How to update a Word add-in from DocTools to the newest version

New versions of the Word add-ins available on this website,, are published when relevant. When a new version is published, it replaces the previous version on the website.

How to find out what version of a DocTools Word add-in you have

To find the version number of your currently installed DocTools Word add-in, go to the Ribbon in Word, select the relevant DocTools tab. In the group of tools belonging to the add-in (example: CrossReferenceManager), select Help > About. You will see the version number just after the add-in name. Examples: 2.0 or 3.7.

How to find out what is new in the newest version compared to your current version of a DocTools Word add-in

The Changelog page includes information about all versions of all DocTools Word add-ins. It is always updated with information about what is new in each version. For each add-in, the newest version is listed at the top. Go to the list for the add-in you want to check. Find your current version number in the list. Every change listed for versions above your current version number is included in the newest version.

How to get an update of a DocTools Word add-in

If you have previously purchased license(s) to a DocTools Word add-in and find out that a newer version is available with new features or changes you would like to have, you can have your current version updated.

  • You can buy an upgrade version at a reduced price via the relevant product page or via the Shop page. Use the relevant Buy UPGRADE button.
  • Note that you may be qualified for a free update of an add-in.

To find out whether you are qualified for a free update and for help on getting an update, either for free or at a reduced price, see I have purchased an add-in and can see that a newer version is now available – how do I get an update? on the FAQ page.

Once you have the files for a new version ready and downloaded, either after requesting a free update or after buying an upgrade, you are ready to install the new version instead of your existing version. 

How to install the update once you have the new files downloaded

The information below is for you if you have a specific DocTools Word add-in installed and are going to update to a new version of the add-in. You must have the new files downloaded first.

You can use the same procedure for updating a DocTools Word add-in as for installing the add-in for the first time. You can follow the quick guide or go to more detailed instructions below.

TIPS – quick guide

No matter whether you are going to install, update or uninstall a DocTools Word Add-In, it takes only a minute or two – all is done following the same principles. To put it briefly, you only need to:

  1. Prevent files from being blockedIn File Explorer, right-click the delivered zip file > select Properties > turn ON the Unblock check box (if found) > click OK.
  2. Unzip: In File Explorer, unzip the delivered zip file (i.e. extract the files from the zip file).
    TIP: You can right-click the zip file and select Extract All to unzip the file.
  3. Open installation document: Open the DocTools InstallationManager document from the unzipped folder. If a Microsoft Word Security Notice is shown, click Enable macros.
  4. Double-click the relevant button in the document.

Instructions are always included with the delivery of an add-in.

In case you need more information about updating a Word add-in from DocTools, follow the instructions below.

If you have installed a Word add-in from DocTools and need to update it to a newer version that becomes available to you, you need to replace the old add-in file(s) with the updated version(s). To update an add-in, follow the instructions for installing an add-in. See How to install a Word add-in from DocTools. Two different procedures are described for installing an add-in:

  • About METHOD 1: Installation using DocTools InstallationManager.docm
    If you update an add-in using this method, the old file(s) will automatically be replaced with the new file(s) as explained in the How to install a Word add-in from DocTools.
  • About METHOD 2: Manual installation
    If you update and add-in using this method, you must manually make sure to remove the old version(s) of the file(s) from the STARTUP folder as explained in How to install a Word add-in from DocTools.

Why the STARTUP folder must contain only a single version of the same add-in

If you are going to update an add-in with a new version, you might think that you can rename the old file in the STARTUP folder and leave it there together with the new version. However, that may cause problems so don't do that unless you change the file extension too so that Word can no longer recognize the renamed file as a Word template.

Example Imagine that you rename an add-in named MyAddIn.dotm to MyAddIn_OLD.dotm. Even if you renamed the old add-in, it contains the same macros as it did beforehand. When you start Word, both add-ins will be loaded and Word has access to two sets of macros with identical names. When you, for example, click a button, Word may grab the requested macro in the old add-in instead of in the new one. Maybe that macro has been changed in the new version and things will not work as designed.

Always keep a backup copy of your add-ins

You should always make sure to keep a backup copy of your add-ins. Then you can easily replace the version in your STARTUP folder with a fresh version if needed.

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