Embedded Excel File Crashes Excel after Extraction from Word


New Member
Dec 20, 2009
I have several .doc files with .xls files (both 97-2003 versions) embedded. When I open the .doc file in Word 2010 and try to open the .xls file I get the following error message: "Microsoft Word can't start the application required to open this object. An error occured and this feature is no longer functioning properly. Would you like to repair this feature now?"

When I try to repair the feature it fails and I still cannot open the .xls. If anyone has a fix for this then I'm set.

I also extracted the .xls files from the .doc file by
Saved the .doc as a .docx
Changed the .docx. file extension to .zip
Opened the .zip and extracted the .xls files in the word/embeddings folder

When I open the .xls in Excel 2010, the results are mixed and not consistent. Some files open and I can edit/save them. Most files don't open. Some files open only when a second file is opened. Some files that open are in Protected View mode and when I try to turn off Protected View it crashes Excel.

When I view the files in Windows Explorer, they don't have date created or date modified time stamps. It's only when I attempt to open the file that the date modified time stamp shows up. If the file doesn't open all the way and I close Excel, the date modified stamp goes away (not sure if this has any bearing on anything).

Looking for tricks/tips/help support.
Anything is appreciated.

Thanks all


New Member
Dec 20, 2009
I was able to come up with this clumsy hack to my own post that worked for a couple documents. Would be interested if someone with more knowledge understands why this works and if there's a better solution. Seems it might be related to the OLE Object linking, but I have no clue and it's above my knowledge.

  • Open the .doc in Word 2010 and save as .docx.</SPAN>
  • Create a copy of the .docx file and rename the .docx extension to .zip.</SPAN>
  • Open the .zip file using WinZip (assume other compression tools will work as well)</SPAN>
  • Navigate to the word/embeddings file to view the embedded .xls files. (normally, you should be able to open the extracted files directly in Excel, but they don't open or crash Excel in this case)
  • Drag and Drop the .xls files from the zip interface to a desktop folder.</SPAN>
  • In the .docx file that was saved earlier delete the original .xls files, then use the Insert->Object->Create from File and Browse the where the new .xls files are located and select the first .xls file. Select the Display as Icon option and OK. Do this for each of the remaining .xls files.</SPAN>
  • The newly embedded .xls file should now be readable within Word.
  • </SPAN>

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