How to Compress Word Files

By Kaitlen Flynn

Running out of space to save Microsoft Word files to a computer can be frustrating, especially when a file is important. Compressing a file decreases the file's size and reduces the amount of space used up by the file. Knowing how to compress a large computer file definitely comes in handy and is the solution to this common computer woe.

Things You'll Need

  • Computer
  • Microsoft Word

Compressing a Word File

Step 1

Save the file you wish to compress in Microsoft Word. In this case, you are saving a written document, so save your file under "My Documents." Make sure you choose a save name you will remember. This will make the file easier to locate, and help keep your documents organized.

Step 2

Go to the start menu and open "My Computer." Search for the file you wish to compress under "My Documents."

Step 3

After locating the file you wish to compress, right click the file. Scroll down and select "Properties."

Step 4

Select the "General" tab when the "Properties" window opens, if not already open. Under the "General" tab, click on "Advanced."

Step 5

Select the check box that says "compress contents to save disk space" under the section titled "Compress or Encrypt Attributes," found in the "Advanced Attributes" window. Click "OK." This takes you back to the "Properties" window. Click "OK" again, and the file is compressed.

Tips & Warnings

  • Organize documents into folders to allow for easy navigation of documents.
  • In the "Control Panel," change "Folder Options" under "Appearance" and "Themes." Select "View" and check the box that says "show encrypted or compressed NTFS files in color." Compressed files will now show in a color, making it easy to see changes made to the files.
  • Compression is not always recommended as it can change the quality of the file.
  • Avoid compressing picture files, as it will tamper with the integrity of the image.