How to Update All Cross-References at Once in Word 2007: A Step-by-Step Guide

Updating all cross-references in Word 2007 requires a few clicks: go to the “Print Preview” mode, and then immediately exit it. This forces Word to update all fields, including cross-references, throughout the document.

After completing this action, all cross-references in your Word document will display the most current information, ensuring accuracy and consistency across your entire document.


Have you ever been neck-deep in a Word document, only to realize your cross-references are out of whack? It’s a common frustration for those dealing with lengthy reports, academic papers, or any document that requires internal references. Cross-referencing is a crucial feature in Microsoft Word that allows you to refer to other parts of the same document, ensuring a seamless and connected reading experience. It’s particularly important for documents that need a table of contents, figures, tables, or a list of authorities.

Cross-references are dynamic fields that update automatically when the referenced item changes. This feature is a lifesaver, preventing you from the tedious task of manually updating every reference. However, when you’re dealing with a large document with numerous references, it can be a real headache if they don’t update correctly. Word 2007 users might find themselves in a bind since the process isn’t as straightforward as in newer versions of Word. But fear not! This guide is designed to help you swiftly update all cross-references in Word 2007 with ease, saving you time and ensuring your document’s integrity.

How to Update All Cross-References in Word 2007

The following steps will guide you through updating all cross-references in your Word 2007 document.

Step 1: Open your document

Open the document in which you need to update the cross-references.

When you open your document, make sure that all the content is final and all the cross-references are in place. This will ensure that when you update the cross-references, they will be accurate.

Step 2: Go to Print Preview

Navigate to the Office button, click on “Print,” and then select “Print Preview.”

This step might seem odd, but entering Print Preview mode forces Word to update all fields in the document, including cross-references, to ensure they are current before printing.

Step 3: Exit Print Preview

Immediately exit Print Preview by clicking on the “Close Print Preview” button.

After exiting Print Preview, your document will return to the normal view, and all cross-references will be updated to reflect any changes made to the referenced items.


Saves TimeNo need to update each reference manually, which can be time-consuming.
Ensures AccuracyAutomatically updates the references to reflect the correct information.
Improves Document IntegrityMaintains consistency across all referenced items within the document.

Updating all cross-references at once in Word 2007 can significantly save time and reduce the potential for human error. It ensures that all referenced information is accurate and consistent throughout your document, maintaining its integrity and professionalism.


Non-IntuitiveThe process is not straightforward and may not be intuitive to all users.
Limited to Word 2007The method may not apply to other versions of Word, limiting its utility.
Potential for MistakesIf not all references are correctly set up, updating all at once could propagate errors.

While updating all cross-references at once is convenient, it can also be confusing for users who are not familiar with this workaround. Additionally, this method is specific to Word 2007 and may not be applicable to other versions, potentially causing frustration. There is also a risk of updating incorrect references if they were not set up properly initially.

Additional Information

When working with cross-references in Word 2007, it’s crucial to ensure that all your references are correctly coded and inserted. Cross-references rely on bookmarks to point to the referenced item. If a bookmark is deleted or renamed, the cross-reference will not update correctly. Therefore, it’s essential to check that all bookmarks are in place before updating cross-references.

Another tip is to use the “Update Field” feature to update individual references if needed. You can do this by right-clicking on the cross-reference and selecting “Update Field.” This is useful if you only need to update a few references rather than the entire document.

Remember, while this guide focuses on Word 2007, the principles of cross-referencing apply to all versions of Word. However, the steps to update them may vary.


  1. Open your document.
  2. Go to Print Preview.
  3. Exit Print Preview.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a cross-reference in Word?

A cross-reference in Word is a reference to another part of the document, such as a figure, table, or section, that updates automatically when the referenced item changes.

Can I update cross-references individually?

Yes, you can update individual cross-references by right-clicking on them and selecting “Update Field.”

Will updating cross-references change their formatting?

Updating cross-references should not change their formatting but will update the content to reflect any changes made to the referenced items.

What if my cross-references don’t update?

If your cross-references don’t update, check that the bookmarks they reference are still in place and have not been deleted or renamed.

Can I use this method in other versions of Word?

The method of updating cross-references using Print Preview is specific to Word 2007. Other versions of Word may have different steps to update cross-references.


Updating all cross-references at once in Word 2007 may seem like a daunting task, but it’s a simple three-step process that can save you a significant amount of time and ensure the accuracy of your document.

While there are some drawbacks, such as the non-intuitive nature of the process and the potential for mistakes, the benefits far outweigh the cons. By following this guide and keeping the additional tips in mind, you’ll be able to manage your document’s cross-references efficiently and with confidence.