Fill out an online fax or scanned form

Microsoft Office Document Imaging is a program included with Microsoft Office 2003 and Office 2003 programs such as Microsoft Office Word 2003 and Microsoft Office Excel 2003 that allows you to open and work with Tagged Image File Format (TIFF) (Tagged Image File Format (TIFF): A high-resolution, tag-based graphics format. TIFF is used for the universal interchange of digital graphics.) files. For example, you can open an online fax (a fax image created by a fax program or print driver that you can view on your computer) you have received, and fill out a form (fill in check boxes, enter text information, or add your signature). You can fill out a scanned form in the same way. You can also print the form when you are finished filling it out, or send it to someone as an e-mail attachment or as a fax over the Internet.

Annotations in Office Document Imaging

Although you cannot remove or change text or images already in a document in Document Imaging (the fax or scanned form), you can add text as a note or comment, apply highlighting to important text, draw freeform text or shapes to circle text in question, or insert a picture in a document by using the buttons on the Annotations toolbar. You can also move, resize, remove, and make formatting and text changes to the annotations you add. For example to fill out a form, you can add your name and address as text annotations, fill in a check box with an "x" as a text annotation, and even sign your name as freeform text.

The following example form (.tif file) was opened in Document Imaging and filled out using annotations.

Online form

Open an online fax or scanned form in Microsoft Office Document Imaging

  • Do one of the following:

ShowOpen a fax you received as an e-mail attachment

  • Double-click the attached .tif file to open the fax in Document Imaging.

ShowOpen a fax or scanned document (.tif) file located on your computer

  1. On the Windows Start menu, point to All Programs (Programs in Microsoft Windows 2000), point to Microsoft Office, point to Microsoft Office Tools, and then click Microsoft Office Document Imaging.
  2. On the File menu, click Open.
  3. Locate the fax or scanned document (.tif) file you want to fill out, and then click Open.

For more information about scanning in Document Imaging, see Document Imaging Help.

Insert an annotation in the fax or scanned document

With the form open in Document Imaging, click the first page that you want to fill out (in the page pane (page pane: Displays the page that's selected in the thumbnail pane in a larger size, and enables portions of the page to be selected and copied.) or the thumbnail pane (thumbnail pane: Presents the current scanned document as one or more small images.)). You are now ready to add the first annotation.

Add text to the form

  1. On the Annotations toolbar, click Insert Text Box Button image.
  2. Click in your document where you want to insert the text box.
  3. To change the size of the text box, drag its sizing handles until it is the size you want.
  4. Position the text box by dragging it to the location on the form you want.
  5. Click inside the text box, and type the text you want.
  6. To make the text look the way you want, do one or more of the following:

ShowRemove the background text box color

  1. On the Annotations toolbar, click Select Annotations Button image.
  2. Click the text box border.
  3. On the Edit menu, click Format Text Box.
  4. In the Format Object dialog box, click the Color tab.
  5. In the Transparency box, enter 100.


  • The Format Text Box command is not available on the Edit menu if the text box border is not selected, for example when the insertion point is inside the text box. Click only the text box border to select the text box.
  • Setting the Transparency value to 100% means that the text box background is completely transparent and the form will appear behind the text box. If you do not want the form to appear behind the text box, change the Color value to white and the Transparency value to 0%.

ShowChange the font type or size

  1. On the Annotations toolbar, click Select Annotations Button image.
  2. Click inside the text box.
  3. Select the text inside the text box, and then click Format Text on the Edit menu.
  4. In the Font dialog box, select the font, style, and size you want, and then click OK.


  • When you add text to a document, the border that appears around the text in your document is for viewing only and does not print.
  • To line up text on a form, it may be helpful to view the document at a larger size. On the View menu, point to Zoom, and then click the zoom option you want, such as 150%.

Add freeform text or shapes to the form

  1. On the Annotations toolbar, click Pen Button image.
  2. Draw the shape on the page.


  • You can use the pen to sign the form with a digital version of your signature.
  • To draw with a different color or width of ink, click the arrow next to Pen Button image, and click the pen you want.
  • To turn off drawing, click Select Button image on the View toolbar.

Work with annotations

  • To show or hide annotations, point to Annotations on the Tools menu, and then click Show Annotations or Hide Annotations. When annotations are shown in the document, they will also print. When annotations are hidden, they will not print.
  • To insert annotations, annotations must be shown.
  • To delete an annotation, select the annotation or annotations, and then press DELETE.
  • To move an annotation, select the annotation, position the pointer over the outline of the annotation until the mouse pointer becomes a four-headed arrow Four-headed arrow handle, and then drag the annotation to the new location.

Save annotations

If you are going to send the fax or scanned document online to someone who does not have Document Imaging, or you want to fax the file from Microsoft Outlook®, you must make the annotations a permanent part of the document in order for that person to see them. You may also want to make the annotations permanent if you don't want others to make changes to your annotations. When you make annotations permanent, you can no longer make any changes to the annotations; you can no longer remove any annotations to restore the document (the original form) in Document Imaging. Therefore, if you use this procedure, make sure you have filled out the form the way you want. You don't have to be finished filling out the form to make annotations permanent; you just need to be sure that the information you have already entered is correct.

  • To save your file with permanent annotations, point to Annotations on the Tools menu, and then click Make Annotations Permanent.

Your filled-out form is now ready to be printed, attached to an e-mail message, or faxed.

For more information about annotations, see Document Imaging Help.