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Why does outlook 2007 sometimes open 'invisible'?

Posted on 2011-03-22
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Hi,

I'm an internal service desk employee, responsable for (among others) the first line support. I can identify most of my problems fast and correct, but lately there is this one that's bothering me:

sometimes, outlook won't open. Or perhaps it's more correct to say that it DOES open, but invisible. There is nothing showing on the desktop or anywhere on the task bar. The only trace is in the task manager, where the OUTLOOK.EXE process just sits like nothing's wrong.

By itself, it wouldn't be that much of a hassle. Just kill the process (or processes, as users will usually click the icon multiple times when it doesn't open fast enough). Once all of the OUTLOOK.EXE processes are ended, starting outlook works fine (you just have to tell it not to start in safe mode because it wasn't shut down properly 'last time it was run').

The real problem is: how to recognize this? There is no error message, nothing out of the ordinary in the event viewer (despite the fact that there are two logs with stuff in it dedicated to office), no strange circumstances that cause it. It doesn't happen all that often (especially not considering how much outlook is used around here), but it happens pretty much at every PC sooner or later. And at total random intervals. Oh, and it's only outlook. The other office applications don't seem to have this hide-n-seek behavior.



I tried googling, but without error messages, decent keywords or specific things that cause this error to appear, it's not really the most successful effort ever.

So...here's the question to you guys: is there someone among you who recognizes this stuff and has a clue or an answer for me?

Thanks for your time. :-)


BVH


Technical stuff (feel free to ask for more if needed):
Windows XP SP3
Office 2007 SP2: (Outlook  12.0.6514.5000). Also has a whole bunch of (security) updates
Microsoft Office language Pack 2007 (both Dutch and French)
Internet Explorer 7
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Comment
Question by:rszppo
7 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:dlongan
ID: 35188667
Generally Outlook will stay in memory and perform housekeeping tasks before it actually unloads (should be fairly fast).
I have seen Outlook with large pst files can take time.
Also if the pst file was closed improperly it will conduct a repair in the background which can cause it to not shutdown properly.
Also any add-ins could be hanging her up  (tools, trust center, add-ins if your 2007 or above).
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LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:A Proorocu
ID: 35188669
This is a usual problem.

As a solution, you should run a Registry Cleaner ( cccleaner is free to use ).
After scan & fix the problem should not appear any more.
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Expert Comment

by:nsonbaty
ID: 35188707
most likely, it is add-ins , I did it by disable ny third party applications add-ins
this link will show you how
http://wtf.ronowicker.com/ms-outlook-2007-only-starts-in-safe-mode-how-to-fix-it/
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Expert Comment

by:JDCUSAF
ID: 35188942
do you use Office Communicator?
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Expert Comment

by:A Proorocu
ID: 35333877
So the problem was solved ?
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Accepted Solution

by:
rszppo earned 0 total points
ID: 37644140
Hi,

we migrated to Windows 7 and MS Office 2007 SP3. The problem stopped.

Thanks anyway for the suggestions.

Wim
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Author Closing Comment

by:rszppo
ID: 37664404
Aparently SP3 for office 2007 solved the problem
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