Bizarre spelling issue in Word, any ideas?
Thread poster: David Jessop

David Jessop  Identity Verified
Spain
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
Mar 11, 2012

Hello...

I am using a Macbook Air running the latest version of Mac OS X as well as Windows 7 in VMWare. I use Microsoft Office 2007 for Windows and Mac Office 2011.

Recently I received a translation project from a regular client and as I went about carrying out the translation in Word, squiggly lines appeared below the text as they normally do, indicating there were spelling errors. I revised them as I went and then did a spell check at the end of the project, after proofreading my work. Word detected some spelling/grammar errors as it normally does. Everything seemed fine.

Then I submitted the work to the client and to my surprise the client wrote back to tell me that several words were lumped together (by way of example: thisishowsometextappeared). How could this be when I had completed a spell check right before submitting my work?

I went back into Word (Windows) and ran spell check again. Word did not detect any spelling errors and said the spell check had completed. I did the same with Word (Mac OS) and the same thing happened.

I have never experienced anything like this. I've searched the Internet for others experience of this, including in Microsoft's help documentation, and cannot find anything. What is especially strange is the same error occurred in two different operating systems and two different Office packages (it's basically as if it occurred on two different computers).

Does anyone have any idea of how this would happen and what I can do to ensure it does not happen again?

Thanks for any help.

David

[Edited at 2012-03-11 07:56 GMT]


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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 10:20
Spanish to English
+ ...
Blame MAC+MS Mar 11, 2012

David Jessop wrote:

Hello...

I am using a Macbook Air running the latest version of Mac OS X as well as Windows 7 in VMWare. I use Microsoft Office 2007 for Windows and Mac Office 2011.

Recently I received a translation project from a regular client and as I went about carrying out the translation in Word, squiggly lines appeared below the text as they normally do, indicating there were spelling errors. I revised them as I went and then did a spell check at the end of the project, after proofreading my work. Word detected some spelling/grammar errors as it normally does. Everything seemed fine.

Then I submitted the work to the client and to my surprise the client wrote back to tell me that several words were lumped together (by way of example: thisishowsometextappeared). How could this be when I had completed a spell check right before submitting my work?

I went back into Word (Windows) and ran spell check again. Word did not detect any spelling errors and said the spell check had completed. I did the same with Word (Mac OS) and the same thing happened.

I have never experienced anything like this. I've searched the Internet for others experience of this, including in Microsoft's help documentation, and cannot find anything. What is especially strange is the same error occurred in two different operating systems and two different Office packages (it's basically as if it occurred on two different computers).

Does anyone have any idea of how this would happen and what I can do to ensure it does not happen again?

Thanks for any help.

David

[Edited at 2012-03-11 07:56 GMT]


This often happens with MACs running an MS Office program on a VM environment, they're supposed to be compatible but they aren't really 100%. And IMHO Windows 7 is ... let's just say it leaves a lot to be desired in the first place. I sometimes get the squiggly underline appearing in a document that has been treated with TM softwares like Trados or Wordfast too in these setups. I don't know how to fix it, so I try to stick to MS Office for translation work and avoid hybrid usage (my VM runs pretty slowly so I end up never using it).


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David Jessop  Identity Verified
Spain
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Booting into Windows works? Mar 11, 2012

neilmac wrote:

David Jessop wrote:

Hello...

I am using a Macbook Air running the latest version of Mac OS X as well as Windows 7 in VMWare. I use Microsoft Office 2007 for Windows and Mac Office 2011.

Recently I received a translation project from a regular client and as I went about carrying out the translation in Word, squiggly lines appeared below the text as they normally do, indicating there were spelling errors. I revised them as I went and then did a spell check at the end of the project, after proofreading my work. Word detected some spelling/grammar errors as it normally does. Everything seemed fine.

Then I submitted the work to the client and to my surprise the client wrote back to tell me that several words were lumped together (by way of example: thisishowsometextappeared). How could this be when I had completed a spell check right before submitting my work?

