Filters for blanks and nonblanks are replicated in the filter criteria list in Word

Article translations Article translations
Article ID: 286880 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q286880
Expand all | Collapse all


When you filter a column for blanks or non-blanks in the Mail Merge Recipients dialog box, the filter criteria is duplicated each time you re-open the dialog box. When more than half the filter criteria list is full of either "Is blank" or "Is not blank" criteria, and you open the Mail Merge Recipients dialog box one more time, the whole list is cleared, leaving no filters applied.


The SQL string for the expression "MyField Is blank" is:
(MyField IS NULL) OR (MyField IS '')
When this SQL string is parsed, two entries are passed to the Office DataSource Object (ODSO), which produces two "is blank" entries in the query criteria list. The same is true for the "MyField Is not blank" expression, except in the negative.


To clear the filter criteria, follow these steps:
  1. On the Mail Merge task bar, click Edit recipient list.
  2. Click the down arrow to the left of any column header, and then click Advanced.
  3. In the Filter and Sort dialog box, on the Filter Records tab, click Clear All, and then click OK. All filters are now removed.


Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed at the beginning of this article.


For more information about sorting and filtering data in a mail merge operation, click Microsoft Word Help on the Help menu, type Select recipients to include in a mail merge in the Office Assistant or the Answer Wizard, and then click Search to view the topic.


Article ID: 286880 - Last Review: February 24, 2009 - Revision: 3.0
  • Microsoft Word 2002
  • Microsoft Office Word 2003
  • Microsoft Office Word 2007
kbbug kbpending KB286880

Give Feedback


Contact us for more help

Contact us for more help
Connect with Answer Desk for expert help.
Get more support from