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Windows 7: Opening attachments from Web-based Email are saved in Temp location...

25 May 2012   #1

Opening attachments from Web-based Email are saved in Temp location...

As above, if a user opens say a Word document which is an attachment on a web-based mail system like hotmail or outlook live and the user then just clicks SAVE, the document is saved to a temporary location.

We have lots of users who are doing this and then finding that they have lost there work etc as they have assumed it was saving to a network drive or even back to the attachment (yes I know thats wrong, but students don't always know till its too late).

So my question is, is there any way of getting Word to prompt them to save the document to somewhere when they click SAVE, rather than save it in a temp area under the temporary files area on the C: drive???

Is it possible to do with a Group Policy setting or any other way round not saving the doc in temp area and forcing the user to choose the location.

Maybe the equivalent to what the SAVE AS function does...

Hope that makes sense.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 May 2012   #2

MS Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit

which version of Word are you using?

Incidentally, here is how you fill out your system specs:
Update your SevenForums System Specs
User CP (located on the top menu bar) |
Your Profile | Edit System Spec
(left-hand column)

To gather info, use Speccy (my favorite) or SIW or System Info

Add the word laptop or desktop or netbook to the
“system manufacturer” block, for example,
Toshiba Satellite L305D notebook.

Provide full windows version info, for example:
MS Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit

Use the “Other Info” block for Optical Reader,
Mouse, touchpad, wifi adapter, speakers, monitor, etc

Scroll down and click on SAVE CHANGES.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 May 2012   #3


word 2010, but the version is irelevant, the behaviour is the same in word 2003, 2007 and earlier, maybe its the way the OS handles attachments from web based email clients.

But just wondering if there is a fix?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

27 May 2012   #4

MS Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1

When you try to open a document either .doc, .xls or .pdf from web mail or a web site, by default the OS downloads it to a temporary folder, usually in the user's profile then opens the document using an associated program.

Word / Excel will only prompt for a location when the file is still in system memory and not yet saved to the disk. The user needs to save the downloaded file to a known location, either a data folder or to My Documents by using the Save As command in Word / Excel or Acrobat Reader while saving it for the first time. Once it is saved to a known location, the usual Save command is enough later on.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2012   #5


@rraod - Haven't I already explained that in my initial post?

No amount of asking students to save their work first when downloading the document is EVER going to work. Students come to us when the work is lost after logging out and not realising that the work was saved in a temporary location.

So as mentioned in my first post, I need a solution which does not let them save to a temporary location, not a lecture on what they should be doing first.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2012   #6

7 x64

It is not word that is doing that. When an attachment is opened the Email program, in your case the browser, is saving the doc to a Temp area and Word is just Resaving to that same area. Set your browsers to Ask where to save files and or set it to save to a specific folder AND ASK every time.
This may also be a setting in the Web based email system.

You could also TRAIN your users to stop opening these Docs and first Save them to wherever they want them first.


Then it really is their problem. And they deserve the headache from not doing the correct thing to start with. If you don't let them, and or force them to, learn from their mistakes they are lost. When they get out of school they will be one of those Occupy people that think everything should be done for them, more then likely by the government. Just my $0.02
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2012   #7

MS Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1

I am still using Word 2003 as I am very much used to it. I have not upgraded to word 2007 or 2010.

Word 2003 has customizable toolbars. Long time ago I tried the same thing by removing the Save button from the Standard toolbar and adding the Save As tool button in it's place. With this modification, whenever I press the Save button, the Select File location dialog box pops out giving me a choice to change the file location. I think this is one of the solution.

I am not aware of the method of replacing the Save button with Save As button in Word 2007 and Word 2010. You may explore in these lines.

If your students are very young, I can excuse them for their behavior. but if they are grown-ups, they have to learn the correct way of using computers and not just playing with them.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2012   #8

x64 (6.3.9600) Win8.1 Pro & soon dual boot x64 (6.1.7601) Win7_SP1 HomePrem

@sharpharp: There are possible solutions for each browser, I'll give you the IE and FF "fixes"

IE => Tools (gear icon or tools menu) => view downloads => download options - set default location => Ok and close
FF => options => general tab=>downloads area - save downloads to or always ask.

This won't help if they open the file, only if they right click to downl;oad.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jun 2012   #9

Win7 Enterprise x64
Catch them with a log off script

We were having exactly the same problem as you with our students. I found the easiest way to do it was to run a script when they log off to catch any documents in the temporary area.

The script uses xcopy to copy every .doc,docx,.xls etc it finds in the temporary area to a folder called the students username in a storage area and then runs the forfiles command to check the storage area for files older than 30 days which it deletes if it finds any so it doesn't just fill up.

Hope that helps
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jun 2012   #10

x64 (6.3.9600) Win8.1 Pro & soon dual boot x64 (6.1.7601) Win7_SP1 HomePrem

I no longer use Office, so I can't give you the exact solution, but perhaps the following suggestion might get some response "Why didn't I think of that?"
So my question is, is there any way of getting Word to prompt them to save the document to somewhere when they click SAVE, rather than save it in a temp area under the temporary files area on the C: drive???
Office supports macros or some version of Visual Basic and most menu picks can be customized. I found this example for Excel, with a little modification you should be able to create one for Word. Note that this example also specifies a filter (default save type) and has specific text for the msg box displayed. It might be easiest if you start recording a macro in word and use that as a basis - and the code below to reference other aspects of your automation.
Private Sub CommandButton1_Click()

 Application.DisplayAlerts = False

 ' Save file name and path into a variable
    template_file = ActiveWorkbook.FullName

 ' Default directory would be c:\temp.  Users however will have the ability to change where to save the file if need be.
' Notice that i'm only allowing the save as option to be of .txt format.
' I'm also attaching the current date to the file name.
    fileSaveName = Application.GetSaveAsFilename( _
     InitialFileName:="C:\temp\filename_" + VBA.Strings.Format(Now, "mmddyyyy") + ".txt", _
     fileFilter:="Text Files (*.txt), *.txt")

     If fileSaveName = False Then
         Exit Sub
     End If

 ' Save file as .txt TAB delimited
    ActiveWorkbook.SaveAs Filename:= _
         fileSaveName, FileFormat:=xlText, _

     file_name_saved = ActiveWorkbook.FullName
     MsgBox "Your Acct Rec upload file has been successfully created at: " & vbCr & vbCr & file_name_saved 

 ' Go back to excel format after TAB delimited file has been created and saved
    ActiveWorkbook.SaveAs Filename:= _
         template_file, FileFormat:= _
         xlNormal, Password:="", WriteResPassword:="", ReadOnlyRecommended:=False _
         , CreateBackup:=False

      Application.DisplayAlerts = True

 End Sub
--> edit: Um, I think you could also set auto save/backup in preferences - not sure where it saves or backs up.

Good luck.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Opening attachments from Web-based Email are saved in Temp location...

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