I went back into Word (Windows) and ran spell check again. Word did not detect any spelling errors and said the spell check had completed. I did the same with Word (Mac OS) and the same thing happened.

I have never experienced anything like this. I've searched the Internet for others experience of this, including in Microsoft's help documentation, and cannot find anything. What is especially strange is the same error occurred in two different operating systems and two different Office packages (it's basically as if it occurred on two different computers).

Does anyone have any idea of how this would happen and what I can do to ensure it does not happen again?

Thanks for any help.

David

[Edited at 2012-03-11 07:56 GMT]


This often happens with MACs running an MS Office program on a VM environment, they're supposed to be compatible but they aren't really 100%. And IMHO Windows 7 is ... let's just say it leaves a lot to be desired in the first place. I sometimes get the squiggly underline appearing in a document that has been treated with TM softwares like Trados or Wordfast too in these setups. I don't know how to fix it, so I try to stick to MS Office for translation work and avoid hybrid usage (my VM runs pretty slowly so I end up never using it).


Hi Neil,

Thanks for your response.

Have you found that a solution is booting into Windows using Boot Camp and doing a final spell check rather than doing the final spell check in VMware solves the problem? Or is it actually necessary to do your final spell check on a non-Mac?

Thanks.

David


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:20
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Use Office for Mac Mar 11, 2012

This shouldn't happen if you're using Office for Mac (i.e. not running the VM machine)

[Edited at 2012-03-11 09:07 GMT]


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David Jessop  Identity Verified
Spain
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
It did happen at first but I was able to solve it by resetting the spell checker Mar 11, 2012

Tom in London wrote:

This shouldn't happen if you're using Office for Mac (i.e. not running the VM machine)

[Edited at 2012-03-11 09:07 GMT]


It did indeed happen when I used Office for Mac.

But then after being alerted to the problem by the client and while attempting to solve it, I went back to Office for Mac and on the menu went to Word > Preferences > Spelling and Grammar > Recheck Document > Window appears stating: "This operation resets the spelling checker and the grammar checker so that Word will recheck words and grammar you previously checked and chose to ignore. Do you want to continue?" > Yes.

The above worked in this case. I suppose the solution would be to go through the above process for every document.

David


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:20
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Strange Mar 11, 2012

David Jessop wrote:

It did indeed happen when I used Office for Mac.

But then after being alerted to the problem by the client and while attempting to solve it, I went back to Office for Mac and on the menu went to Word > Preferences > Spelling and Grammar > Recheck Document > Window appears stating: "This operation resets the spelling checker and the grammar checker so that Word will recheck words and grammar you previously checked and chose to ignore. Do you want to continue?" > Yes.

The above worked in this case. I suppose the solution would be to go through the above process for every document.

David


Scary. I use Office 2008 and 2011 for Mac, all the time and of course, I spellcheck all my translations before releasing them- but I've never come across this issue. I'll be watching out for it now. I know M$Office can get up to some strange tricks.

This must be happening when you change the spelling of a word, using the spellcheck. Evidently MSWord over-writes the original word with the new one but doesn't do so correctly. This could be one of those strange glitches that sometimes appear and then just as strangely, disappear.

Maybe try re-installing Office? Repairing permissions on the Mac? Emptying your caches?

[Edited at 2012-03-11 09:27 GMT]


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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 10:20
Spanish to English
+ ...
Recreate the doc from scratch Mar 11, 2012

[quote]David Jessop wrote:

neilmac wrote:


Have you found that a solution is booting into Windows using Boot Camp and doing a final spell check rather than doing the final spell check in VMware solves the problem? Or is it actually necessary to do your final spell check on a non-Mac?

Thanks.

David


Nah, I don't usually have enough patience to try several solutions. In these kind of cases I usually just make a TXT (unformatted text) copy of the doc from scratch on a Windows-dedicated PC and run the normal MS spellcheck, which also gets rid of the underline; the only problem is you have to reformat it again afterwards if you want to stick to same format as the original (a condition I try to avoid).


