Friday, June 15, 2007

Automating Word with Ruby: Formatting Text

A reader asks "Can you tell me how to format text in Word using Ruby? I'm most interested in controlling justification, indenting paragraphs, changing fonts, using italics, bold, and underlining, etc."

This is the latest in a series of articles about Automating Word with Ruby.

There's a variety of formatting that you can apply to Range objects in Word. Let's look at some of the most common...


To change the font of a Range object, set its Font.Name value to a valid font name:

document.Words(1).Font.Name = 'Verdana'

To change the font size of a Range object, set its Font.Size value:

document.Words(1).Font.Size = 18

To set Bold, Italic, and Underline properties of a Range object, supply a boolean value:

document.Sentences(1).Font.Bold = true
document.Sentences(1).Font.Italic = true
document.Sentences(1).Font.Underline = true


To indent a paragraph, call its Indent method. For example, to indent all paragraphs in the document:


To un-indent a paragraph, call its Outdent method. For example, to un-indent only the first paragraph:



To align a paragraph, set its Alignment value to one of the following values:

Left = 0
Center = 1
Right = 2
Justify = 3

To center-align the second paragraph, for example:

document.Paragraphs(2).Alignment = 1

That's all for now, and I hope you find it helpful. As always, post a comment here or send me an email to request future topics.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Anonymous said...

Thanks for the information about formatting. That's just what I needed to know!

Anonymous said...

You can find out lots more stuff by using the code-completion facility (is it called `IntelliSense'?) in Word's macros to discover more about the automation methods.

You access the macros (I don't have a Word here - running off memory) by going to Tools -> Macros -> Visual Basic Editor then clicking on the word document object (I think it will be called document1 or something), and, when you type `document1.' (with the dot), a list of methods and properties will drop down. Surf through. Enjoy. :o)