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Disable, Enable, and Set the Default Custom Dictionary in PowerPoint 365 for Windows

Learn how to disable, enable, and set the default custom dictionary in PowerPoint 365 for Windows. The default custom dictionary contains all the new words you added.


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Product/Version: PowerPoint 365 for Windows

OS: Microsoft Windows 10 and higher



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Any custom spelling dictionary that you create within PowerPoint or any other Microsoft Office program is used by all the Office applications installed on your computer. Also, any changes made to the list of words within a custom dictionary reflect in proofing tools of all Office applications. Each logged-in user has a default custom dictionary called RoamingCustom.dic, stored in a separate folder for each local user.

If you are running Windows 11, 10, 8, or 7, you can find the default custom dictionary at this location:

C:\Users\<Username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\UProof

So, what exactly is a default dictionary? Let's assume you are running a regular spell check, and encounter a word that PowerPoint flags as misspelled. You know that the word is correctly spelled, and you choose the Add to Dictionary option. Any custom spellings that you add are saved to your default dictionary. We have already established in the preceding section that every user has a default custom dictionary called RoamingCustom.dic, but you can change your default custom dictionary to any other if you please. We will show you how to do that later in this tutorial. There are other aspects of spell checking that you may want to explore. For instance, after adding a ready-made 3rd party dictionary or creating a new dictionary, you may want to disable a custom dictionary temporarily and enable it later.

Follow these steps to learn more about enabling and disabling custom dictionaries. You will also learn how you can set a default custom dictionary in PowerPoint 365 for Windows:

  1. If you have launched PowerPoint, choose Options, as shown highlighted in green within Figure 1, below. Alternatively, if you already have a presentation open, choose the File menu to bring up Backstage view, and select Options. You can also press both the Alt and T keys together, and next press O.
  2. Access Options in PowerPoint
    Figure 1: Options tab of Backstage view
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  4. Either way, you bring up the PowerPoint Options dialog box. Click the Proofing option within the sidebar, as shown highlighted in red within Figure 2, below.
  5. Proofing section of PowerPoint Options dialog box includes the Custom Dictionaries button
    Figure 2: Proofing tab in PowerPoint Options
  6. Now, click the Custom Dictionaries button, as shown highlighted in blue within Figure 2, above. Doing so summons the Custom Dictionaries dialog box, as shown in Figure 3, below. All the custom dictionaries can be found under Dictionary List within the Custom Dictionaries dialog box. Note that we have several dictionaries available, as highlighted in red within Figure 3. Your number of dictionaries may be different, and that's perfectly OK.
  7. Dictionary list in PowerPoint 365
    Figure 3: Custom Dictionaries dialog box
  8. Multiple Spelling Dictionaries

  9. You may have one or more custom dictionaries available. You can add a ready-made 3rd party dictionary or create a new dictionary to end up with multiple spelling dictionaries.
  10. You can now enable or disable dictionaries to be used for spell checking. To do so, select or deselect the check-boxes preceding the particular dictionary name, as shown highlighted in red within Figure 4, below.
  11. Enable or disable custom dictionaries in PowerPoint 365
    Figure 4: Enable or disable custom dictionaries for spell check
  12. To change the default custom dictionary, select any enabled custom dictionary within the Dictionary List that you want to be used as the default dictionary, and click the Change Default button, as shown highlighted in red within Figure 5, below, within the Custom Dictionaries dialog box.
  13. Change Default button in PowerPoint 365
    Figure 5: Change Default button
  14. This action will set the selected dictionary to be the default dictionary. In Figure 6, below, you can see that Custom.dic is now set as the default dictionary, which is indicated by the word Default suffixed to it (compare with Figure 5, above).
  15. Changed default dictionary in PowerPoint 365
    Figure 6: Suffixed word Default indicates the default dictionary
  16. Should You Change the Default Dictionary?

  17. You should have a compelling reason to change your default dictionary. Most of the time, PowerPoint expects RoamingCustom.dic to be your default dictionary. Fortunately, you can always change back to the original default dictionary using the steps explained in this tutorial.
  18. Also, if you change the default dictionary in PowerPoint, you'll end up changing the default dictionary in other Microsoft Office programs such as Word, Excel, and Outlook.
  19. Once done, click the OK button within the Custom Dictionaries dialog box, as shown highlighted in red within Figure 6 to save the changes you made.
  20. Save your presentation often.

See Also:

05 08 15 - Spelling, AutoCorrect, and Reference Tools: Disable, Enable, and Set the Default Custom Dictionary in PowerPoint (Glossary Page)

Disable, Enable, and Set the Default Custom Dictionary in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows
Disable, Enable, and Set the Default Custom Dictionary in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Disable, Enable, and Set the Default Custom Dictionary in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
Disable, Enable, and Set the Default Custom Dictionary in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows

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