Microsoft Word is the best word editor available for users. While it is almost perfect, many users report a problem with the application where they encounter the error Word can’t do this because a dialog box is open. The error occurs while creating a new Word document or opening an existing one. If you encounter this error on your system, please read this article for the resolutions.
A Dialog Box is a temporary window that asks for user input. It could be a message asking for your acknowledgment by hitting Yes or Cancel. It could be a suggestion or request for more information. Mostly, a Dialog Box is a prompt. however, most of the time, you would be required to close the Dialog box before closing the application.
Word can’t do this because a dialog box is open
The primary cause of this problem is that a dialog box associated with Microsoft Word is open. It might not be visible upfront if many windows are open on your computer. Please try the following solutions sequentially to fix this problem.
- Find the dialog box and close it
- Kill the Microsoft Word process
- Disable Add-ins in Microsoft Word
- Repair Microsoft Office
1] Find the dialog box and close it
If many tabs are open on your system, check through the preview of those tabs and find the ones which are dialog boxes. Close them when you come across them. In most cases, all you need to do is click on OK. A good shortcut for this job is to press CTRL+TAB to switch between the tabs. Once you close the dialog box, try creating or opening the document once again.
2] Kill the Microsoft Word process
If you cannot find the problematic dialog box or if closing it doesn’t help, you would have to kill the Microsoft Word process from the Task Manager. The procedure to kill the Microsoft Word process is as follows.
- Search for Task Manager in the Windows Search bar and click on the application to open it.
- Check for the Microsoft Word process amongst the list of processes.
- Right-click on the Microsoft Word process and select End Task.
- Reboot your system.
Try creating or opening the Word document once again.
3] Disable Add-ins in Microsoft Word
If you have killed the Microsoft Word process and rebooted your system, perhaps the problem is because of a troublesome Word Add-in. In this case, removing the Add-in can be helpful. The procedure is as follows.
- Open Microsoft Word.
- Go to File > Options > Add-ins.
- Corresponding to Manage, change the drop-down option to COM Add-in.
- Click on Go.
- Now, to remove an Add-in, you can check the checkbox associated with the Add-in and select Remove.
- Use the hit and trail to find the troublesome Add-in.
Reboot your system and check if it helps.
4] Repair Microsoft Office
If all the solutions mentioned above fail, it could be possible that the Microsoft office client could be corrupt. In this case, we suggest you repair the Microsoft Office application. The procedure to do so is as follows.
- Right-click on the Start button and select Settings from the menu.
- Go to Apps >> Installed Apps.
- Scroll down to the Microsoft 365 application.
- Click on the three dots corresponding to it and select Modify.
- If you get the UAC prompt, click on Yes.
- Select the radio button at Online repair.
- Click on Repair.
Once the process completes, reboot the system and check if the problem is resolved.