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Word crashes while saving a document - help!
Thread poster: Natalie

Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:33
Member (2002)
English to Russian
+ ...

MODERATOR
Nov 1, 2006

Hi all,

I need some help as I have a problem I am unable to solve. I have a set of documents four of which cause my Word crashing. The problem looks as follows.

All four documents can be opened, I can scroll down and even edit them. But as soon as I click 'save' or save as' Word freezes or closes down. There are either no error messages at all or some crazy messages like "Unable to save the document as it is too large". No need to say that I have more that enough room at the hard disk, and the files aren't that large at all; these are text files (from 30 to 70 pages each), containing several small images, so nothing special.

I use MS Office 2003 under Win XP SP2; after having studied all available information on Word crashes in MS knwledgebase I downloaded and installed the newest service pack (as MS suggested that the problems might be caused by embedded OLE objects etc.). Alas! The problem persists.

Just to add: I have already tried working in normal view; turning off each and every option in Word that could affect this behavior, i.e. fast saving, automatic language recognition and all other automatic options. I have searched and deleted all temporary files falling in the pattern ~$*.do? What is even more crazy, I have this problem on my both home computers, while I can normally handle these files at another computer, in my lab, where the OS and Office are exactly the same.

Any ideas?
Thanks a lot in advance for all suggestions,
Natalia


P.S. I am also unable to copy the documents and paste them into new files: copy/paste operation also results in crash.



[Edited at 2006-11-01 01:14]


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 17:33
English to French
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If you have Win updates turned on for automatic downloads... Nov 1, 2006

It may be that you already downloaded the update you are referring to at an earlier time. In fact, if your Windows Update is set for automatic download and install of all updates, then it is certain that you have already installed it before. Which is probably what's causing the problem.

You have to find a way to uninstall that update. It is more than possible that it's that very update itself that is causing Word to crash. At least, that's what other users are suggesting. As long as you get rid of that update, Word should be fine. Search the forum, there may already be a procedure up here for that. In fact, you are not the first one to complain of the same exact problem: this is happening to pretty much everybody who uses Word 2003.

What can I say? Another smart Microsoft move!

All the best!


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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:33
Member (2002)
English to Russian
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No automatic updating Nov 1, 2006

Hi Victoria,

No, it is not the case. I don't allow my system downloading anything without my consent. It's me who decides what and when should be downloaded, everything is under my full control.


RE Word 2003: I use this version at three computers for three years already, I have never encountered such serious problem. It is obviously something caused by the files themselves.





[Edited at 2006-11-01 09:24]


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Zoltán Medgyesi
Hungary
Local time: 23:33
English to Hungarian
Similar symptoms Nov 1, 2006

I had similar problems with my machine. First, Word sometimes crashed when I used it with Trados, then crashed when I tried to paste something; in its final state even the most basic functions caused a crash. I tried to reinstall Office, but nothing has changed, the solution was reinstalling the whole machine. It was a lot of time, but it was a good decision, now I can do my work without worrying about the crashes.

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John Jory  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:33
Member (2004)
English to German
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Contact the client/agency Nov 1, 2006

I had the same problem a few months ago. The document had pictures in it with an incredibly high resolution. I could work in the document but not save (crash). The pictures were several megabytes large, but they had simply been scaled down to fit into the available space.

After contacting the client and describing the problem, I was sent a new document that worked OK.

While I was messing around with a copy of the original version, I discovered that the problem was solved after deleting the pictures.

If that is the only solution, I guess the client could reinsert the pictures as necessary.

HTH John

[Edited at 2006-11-01 09:48]


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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:33
Member (2002)
English to Russian
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But the problem concerns four files only Nov 1, 2006

Everything other works fine. And I work with many files on a daily basis, sometimes dozens and dozens of files of various size and format, both in Office applications and various other programs. No slightest problems anywhere.

