How to Use Undo and Redo in Word 2007 - dummies

How to Use Undo and Redo in Word 2007

By Dan Gookin

The Undo and Redo commands in Word 2007 keep you from having to be afraid of deleting your text, or of doing anything else wrong, while you’re working on your documents. What you can do, you can also undo.

The Undo command

The Undo command undoes anything you do in Word, such as formatting text, moving blocks, typing and deleting text, formatting — all of it. You can unleash the Undo command in two handy ways:

  • Press Ctrl+Z.

  • Click the Undo command button on the Quick Access Toolbar.


An advantage of using the Undo command button is that it sports a drop-down menu that helps you review the past several things you’ve done, or that can be undone.

  • Regrettably, you cannot pick and choose from the Undo command button’s drop-down menu; the menu merely allows you to undo multiple instances of things all at one time.

  • At sporadic times, Undo doesn’t work. Word warns you, though. For example, you may see the message “There is not enough memory to undo this operation, Continue?” Proceed at your own peril.

  • The Undo command doesn’t work when there’s nothing to undo, or if something simply cannot be undone. For example, you cannot undo a save-to-disk operation.

  • To undo an Undo, use Redo.

Redo, the Undo-Undo command

If you undo something and — whoops! — you didn’t mean to, you must use the Redo command to set things back. For example, you may type some text and then use Undo to “untype” the text. You can use the Redo command to restore the typing. You have two choices:

  • Press Ctrl+Y.

  • Click the Redo command button on the Quick Access Toolbar.


The Redo command serves two functions:

  • It does exactly the opposite of whatever the Undo command does. So, if you type text, Undo untypes the text, and Redo recovers the text.

  • If you use Undo to recover deleted text, Redo deletes the text again.

Redo, the Repeat Typing command

When the Redo command has nothing left to redo, it changes functions and becomes the Repeat Typing command, which can be a real timesaver.

For example, type the following lines in Word:

Knock, knock.

Who’s there?


Knock who?

Press Ctrl+Y or click the Repeat Typing command button on the Quick Access Toolbar. Word repeats the last few entries you typed. (If you had to press the Backspace key to back up and erase, Ctrl+Y repeats only from that point.)

  • You can also use the Repeat Typing command to reapply formatting. When you’re working in a document and changing styles on various chunks of text, using the Repeat key or Redo command can save oodles of time, especially in applying formatting.

  • The F4 key works the same as Ctrl+Y; both serve as the Repeat Typing command keys.