Word does not open documents by clicking on the icon.

Posted on 1998-09-16
Last Modified: 2006-11-17
I have word 95. I used to open documents by just clicking on the icon for that document. After I installed Clean Sweep on my machine and deleted some files, now when I click on  word icons that correspond to the documents in my C:\...  file,  Word opens but then says that "it can not find that file". The strange thing is that when I click on any word icon for documents that are in other drives(network and outside my own drive), they open as usual(some of the icons are shortcuts and some are the icon for the actual document).

Also I have to add when I open word and then through word go to that document and click on it, I can open it.

Can anybody please say what is wrong and what shall I do to rectify the problem?


Rama Fayaz,
Cambridge University,
Question by:rf203

Author Comment

ID: 1613630
Adjusted points to 100

Expert Comment

ID: 1613631
Are you sure that the documents exist (not just shortcuts to the documents)?
Presumably you are opening them through "My Computer", can you find them by browsing to them from Word?
Or is this too simple.


Author Comment

ID: 1613632
Edited text of question
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Author Comment

ID: 1613633
Edited text of question

Author Comment

ID: 1613634
In reply to Englishman,

Yes, the document for that shortcut exist and I can open it through the word.

Author Comment

ID: 1613635
In reply to Englishman,

Yes, the document for that shortcut exist and I can open it through the word.

Expert Comment

ID: 1613636
Using windows explorer, go to the file. Click the right button on your mouse to get the pop-up window. click the top option "Open With..". thiss will allow you to set your windows options that any time you click a file with the extension '.doc' it will point to MS Word to open that file type. No re-installation required.

Author Comment

ID: 1613637
Already mentioned.

Expert Comment

ID: 1613638

Here is an article from the MS Knowledgebase that might apply to your situation. Give it a try and let me know if it works.

The article URL is:

WD95: Error: "Word Cannot Open Document" with Long File Name

                                                                Last reviewed: June 9, 1998
                                                                     Article ID: Q186947

     The information in this article applies to:

        Microsoft Word for Windows 95, versions 7.0, 7.0a


     You may receive the following series of error messages when you double- click the "New Microsoft Word Document.doc" icon on your desktop:

        Word cannot open the document C:\Windows\Desktop\New.doc
        Word cannot open the document C:\Windows\Desktop\Microsoft.doc
        Word cannot open the document C:\Windows\Desktop\Word.doc
        Word cannot open the document C:\Windows\Desktop\Document.doc

     This icon is created when you use the right mouse button to click (right- click) the Windows 95 desktop, point to New, and then click Microsoft Word Document.

     NOTE: These error messages may also occur in Windows Explorer when you try to start a document with a long file name if the file name contains spaces.


     The registry contains a string value with an incorrect value data string, as in the following examples:

        c:\msoffice\winword\winword.exe /n


        c:\msoffice\winword\winword.exe /n %1

     In these examples, the %1 represents a file name. Because the %1 is not part of the statement (first example) or is not enclosed in quotation marks (second example), each word in the long file name is interpreted as a single document. As a result, the file name "New Microsoft Word Document.doc" may be interpreted as four documents, not one. Because Word cannot locate these four documents, it displays the error messages.


     NOTE: Because there are several versions of Windows, the following steps may be different on your computer. If they are, please consult your product documentation to complete these steps.

     To correct the registry, follow these steps:

       1.In Windows, right-click the Start button, and click Explore. In Windows Explorer, click Options on the View menu.

       2.In the Options dialog box, click the File Types tab.

       3.Under Registered File Types, select "Microsoft Word Document," and click Edit.

       4.In the Edit File Type dialog box, under Actions, select Open, and then click Edit.

       5.In the "Editing action for type" dialog box, the "Application used to perform action" line should point to <path>\Winword.exe, for example:


        NOTE: The %1 may or may not be present on this line.

        Change the above line to the following:


        NOTE: The %1 must be enclosed in quotation marks. If the %1 is not on the above line, add the %1 with the quotation marks.

       6.Click OK to close the "Editing action for type" dialog box.

       7.Click Close to close the "Edit File Type" dialog box.

       8.Click Close to close the Options dialog box.


     Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in the Microsoft products listed at the beginning of this article.


     Errors similar to those listed in the "Symptoms" section of this article will appear for any program that has an invalid registry entry, such as that described in the "Cause" section. Other programs that appear on the shortcut menu when you click New include:

        Text Document
        Bitmap Image
        Wave Sound
        Microsoft PowerPoint Presentation
        Microsoft Excel Worksheet
        Microsoft Office Binder
        Microsoft Publisher Document

     You may also encounter these errors in Windows Explorer when you double- click any file that has an undefined file name extension. Windows 95 will prompt you with an "Open With" dialog box so you can choose which program you want to use to open the file.

     For additional information, please see the following article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

        ARTICLE-ID: Q133217
        TITLE     : How to Create Multiple Associations for One File Name Extension


Author Comment

ID: 1613639
Brilliant Shalbe......... the problem was exactly what you mentioned and when I corrected it, the word started to open the document by clicking on it's icon.

Accepted Solution

shalbe earned 100 total points
ID: 1613640

Glad I could be of help rf203.

See my previous post for the answer.


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