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Thread: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    42

    Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    I am facing problem with Excel 2003. I am not able to open any documents in it. It is not working at all. I work on some files and they are listed inside Recent Documents List. There are all documents listed in the same. When I click on it sometime Excel freezes and sometime it is extremely slow to open. The files are fine. There is no issue with that. I work on more than 10 files at a time and due to this slow performance I am not able to work properly on it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    110
    It can be due to some large or corrupt files. I am having a excel sheet that is having around 50 sheets or more. And there are circular reference in each of them. So when I open them Excel took some time to open it. I am sure your database is quiet large due to which you are getting the problem. You can try to uncheck some options and then try back again.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    1
    I followed your instructions above and now when I double click an excel file on my desktop, it shows a lot of ! boxes like 'C:\documents.xls' could not be found. check the spelling of the file name.

    When I click ok another box opens and says 'and.xls' could not be found. Check spelling of the file name, and verify that the file location is correct. If you are trying to open the file from your list of most recently used files, make sure it hasn't been renamed.

    If I open Excel first, then open the file from there, it opens fine.

    Any suggestions?

    I opened up the VBA editor. I wasn't sure what you meant by removing any VBA code in the Personal.xls project. If it makes any difference I'm using 2003. In the editor it shows VBAProject and a folder titled Microsoft Excel Objects.

    I had the exact same issue after trying this. I can't figure out what I am doing wrong. I am also using Excel 2003. If I go back in after I make these changes, 'Use DDE' is checked again. Is there another setting that would make it do that?

    Lastly, I wanted to check to see if you think this issue applies to my problem. I especially have this problem when openinig Excel attachments in Outlook Express. However, it is inconsistent. Some times it opens right up, but it usually takes 30-60 seconds. It is a brand new computer so it has plenty of horse power. If I open the Task Manager and watch it while it is opening the file, Outlook Express temporarily switches to 'not responding' while the Excel file is opening but then goes back to 'running' after it is open.

    I just found the same issue. I uninstalled a virus scan software which I unknowingly dl'ed when upgrading my Adobe Flashplayer. After a restart, all things back to normal.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    149
    It looks a problem with antivirus. When you open a files then applications scan the file and then it opens up. You can try running disk cleanup to wipe out some old files or disable the antivirus for sometime and then see whether the performance is proper or not. It is right that sometime large files take too much time to open. You can try running repair setup of Office and then see all stuff is fixed or not.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    1

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    The %1 append does not work. What Sukubus said prior is what happens - lots of error messages. Also, I could not delete the %1 once I typed and saved it. It does not resort back! I had to do a system restore to resort back to the original. Ridiculous.

    You guys are a bunch of weekend warriors not knowing what you're doing.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    5

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    After doing the DDE fix (removing the /e and replacing it with "%1" and unchecking the Use DDE box) and then undoing it (deleting the "%1" and adding back the /e, rechecking Use DDE and putting [open("%1")] back in the DDE Message: field) the %1 will keep coming back at the end of the command line (in the Application used to perform action: field), and you get lots of error messages when opening Excel files afterward.

    All you have to do is add quotes around the %1 that it keeps adding to the end, and the problem is solved.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    1

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    word excel are taking to much time to open

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    100

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    word excel are taking to much time to open
    Have you tried to scan your system by updated anti-virus?? If you have tried then, removing the temporary files from your system will definitely help you. For removing temporary files, just click on start button, click on Run command, and then type temp and then delete all files. After that again follow the same steps and then type %temp% in run, and then delete again all files that are shown in temporary directory. I am sure that will help you.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    1

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    I had this problem for two months...took my printer off the network and attached it directly to my PC, problem went away IMMEDIATELY.

    Very easy fix, if you can manage it...I am not sure what I did, but somewhere along the way I must have added some app that affected my printer,...anyway, I am thrilled,...it was AGONIZINGLY slow.

    Detail: I had an HP Laserjet connected by USB to a Network Attached Storgae unit. That allowed me constant printer access from any computer in the house,....it worked completely fine up till a month or two ago,...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    Please try the following steps:

    Microsoft Excel 2010
    Click the File tab, and then click Options.
    Click Advanced, and then click to clear the Ignore other applications check box in the General area.
    Click OK.

    Microsoft Office Excel 2007
    Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Excel Options.
    Click Advanced, and then click to clear the Ignore other applications check box in the General area.
    Click OK.

