Word crashes can be very annoying when you try to open that important document.

File format related crashes

The title of this article could also have been PowerPoint 2010 crashes with .ppt or pptx format as I just got the same result in PowerPoint as well.

I’ve got a document library in SharePoint 2010 which uses a standard document library template (.docx).

When I create a new document which uses the default content type of Document Word 2010 crashes when I attempt to save the document to the document library. I noticed that Word opened the document compatibility mode event though my template is a .docx file. Word convert the actual file format to a .doc file therefore all document properties are being removed on the way. Saving the document using the 2007/2010 file format doesn’t recover the fields in the document.

The only modification that I made in SharePoint is that I’ve enabled the “Always show Document Information Panel on document open and initial save for this content type” option on the Document content type in SharePoint. This is not relevant to the problem however it does make it easier to update the site columns in Word.

The problem actually occurred initially with a custom content type, but for simplicity sake I’m trying to go back to out of the box features in this post.

When I now update any of the fields (in case of Document I’m updating the Title) in the DIP Word 2010 crashes and leaves the following in my Event Log:

Faulting application name: WINWORD.EXE, version: 14.0.4762.1000, time stamp: 0x4bae25b7
Faulting module name: wwlib.dll, version: 14.0.4762.1000, time stamp: 0x4bae2623
Exception code: 0xc0000005
Fault offset: 0x003dd5d6
Faulting process id: 0xf98
Faulting application start time: 0x01cc325b0152b783
Faulting application path: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\WINWORD.EXE
Faulting module path: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\wwlib.dll
Report Id: 45e9d285-9e4e-11e0-81f2-6c626dd077a3

Fault bucket , type 0
Event Name: APPCRASH
Response: Not available
Cab Id: 0
Problem signature:
P2: 14.0.4762.1000
P3: 4bae25b7
P4: wwlib.dll
P5: 14.0.4762.1000
P6: 4bae2623
P7: c0000005
P8: 003dd5d6
Attached files:

These files may be available here:

Analysis symbol:
Rechecking for solution: 0
Report Id: 45e9d285-9e4e-11e0-81f2-6c626dd077a3
Report Status: 0


My system has a default document type of .doc and setting this to .docx resolved the issue.

I resolved this by changing  HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\office\14.0\word\options the key DefaultFormat from “Doc”to “DocX”

On Windows 7 Word 2010 actually crashed. It looks like Word 2010 on XP handles this all slightly better as it doesn’t crash.

Alternative Solution

Perhaps this should be the preferred option:

Start Word
File -> Word Options -> Save -> Save files in this format
then select Word Document (*.docx)

Note: It’s also possible for this problem to occur when opening .doc files while the default document format is set to .docx.

By Pieter Veenstra

Business Applications and Office Apps & Services Microsoft MVP working as a Microsoft Productivity Principal Consultant at HybrIT Services. You can contact me using contact@veenstra.me.uk.

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