It is a terrifying scenario that jolts every business owner: a Microsoft Word file containing confidential business information has been corrupted. Either it’s not opening at all, or it shows some of the information – but the rest isn’t visible.
As it appears, you’ve lost important data and countless hours of productivity. What do you do? Start all over? See if someone in your company created a backup copy?
Hang on. A corrupted Microsoft Word file doesn’t always mean you have to accept data loss. Here are some actionable tips you can implement when a corrupted Word file shows up on your/your employee’s system.
1. Try the “Open & Repair” Option
Microsoft Office is capable of fixing some corrupted Word documents by itself. But if it doesn’t, you can manually instruct it to resolve a specific issue. Open a Word file as normal, select the document that’s corrupt, click the arrow beside the “Open” button and choose “Open and Repair.”
Microsoft Office will repair the file if it’s a minor corruption. If it doesn’t work out, there’s a second bare-bones option you can attempt. Open a document again, select the damaged file, and from the “Files of Type” section, select “Recover Text from Any File.” This may recover the raw text but won’t recover formatting and images.
2. Recovery Software Is Often Neglected
Unfortunately, businesses often neglect the power of data recovery software to repair corrupt Word files. Top data recovery vendors provide options of programs that repair corrupted Word files and work with all Windows operating systems, including 2003 Server, 2008 Server, 2012 Server, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows 2000, Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 10. Most of such programs just need to be downloaded and loaded, after which they conduct a full diagnosis and report what contents can be recovered and repaired.
Recovery can be attempted on several types of contents including text, formatting, bulleted lists, charts, drawings, tables, headers, footers, and images at the end of the file. Top service providers enable users to try a demo first before they purchase a license. The demo version will restore some of the contents of the Word document and will display the remaining as the demo text until an upgrade has been made.
3. Try Switching the Template
While you try fixing software-related problems that may be the cause of corrupted files, the issue could be relatively minor. For instance, the file may not be opening due to a faulty template, or even a phony add-on you recently unknowingly installed. Try changing the template to see if the Word document becomes viewable again.
You can also try fixing several minor issues simultaneously. Use “Safe Mode” to see if things work out, as this mode deactivates add-ons and other similar things. Also, you can refer to the official troubleshooting guide published by Microsoft to see if you can get the issue fixed.
4. Attempt Document Recovery
One last thing you can attempt is document recovery. To do this, end all the Word related processes, and select “Ctrl+Alt+Del” to launch the Task Manager box. Once opened, check for Word specific processes like Winword.exe and Microsoft Word.
Next, click “End Process” to terminate the processes. And repeat for all related ones. Then restart the PC and then launch Word again. The document recovery task pane will appear. See if the file that was corrupted is eligible for recovery. The auto recovery option may also pop up upon taking this measure.
If the corrupted files on your PC contain important business data, these tips could become your great escape. Try a multitude of them to see if you can repair corrupted Word files.