Start with Tools > Options > Save.
Word 2007and later versions have similar options, however in Word 2007 they are accessed by clicking the Office Button and in later versions from the File tab on the ribbon. The dialogs are essentially similar to the illustrations below.
Fast saves has been dropped, but check the following
When Word is opened, Word creates an assortment of hidden temporary files, in various locations on the hard drive. Open a document and more are created. Edit the document and there are even more. In the normal course of events, these files are closed when they are no longer required, but if Word crashes and is unable to recover, they may be left behind, where they can cause havoc, and in a worse case, prevent you from re-opening your document - even from re-starting Word.
Much of this heartache can be avoided, if, following such a crash, measures are taken to put things right.
Windows Explorer is configured to hide hidden folders and system folders by default. Configure Explorer to display hidden files and the extensions of know file types. In Windows 7 this option is accessed from the Explorer menu
Windows 8 introduced the ribbon to Windows Explorer and renamed the function as File Explorer. The principles are however the same.
Using Windows Explorer, the first place to look is the Windows temp folder, the location of which will be determined by the operating system, but it can be easily found by typing %temp% in the address bar of Windows Explorer and pressing Enter. This same shortcut will work with Internet Explorer but not other browsers.
You can safely delete everything in this folder. Windows will not allow you to delete anything actually in use; however if Windows has locked the files, and certainly with Windows 95/98 if anyone is still using these old systems, you must reboot first to free the locked files.
Given that the crash may have left the machine in an unstable condition, this is not a bad plan in any case.
Next step is to find the remaining problem files and delete them. Word creates temporary files in a variety of places. Whereas these were fairly easy to locate with older operating systems, in Windows 7 at least they are somewhat more elusive as the standard search pattern of
does not appear to locate them, so look in the following locations:
1. The User Templates folder - this is the folder defined in Word Options > File Locations > User Templates and is that folder that will contain the normal template. Word always creates a temporary file associated with the normal template.
2. The document template.- Word no longer adheres so religiously to its template folder locations as did earlier versions. If you were using a document template filed somewhere other than the designated User templates folder when Word crashed, then you will need to remove the temporary file associated with the template in that folder.
3. The Word Startup folder - This folder contains templates used for add-ins.
4 The Office Startup folder - Few, if any add-ins, now use this folder, but it works in much the same way as the Word Startup folder. It is located at C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\STARTUP (where 14 is the Office version - here Office 2010 and x86 indicates a 64 bit operating system)
DOS commands have largely been lost to folklore, but you can eliminate the temporary files by means of a simple DOS batch file called from a Windows shortcut (run as Administrator in recent versions of Windows).
In the following example from my own PC these are:
D:\Word 2010 Templates
D:\Word 2010 Startup
C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\STARTUP
The batch file opens each folder in turn, sets the file attributes to unhidden, where required, and deletes the orphaned temporary files.
Using Notepad or a preferred text editor, enter the following - changing the drive letters and folder paths to match the locations of the template and add-in folders. The REM lines are only descriptive and are ignored when the batch file is run.
Save in the Windows folder as WordFix.bat Create a shortcut to this file on the desktop and when the wheel comes off and Word crashes, click to delete the all the orphaned temp files.
Word can now be restarted and you can re-load the last saved version of your document.
Such is the nature of the beast that sooner or later Word will crash. When you restart, Word may try and recover the document you were working on, but this is a bit hit and miss, so don't rely on it.
Configure Word to create a backup file - and save often.
It is good practice to drill CTRL+S into your brain and apply it every time you pause for thought. Then when the wheel comes off, you don't lose too much work.