Word Hangs Opening Particular Files

Posted on 2009-04-15
Last Modified: 2012-05-06

I have a user which is having trouble opening particular Word documents from a file server. Most documents will open fine but for some reason Word will simply hang when trying to open some files. It sits there trying to open it for about 5 minutes and Word is not usable. Sometimes it will eventually open.

The documents in question will open correctly on other machines.

Things i have tried to resolve this issue but have made no difference:
- copying the documents to the local machine
- running detect and repair
- Recreating the template
- Re-installing Office 2003 (note that i did restore Office settings after this...)
- Patching Office and Windows
- Uninstalling printer drivers and scanner drivers.
- Talking with Level 1 Microsoft support who said it was a hardware fault before i finished my first sentence... I hung up

OS: XP Pro SP3
App: Office 2003 Pro SP3

Any other ideas as to what it could be?
Question by:mrwolf
    LVL 3

    Expert Comment

    Sounds like you have done everything you can on the local machine. I have only questions for you atm!

    Are the files that won't open all in the same directory?
    Is it the same files all of the time that won't open or is it seemingly random?
    Could it be a permission issue for this user, can another user access the files logged into the same machine?


    LVL 3

    Author Comment

    - Well some are in the same directory but some are in others
    - It is the same files from what i can see
    - It is not a permission issue. The same user is able to access the files using a different machine.

    Thanks for your reply.
    LVL 3

    Accepted Solution

    Have you tried working through the following MS article?;EN-US;830561

    LVL 19

    Expert Comment

    I agree with NahThenLad, the attached template is no longer where the document thinks it is. To check, click on Tools, Templates and Add-ins and review the attached template. You can re-attach the document to the current Normal template from there.

    Dawn Bleuel
    Word MVP
    LVL 3

    Author Comment

    That seems very plausible! I have been very busy today so i will have to try them out on Monday afternoon Australia time  :(

    Thank you for your input. Fingers crossed!
    LVL 3

    Author Comment


    You are correct. The documents are pointing to a template which resides in a share which no longer exists. If i change the attached template to the local then it opens fine!

    Noe the problem is that it happens to quite a lot of files and i do not want to have to go through and change each one. Method 4 in the Microsoft KB article looks like a good solution but i do not know how to implement it. As a band-aid solution i am going to make the share it is looking for and simply rename a to the template it is looking for so that it will find the template.

    Is there a way to make Word always use if it does not find the attached template? Or could i get some help with implementing Method 4

    Thank you very much
    LVL 19

    Assisted Solution

    Here is a slightly revised version of Method 4. You will be prompted for your server name as well as the path to your New template.

    See for how to use this code.

    Dawn Bleuel
    Word MVP
    Sub AttachToNewTemplate()
    Dim strFilePath As String
    Dim strPath As String
    Dim intCounter As Integer
    Dim strFileName As String
    Dim OldServer As String
    Dim objDoc As Document
    Dim objTemplate As Template
    Dim dlgTemplate As Dialog
    Dim nServer As Integer
    'Capture the Old Server Name
    OldServer = InputBox("Enter the name of the old Server", "Server Name and Path", "Server Name")
    nServer = Len(OldServer)
    'Capture where the New Template is located
    strFilePath = InputBox("What is the folder location that you want to use?")
    'Adjust captured information for proper syntax
    If Right(strFilePath, 1) <> "\" Then strFilePath = strFilePath & "\"
        strFileName = Dir(strFilePath & "*.doc")
            'Open Files
            Do While strFileName <> ""
                Set objDoc = Documents.Open(strFilePath & strFileName)
                Set objTemplate = objDoc.AttachedTemplate
                Set dlgTemplate = Dialogs(wdDialogToolsTemplates)
                strPath = dlgTemplate.Template
                    'Test if file is attached to Old Server
                    'If it is, replace with new template location
                    If LCase(Left(strPath, nServer)) = LCase(OldServer) Then
                        objDoc.AttachedTemplate = NormalTemplate
                    End If
                strFileName = Dir()
    'Release Memory
    Set objDoc = Nothing
    Set objTemplate = Nothing
    Set dlgTemplate = Nothing
    End Sub

    Open in new window

    LVL 3

    Author Comment

    Thank you very much to you both. This issue is now resolved!

    You are considerably better than Microsoft tech support who told me it was hardware and to take the computer to my local technician. I am my local technician and i knew it wasn't hardware!
    LVL 3

    Author Closing Comment

    Thank you so much guys! I had spent a long time on this issue. I split the points because the initial solution was posted by Nath and dc helped me to implement the VB macro.
    LVL 19

    Expert Comment

    I'm very glad that you got it working.

    Dawn Bleuel
    Word MVP

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