While collaborating with colleagues or working on documents ourselves we find ourselves with multiple copies of the same document. Did you know that Word has a way to compare documents? This tutorial article takes you through How to compare documents in Word online.
To compare documents in Word online start by logging in to Office online. Go to the review tab in the top section of the document. From the options below click on Compare document. You will then have the option to choose the documents you would like to compare.
How to compare documents in Word online?
It is unfortunate that Word Online has only limited features. A feature to directly compare two documents and point out differences is not included in Word Online. You can utilize the “Track Changes” and “Combine” capabilities as a workaround. This section looks at how you can compare documents in Word online using the desktop application for Office 365.
- Open the browser of your choice and go to the Word Online website (https://www.office.com).
- Log in to your Microsoft account. You also have the option to create a new account if you do not have one. You can choose to use the free version or use the paid service Office 365 which offers more features and editing options.
- To create a new document or open an existing one after signing in, select the “Word” icon in the left panel. You will then be redirected to the word home screen.
- To compare documents, start by opening the first one by double-clicking on the name.
- Select “Review” from the top panel.
- From the options available click on “Compare” from the “Compare” group from the drop-down menu.
- Select the “Choose File” button located on the “Compare Documents” dialogue box’s toolbar.
- To compare a second document, choose it from your computer and click “Open.”
- Click the “OK” button in the “Compare Documents” dialogue box after selecting both documents from your computer.
- After comparing the two documents, Word Online will create a new document that highlights additions, deletions, and adjustments.
- To identify the differences between the compared papers, look over the highlighted changes.
Compare two Word documents and highlight differences online
Word Online has fewer features as compared to the desktop version or Office 365. Hence, a feature to directly compare two documents and point out differences is not included in Word Online. You can utilize the “Track Changes” and “Combine” capabilities as a workaround, though. Here are the steps you can follow.
- Launch the web browser you use and go to the Word Online website.
- Log in to your Microsoft account, or create a new one.
- To create a new document or open an existing one after signing in, select the “Word” icon from the left panel of the home screen.
- To compare documents, start by opening the first document from the list of documents created and saved on your computer.
- Select “Review” from the top panel of the document.
- The “Track Changes” function can be activated by selecting the “Track Changes” button under the “Tracking” menu
- Track all the changes made to the document by either you or anyone using the document. You can then save the document.
- Open the other document you want to compare this document with.
- For this document, turn on the “Track Changes” option as well as you did for the previous document.
- Make the desired changes and save this document as well.
Compare chosen documents
- You will now have two documents that have tracked modifications turned on.
- Open Word Online and create a new document.
- Select the “Review” tab from the top ribbon of the document.
- In the “Compare” section, select the “Compare” button.
- There will be a drop-down menu. Select “Combine.”
- Click the “Choose File” button in the “Combine Documents” dialogue box.
- The first document with monitored modifications should be selected, then click “Open.”
- Repeatedly select the “Choose File” button in the “Combine Documents” dialogue box.
- Choose the second document that has tracked modifications and choose “Open.”
- Once both papers have been selected, click “OK” in the “Combine Documents” dialogue box.
- The two documents will be combined into a single new document with Word Online, which will format and color-code the differences.
- Examine the merged document to observe the differences and modifications that were highlighted in the source documents.
Can you compare two Word documents for differences?
Yes, it is possible to compare two Word documents for differences. Here are the steps you can follow.
- Start by locating and opening Microsoft Word on your computer.
- To compare documents, start by opening the first one.
- Click on “Review” from the top ribbon of the document
- Select “Compare” from the “Compare” group by clicking the button under the “Review” tab.
- Choose “Compare” from the drop-down menu.
- Click the “Browse” or “Choose File” button in the “Compare Documents” dialogue box to choose the second document you wish to compare.
- Click the “OK” or “Compare” button in the “Compare Documents” dialogue box after selecting the second document.
- Microsoft Word will then compare both the documents and a new document showcasing their differences will be created.
- Examine the updated document to see the highlighted additions, deletions, and changes.
You will see that the new documents will show markings of all the similarities and differences. You can then choose to keep the changes made or revert to the older version of the document. Then save the document and send it or save it on your computer. You can then delete the other documents to reduce the chances of duplication.
This tutorial article took you through how to compare documents in Word online. It gave you an inside into comparing and combining documents created and saved using Microsoft Word.
It is important to note that it is possible that Word Online’s “Compare” tool lacks some of the more sophisticated capabilities of Microsoft Word’s desktop application. If you are looking for a more detailed outcome consider utilizing the desktop edition of Word. This will surely give you a more thorough comparison experience.
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My name is Carissa Gudino and I am an expert in word online, using Word Online in my day-to-day tasks. In this blog, I will share with you tips and tutorials on how to use word online to its fullest potential. I work for various clients in various countries like the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, etc. My tutorials are designed to help beginners, as well as more experienced users, learn new tricks and tips on Microsoft word online. Check out more.