Commas Appearing After Updating Table of Content

I am having an issue with documents adding commas to the front of the table of contents after updating.

As you may be able to see in the images, it is not there at first, but after a number of ToC updates, it begins to place a comma for what appears to be no reason at all.

I do need to continue working on the document, but I need to be able to continually update my ToC for reviewers and others, without having the commas which are definitely going to suck in the final version.

EDIT: I removed the screenshot and uploaded the file after removing all the pictures. On my computer, the commas do not appear in the current table of contents, but if I update it again, they appear and the only way I have found to remove then is CTRL Z … which also removes the updates to the index.

CommaAdded.docx (199.8 KB)

My first tip:
Always use ODF file formats - if you want to work efficiently with the LibreOffice.

Which version of the LO are you using?

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Using version but unfortunately, we have people using Mac, Windows, and a host of word processors, so working in cooperation with others to facilitate editing requires a consistent format, and they determined we need to use Docx.

I can’t confirm the problem using Version: (x64) / LibreOffice Community
Build ID: 43e5fcfbbadd18fccee5a6f42ddd533e40151bcf
CPU threads: 12; OS: Windows 10.0 Build 19044; UI render: Skia/Raster; VCL: win
Locale: en-US (ru_RU); UI: en-US
Calc: CL

After updating ToC:

… so working in cooperation with others to facilitate editing requires a consistent format, …

Then you should also use a consistent office program.

It could be a compatibility problem


Recommendation for clean working with LibreOffice when different Office programs are used.
Always create and save your files in LibreOffice and save them in ODF format (ODT, ODS, etc.).
Always keep these files as their source.
If you need other formats for distribution to partners, you can open an ODF file and save and distribute another format with ″ Save as… ″.
This way, you always have working files available in your system environment.


Edit different file formats in LibreOffice

Please report the behavior as a bug in Bugzilla .

See also:

How to Report Bugs in LibreOffice .

Please post the link from the bug here.
format: tdf#nnnnnn (use only the number, not the link)
To do this, edit your initial question. Thank you.

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The DOCX (OOXML) is not a consistent file format. It have two subversions: the Strict ands the Transitional. If you want a minimal cosistent file format then you must use the Strict one. But thew MS Office uses the Transitional one by default: because they can modify it without publishing any descriptions and documentations. You can set the Strict version in the MS Office in the deep settings.
The LibreOffice uses the Strict version only, because there is not up-to-date informations about the changes of the transitional version of the OOXML file formats.

From the sheet:

Microsoft Office 2010 provides read support for ECMA-376, full support for ISO/IEC 29500 Transitional, and read support for ISO/IEC 29500 Strict.[4] Microsoft Office 2013 and later fully support ISO/IEC 29500 Strict,[5] but don’t use it as the default file format because of backwards compatibility concerns.[6]


Just to clarify:

It is incorrect. LibreOffice does not support fully either specification (indeed, as it’s an external format, with imperfect support); but it tries to support both for an extent. You may see Word 2007-365 (*.docx) and Office Open XML Text (Transitional) (*.docx) in the list of formats in Save As dialog, which correspond to the only flavor - transitional - that we support for export (“Word 2007-365” is for the Word-specific flavor specified in [MS-DOCX]); also there is an import-only subfilter for strict flavor (see comments by Miklos at

When producing a document in a group, you should all preferably use the same software, and in this case that means MS Office, preferably the same version as the others.
Commercial office software is intended to be incompatible with other commercial software, to force as many people as possible to use that software. In the long run, and often already in the short run, the frustration and time spent on coping with compatibility issues outweighs the money spent to buy MS Office (or another suite for that matter). Note: I’m not advertising MS Office. I haven’t used that for years.

I can’t reproduce the issue with LO under Fedora 36 (Linux), KDE Plasma desktop.
But you’ll bump into much more serious problems because your document is direct formatted all along (except for headings). Everything is Default Paragraph Style with manual format patched added. As an example of problems, vertical spacing is achieved with empty paragraphs. As a result, since page size is not defined is some “portable” way, it happens as A4 here where you probably intended Letter or perhaps Legal. In the latter case, layout is dramatically improved, pagebreak-wise.

You should consider styling the document but it is next to impossible to guarantee reliability because you’ll undergo repeated and cumulative conversion approximations to/from .docx format.

A4 and the formatting are quite intentional. The font for the Default Paragraph Style is set up as Arial with 10.5 and full justified. However, saving the original doc as odf format seems about the simplest solution. Styling is adversely impacted by using multiple word processors as well, but again, when we have a group of freelancers around the world, hard to demand any single program.

PS I hate Word and it will not work even on my Windows laptop anyhow.

As I understand, your document is a collaborative work. Main part of it is a collection of “definition/comment” paragraphs for names and its probably where you have contributions from around the world.
In this case, request the contributions in plain text and merge them yourself in your favourite document application (keeping the file in native format). Contributions look rather short, so this wouldn’t be too tedious.

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Multiple solutions are possible; having plain text changes is one of them. Asking others to use change tracking is the other - potentially more useful, allowing to have commenting and highlighting for convenient comparison; you would still have to merge the changes manually, just as with plain text changes, but the convenience of the others might be better.

Or you could use a cloud collaborative editing solution (like Collabora Online; indeed, I’m affiliated). That allows you to host the documents and the editing software on your server, being in control of your data and using FLOSS solutions, and at the same time guarantee same application used by all colleagues.