How do I fix an install error that I've never had before.

I've been using Excel, Word, etc. for years on this computer. Out of the blue when I try to open Excel, I get a popup screen that says windows installer is trying to install. If I let it go, I get a second error message that says the required file or disk aren't available. The software was installed years ago.  How do I fix this without losing data? Why did this just start happening?

Thank you - Lisa
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
I suggest you try an Office Repair. Go to Programs and Features, click on Office and then Repair.

Microsoft is moving toward "silent" updates but I have not seen any silent Office 2010 or prior updates. Try the repair and see if that works.

Also set up a new, test Windows User Profile (Account) and log into the new account. Does Excel complain in the new account?
Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
If the Office repair that John suggested doesn't work, the next think I'd try would be to completely un-install Office and re-install.
in addition, if you have installed a 2013 application like visio or other I have found that to be problematic for 2010 office
Active Protection takes the fight to cryptojacking

While there were several headline-grabbing ransomware attacks during in 2017, another big threat started appearing at the same time that didn’t get the same coverage – illicit cryptomining.

Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
BTW...what version of Office are you using?
dingbat1965Author Commented:
I should have given additional information.  I'm using Office 2003.  I know it is old and I do not have any copies of the source to uninstall and then reinstall. I just really don't want to lose what I have already. Any reason why it just started after years with no issues?  Thanks for all responses.  I'll see if I even have repair.
Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
Well you won't lose any of your documents.  But for safety's sake you might want to make backups of them if you haven't already.

It's hard to say why it's acting up all of a sudden.  Possibly an OS update that is incompatible, one of the library files might have gotten corrupted, etc.

If the repair doesn't work, then you can either buy an old copy off of eBay or you might want to consider upgrading to Office 2013.  Office 2013 will open all of your current files.
dingbat1965Author Commented:
I couldn't even find repair as an option. I tried looking in a few other places for something similar and no luck. Getting an old copy or Office 2013 sounds like the way I need to go. Thank you all for your help.  Lisa (Dingbat1965).
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Office 2003 is very old and there is no way it is getting silent updates. Not possible.

You could easily have a virus or other malware so I would check for that and also using a different user account because your profile could be damaged.

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
BTW....what OS are you running on?  If it's Windows XP or Vista, Office 2013 won't install on that.  You need Windows 7 or higher.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
If the computer is XP, it is now a huge security risk and now easily feasible it has been hosed by viruses
Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
What he said ^^^
dingbat1965Author Commented:
It has Vista so I'm not even sure if I want to mess with trying to upgrade this laptop or not. Not sure if I have enough memory, etc. I do have another laptop that has Window's 8 so I guess I'm forced to go into the future (probably old by now too). Thank you both for your help.

I've been running malware protection software but am not sure where this came from. I know I did download Window's updates very recently.
dingbat1965Author Commented:
Lots of great information.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
@dingbat1965  - Thanks for the update and I was happy to help.
Scott CSenior EngineerCommented:
wondering on the grade of B.  It's customary to give an explanation for grades of B or C.

Thank you.
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.