Word document.

Sometimes we would like to hide some texts to make it invisible out of the need to protect sensitive and confidential information. However, as time goes by, we can easily forget about their existence. Therefore, we have to find out hidden texts as not to overwrite them by accident. This post will show you all 4 ways to do so.Find Hidden Texts in Your Word Document

Method 1: Show All Hidden Texts in a Document

  1. Open document and click “Home” tab.
  2. And in “Paragraph” group, there is the “Show/Hide” command. Click it to view all hidden texts in the document.   Click "Home"->Click "Show Hide" Command

Words with dotted under lines are hidden texts. You should know that this command also reveal all other hidden marks and symbols in a document, such as the paragraph mark.

Method 2: Show Hidden Texts Only

  1. First of all, click “File” tab.
  2. Then click “Options” to open “Word Options” dialog box.
  3. Next click “Display”.
  4. Scroll down to “Always show these formatting marks on the screen” section, check “Hidden text” box.
  5. Finally, click “OK” to save the setting.Click "Display"->Check "Hidden text" Box->Click "OK"

With this approach applied, the “Show/Hide” command will lose its control over hidden texts. This method shows all hidden texts in a document, but it shall not reveal other hidden symbols such as paragraph marks. Thus your document can look more concise.

Method 3: Use “Advanced Find” Feature

  1. To begin with, you need to click the “Show/Hide” command to reveal all hidden marks,
  2. Secondly, click the drop-down button on “Find” command and choose “Advanced Find”.
  3. Next put insertion pointer inside the “Find what” text box.
  4. Then click “Format” tab and select “Font”.Click "Format"->Click "Font"
  5. In “Find Font” box open, check “Hidden” box and click “OK”.
  6. Now back to “Find and Replace” box, click “Find In” and choose “Main Document”.
  7. All hidden texts are in selection. In “Find and Replace” box, click “Reading Highlight” tab and select “Highlight All” to highlight found hidden texts.Click "Find In"->Click "Reading Highlight"->Choose "Highlight All"

Note:

You must click “Show/Hide” command to show all hidden marks at the first step, or Word shall fail to find any hidden texts.

Method 4: Run Word Macro to Find and Highlight Hidden Texts

  1. Firstly, press “Alt+ F11” to open VBA editor.
  2. Next click “Normal” on the left panel.
  3. And click “Insert” tab.
  4. Then select “Module”.Click "Normal"->Click "Insert"->Click "Module"
  5. Open module with double click and paste following codes there:
Sub HighlightHiddenTextsInDoc()
  ActiveWindow.ActivePane.View.ShowAll = Not ActiveWindow.ActivePane.View.ShowAll
  With Selection
    .HomeKey Unit:=wdStory
    With Selection.Find
      .ClearFormatting
      .Font.Hidden = True
      .Text = ""
      .Replacement.Text = ""
      .Forward = True
      .Wrap = wdFindContinue
      .Format = True
      .MatchCase = False
      .MatchWildcards = False
      .MatchWholeWord = False
      .MatchAllWordForms = False
      .MatchSoundsLike = False
      .Execute
    End With
    Do While .Find.Found
      Selection.Range.Font.ColorIndex = wdBrightGreen
      .Collapse wdCollapseEnd
      .Find.Execute
    Loop
  End With
  ActiveWindow.View.ShowHiddenText = True
  ActiveWindow.ActivePane.View.ShowAll = Not ActiveWindow.ActivePane.View.ShowAll
End Sub
  1. Make sure your cursor is inside the macro and hit “F5” to run codes.Paste Codes->Click "Run"

You will get final effect like this:Highlighted Hidden Texts

Comparison of 4 Methods

Methods Advantages Disadvantages
Method 1: Show All Hidden Marks in a Document The quickest method and easy to operate 1.        It shows all hidden marks and symbols in a document, which make it look messy.

2.        The hidden texts are not easy to recognize.

Method 2: Show Hidden Texts Only It shows only hidden texts but will not reveal other hidden symbols such as paragraph marks. The hidden texts are not easy to recognize.
Method 3: Use “Advanced Find” Feature It will highlight all hidden texts as to stand them out. 1.        You have to show all hidden marks first before using the “Advanced Find” feature.

2.        You will have other hidden marks and symbols visible.

Method 4: Run Word Macro to Find and Highlight Hidden Texts 1.        It will highlight all hidden texts as to stand them out.

2.        No other hidden marks will be revealed.

Word will always show hidden texts on the screen, so you may have to manually turn this feature off if necessary.

 

Repair Your Word

Now and then, you may find Word isn’t work correctly. Sometimes, a simple restart may address the issue. Well, other times, you will have to utilize built-in function to repair Word. What’s worse, if that doesn’t work either, you only reliance will be a third-party tool.

Author Introduction:

Vera Chen is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including xls recovery and pdf repair software products. For more information visit www.datanumen.com

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  10. …for example by selecting a chunk of text that unbeknownst to me has hidden text in it AND DELETING IT

  11. This is very helpful. Thanks for it.
    Can you tell me how to modify the macro (1) to select hidden text but not highlight it? (2) to revert to hiding it?
    A separate question: I worry that I’ll inadvertently delete hidden text–for example by selecting a chunk of text that unbeknownst to me has hidden text in it. Is this even possible? If it is possible, is there a way to prevent it?

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