Problems with "Compress Photos" in MS Word 365. There are two versions

I have been using MS Word for 6-7 years now. I create documents of cemeteries so I have photos of tombstones, usually 10 or so per document. I use one blank document that I copy so I’ve been using the same one for years. I compress the photos when I’m done to make the document much smaller, down from 4-5 megs to under 1.

Lately though the option for compressing photos has changed, as has the way the photos look when I drag and drop them. Before when I would drag and drop the photo would just have a light outline around it, now it brings up the word wrap option. This even happens if I go in to an older document and try and drag a new photo in. I’ve see the word wrap option every so often before and was able to just delete the photo or start over, now it seems to be permanent.

Original way to compress
That’s what the option looked like before, and I can still get to that one if I open an older document.

New way to compress
This is what I get now. I can actually get both options in the same document if I open an older one and drag a new photo in. The problem with this way is that it doesn’t seem to compress the photos to make the document any smaller.

I don’t know what happened as I was just doing it the older way last week, and now it doesn’t matter what I do. Is there some sort of option I need to find, or put the photos in a different way? I’ve tired to use other ways of putting the photos in but I keep getting the same results. I’ve tried searching and all I get is how to compress photos.

I don’t recognize the panels in the screenshots. Are you dragging the files in from Windows Explorer? Or from another document? What if you use insert>photo?

Back at my desk.

The wrapping behavior is a Layout property. Right click on the photo in Word and select Size & Position > Text Wrap.

I dragged a 2.7 MB photo into a new blank document and saved. The resulting .docx file is 350 KB, it compressed without notification. If I repeat but save as .doc, it’s a 2.8 MB file.

I drag and drop from Windows Explorer. That’s how I’ve always done it. I tried insert photo and it does the same thing.

The panels are found when you highlight the photo a new option comes up that is called Picture Tools>Format. It gives a new ribbon and one of the options is Compress Photos. Thing is the ribbon is totally different too. I’m not on my work computer so I’ll have to get screen shots of the difference later.

I think I lost track of the question. What do you need Word to do?

Let me see if I can get better photos. But I can not currently compress photos at all. I try and it does not do it. The file size stays the same. I know that the old way still works as I have done it with a couple of files that I didn’t compress before and it did work.

Before when I drag and dropped, this is what the photo looked like. Notice the gray line but nothing else. Now when I drag a photo it looks like this with the word wrap.

If you select a photo it used to bring up this ribbon at the top. The red circle is where you would select the compress photos. Now when I select a photo this is what the ribbon looks like and is totally different.

Oddly enough even THIS is different between the photos. In an older document there is no Size & Position option. The new photos it will, even in the same document. It seems there’s some new change to dragging and dropping photos that’s just changed.

I still didn’t get the question but are you certain the photos aren’t compressing when dragged in?

I’m not sure how else to say it. But no the photos will not compress. For instance I have files with 4-5 photos in them, they are well under 1 meg after being compressed. The last file I made is almost 4 megs with just a couple of photos. No matter how I try and compress the photos the file size stays the same.

Let’s start a fresh file and see whether it CAN compress photos.

Start Word and select New>Blank document.
Drag in one of your large photos and save-as .docx. Is the file reduced?

I just did this and what started as a 4.3 MB jpg photo generated a 540 KB .docx file.

I just did this, the original photo is 4.8 MB, I dragged and saved and it saved it at 979 KB .docx. My original file has always been a .docx. So it seems to compress automatically now, I just dragged and dropped, then saved. Then I went in and tried to compress and it did not get any smaller. I also just tried moving my tables in to the file and dropping 4 photos and the entire size is 2.19 MB, so yes it compresses on pasting, but no smaller. I tried to select compress->all photos and 200 DPI and nothing.

For my other files I have sizes ranging from 570 KB to 10.9 MB. Many of my files are in the 1-3 MB range, usually 4-10 photos. The 10.9 file have 116 photos in it.

I guess Word just does what it thinks is the best to keep the image quality good but the document size reasonable.
If you want to reduce the sizes even more, the Image Reducer for Windows is a cool Powertoys utility from Microsoft.

Thanks, I don’t know if my work has this, I know I’ll not be able to install it. Just really strange that one day it works and then it stops and even in the same document it can be different.