How do I – Fix the problem where IE crashes when opening Office documents on SharePoint?

Written by Cornelius J. van Dyk on . Posted in How Do I...

OK, this one has several pieces out there in the blogosphere and some more on the newsgroups, but I’ve not seen a comprehensive post that clearly stipulates why the problem occurs and how to fix it.

Why? OK, so first the why. Why does IE (both 6 and 7) crash when I try to open an Office document (Word, Excel, PowerPoint etc.) on SharePoint (WSS or MOSS)?

When you try to use the “Edit in Microsoft…” option for a document it always blows up. Sometimes this is also seen when you just simply click on the document which would then open in browse mode.

Either way, instead of seeing this:

Friendly little warning, you see this:

Ugly “The exception unknown software exception (0xc06d007f) occurred in the application at location 0x7c812a5b.” error message. When you click the “OK” button, you get another error message, the “The instruction at “0x30cb05e4” referenced memory at “0x00000000”. The memory could not be “written.” error.

Well the problem started when you installed a brand new shiny Office 2007 application. In my case, I was working on migrating us to MOSS 2007 from SPS 2003 and installed SharePoint Designer 2007… and that was enough to break my system. The underlying problem occurs in the OWSSUPP.DLL file located in the C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12 folder.

After much research and debug tracing with Joe on a Microsoft Premier Support ticket I had opened for this, we discovered that OWSSUPP.DLL actually calls, down the line, the NAME.DLL which, installed with Office 2007 apps, are incompatible. Anyway, to make a long story short, reverting back to the old version of OWSSUPP.DLL will solve the problem.


OK, so here’s how you fix it. NOTE: This fix will only work until you install another Office 2007 component at which point you will need to redo these steps again.

  1. Open Windows Explorer and navigate to C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12.
  2. Locate the OWSSUPP.DLL file and rename it to OWSSUPP.DLL.OLD.

  3. Now navigate to the C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office11 folder.
  4. Locate the OWSSUPP.DLL file and copy it.

  5. Now navigate back to the C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12 folder.
  6. Paste the OWSSUPP.DLL file from the Office11 folder to here, the Office12 folder.
  7. Open a command prompt window with Start/Run/cmd.
  8. Chance directory to the Office12 folder with CD “Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12”.
  9. Now using REGSVR32 OWSSUPP.DLL re-register the DLL file.

  10. Now here’s where the trick come in. You will receive an error message like this:

  11. Pay the error no heed. The registration worked. Go back and attempt to edit your Office document on SharePoint. It should work without any problems.



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Cornelius J. van Dyk

Born and raised in South Africa during the 70's I got my start in computers when a game on my Sinclair ZX Spectrum crashed, revealing it's BASIC source code. The ZX had a whopping 48K of memory which was considered to be a lot in the Commodore Vic20 era, but more importantly, it had BASIC built into the soft touch keyboard. Teaching myself to program, I coded my first commercial program at age 15.

After graduating high school at 17, I joined the South African Air Force, graduating the Academy and becoming a Pilot with the rank of First Lieutenant by age 20. After serving my country for six years, I made my way back into computer software.

Continuing my education, I graduated Suma Cum Laude from the Computer Training Institute before joining First National Bank where my work won the Smithsonian Award for Technological Innovation in the field of Banking and Insurance. Soon I met Will Coleman from Amdahl SA, who introduced me to a little known programming language named Huron/ObjectStar. As fate would have it, this unknown language and Y2K brought me to the USA in 1998.

I got involved with SharePoint after playing around with the Beta for SharePoint Portal Server 2003. Leaving my career at Rexnord to become a consultant in 2004, I was first awarded the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional Award for SharePoint in 2005, becoming only the 9th MVP for WSS at the time. I fulfilled a life long dream by pledging allegiance to the Flag as a US citizen in 2006. I met the love of my life and became a private consultant in 2008. I was honored to receive my ninth MVP award for SharePoint Server in 2013.

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