File Associations Lost for Office 2010 Documents

Posted on 2012-04-09
Last Modified: 2012-06-27
One of our users cannot open Office Documents (Excel, Word) through double-clicking the file. The icon on the desktop appears "blank" and double-clicking results in a "Which Program Do You Want To Open With" dialogue. Strangely, Reader is the only program that appears available.

Browsing to the correct program file: (Program Files (x86)\Office 14\Excel.exe) does not work. Repairing & Reinstalling did not work.

If she opens Excel / Word first and opens the file through the program, the file will open properly.

She is using Office 2010 and Windows 7. Thank you.
Question by:ecshelpdesk
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
LVL 28

Expert Comment

ID: 37824371
Follow the instructions on this page and utilize the link found on the subsequent list to restore the default EXE file association:

Restore Default Windows 7 File Extension Type Associations
LVL 17

Expert Comment

ID: 37824385
please use solution from below link..
LVL 28

Expert Comment

ID: 37824403
If the EXE file association fix doesn't alleviate the problem, you may want to consider dropping back to an operating system snapshot prior to when the problem started:

How to Do a System Restore in Windows 7
Office 365 Training for Admins - 7 Day Trial

Learn how to provision tenants, synchronize on-premise Active Directory, implement Single Sign-On, customize Office deployment, and protect your organization with eDiscovery and DLP policies.  Only from Platform Scholar.

LVL 54

Accepted Solution

McKnife earned 500 total points
ID: 37824620

If still no good, try a different user profile. If it's only her profile, coinsider to (backup and) delete and recreate her profile.
LVL 14

Expert Comment

ID: 37824928
Has the file extension been dropped from the file name?  i.e.

"document.doc" renamed to "document"

if so, simply rename with the correct file extension.  If you don't know the correct file type, use the following site to determine it for you:

Author Comment

ID: 37824994
@Run5k - sorry if I'm missing something. There is no xls, xlsx, or doc, docx extension listed on that page..?

@Aur or Run: System restore did not work :/ Thought for sure that would do it.

@McKnife: Thanks! Deleting / recreating the profile worked!
LVL 28

Expert Comment

ID: 37825097
Ecshelpdesk, I'm certainly glad that your problem was solved but normally you can fix the file associations with needing to delete the entire profile.

I think you may have accidentally misinterpreted what I said.  I specifically emphasized that you should "restore the default EXE file association" on the page that I listed, not the ones for the various Office file types.  It sounds like something changed the default executable file type association within that profile, and I'm fairly certain that would have alleviated the problem.

As a precaution, you may want to run a quick scan with Malwarebytes, also.

Author Comment

ID: 37825125
Ah...that makes a lot more sense. Thank you. And I'll run that scan :)
LVL 28

Expert Comment

ID: 37825267
Glad to help.  Once again, I'm rather certain that would have fixed the problem without needing to backup the important documents within the profile, delete it properly, and then recreate it again.

In the future, I will ensure that I phrase that solution a bit differently to avoid any further misunderstandings.

Featured Post

Free Tool: Port Scanner

Check which ports are open to the outside world. Helps make sure that your firewall rules are working as intended.

One of a set of tools we are providing to everyone as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

How to get Spreadsheet Compare 2016 working with the 64 bit version of Office 2016
This article describes a serious pitfall that can happen when deleting shapes using VBA.
The viewer will learn how to use a discrete random variable to simulate the return on an investment over a period of years, create a Monte Carlo simulation using the discrete random variable, and create a graph to represent the possible returns over…
This Micro Tutorial will give you a basic overview of Windows DVD Burner through its features and interface. This will be demonstrated using Windows 7 operating system.

751 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question