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Posted 12 Jan 2012

Utility to Generate Word Documents from Templates Using Visual Studio 2010 and Open XML 2.0 SDK - Part 3

, 12 Jan 2012
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This is the third post of this series.

This is the third post of this series. The earlier posts can be read at Part 1 and Part 2.

In Part 1, I discussed about:

  • Document generation using Content Controls and Open XML 2.0 SDK
  • Creating Word templates
  • Implementation and Samples

In Part 2, I discussed about:

  • List of functionalities that can be achieved using the utility/source code
  • Description regarding samples provided with utility
  • New samples added in this update

In this part, I’ll discuss about the sample that shows one of the ways to “Refresh the document from within the Word (e.g. right click on document and click Refresh) using document-level customizations for Word 2007 and Word 2010“. On click of Refresh Document, the content of the document is refreshed as displayed below:


Project “WordDocumentGenerator.WordRefreshableDocumentAddin” has been added to the utility for this sample. The steps followed for creating this sample are listed below:



The code snippet to add a new Command bar button is:

  1. Added a new Word 2010 Document project as displayed below
  2. Updated the document by adding the content controls as displayed below:
  3. Added a new Command bar button, i.e., “Refresh Data” to the Command bar. On click of this button, the document will be refreshed. The common scenario will be to refresh data from the Service. “WordDocumentGenerator.WordRefreshableDocumentAddin” is the document level customization project. This project references “WordDocumentGenerator.Library” and “WordDocumentGenerator.Client” projects.
/// <summary>
/// Adds the command bar.
/// </summary>
/// <param name="cmdBr">The CMD br.</param>
/// <param name="handler">The handler.</param>
/// <param name="index">The index.</param>
/// <param name="tag">The tag.</param>
/// <param name="caption">The caption.</param>
/// <returns></returns>
private CommandBarButton AddCommandBar(CommandBar cmdBr, 
   _CommandBarButtonEvents_ClickEventHandler handler, 
   int index, string tag, string caption)
    CommandBarButton cmdBtn = (CommandBarButton)cmdBr.FindControl(
      MsoControlType.msoControlButton, 0, tag, missing, missing);

    if ((cmdBtn != null))

    cmdBtn = (CommandBarButton)cmdBr.Controls.Add(
      MsoControlType.msoControlButton, missing, missing, index, true);
    cmdBtn.Style = MsoButtonStyle.msoButtonCaption;
    cmdBtn.Caption = caption;
    cmdBtn.Tag = tag;
    cmdBtn.Visible = true;

    cmdBtn.Click -= handler;
    cmdBtn.Click += handler;

    if (!commandBarsTags.Contains(tag))
    return cmdBtn;

On click of refresh data, the main steps are:

Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word.Document doc = app.ActiveDocument;
// Get the active documents as stream of bytes
byte[] input = doc.GetPackageStream(); 
// Generate document on the Server.
// AddInService can be a proxy to service, however here it's direct call
byte[] output = AddInService.GenerateDocument(input);
/// <summary>
/// Generates the document.
/// </summary>
/// <param name="documentStream">The document stream.</param>
/// <returns></returns>
public static byte[] GenerateDocument(byte[] documentStream)
XDocument xDoc = OPCHelper.OpcToFlatOpc(wordDocument.Package);
string openxml = xDoc.ToString();                        
  1. Get package steam from the document
  2. Call the Service/Client method that generates/refreshes the document. This can be a Server or a direct call. In this method, it’s a direct call.
  3. Update the document contents

These are partial code snippets to show the code flow. For the complete sample, please download the source code.



This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)


About the Author

Software Developer (Senior)
India India
Atul works at Microsoft as a .NET consultant. As a consultant his job is to design, develop and deploy enterprise level secure and scalable solutions using Microsoft Technologies.

His technical expertise include .NET Framework(4.0, 3.5, 3.0), WPF, WCF, SharePoint 2010,, AJAX, Web Services, Enterprise Applications, SQL Server 2008, Open Xml, MS Word Automation.

Follow him on twitter @verma_atul

He blogs at

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