    Microsoft Office Excel 2003 or earlier versions of Excel
    Click Options, on the Tools menu.
    Click the General tab.
    Click to clear the Ignore other applications check box, and then click OK.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    1

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    It seems there are lots of different ways to fix this issue. Just thought I'd add, Excel can also go slow if you have the 'Default file location' found in tools\options\general set to go to a location on a server that doesn't exist any more.

    As I found out today :P

    We have just replaced our main server and obviously one of our users has been having problems. I found out the path was incorrect \\oldserver\folder\folder was set to default. I changed it to \\newserver\folder\folder and everything worked fine. I'm guessing the same will happen with mapped drives and folders on your pc that don't exist anymore.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    5

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    What I would like to know, is what exactly causes this problem.

    Apparently they have fixed it in Office 2010, but there are those of us in organizations on networks that have reason to still use Office 2003 and 2007, and still have to apply the "DDE fix" regularly. It boggles my mind that after 7 years there is, unless I missed something in my endless searches on the problem, still no clear-cut explanation as to why this happens and why we have to apply the fix when opening Excel files over the network becomes slow. It's a quick and dirty fix to be sure, but it usually works. But, unfortunately, at the cost of having users being unable to copy and paste between open excel documents unless they use the File-->Open command to open the other documents after opening the initial one. I have some users where this isn't an issue, and others where it's a major annoyance.

    In my particular case, my worst nightmare has finally came true: I have 2 machines this week where the DDE fix does not fix the slow-opening-network-excel-files problem, and I'm about to pull my hair out. I've tried many, many things that I've found on the 'net to no avail, including:

    - the original DDE fix (uncheck 'Use DDE', delete '/e' at the end of the command line and replace it with '"%1"')
    - the alternate one (leave 'Use DDE' checked, leave the '/e' on the command line, add a space and '"%1"' after it, and in the 'DDE application not running' box, add '[rem see command line]') under normal circumstances, this one will usually fix the problem, while also letting people cut and paste normally, but in my experience this version of the fix is short-lived.
    - enabled 'Lookup Assistant' under Add-ons (this may be a 2007-only thing)
    - in AVG antivirus, added the network drive to the scan exceptions list.
    - disabled as many non-essential startup items as possible in msconfig.
    - Uninstalled everything related to Windows Live Essentials
    - I did the 'excel.exe /unregserver' followed by 'excel.exe /regserver' (On another note, this will effectively and cleanly undo/reset the "DDE fix" for XLS entirely, for those of you having problems with that.)
    - I set the duplex on the network card to '100MB Full' as opposed to 'Auto' since we had an issue on the server in the past where this was negotiating incorrectly, making all network drive access slow.
    - rebooted the network switch in the department with the troubled machines, in case it was a duplexing issue there.
    - Tried 'ipconfig /flushdns' and then 'ipconfig /registerdns'
    - made sure these machines weren't getting duplicate IP's/IP conflicts
    - For shints and giggles, I tried adding an exception in the firewall settings for \windows\system32\netdde.exe" and then went into services and started the 'Network DDE DSDM' and 'Network DDE" services'

    In light of the newer posts here, the next things I'm going to try, is turn off the print spooler service, maybe going as far as to deleting all of the network printers, clear temp files, and change the 'Default file location' to something local, even though the present network location is still valid.

    But it would be awesome if someone could point out exactly what goes on to cause this, whether it be a setting on the file server that gets corrupt or needs changed, something on the local machine, etc..

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    1,602

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    Hi Mezmaron,

    I can understand your pain but it all depends of the resources consumed in each machines which slows down many of the processes. In any case, are you using antivirus software? KAS or AVG by chance? Checked the usual suspects, chkdsk, defrag, advanced settings. etc; drivers, chipset? What about the logs? How much memory is used in all of the machines? How old are the computers anyway?

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    3

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    Don't worry Mezmaron, you're not alone. I think that there are a lot of Office 2003 users experiencing this issue and I'll bet that Microsoft comes out with some kind of fix for this soon. One thing you may want to take a look at is any Office updates that we recently applied. If you find them try uninstalling and see if that takes care of the issue. That is my next path for troubleshooting this issue. It's very frustrating, but I'm kind of glad to see that I'm not alone.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    3

    Re: Excel 2003 documents open slow or do not open.

    I found the issue! :) YAY!!

    Uninstall Excel update #KB2541025 then restart... Viola! enjoy

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