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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
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Hi John Nov 1, 2006

Did this, of course. And received another set of files, without images, with standardized fonts, correct language settings etc. But the problem still persists. What is most strange, the small images in one of the files are still there, and they cannot be deleted. I can only move them form page to page, but I cannot get rid of them. I strongly suspect that the problem is somehow related to these images (or maybe other objects, maybe hidden, I don't know).

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John Jory  Identity Verified
Germany
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Converted format? Nov 1, 2006

Does your client generate the documents in some other format and then convert to MS Word for you?
If that is so, perhaps the client could supply in the 'neutral' RTF format.


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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
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The files were created in Word Nov 1, 2006

John, as far as I know, the files were created in Word or perhaps converted from a pdf, as the source file was in pdf format. The translator had some problems with translation in Trados but the final files seemed to be OK, so they (the translator and the client) did not understand what went wrong. They sent me various other versions re-saved with different options but nothing helped.

Do you have any idea how to get rid of embedded objects?



[Edited at 2006-11-01 10:01]


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Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:33
Member (2003)
Polish to German
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This happens sometimes Nov 1, 2006

Those Word files have an error somwhere.
They save in source version without a problem, but as soon you change antyhing they crash. I have no explanation for this, but maybe a solution for you.
If you are able to print those files, print them to PDF with very high resolution. Let this be an open PDF, allowing you to select and copy things. In this way you can prevent all graphics (if any).
Close Word. Delete all temp files, as you already did.

If you have OpenOffice, use the Writer to open the Word files, or install OO and then use the Writer.
If the files are not badly damaged, Writer opens them. Possibly some graphics may be lost, but you can then replace them from PDF Save as Word and you are done.

HTH
Jerzy


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Ken Cox  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:33
German to English
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Other suggestions Nov 1, 2006

The options suggested by Jerzy are worth trying -- in particular, OO can often open and successfully save files that cause Word to crash, although some of the formatting may have to be repaired afterwards (tables and bullet lists in particular).

You could also try to save the files as text. If it works at all, it will strip out all embedded objects, but it's only worth considering if the documents are small enough to make restoring the formatting a reasonable option.

Another popular trick is to delete the last paragarph mark in the document, since the document formating information is tied to this mark.

As for deleting embedded objects: AFAIK every embedded object is anchored to some other object (usually a paragraph) in the document, and if you delete the anchor object the embedded object will also be deleted.

To see the anchors, view the document in page layout mode and enable display of object anchors in the Tools/Options/View settings. When you select an embedded object, the corresponging anchor will be shown in the margin next to the object it is anchored to.

Good luck!


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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:33
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Thanks Jerzy an Ken Nov 1, 2006

I will certainly try installing and using OO, and I'll report the results here.

Ken, the problem is that I cannot do ANYTHING with these documents: I cannot delete paragraphs, I cannot copy etc. I.e., I am able to do all these operations while the files are open, but as soon as I click the 'save' button, Word crashes...


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Can Altinbay  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:33
Japanese to English
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One thing to try... Nov 1, 2006

(If you said you already tried it and I missed it, please forgive me.)

Will it save in RTF? I edit large files with Track changes, and once or twice, Word decided it couldn't deal with changing them any more. Saving to RTF and loading back into Word worked.

Open Office is a good suggestion, too.

Please let us know how this turns out.


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esperantisto  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:33
Member (2006)
English to Russian
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Virus? Damaged Normal.dot? Nov 1, 2006

Natalie, I strongly suggest you to immediately run an anti-virus utility both on your files and on Normal.dot. The problem may be caused by a virus.

Also, try to delete Normal.dot and see, if the problem disappears (having found no Normal.dot, Word will recreate it from scratch). However, you may loose something valuable, like macros etc.

Finally, look at Service -> Templates, try to switch off the templates present there, one-by-one, restarting Word. It's possible, that one of the templates is damaged.


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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:33
Member (2002)
English to Russian
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No viruses, no spyware, no adware... Nov 1, 2006

no damaged system files (and normal.dot is perfectly OK, too). I am 100% sure that my system is healthy and free of any system garbage.


I am going to install the OpenOffice later today. I'll post the results here.


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