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One Excel 2010 user corrupts spreadsheets

Posted on 2014-01-09
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2014-02-12
Hey guys, hoping for some insight on an issue I am facing:

We have one user that is running Excel 2010. When she opens a spreadsheet, works on it, then saves it, it opens with errors the next time anyone tries to use it. It gives an "Unreadable content error message" and asks if you want to repair the file. It seems to only happen if she saves it as .xlsx, saving it as .xls doesn't seem to cause the same problem.

Exact Error:

"Excel found unreadable content in filename.xls. Do you want to recover the contents of this workbook? If you trust the source of this workbook, click Yes."

She is running Office 2010 Home & Business on Windows 7 Pro x64

I have tried repairing Office 2010, uninstalling and reinstalling Office 2010, making sure it has the latest updates and service packs.

Any insight into this issue would be greatly appreciated!

Question by:Help Desk
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LVL 35

Expert Comment

by:[ fanpages ]
ID: 39769898
Hi Kevin,

Are all of the other users using the same environment (MS-Office version &, specifically, a 64-bit version of Windows [7 Pro])?

Also, if the user that experiences the issue opens MS-Excel (2010) in "Safe Mode" (depressing the [CTRL] key when launching the application from a shortcut or from the Windows Start Menu until a message is displayed, as below), does the same issue exist?

Excel has detected that you are holding down the CTRL key


Author Comment

by:Help Desk
ID: 39771274
All users are running Windows 7 Pro x64 and either Excel 2010 or 2013.

Have not tried running Excel in safe mode but will give that a try thanks.
LVL 13

Expert Comment

by:Jeff Darling
ID: 39772520
Is your file on a local drive or a network drive?

Is there any disk encryption involved?

Is there any disk compression involved?

Are multiple users opening the Excel file?

Do you have any large Pivot tables involved?

Do you have any large data connections to a database involved?  If yes, what kind of database? Access or MSSQL etcetera
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Author Comment

by:Help Desk
ID: 39772536
1. Network drive

2. No

3. No

4. Yes

5. Will have to verify but I believe some of them are using pivot tables

6. Some are linked to other spreadsheets but no database linking that I know of
LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:Patrick Matthews
ID: 39773081
Is this by chance a shared workbook?

Author Comment

by:Help Desk
ID: 39777529
The workbook is on a shared network drive on a Windows 2008 server, and is used by several people.  The users are not using the Shared Workbook function.

Opening Excel in Safe Mode does not help.  See attached image of the error received after attempting to open in Safe Mode.Excel Errors
LVL 70

Expert Comment

ID: 39834960
You say> it seems to only happen if she saves it as .xlsx, saving it as .xls doesn't seem to cause the same problem.

This is the new format for Microsoft Office documents.
and is a combination of XML architecture and ZIP compression for size reduction.
the exact error is>"Excel found unreadable content in filename.xls"<< that says .xls not .xlsx
A bit of discrepancy here.
Which .xls is being used? that could cause a problem with .xlsx
since there is a few to choose from. Could be relevent?

Microsoft suggests
Start Excel.
Select File > Options.
Click Advanced on the left hand side of the Excel Options dialog.
Scroll down to the General section.
Make sure that the check box "Ignore other applications that use Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE)" is clear (NOT ticked).
Click OK.
See if there is any updates office.
Any updates for your windows and Microsoft products.
All Fonts are correct.
Seems to be a problem with .xls not so much the.xlsx

Author Comment

by:Help Desk
ID: 39836136
The screenshot above show the error while opening .XLSX, not .XLS.

We will try the above DDE option and will report back.

Please share any other thoughts, as this issue has been unresolved for nearly 4 weeks now.


Accepted Solution

Help Desk earned 0 total points
ID: 39842404
Found something on another forum that seems to be our issue:

It seems Excel doesnt like the logmein print driver.  The error goes like this...
So you are creating a new excel file it uses the logmein print driver for the sheet.  Make some changes in the new sheet then save it.  Opening back up the excel sheet will complain about being corrupt and will be repaired only to have the changes you just made removed.  Excel will complain about something it doesnt like in an XML file for each tab.  But like I say your changes will be removed and the file recovered.
The solution to this is when your in excel through LOGMEIN change your default printer to something other than LOGMEIN.  The "Microsoft XPS document writer" for example.  So then things will create fine with the excel sheet and when you save it and reopen it wont give an error.
When you go to print change the driver to print.
The error is due to the logmein printer driver not being understood and attaching to the excel file.  Any other machine opening this excel file created with the logmein driver will also get the excel error on the file.
I have opened a support case with Microsoft about the problem.  MS Support case 111120968762674 was created about this issue.

The user has been on GoToMyPC for a few weeks now instead of LogMeIn and they have not reported any spreadsheet corruption issues. I will continue to follow up but it seems we have found the cause of the problem.

Author Closing Comment

by:Help Desk
ID: 39852807
We have resolved this internally.

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