How to Fix: Bookmark Not Defined on Word

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In Word 2010 documents, “bookmarks” are generally used as a reference or hyperlink for a specific section or location in your Word document that you want to use for future reference. These bookmarks are useful, but can cause problems at times. In this article, we will discuss an ‘Bookmark not defined’ error.

This error is quite common when using an automated table of contents in a Word document. When creating a PDF file from such a Word document, this error occurs in the PDF file.

The reason for this error is that Word uses a hidden bookmarking system to associate the table of contents with the page number. For this reason, if the bookmark is deleted because of topics deleted from the Word document or because of a change in formatting, we get this undefined error bookmark.

If a bookmark has been used to create a cross-reference in the document and you see the error where the cross-reference is to appear, it means that the bookmark referenced in the cross-reference field is no longer valid. This may be the case if the bookmark has been deleted or if the bookmark name has been entered incorrectly in the cross-reference field. The only way to get around the problem is to delete the cross-reference field or to ensure that the bookmark to which it refers exists in the document.

How to Fix Bookmark Not Defined on Word:

Using the Cancel command

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If you get this error while trying to use an automated table of contents (ToC), it is possible that one or more fields contain a broken link to a bookmark.

If the message “Error! Bookmark not defined” immediately after generating the TOC and saving the document, you can immediately restore the original text by pressing the Ctrl + Z key combination.

You can also use the Cancel function from the Ribbon menu at the top of the screen. After cancelling the action, correct broken bookmark links before trying to convert the document to a PDF file.

TOC update

The TOC functionality in Word is based on the bookmarks it creates for the different sections. If a bookmark can no longer be found, you get the message you see.

In MS Word, from the View menu, select Toolbars, then click Preview.

If the document contains several tables of contents, place the insertion point in the table of contents that causes the problem and that needs to be updated.

On the Contour toolbar, click the Update TOC button.

Conversion of TOC to static text

If your table of contents contains many broken links and you are not ready to correct each entry, here is a quick solution to the “Error! The “Bookmark not defined” error consists in converting the automated table of contents into static text. This will correct the error and you can delete the message “Error! Undefined bookmark” with their own text.

To convert the OCT (table of contents) into completely static text, simply select the OCT and press Ctrl + Shift + F9. Then, all your TOC entries will be converted into static text, which you can edit as you wish.

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