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Dave Bindon  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 11:20
Member (2010)
Greek to English
Happened to me... Mar 11, 2012

...a few months ago. The document was fine on my PC but on the client's PC words were running together in groups. I saved the file in an earlier version of Word and also sent her a pdf.

I still don't know why it happened.


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Texte Style
Local time: 10:20
French to English
me too, on PCs only! Mar 11, 2012

I have windows 7 and my colleague has XP, when she opens my files she gets the same problem, so it's not Mac that's at fault

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David Jessop  Identity Verified
Spain
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
different problem Mar 11, 2012

[quote]neilmac wrote:

David Jessop wrote:

neilmac wrote:


Have you found that a solution is booting into Windows using Boot Camp and doing a final spell check rather than doing the final spell check in VMware solves the problem? Or is it actually necessary to do your final spell check on a non-Mac?

Thanks.

David


In these kind of cases I usually just make a TXT (unformatted text) copy of the doc from scratch on a Windows-dedicated PC and run the normal MS spellcheck, which also gets rid of the underline; the only problem is you have to reformat it again afterwards if you want to stick to same format as the original (a condition I try to avoid).


Hi Neil,

I think we are having two distinct issues as the lines I was referring to are the normal lines that Word puts underneath the word when there is a spelling error.

David


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Steve Booth  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:20
Member (2007)
English to Arabic
+ ...
something to check Mar 11, 2012

is your disabled items list, I had this problem recently where it was saying the spell check had completed even though I could see a typo.

It turned out it was caused by something being disabled - unfortunately i can't remember exactly what but it was something to do with the dictionary or an add in or something like that


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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:20
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Corruption en-route? Mar 12, 2012

There is something I don't understand, please clarify.
David Jessop wrote:

I went back into Word (Windows) and ran spell check again. Word did not detect any spelling errors and said the spell check had completed. I did the same with Word (Mac OS) and the same thing happened.


Does this mean the spellchecker did not find the problem but you could see the spaces missing (words stuck together)? Or do you mean the words were definitely not stuck together?

Could there be one more possibility - that the file got corrupted as it traveled via email?
Did you attach it as a Word document, or did you zip it and attached the zip file?

I am asking this because I have had 2-3 cases recently where files I sent simply attached to an email got corrupted on the other end (either due to server encoding issues or virus checking), but when I zipped them and attached the zip file, everything was OK.

Katalin


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Daniel Grau  Identity Verified
Argentina
English to Spanish
It could be a missing update on the PC side Mar 12, 2012

See http://blogs.technet.com/b/office_sustained_engineering/archive/2011/02/24/addressing-word-2007-docx-compatibility-and-missing-spaces.aspx .

To understand the squiggly lines (if the interactive options Check spelling as you type and Check grammar as you type are enabled in Word > Preferences > Language and Spelling), you must be aware that language is not a Word setting, but a text attribute. You must apply a given language by selecting the text and then going to Tools > Language, just like you would apply bold or color. You can also press the Default button there to change the language permanently in your Normal template.

As long as those options remain enabled, the green and red underlines will reappear the next time you open your document (unless the problem words have been added to a custom dictionary).


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Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 10:20
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
Somewhat off topic... Mar 12, 2012

But maybethisis whatIshouldask oneofmy regularclientsabout whentheysendjobs andwedisagreewildly onthewordcount???

I end up running a laborious manual spell check and wanting to be paid about five times what they offer for the job.
The source language does run some words together as German does, and the spell checker splits too many apart, so it is necessary to know your grammar, and the client doesn't read Danish...

I thought it was a problem with their OCR and PDFs, but they insist it can't be.

Most of the time we have no problems, and I want to stay on friendly terms with them!


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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:20
French to English
Similar idea Mar 12, 2012

Daniel Grau wrote:

language is not a Word setting, but a text attribute. You must apply a given language by selecting the text and then going to Tools > Language, just like you would apply bold or color.


In a similar vein, I was going to ask whether the OP had tried selecting the entire document and setting a) the language needed and b) enabling spell check throughout. You do sometimes find odd words and chunks of text either with spell check turned off for no (apparent) good reason, or set to a different language, or some other anomaly.


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