WordPad is a text-editing program you can use to create and edit documents. Unlike Notepad, WordPad documents can include rich formatting and graphics, and you can link to or embed objects, such as pictures or other documents.

Picture of the WordPad window
WordPad window

Create, open, and save documents

  1. Open WordPad by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button. In the search box, type WordPad, and then, in the list of results, click WordPad.

  2. Use the following commands to create, open, or save documents:

    To Do this
    To

    Create a new document

    Do this
    Click the WordPad menu button Picture of the WordPad menu button, and then click New.
    To

    Open a document

    Do this
    Click the WordPad menu button Picture of the WordPad menu button, and then click Open.
    To

    Save a document

    Do this
    Click the WordPad menu button Picture of the WordPad menu button, and then click Save.
    To

    Save a document with a new name or format

    Do this
    Click the WordPad menu button Picture of the WordPad menu button, point to Save as, and then click the format you want to save the document in.

Note

  • WordPad can be used to open and save text documents (.txt), rich text files (.rtf), Word documents (.docx), and OpenDocument Text (.odt) documents. Documents in other formats are opened as plain text documents and might not appear as expected.

Format documents

Formatting refers to how the text in your document looks as well as how it's arranged. You can use the ribbon, located just underneath the title bar to easily change the formatting in your document. For example, you can choose from many different fonts and font sizes, and you can make your text almost any color you want. You can also easily change how your document is aligned.

  1. Open WordPad by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button. In the search box, type WordPad, and then, in the list of results, click WordPad.

  2. Use the following commands to change the formatting of your document:

    To Do this
    To

    Change how text looks in your document

    Do this

    Select the text that you want to change, and then use the buttons on the Home tab in the Font group. For more information about what each button does, hover over the button for a description.

    To

    Change how text is aligned in your document

    Do this

    Select the text that you want to change, and then use the buttons on the Home tab in the Paragraph group. For more information about what each button does, hover over the button for a description.

Insert dates and pictures to documents

  1. Open WordPad by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button. In the search box, type WordPad, and then, in the list of results, click WordPad.

  2. Use the following commands to insert the current date or a picture:

    To Do this
    To

    Insert the current date

    Do this
    1. On the Home tab, in the Insert group, click Date and time.

    2. Click the format you want, and then click OK.

    To

    Insert a picture

    Do this
    1. On the Home tab, in the Insert group, click Picture.

    2. Locate the picture that you want to insert, and then click Open.

    To

    Insert a drawing

    Do this
    1. On the Home tab, in the Insert group, click Paint drawing.

    2. Create the drawing that you want to insert and then close Paint.

View documents

  1. Open WordPad by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button. In the search box, type WordPad, and then, in the list of results, click WordPad.

  2. Use the following commands to view documents:

    To Do this
    To

    Increase or decrease the zoom level

    Do this

    On the View tab, in the Zoom group, click Zoom in or Zoom out.

    To

    View the document at its actual size

    Do this

    On the View tab, in the Zoom group, click 100%.

    To

    Display the ruler

    Do this

    On the View tab, in the Show or hide group, select the Ruler check box.

    To

    Display the status bar

    Do this

    On the View tab, in the Show or hide group, select the Status bar check box.

    To

    Change the word wrap settings

    Do this

    On the View tab, in the Settings group, click Word wrap, and then click the setting that you want.

    To

    Change the unit of measurement on the ruler

    Do this

    On the View tab, in the Settings group, click Measurement units, and then click the units that you want.

Tip

  • To zoom in and out in a document, you can also click the Zoom inPicture of the Zoom in button or Zoom outPicture of the Zoom out button buttons on the Zoom slider in the lower-right corner of the window to increase or decrease the zoom level.
    Picture of the Zoom slider
    Zoom slider

Change page margins

  1. Open WordPad by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button. In the search box, type WordPad, and then, in the list of results, click WordPad.

  2. Click the WordPad menu button Picture of the WordPad menu button, click Page setup, and then select the options you want.

Print documents

  1. Open WordPad by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button. In the search box, type WordPad, and then, in the list of results, click WordPad.

  2. Click the WordPad menu button Picture of the WordPad menu button, click Print, and then select the options you want.

Note

  • You can use Print preview to see how your document will look before you print it. To use Print preview, click the WordPad menu button Picture of the WordPad menu button, point to Print, and then click Print preview. When you are finished previewing your document, click Close print preview.