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Repair MS Office Word Documents with Office 365 or Office 2016

Even if there are many other free software that can open DOC, DOCX, XLS or other MS Office files, I stick with MS Office. I don’t know why, maybe because the software is mature enough and I’m using it for a long time.
Sometimes you happen to have a broken Word file. Many of us don’t know, but MS Office has the capability to repair those broken files without the need of any other third party tools.
There are just a few external application which are free of charge and get the job done.

The Repair feature from Microsoft Office

Repair Word Files with MS Office

You don’t have to be a geek to know there are some less known features in Microsoft Office, and one of them is the feature to repair damaged Word files. This feature is in the Microsoft Office starting with version 2003, and is still present in Office 2007, Office 2010, Office 2013 and of course the Office 2016 and Office 365.
This feature is efficient in repairing many kinds of documents not only Word files, but Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, InfoPath and many others.

The document can be considered damaged if you have one of the following errors:

  • – Unreadable Characters in file.
  • – Office is unable to open files, throwing an exception while opening.
  • – Office is unable to save file.
  • – Computer will hang or freeze for a while when opening the Office document.

Based on Microsoft documentation, Microsoft Office will try to repair the file by itself, but sometimes you may want or need to repair the document manually.

How to Use the Microsoft Office to repair documents in Windows

1. Open Office Excel, Office Word or any other program from the Office package that supports the document extension.
2. Click the file menu and select the Option.

Repair OIffice Documents with Office 365

3. On the following screen, click the Browse button.

Repair Damaged Office Documents

4. Now you have to browse to the location of the damaged document and select the down arrow button near the Open button as you can see in the attached image.

5. Don’t just press the Open button, first select the Open and Repair from the drop-down menu so you can tell office to open the document and start repairing it.

Repair Office Document.

Now, the Office should open the document and repair the damage. For me it works all the time, if it doesn’t work for you, leave a message and i’ll do my best to come up with an alternative.