UFO: Handle conflicts in Microsoft Word files

The Universal File Opener (UFO) is a Google Chrome extension. It enhances the Google Drive and AODocs experience by allowing you to:

  • open non-Google files locally on your computer using the corresponding software
  • save the changes you made locally back to Google Drive or AODocs

You may occasionally encounter a conflict between the changes you've made on your computer and the version stored in Google Drive. If this occurs in Microsoft Word files, you can manage the conflict with the Compare and Merge feature.

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Handle conflicts in Word with Compare and Merge

When you try to save a Word file in which there is a conflict (meaning that the version in Google Drive has been changed since you last saved), the Resolve conflict dialog appears. 

1. Select one of the options: 

  • Overwrite Drive file: your local version overwrites the version in Google Drive
  • Compare and Merge: use Word's Combine feature to compare the modifications and select which ones you want to keep – learn more from Microsoft support: Combine document revisions.

Note: If you're using macOS, a permissions dialog opens requesting confirmation that you grant UFO access to the instance of Word on your device – press OK.

2. If you selected Compare and Merge, the conflicts are displayed in your local Word file. Resolve all the conflicts: right-click each one and select Accept change or Reject change. Learn more from Microsoft support: Combine document revisions.


3. Save your file. 

A message indicates that the file is being uploaded back to Google Drive or AODocs. It's saved as a new version with all the updates you made locally. You can cancel the upload if required.

Notes about handling Word conflicts on macOS

On masOS, you can't run the Compare and Merge option in the event of conflicts in Word files in these situations:

  • You've activated Track changes in your Word file and made some changes that you haven't yet resolved. If you try to save your file in the event of a conflict and you select Compare and Merge in the Resolve conflicts dialog, UFO prompts you to resolve the changes you made with Track changes before running the comparison with the file from Google Drive.
  • You're already using Compare and Merge to resolve conflicts with the Google Drive file and there are some unresolved conflicts in your file. The Google Drive file is modified again by someone else. If you try to save your file and haven't yet resolved all the initial conflicts, when you select Compare and Merge in the Resolve conflicts dialog, UFO prompts you to resolve the conflicts in your local file before running Compare and Merge.

In both these cases, once you've resolved the conflicts or changes, save your file again to open the Resolve conflicts dialog, then select Compare and Merge. You'll now be able to compare your local file with the Drive one.


  • There are track changes present in the Google Drive version of the file. When you select Compare and Merge, the Drive file opens in read only so you can compare your two files visually. Make the changes required to your local version, then save it to overwrite the version on Drive. 


Note: If you're working in Windows, when you run Compare and Merge in these situations, any conflicts or changes in your local file are combined with the new conflicts from the Google Drive file.

Update your Sync Client on macOS

The first time you use the Compare and Merge feature on macOS, UFO may identify that you need to update your sync client. The Resolve conflict message appears. You need to reinstall the Sync Client. You can download the installer directly from the message. 

Learn more: 


Note: After re-installing the Sync Client, save your file again. You can then access the Compare and Merge feature. 

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