MS Word Won't Open Except As Administrator - Microsoft Office 365

Jerry L
Jerry L used Ask the Experts™
Desktop Machine
AMD Processor
Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate SP1
Microsoft Office 365
Avast Anti-Virus

This last week, I disabled all anti-virus software.
Then, I uninstalled Office completely using the Microsoft Tool:

Now, I have reinstalled Office 365 from my account page at:

I have NOT re-enabled any anti-virus.

Checking SERVICES, I do not see anything out of the ordinary.
Checking TASK MANAGER, I do not see anything out of the ordinary.

After the fresh install of Office 365, when I double click on either the Excel or the Word ICON on my desktop, the hourglass icon appears for an instant, but the program never opens. Also, when I select Excel or Word from the "START MENU > ALL PROGRAMS", neither program starts.

NOTE however, when I right click the program's icon and select "RUN AS ADMINISTRATOR", both programs start normally.

I rebooted into "SAFE MODE" and tried the same steps, open normally and as administrator, but this time, neither one worked. An error message both times popped up in a window that said,
Something went wrong
We couldn't start your program. Please try starting it again.
If it won't start, try repairing office from 'Programs and Features' in the Control Panel.

After rebooting into normal mode, I tried the "QUICK REPAIR" option, but that did not fix the problem.

What is causing this problem, and how do I fix it?
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Jackie Man IT Manager
Top Expert 2010

Uninstall antivirus / internet security software using their removal tools before you reinstall office 365.
When installing the Office, did it ask you to install for just you, or for everyone?

Also, I have no idea why Office products need to run as administrator, but as a sleazy fix, you could just change the app to always run as administrator. I don't like it, but it would stop the right click annoyance.

Open the Start menu and click All apps.
Find the program you want to always run in administrator mode and right-click on the shortcut.
In the pop-up menu, click Open file location.
Only desktop programs (not native Windows 10 apps) will have this option.
A File Explorer window will open to the location of the program you want to access.
Right-click on the program and click Properties from the pop-up menu.
In the Properties window, click the Shortcut tab and then click Advanced...
In the Advanced Properties window, check the box next to Run as administrator and click OK.

It also looks like this is a known issue. From the Microsoft forum:
There are two suggestions there.
1). Run a DISM check (two commands: "DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Scanhealth", and "DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth"
2). See if this is related to your account by creating a new user and see if the problem is on the new user.
Jerry LOperations Manager


Thank you, those are some very helpful suggestions. Maybe I need to actually UNINSTALL antivirus rather than simply DISABLE. I will try that. Otherwise, I will try the DISM check and New User options first. If those don't fix it, then I may just keep an image (and hard drive) of this Windows 7 system in case I ever want to run programs not compatible with Windows 10+. And start an install of Windows 10 on a new hard drive.

After trying your suggestions, I will report back, and either pose more related questions, look at any other expert comments, or close this Question.
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I find it hard to believe that an antivirus program would cause this, so I will be interested in hearing your test results.
Jerry LOperations Manager


Rather than go into all the details, I will only say that, basically, I was not able to resolve the problem.
I've restored my Windows 7 system to its original state where I can run Office programs only when in Admin mode.
Sorry for the anticlimactic ending. If I ever have more time, I'll return to this, but can't right now.
Thanks for all your input and interest in this problem.

Thanks Jerry

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