Cannot sort a table containing text


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In Word 2016 I created a table with no headers. The data is all text, although one column contains mostly numbers with hyphens, to be sorted as text. The document has headers and footers but no other text besides the table.

No matter which column I attempt to sort, the sort fails. I select a column, then Table Tools > Layout > Sort, then "OK" in the Sort dialog. This error dialog opens:

"This entry is not valid for sorting. Please type or select another entry from the list."

I did not select an "entry"; I selected a column.

What's more, I am able to trick Word into sorting by the left column. In the Sort dialog I select "Options..." and then "OK" in the next dialog. I then select "OK" in the Sort dialog and the table is sorted.

This only works on the left column, however. If I try to sort by another column, selecting "Options..." does let me skip the "This entry is not valid for sorting...." dialog. But nothing is sorted.

Clearly the app is not behaving as it's supposed to. Any ideas?
 
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macropod

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Provided your insertion point is in the table, there is no need to select anything. That said, I've never seen that error message and can find no reference to it.

Have you tried repairing the Office installation (via Windows Control Panel > Programs > Programs & Features > Microsoft Office (version) > Change > Repair)?
 
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I had this problem. It was solved by adding a repeat headers row. Then the sort command worked exactly as it is supposed to. As an experiment, I then deleted the header row. My table stayed sorted, but again, the sort command didn't work. Header rows aren't a bad thing, and I always want to sort my tables. Therefore my tables will always have to have them!

And by the way, I don't intend this in a mean way, but you can tell that a comment is coming from a point of not having a *real* answer when the suggestion is to repair or reinstall the software! Bless your heart, macropod!
 
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als

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I solved this by going into "Option" in the "Sort" dialogue box that comes up when you press the "Sort" button on Word's Table Design Layout Ribbon. I changed "Separate fields at" from from "commas" to "Tabs" and everything sorted as expected.
 

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