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Multiple replace


Category: Translation

With this command, you will be able to make a number of replacements in the document at once without having to replace them individually using Microsoft Word's Find/Replace dialogue.

When to use:

  • You want to make several corrections during proofreading. For example, if you work on a series of documents on a specific project, you can prepare a list of corrections on the basis of one document and perform these corrections in all other documents from the same project.
  • You don't use CAT tools like SDL Trados 2007 (Word add-in) or Wordfast Classic and you want to pre-translate a document using a list of common words/phrases.
  • The documents you translate contain repetitive information in tables, textboxes, etc. which you want to translate quickly (mostly software-generated reports, etc).
Undo Undo support - This command is fully undoable. In Microsoft Word 2010 and newer versions, Undo command restores the original document before replacements were made.


Screenshot: Multiple Replace dialogue

  • Replacement List – List of entries that should be replaced in the current document. Every entry consists of text or expression to search for (Find What), text or expression to replace the found text with (Replace With), and additional options: “Replace whole words only” (“F” in the third column), “Case sensitive search ” (“C” in the third column) and “Use wildcards” (“W” in the third column). You can manage replacement lists using the following buttons:
    • Add – adds a new entry to the current replacement list. When you press this button, you will see a new dialogue where you can enter the “Find What” text, “Replace With” text, and choose additional options: “Replace whole words only” (on by default), “Case sensitive search”, “Use wildcards”.

      Screenshot: Add new replacement list entry

      All the options in this dialogue correspond to the appropriate options in Microsoft Word's Find & Replace dialogue, so you can use anything that is valid inside the Find & Replace dialogue, e.g., ^l for line break or ^t for tab character.

      You can also format replacements using any of the following options, alone or in combination: Bold, Italic, Underlined, Superscript, Subscript. To apply such formatting to replacements, toggle the appropriate buttons.

    • Edit – modifies the first selected entry in the current replacement list. You can also double-click the list or press the Enter key when the list is selected. This opens a new dialogue where you can edit the entry's information.
    • Remove – removes the selected entries from the current replacement list. Note: if a previously saved replacement list is selected in the drop-down list, this change is saved to the configuration file immediately.
    • Clear – removes all entries from the current replacement list. Note: if a previously saved replacement list is selected in the drop-down list, this change is saved to the configuration file immediately.
    • Copy – copies all entries to the clipboard. This is useful if you want to save them in a separate file or add them to another list.
    • Paste – adds entries which were previously copied to the clipboard (without removing the existing entries). This is useful if you want to add several entries to the current list. For example, you can keep replacement list entries in a Word table or Excel spreadsheet and copy them from there. Note: if a previously saved replacement list is selected in the drop-down list, this change is saved to the configuration file immediately.
    • Save – if “New List...” is selected in the List drop-down list, you will be prompted for a name of a new replacement list which will be saved with the current replacement list entries.
    • Delete – deletes a previously saved replacement list selected in the List drop-down list.

    Note: spaces and non-breaking spaces are shown in the replacement list with special symbols (• for space and ° for non-breaking space) for convenience.
  • Options – replacement options:
    • Entire document – select this option if you want to make replacements in the entire document (including headers / footers, textboxes, comments, footnotes / endnotes).
    • Selection – select this option if you want to process the selection only. The selection may be a block of text, a shape or a group of shapes.
    • Highlight Color – a text highlight color which will be used to highlight the text that is replaced, making it easier for you to find whether all replacements were made correctly. You can also select “Do not highlight” if you do not want to use any color. By default, Yellow color is selected in this list.
    • Look in hidden text – use this option if you want to find and replace in text that is marked with the font attribute. This may be useful if you use a CAT tool that works inside Microsoft Word, e.g., Wordfast Classic or Trados 2007.


To continue, click Replace All. You will see a notification and the dialogue will be closed.


For CAT tool users

If you use a CAT tool and want to perform replacements in an ongoing translation, you can do so as follows:

  1. Export the translation in one of the following bilingual translation exchange formats: Trados Tag-delimited DOC format (Trados 2007 format) or Bilingual Table format (Word document with a single table containing original text and translation). If you work in Trados 2007 or Wordfast Classic, there is no need to do so because the document will be ready for the next step.
  2. Open the created bilingual document.
  3. Run Multiple Replace:
    • If you exported to Trados Tag-delimited DOC format or work in Trados 2007 / Wordfast Classic, check “Entire Document” option, make sure that “Look in hidden text” option is unchecked, and click Replace All.
    • If you exported to a bilingual table format, select the column containing the translation, check “Selection” option, and click Replace All.
  4. Re-import the modified bilingual document into your CAT tool in order to update the TM and save the final translated document.

Developed by Stanislav Okhvat, 2007–2018

Microsoft Word®, Excel®, PowerPoint® and Visio® are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation.
Autocad© is copyright of Autodesk, Inc.
SDL Trados® (including SDL Trados Studio, Trados Workbench, TagEditor and Microsoft Word Addin) is a registered trademark of SDL plc.
memoQ is copyright of Kilgray Translation Technologies.
Wordfast© is copyright of Yves Champollion.

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