Fix: Microsoft Word will not open and run properly

Microsoft has published an article that describes how to troubleshoot problems that occur when you start or use Microsoft Office Word. The methods that are described can help you determine the cause of a problem with Word when you cannot identify the problem by another method.

Microsoft Word will not open

Microsoft Word

You may have to try one or more of these suggested troubleshooting steps and after every try, see if your Word starts and runs correctly. Before you proceed, create a system restore point first.

1. Delete the Word Data registry key.

Open regedit and locate the following registry subkey, as appropriate for the version of Word that you are running:

  • Word 2010: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Word\Data
  • Word 2007: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\ Office\12.0\Word\Data
  • Word 2003: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\ Office\11.0\Word\Data
  • Word 2002: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft \Office\10.0\Word\Data

Click Data, and then click Export on the File menu. Name the file Wddata.reg, and then save the file to the desktop.

Click Delete on the Edit menu, and then click Yes. Exit Registry Editor.

If Word starts and works correctly, great! If not, restore the original backed-up Word Data registry key Wddata.reg, by double-clicking on it.

2. Delete the Word Options registry key.

To delete the Word Options registry key, open Registry Editor and locate the following registry subkey, as appropriate for the version of Word that you are running:

  • Word 2010: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Word\Options
  • Word 2007: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\ Office\12.0\Word\Options
  • Word 2003: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\ Office\11.0\Word\Options
  • Word 2002: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\ Office\10.0\Word\Options

Click Options, and then click Export on the File menu. Name the file Wdoptn.reg, and then save the file to the desktop.

Click Delete on the Edit menu, and then click Yes. Exit Registry Editor.

If Word starts and works correctly, you have resolved the problem. The problem was a damaged Word Options registry key. If the problem is not resolved, restore the original Wdoptn.reg Word Options registry key.

Microsoft has also laid out several more troubleshooting steps in the article, where you may have to:

  • Rename the Normal.dot or Normal.dotm global template file
  • Disable the Startup folder add-ins
  • Delete the COM add-ins registry keys
  • Determine which COM add-in program is causing the problem

So if these have not addressed your issue, you may want to head over to KB921541 for further instructions. You can download and use the guided help or use the Fix it.

Repairing your Office installation is another option you may want to consider.

Posted by on , in Category Office with Tags
Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.