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Outlook, 2007, on Vista, text formatting command is not available

Skorptech asked
Last Modified: 2008-09-27
I have a computer (Faairly new) running Vista (with SP1 installed), with Office 2007 on it. After a recent update, Outlook has developed an issue. It will open just fine, but any attempt to open anything inside it (mail messages, contacts, tasks, calendar etc) causes it to display a "text formatting command is not available" error. Outlook continues to download new emails, you just cant read them...

We have reinstalled Outlook, run the inbox repair tool, tried setting up a new profile, and the problem persists.

Any help is greatly appreciated!

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I believe that this is IE7 issue not an Outlook issue as such. Outlook integrates with IE7 for html formatting and I think you'll find that this is the problem. Can you try uninstalling and reinstalling IE7?

You might find that in add/remove programs the option to remove IE7 isn't there. If that's the case follow these instructions from MS for an alternative method.

Step 1: Make hidden files and hidden folders visible
a.  Click Start, and then click My Documents.
b.  On the Tools menu, click Folder Options.
c.  Click the View tab.
d.  In the Advanced settings list, under Hidden files and folders, click Show hidden files and folders, and then click OK.

Back to the top

Step 2: Run Spuninst.exe to uninstall Internet Explorer 7
a.  Click Start, and then click Run.
b.  In the Open box, type %windir%\ie7\spuninst\spuninst.exe, and then click OK.
c.  Follow the wizard instructions to uninstall Internet Explorer 7.
After you uninstall Internet Explorer 7, double-click the Internet Explorer icon to verify that Internet Explorer 6 is restored


Im pretty good with XP, certified and all, but Vista is pretty much all new to me, and I'm still learning it... I dont have a "Run" option in my start menu. Is this something I can turn on? Or were those directions for XP?

Thank you!

In Vista the Run command is hidden in the accessories folder. Click the Start button , click All Programs, click Accessories, and then click Run.


That file does not exist on my machine. This is a Vista box, running Outlook 07. I think you have provided instructions for an XP based system.

Everything I can find indicates that IE7 is integral to Vista and cannot be removed... is this incorrect?

Try resetting the IE7 settings to default. From the Tools menu, select Internet Options and on the Advanced tab, click the Reset Internet Explorer Settings button. If this doesn't work then you may have to repair the OS to fix IE


Resetting IE to default did not correct the problem either...

Does Vista have the same repair option as XP? Use the CD?


So far, short of reinstalling the OS (which is the next step, unless we find something else), nothing has worked.

We have tried all suggestions from this and other sites. Does anyone have any more ideas?


We tried installing IE8 beta, but that was unneffective as well, however, after updating the PC this morning (via Windows Updater) the problem as apparently resolved itself. Outlook now functions normally.

I have done all the steps above and still get the text error. Do you know which windows update fiexed your problem.  If not I think i am going to make a frisbee out of this laptop with VISTA......
This one is on us!
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