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What causes Word 2007 document variables to get corrupted

Posted on 2009-06-28
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Last Modified: 2012-05-07
I can save a Word 2007 document with Document Variables on computer A and then reopen it and the Document Variables are intact.  I can then do the exact same thing with the exact same document on computer B but the Document Variables are corrupted and contain garbage.  I repeat the experiment on computer C and it acts the same way as computer B.  As far as I can tell, computers A, B and C are identical.

Clue? -- The garbage on computer B and C is identical.

This is driving me crazy.  Any ideas?
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Question by:TimLitle
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Expert Comment

by:Joanne M. Orzech
ID: 24738595
What do you mean by "garbage?"  Can you upload a screen shot or a document? And where are the values of the variables coming from?
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Author Comment

by:TimLitle
ID: 24741853

I have some more information.  Also, I was wrong in that Computers A, B and C all function the same way.
 
I have found that a .dot Document Word 2007 (Compatibility Mode) works as it should.  A .dotm Document Word 2007 (Word 2007 Mode) does not.  I created an example of each where the problem is self-explanatory but the Experts-Exchange Attach File feature will not allow such files, even if zipped, to be attached.
 
I would like to find out if I have found a Microsoft bug or if I am doing something wrong.  I suppose I could use the .dot format but I would rather not for a variety of reasons.  I cannot do without the Document Variables.
 
A Google search of persistence Document Variables dotm (without the quotes) raises the same question but I couldnt find any answers if they exist.
 
My email is Tim@Litle.com.  Could you email me so I can send you the zipped examples?  Thanks.  
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Author Comment

by:TimLitle
ID: 24741863
I have some more information.

I have found that a .dot Document Word 2007 (Compatibility Mode) works as it should.  A .dotm Document Word 2007 (Word 2007 Mode) does not.  I created an example of each where the problem is self-explanatory but the Experts-Exchange "Attach File" feature will not allow such files, even if zipped, to be attached.

I would like to find out if I have found a Microsoft bug or if I am doing something wrong.  I suppose I could use the .dot format but I would rather not for a variety of reasons.  I cannot do without the Document Variables.

A Google search of "persistence Document Variables dotm" (without the quotes) raises the same question but I couldn't find any answers if they exist.

My email is Tim@Litle.com.  Could you email me so I can send you the zipped examples?  Thanks.  
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Author Comment

by:TimLitle
ID: 24742134
I have looked through my records and believe, for various reasons, that the Document Variables in Word 2007 Documents worked as recently as May 29, 2009.  The earliest date I can find of an internet reference to the problem is June 16, 2009.  I suspect that its possible that a Microsoft update between those two dates caused the problem.  Can anyone shed some light on this?  
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Accepted Solution

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Joanne M. Orzech earned 500 total points
ID: 24746255
I have no problem using DocVariables in Word 2007.  Therefore, I need to know what "garbage" is appearing in your documents.  I was unable to locate a list of updates between those dates you provided.
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Author Comment

by:TimLitle
ID: 24749805
I have found the solution to the problem.  It is a Microsoft bug that can be fixed by uninstalling security patch KB969604.   Check out the following:

http://www.microsoft.com/communities/newsgroups/en-us/default.aspx?dg=microsoft.public.word.vba.general&tid=1e5dddc7-0269-4d98-935f-973164e3130c&cat=)=&cr=&sloc=&p=1 

Thanks for putting me on the trail of an Office 2007 problem.
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Expert Comment

by:Joanne M. Orzech
ID: 24753961
Thanks for posting your solution Tim!  I know this will be helpful to others who may be experiencing the same issues.

Joanne
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Author Comment

by:TimLitle
ID: 24868738
Apparently Microsoft Security Patches come out once per month and 6 new ones came out on July 14, 2009.  Needless to say, these patches didnt fix the Document Variable problems caused by the last set of patches.  Uninstalling KB969604 is still the only solution.

If you have a new PC that came with Office 2007 SP2 factory installed (which has KB969604 baked in), you need to COMPLETELY uninstall Outlook 2007 SP2 and reinstall an earlier version then roll-forward by installing all the updates except KB969604 leaving you with Outlook 2007 SP2 sans KB969604.

Once again  thank you Microsoft!
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by:Joanne M. Orzech
ID: 24871448
So nice of you to come back to this question and post such a detailed solution.  Thank you again Tim!
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Author Comment

by:TimLitle
ID: 24925912
Microsoft claims that KB970942 fixes both the "Document Variable" and Password is incorrect" errors caused by SP2.  It also appears to be, at 11.6mb, the beta (with all the normal caveats) for Office 2007 SP3.  It claims to fix all kinds of other issues as well so I wont install it unless operating on Office 2007 rolled-back to SP1 proves to be a problem.

I also found out why solving my two issues was so complicated.  Removing KB969604 security patch to SP2 did, in fact, solve the "Document Variable" problem but I still had the "Password is incorrect" error.  Hotfix KB969961 solved "Password is incorrect"  but REINTRODUCED the "Document Variable" issue.

This is my current understanding of what is going on but as the result of the all the misinformation floating around, it is subject to change.
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Expert Comment

by:Joanne M. Orzech
ID: 24926056
What a mess!
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Author Comment

by:TimLitle
ID: 24926170
I suspect that there are companies with thousands of documents that use both Passwords and Document Variables.  Whe they upgrade to SP2, they are in for a BIG surprise.
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Expert Comment

by:Joanne M. Orzech
ID: 24926671
Painful...
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