Reverting To A Previous Version Of A Document On A Mac

With standard Mac apps like Pages, Numbers and Keynote, you can revert to a previously saved version of the file to retrieve text or items you may have deleted or changed. You can completely revert to the old version, or copy and paste some text from an old version. This also works with TextEdit and some third-party apps.

Comments: 9 Responses to “Reverting To A Previous Version Of A Document On A Mac”

    Jean-Claude
    4 months ago

    Best explanation I’ve seen of this feature, which is a great and probably underused feature!

    Jan Franklin
    4 months ago

    After the initial “save,” do you really have to “save” again? I find previous versions without the necessity of saving each time I do a new edit. Of course, I quit the app after each subsequent addition/deletion…then open again.

    Armando Gutierrez V.
    4 months ago

    EXCELLENT as usual your videos are really useful and easy to practice, this is a very nice feature and never used before, thanks for sharing. AG

    4 months ago

    Jan: Every time you quit you are saving the document. If you want to save a version without quitting, you can use File, Save.

    Mike Ganey
    4 months ago

    This is the best, most-helpful explanation of this powerful feature. And I’ve never used it! One use I will try is monthly expense reports. Now I create separate documents with differing names to keep track. I’m thinking of making one template, then saving at the Month level, thus having only one expense report document each year. Great tip, clearly explained.

    Caro
    4 months ago

    Excellent and interesting! The Revert functionality is there on Nisus Writer Pro, too. But doesn’t seem to be available on Microsoft Word, which is a pity.

    Tom Gifford
    4 months ago

    Wow – I never knew what this did – thanks!

    One question, suppose for privacy purposes, I want to delete all the previous versions and “flatten” the document to only the most current version and remove the ability to see previous versions. Is that possible (and how)?

    4 months ago

    Tom: Not sure why that situation would ever come up since someone else would need your password to get access to your Mac’s user account to view the document in the first place, right?
    But if you wanted to get rid of all past revisions, you could always use File, Duplicate (or Save As) to save a new copy of the file. That should be missing all previous revisions. Then delete the original.

    Tom Gifford
    4 months ago

    Thanks Gary – that makes sense that “Save As” would eliminate the history. It is not so intuitive that “Duplicate” would as I would think that it would duplicate the current version and previous versions. My primary concern was if I emailed the document to someone – in many cases, I would prefer not to share the full version history with the person that I emailed it to.

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