Fixing ‘The file is corrupted and cannot be opened’ Error in MS Word

The error message “The file is corrupted and cannot be opened” in MS Word doesn’t really mean that your Word file is permanently damaged or corrupted. Here are some of the troubleshooting methods to fix the issue and recover or get access to your MS Word file.

Basically, you can see the error “The file is corrupted and cannot be opened” in Word when you try to open old version Office file that created in a new version, for example, open a file created in Word 2007 or earlier in Word 2013 or 2016. Many users have reported this kind of error after upgrading the MS Office applications and asked for help!

How to Fix ‘The file is corrupted and cannot be opened’ error in MS Word

If you happen to encounter such a terrible situation, please don’t worry! At most of the times, the word file doesn’t respond because it is not right with the settings of the newer versions of Office applications. In such cases, there are a couple of ways to fix the issue.

Method #1: Change the Protected View settings

Protected View settings lie under ‘Trust Center’. And enabling these Protected View settings to prevent the Word file from opening. So to change these settings, follow the below steps:

  • Open your MS Word application
  • Navigate to ‘File >> Options
  • Select the ‘Trust Center‘ and press button under ‘Trust Center Settings
  • Now click on ‘Protected View’
  • Uncheck all the options available under ‘Protected View‘ and click ‘OK‘ to confirm
  • Then try to open your unreadable Word document after restarting the Word application

Method #2: Change Component Services settings

Follow the below-mentioned steps to change Component Services settings to default settings:

  • At first, navigate to ‘Start‘ and in the search box, type ‘dcomcnfg‘. After that, select ‘dcomcnfg‘ from the program list
  • Go to the navigation pane and expand the ‘Component Services‘. Then, go to ‘Computers‘ and expand it. After that, right-click on ‘My Computer‘, and then click ‘Properties
  • Now open the ‘Default Properties‘ tab and set the Default Authentication Level as Connect, and Default Impersonation Level as Identify.
  • Finally, click ‘OK

When none of the above methods work in fixing the error ‘The file is corrupted and cannot be opened’, then make use of our Remo Word Repair Software. This tool will repair corrupt word file and meanwhile restores all the stored data in it without altering the file’s original formatting.

To repair corrupt Word file, follow these simple guidelines:

  • Download and install the demo version of Remo Word Repair Tool on your system successfully
  • Launch the software and choose your problematic Word file
  • Click on Repair option and wait for few minutes until you get the confirmation message
  • Click on Preview File to preview repaired file
  • Purchase full version to save that file to your hard drive

That’s all! Your Word file must be repaired and the error should be resolved.

However, the error is not limited to MS Word file only. But also be found in the newer versions of MS Excel and MS PowerPoint after upgrading from their 2007 versions. The above-mentioned troubleshooting methods (Changing the Protected View settings and Changing Component Services settings) will resolve the problem.

Fixing ‘The file is corrupted and cannot be opened’ Error in MS Word was last modified: March 21st, 2018 by John Harris

Customer Evangelist @remosoftware. Trying to perfect the art of writing while running a business. Fan of exceptional customer service.

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