Recently a subscriber contacted me because she had a locked form in which she had fields that would not calculate. That is to say that her form had Field 1, Field 2 and Field 3. These fields were to be calculated with a total appearing in Field 4 and it simply wasn’t working for her. She explained that she had set the Calculate on Exit property of Field 4 (the Total field ).
First I explained to her that the fact that her form was locked had absolutely nothing to do with the issue she was experiencing. The fact is if she did not have it locked, she would not be able to enter anything at all in her fields. A form must be locked in order to fill in fields. I then explained that she was having a problem with her fields calculating because she had misunderstood how Word calculates form fields.
Her problem was that it is not the Total field that must have the Calculate on Exit property enabled, but rather, the fields on which the Total is dependent. In her case, all three fields, Field 1, Field 2 and Field 3 must have their Calculate on Exit property enabled. When they are the Total will update property and interactively the way it should.
It does very little good to have the Calculate on Exit property set in the Total field because when you set the field’s Type property to Calculation, enter your formula in the Form Field Options dialog box, and then lock the form, the Total field cannot be selected. If it cannot be selected, you cannot exit it and you cannot exit what you cannot enter, so the Calculate on Exit property is never triggered.