Help! It's all turned to custard...


Well-known Member
Jul 1, 2009
Suddenly my .xls file won't run. I'm getting "Can't exit design mode because Control 'label2' can not be created".

I've Googled for help with this and found quite a few mentions but no solutions yet. Microsoft say

Open your, access the control, and then save and close the template. -or-

If you have Visual Basic for Applications code that runs when you access the control, run the procedure prior to saving and
closing the template.

However I don't know where/how to open or what procedure they're talking about. It happens as soon as the spreadsheet opens.

Something else Microsoft say:

"The control specified in the error message dialog box could not be created. Code can only run after all controls are instantiated
and properly connected. Make sure every file needed for the control is available before trying again. "

What's an ordinary bloke meant to do with that!? I'm not even sure what 'instantiated' means, where the control is, how to see if it's
properly connected, or what files are needed.

Others say it is 'Computer specific' and this seems correct as the xls runs ok on another computer. I have re-installed Office
but the problem is still there. (I'm a bit suspicious about the re-instal as it showed a history of previously opened files.
If it were a new install how would it know?)

I was intending to rebuild everything, component by component, but if it's ok on another computer doesn't that prove the 'problem' is somewhere else ?

I don't know what 'label2' is or even if I have one. I've also tried Excel safe mode and a windows XP system restore, nothing made any difference
(although system restore failed).

Any suggestions or help to fix this REALLY appreciated. Has anyone had this error and recovered from it ?

Thanks, ADKM

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Well-known Member
Jul 1, 2009
Hi Shg, Just realised I didn't specified I'm using Office 2003. (The xls file does run OK under Office 2007, and 2003 on a different machine).

I've also been informed "The fundamental problem is that VBA is considered a common feature by Windows, so once it has been installed it is very hard to remove or replace. Uninstalling Office will not remove VBA, and reinstalling Office won't replace the files with the same version that are already there, so you have to either install a newer version or delete everything and reinstall everything."

This suggests I think, a reinstall of Windows, and Office from a new Hard drive ?

Michael M

Well-known Member
Oct 27, 2005
Office Version
Maybe there is something in the workbook open code causing the problem..
If you open the file via windows explorer and hold down the SHIFT key... while opening the file.
See if that gets you into the file.....then you could / should be able to exit the design mode.

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