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  • Tag Archives office 2013
  • Excel crashes, locks up, or stops responding opening certain files, Office 2007, Office 2010, Office 2013

    IT Services HOustonI had a client recently call me and one of her main Excel files that was stored on the server was crashing, locking up, and generally being obnoxious. There have been many versions of Excel, starting with Office 95, thru the newest version Excel 2013. This would apply to any version of Excel. For the most part, Excel problems are caused by improperly closing the file. When a file, database, .pst or .ost email database, or generally any file isn’t closed gracefully, it causes issues. This is exaggerated when the file is stored on a server, and many times that file will be opened by more than one person. At times, at the same time. Which gives you a message that the file is already open.

    If you have a file acting up, one way to remedy this is to start a new file. Chances are your not going to be able to fix the one that has become corrupt. There are some scan tools out there that attempt to repair Excel files. I haven’t had much luck with these tools, and there’s a chance when you download “Free” programs, they really aren’t free. Spyware, Malware and other nasties often piggyback on free downloads. Don’t take the chance. Start a new file.

    Since many large Excel files in the enterprise have tons of accounting, formulas, object tracking, and other data in them, many times you never really know how old the files is, what the original version of Excel it was generated in, whether it started life as a .xml standard file, etc. Start a new file, cut and paste each page into the new file, cleanup any unneeded data, and you should be good to go. That is if you can get the files to open and cut and paste out of it. If not, try copying it from the server to your machine locally, if it’s not there already. You can also give “Autorecover” a shot as my friend in the picture refers to. Autorecover is a built in function in the later versions of Office that saves a copy of your file every few minutes. Chances are you have seen a tab on the left of Excel stating “Autorecover has saved a version of this file”. Just find that version of the file and see if it will open.

    If Excel acts up on ANY file you open, it could be you have a problem in the Office suite. If that’s the case, go to control panel, add-remove programs, or whatever depending on your Windows version, and try a repair of Office by highlighting Office in the list, click change, and select repair. Then try your file and see if it’s fixed.

    You may also have an add-in that is causing the problem. Another troubleshooting task would be to disable any add-ins in Excel from the add-in configuration page under options. If you have any macros running, try disabling them and see if that helps.

    As a last resort, contact your system administrator and have them do a restore of the file from when the file was ok. You may also be able to try this yourself by right clicking on the file, and see if there is a tab called “Other versions” This is the VSS copy of the file that Windows, if correctly configured, has saved for you.

    Good Luck and Happy Excel-ing!

  • Featured ImageOffice 2013 Office 365 Activate Activation Error Code 0x80070005

    Outlook 2013 or Office 365 activation error 0x80070005

    Recently after installing Office 2013 from an Office 365 web account, thru web based Outlook, I encountered the error code (0x80070005).

    We’re sorry, something went wrong and we can’t do this for you right now. Please try again later. (0x80070005).



    Incredibly, trying again later didn’t help. “Was this information helpful?” Is the link under that error, and of course I did advise them that it wasn’t.

    After some research, it appears Microsoft requires admin access when running their activation software, which Office generally doesn’t run under. This will generally occur on  startup of any Office 2013 application after initial installation . So the pretty simple fix for this error was to run whichever Office product you first start after your installation is complete as an administrator.

    Right clicking on any Office product shortcut and then clicking on the Run as Administrator command will solve this problem straightaway.


    Office shortcuts can be found in Start>All Programs>Microsoft Office. You may need to create a shortcut on your desktop first by dragging and dropping a copy of the shortcut from the Microsoft Office folder in the start menu. Be sure the icon has a little “Plus” sign on it before you let go of the mouse, or you will move the icon, much to the chagrin of the other users on this machine, if any.

    The Office program should start and will not show any error, and it will automatically register with Microsoft, if you have configured everything else properly. As both Office 365 and Office 2013 require you to have an email account and register Office tied to that, this must be done first.

    Mike at Westway PC


  • Office 2013 or Office 365 – Do I trust someone else with my data?

    Microsoft is trying to drag everyone into their cloud with Office 365.

    Microsoft’s latest Office suite offering, Office 365, comes pre-installed on most PCs you buy retail from now on. The question is, do you want to rent cloud-based software from Microsoft? Or do you want to buy a perpetual license for the Office suite software for your PC.

    The differences between Office 365 Home Premium and Office 2013 Full versions are minute, but the licensing is not. As of March of this year (2013), Microsoft changed the End User License Agreement (EULA) on the perpetual license of the Office 2013 Full Packaged Product Retail (FPP). Now the Office license is not tied to the machine it is first licensed and loaded on. Of course, this is the most expensive version of Office 2013 at over $400. But compare to the Office Home and Student version which excludes Outlook (unbelievably), Access, and Publisher. In my opinion, Outlook is without a doubt the best email client out there, so I recommend not buying Office 2013 Home and Student.

    The next step up is Office Home and Business, which does include Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. This can be obtained for around $150.00 or less, and it comes in a download form. This should be all any home user would need. If you are an Access database developer that works from home, you probably aren’t going to be reading this article. This comes with the caveat that it is locked to the machine you initially install it to. If your hard drive fails and you have to re-install Windows, you are going to run into problems re-installing. Of course, you should always have a full backup including a Windows Image, which SHOULD preclude this problem.

    Office 365 Home Premium comes with the latest versions of the Office software bundled. However, is that once you commit to using Office 365, you must continue paying the subscription fee or lose access to the software. At this time, it runs $10 a month, or $100 a year. That being said, it allows for installation on 5 machines with the same logon. It also includes 20gb of drive space on Skydrive. Since most people don’t have 5 machines they logon to, it doesn’t appear to be cost-effective to rent.

    Many home users are still on Office 2003 and are perfectly happy with that. Now, if you have several devices that can run Office, and trust your data with someone else, maybe Office 365 Home Premium is for you. Microsoft has also promised you get any upgrades that come out for no charge. But then they said the same thing about Vista Ultimate and it really never happened. BTW, Office 365 runs only on Windows 7 and up. Vista or XP is a no-go.

    In summation, you have a decision to make when you set up your shiny new computer. Do I want to rent Office 365 Home Premium and be locked into renting software from Microsoft? Or will a download of Office 2013 Home and Business using a traditional perpetual license work for me?