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Office 15: all programs won't start due to invalid address error

Posted on 2014-11-29
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Last Modified: 2014-12-18
Starting earlier this week, none of my Office 365 (AKA Office 2013, AKA Office 15) apps will start; they all pop up the error "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office 15\root\Office 15\<program>.exe"  "Attempt to access invalid address, like the one shown in the attached jpg. (Where <Program> is Excel, Word, Outlook, etc.).

1) At the time, I had EMET 5.0 installed, although it had been installed for several weeks without error. After searching, I found a post that said EMET 5.0 can cause this after November's Patch Tuesday and I should upgrade to 5.1. I completely uninstalled EMET, but that did not help. (BTW, I rebooted after every one of the attempted fixes I will describe here.)

2) I tried repairing Office 365, but that did not help.

3) I ran the Microsoft FixIt described at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2739501, and reinstalled Office 365, but that did not help.

4) I ran  the FixIt, ran CCleaner 5.00, reinstalled Office 365, but that did not help.

5) I created a new User (administrator) to see if my profile was corrupted - same problem.

I have run out of idea and need a great suggestion.

I am running:
Asus P8Z68 DELUXE/GEN3
3.4 GHz core i7
16 GB RAM
ASUS Radeon 1GB HD7790 Video
Win 7 Pro - 64 bit / SP1
MANY gigabytes of free space on my hard drives and SSD boot drive.

Thanks,
Stan
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Question by:rosest
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40471848
I have Office 2013 installed on Windows 8.1 and EMET 5.1 running (EMET 5 and 4 before that). I survived all the recent patches including Windows 8.1 update 2. Office 2013 is running fine.

Uninstall Office 2013 completely and restart.

If Windows 7, run SFC /SCANNOW twice and restart. Install Office 2013 and test.

If Windows 8, run DISM and restart. Install Office 2013 and test.

Open cmd.exe with Run as Administrator.
DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /Scanhealth (takes 15 - 20 minutes).
DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /Restorehealth (takes 15 - 20 minutes).
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Author Comment

by:rosest
ID: 40471909
John,

I was really hopeful that your suggestion to run SFC /SCANNOW would find some corruption, but, unfortunately, it reported no errors:

   C:\Windows\system32>sfc /scannow

   Beginning system scan.  This process will take some time.

   Beginning verification phase of system scan.
   Verification 100% complete.

   Windows Resource Protection did not find any integrity violations.

   C:\Windows\system32>sfc /scannow

   Beginning system scan.  This process will take some time.

   Beginning verification phase of system scan.
   Verification 100% complete.

   Windows Resource Protection did not find any integrity violations.

After reinstalling Office 365, I continue to have the problem. However, I did discover one interesting thing. While Office 365 is installing, it says that even though it is still downloading required files, it is OK to start using it. Well, it turns out all the apps work fine at the start of installation and don't fail until it gets to around the 45% point. After 45%, the illegal access error is back.

:-(

Stan
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Accepted Solution

by:
John Hurst earned 500 total points
ID: 40471911
If the above did not work and using another Windows Profile did not work (you said), you can try a Windows Repair Install (need the Windows DVD) or else consider backing up and reinstalling Windows.
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Author Comment

by:rosest
ID: 40472029
I'll try the repair disk, but if I remember correctly, I'll have to create a Win 7 SP1 slip stream disk to do so. Otherwise, I've been putting off rebuilding my system with Win 8(.1).
I'll let you know what works (but that will probably take a few days).

Stan
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LVL 94

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40472033
I've been putting off rebuilding my system with Win 8(.1).  <--- If you do this, do a fresh install of Windows 8.1. I have Office 2013 on both Windows 7 and 8.1 and it works great in Windows 8.1
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Author Comment

by:rosest
ID: 40472043
For sure; I never upgrade! It also provides an opportunity to get rid of all the dead wood that's accumulated the past several years.
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Author Comment

by:rosest
ID: 40481293
John,

Well, I did it. I did a clean install of Win 8.1 and all my apps. Everything is working fine, again. Guess I'll never know what caused the problem but as long as I am back in business, that's what counts.

Thanks for all your suggestions.
Stan
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LVL 94

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40481485
@rosest  - Thanks for the update.
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Author Comment

by:rosest
ID: 40506717
I've requested that this question be closed as follows:

Accepted answer: 0 points for rosest's comment #a40481293

for the following reason:

In the end, the only fix that worked was to do a clean install of windows. It wasn't elegant, so it certainly didn't deserve an "A".
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LVL 94

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40506718
I suggested above you do a clean install. It is not elegant, but that WAS the answer.
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Author Comment

by:rosest
ID: 40507958
John,

My apologies - you did include that suggestion in your note, but I guess I had missed it (or hoped it wouldn't be necessary): "If the above did not work and using another Windows Profile did not work (you said), you can try a Windows Repair Install (need the Windows DVD) or else consider backing up and reinstalling Windows."

I'll mark that one as the solution.

Stan
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Author Closing Comment

by:rosest
ID: 40507961
Did require a full reinstall (clean install). Took the opportunity to upgrade from WIn 7 to Win 8.1.
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40507983
Stan - thank you very much for following up. I do appreciate it.
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