Working with Files in the Document Library

Now that you've added files to the document library, you're ready to learn how to check out a file, open it for editing, and then change the properties of a file.

Checking out a document

With document library files, you should always check out a file before opening it and making changes. This prevents other users from opening the file and making changes while you have it checked it. If a user views the file while you have it checked out, he or she will see the last version that was checked out, not the version that you're working. Once you check the file back in, users can see the changes that you made.

Checking out a file

  1. Go to the Shared Documents area.
  2. On the Shared Documents page, point to the file you want to work with, this will display the down arrow.
  3. Click the down arrow to reveal a menu.
  4. Click Check Out.

Once you've checked out a file, the Check Out option on the menu changes to Check In. You can use this option to check the file back in after you're done making changes to the file.

Open a file for editing

Now that the your file is checked out, you're ready to open it in Microsoft Word.

  1. In the Shared Documents area, point to file you want to work with to display a down arrow.
  2. Click the down arrow to reveal a menu.
  3. Click Edit in Microsoft Office Word. Microsoft Office Word opens, displaying the file.

If you click on the file name without using the menu, you will be prompted to open the file as Read-Only or in Edit Mode.  Make certain you check out the file first.