Microsoft KB Archive/169967

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Article ID: 169967

Article Last Modified on 1/19/2007


  • Microsoft Word 97 Standard Edition

This article was previously published under Q169967


After you change the Regional Settings on your computer to use a four-digit year (for example, in the short-date format), the AutoComplete feature in Microsoft Word still suggests a two-digit year.


Use one of the following methods to work around this problem:

Method 1: Create an AutoCorrect Entry

Use this method to correct the date after accepting the suggested AutoComplete date. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. On the Tools menu, click AutoCorrect.
  2. On the AutoCorrect tab, type /00 in the Replace box. Then type /2000 in the With box.
  3. Click Add to add your new AutoCorrect entry to the AutoCorrect list.
  4. Click OK to close the AutoCorrect dialog box.

When you type the first four characters of the date, Word suggests today's date as usual. If you type 1/1/, Word suggests the date 1/1/00. Press ENTER or the TAB key to accept the suggested date. When you press the SPACEBAR to type additional text or press ENTER to go to the next paragraph, Word corrects the date with the AutoCorrect entry you added.

For example, Word corrects the date from the date you accepted, 1/1/00, to 1/1/2000.

Method 2: Use the "M/d/yyyy" or "MM/dd/yyyy" Date Format

Use this method to "force" Word to show the correct AutoComplete date format as M/d/yyyy or MM/dd/yyyy. To do this, follow these steps:

NOTE: There is no known workaround that forces Word to show an AutoComplete date in the format of M-d-yyyy or MM-dd-yyyy.

  1. Quit Microsoft Word.
  2. On the Windows Start menu, point to Settings and click Control Panel.
  3. Double-click Regional Settings.
  4. On the Date tab, type one of the following in the Short date style box:
    • If you want to type and show the date as M/d/yyyy (for example: 1/1/2000), type M-d-yyyy.


    • If you want to type and show the date as MM/dd/yyyy (for example: 01/01/2000), type MM-dd-yyyyNOTE: Word does not show or use this Short date style format. Instead, this "forces" Word to use the short date style M/d/yyyy or MM/dd/yyyy.

  1. Click Apply.
  2. Click OK to close the Regional Settings Properties dialog box.
  3. Restart Microsoft Word.

When you type the first four characters of the date (for example, type 1/1/ or 01/0), Word shows an AutoComplete tip in the correct date format. To accept the AutoComplete date, press either ENTER or the TAB key.

For example, when you type 1/13, Word shows an AutoComplete date of 1/13/2000.


Most non-English (U.S.) languages show the default date format with the day first, followed by the month and year. Use Method 2 earlier in this article when you want to insert a date in the format of either d/M/yyyy (for example: 13/1/2000) or dd/MM/yyyy (for example: 13/01/2000).

To do this, type either d-M-yyyy or dd-MM-yyyy in step 4.

Keywords: kbautotext kbprb KB169967