Microsoft Word and file opening issue

Posted on 2014-12-17
Last Modified: 2015-01-04
Windows 7 Home with MS Office 2007 installed.  The issue is specific to WORD.  If we open the WORD application and then navigate to a file, the file opens OK.  If on the other hand, we navigate to a file, we get an error message...."There was a problem sending the command to the program."  I've already researched the web for answers and tried 3 different solutions offered to no avail.  We did a repair via the Office CDs and that did not fix the problem.  

Here is another observation:  If we navigate to an EXCEL file, EXCEL opens the file "DIRECTLY" with no problems.  The EXCEL files are in the same folder as the WORD files.  If we attempt to open a WORD file, we will get a USER ACCOUNT CONTROL window first and then the error message.  The USER ACCOUNT CONTROL window does not appear when opening an EXCEL file.  

Looking at the Control Panel and Default programs, the DOCX and DOC extensions are all properly set to be opened by Microsoft Office 2007 Word.

Any ideas on how to solve this one will be appreciated.   We have thought about reloading WORD but I frankly to not think this is an application problem.  I believe this to be a file linkage to the program problem.
Question by:tonyadam
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
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • +1
LVL 18

Expert Comment

ID: 40508954
Sounds like a candidate for a thorough virus scan on the PC.

Using regedit: Navigate to Computer\HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Applications\Winword.exe.
Navigate under its name to shell\edit\command.
Check the path shown in Default. If it doesn't correspond with the actual location of Word, modify it to do so.
Check also the SupportedTypes - it should include .doc, .docx, .dotm etc.

If you've made any changes exit regedit, and then try and reassociate the file type as you normally would.

Author Comment

ID: 40510259
SimonAdept, we did all of the suggestions in your comment above.  We ran Malwarebytes and CCleaner and AVAST.  There were a few minor issues but nothing that seemed overly serious.  

There was no reason to change the regedit since it was already correct.  I also checked, via the Control Panel, the Associate a file type....  inventory of extensions to be sure that *.doc, *.docx etc. were associated with MS Office Word.  They were.  

We then uninstalled MS Office 2007.  Ran a registry clean after the reboot and installed Office 2007 again.  This did not solve the problem.  We continue getting the same behavior.  

Please get back to us with what else could possibly creating this issue.  Again...Excel and PowerPoint all work correctly.
LVL 18

Expert Comment

ID: 40510277
Hi Tony, sorry to hear that my suggestions didn't work. I've only one other long shot, related to DDE:

See also
"I searched for and found many suggested fixes for the problem ... and none of the fixes worked for me.  I eventually fixed the message "There was a problem sending the command to the program" with a change in the registry.  I edited "HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Word.Document.12\shell\Open " and deleted the "ddeexec" key.  The "ddeexec" key can also be deleted from "HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Word.DocumentMacroEnabled.12\shell\Open".
Online Training Solution

Drastically shorten your training time with WalkMe's advanced online training solution that Guides your trainees to action. Forget about retraining and skyrocket knowledge retention rates.

LVL 43

Expert Comment

by:Davis McCarn
ID: 40510760
"There were a few minor issues but nothing that seemed overly serious"  Since the answer is always in the details, what were the " minor issues"?  I might suggest running ADWCleaner and TDSSKiller, both of which are far better than what you have run already:

Uninstalling and reinstalling almost never fixes things.  For Office, you do a repair install from Programs and Features.  For Word, the best answer is usually to rename NORMAL.DOT with Word not running.  It will create a new one when you next run it.
LVL 15

Accepted Solution

DrTribos earned 500 total points
ID: 40511218
Pls try logging on as a different user. My guess is a corrupt user profile.

Author Comment

ID: 40511233
Interesting idea.  Will try that.
LVL 15

Expert Comment

ID: 40511236
Sadly it often does the trick. Then you have to figure out how to move the user data to the new profile w/o breaking it.

Author Closing Comment

ID: 40530611
Creating a new user account and transferring the file solved the problem but we found this much too difficult to do with 1000s of files.  Therefore, the decision was to recreated the OS which we did and the problem is solved.  Thank you.
LVL 15

Expert Comment

ID: 40530664
Thank you - once the problem is identified a os rebuild is easier to justify. Glad it helped

Featured Post

Revamp Your Training Process

Drastically shorten your training time with WalkMe's advanced online training solution that Guides your trainees to action.

Question has a verified solution.

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

Suggested Solutions

Title # Comments Views Activity
Converting time 4 37
Office 365 Install Issues 3 54
Word VBA, Clear CheckBoxes in VBA Form 4 36
Incoming email read aloud on Android 1 29
Outlook Free & Paid Tools
This article descibes how to create a connection between Excel and SAP and how to move data from Excel to SAP or the other way around.
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…
The viewer will learn how to  create a slide that will launch other presentations in Microsoft PowerPoint. In the finished slide, each item launches a new PowerPoint presentation and when each is finished it automatically comes back to this slide: …

763 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