OFFXP: Troubleshooting Office Programs on Microsoft Windows NT 4.0

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Article ID: 290367 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q290367
This article has been archived. It is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.
For a Microsoft Office 2000 version of this article, see 200116.
For a Microsoft Office 97 version of this article, see 178565.

IMPORTANT: This article contains information about modifying the registry. Before you modify the registry, make sure to back it up and make sure that you understand how to restore the registry if a problem occurs. For information about how to back up, restore, and edit the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
256986 Description of the Microsoft Windows Registry
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SUMMARY

This article contains troubleshooting steps that you can use if error messages appear when you run the Setup program or any Microsoft Office XP program on a computer that is running Microsoft Windows NT 4.0.

MORE INFORMATION

Start in Standard Video Graphics Adapter (VGA) Mode

Start your computer using VGA mode, especially if the display is distorted or if unreadable text appears on the screen. By default, the Windows NT boot loader menu offers options that allow you to start the computer normally or in VGA mode. To use the standard VGA driver, select the VGA Mode option.

If starting the computer in VGA mode corrects the problem, contact the display adapter's manufacturer for information about obtaining an updated Windows NT video driver.

Obtain the Latest Service Pack

Service packs contain Windows NT updates. Service packs keep the product current and extend and update your computer's functionality. Service packs include updates, system administration tools, drivers, and additional components. All of these files are conveniently bundled for easy downloading. Service packs are cumulative; each new service pack contains all the fixes that are contained in service packs released earlier, as well as any new fixes.

NOTE: On a Windows NT 4.0 system, Service Pack 6 or later is required for Office XP.

For additional information about obtaining the latest service pack, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
152734 How to Obtain the Latest Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack

Verify the Permissions

Make sure that the correct permissions are set for your account. To determine whether you have the correct permissions to run and use the Office program you are having problems with, log on to the computer as an administrator. When you log on to Windows NT as an administrator, you have full read/write permission to all folders and files on the computer. If the problem does not occur after you log on as an administrator, verify the permissions of your logon account.

Close Unnecessary Memory-Resident Programs

Programs that run in the background in memory are called terminate-and-stay-resident programs (TSRs). For example, these programs may be virus protection software, utility programs, print manager programs, or screen savers. To determine whether a terminate-and-stay-resident program is running, follow these steps:
  1. Display the Close Program window (the Task List) by pressing CTRL+ALT+DEL and then clicking Task List.
  2. Close any unknown or unnecessary programs in the Close Program list by clicking the program to select it, and then clicking End Task.
  3. If you close a program and then want to close another one, press CTRL+ALT+DEL and then click Task List to display the Close Program window again. Repeat steps 1 through 3 until you close all unknown or unnecessary programs.
Some TSRs may be loaded into memory but may not appear on the Task List. These TSRs are loaded via the Windows NT registry.

WARNING: If you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Microsoft cannot guarantee that you can solve problems that result from using Registry Editor incorrectly. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.

To see what programs are loaded via the registry, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, and then click Run. In the Open box, type regedit, and then click OK. Select the following key in the registry:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
    This key lists all programs that are started when Windows NT 4.0 is started. Programs that are started can cause problems in Office programs and should be disabled.

  2. Select the following key in the registry:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
    Entries in this key are run once when the computer is restarted and then are deleted by the system. This key should be empty. Other programs that are started can cause problems in Office programs and should be disabled.

  3. Select the following key in the registry:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
    This key lists all programs that are started when Windows NT is loaded. The only program that is required in this key is System Tray (Systray.exe). Other programs that are loading can cause problems with Office programs and should be disabled.

  4. Select the following key in the registry:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
    Entries in this key are run once when the computer is restarted and then are deleted by the system. This key should be empty. Other programs that are loaded can cause problems in Office programs and should be disabled.

Check the TEMP and TMP Environment Variables

An invalid TEMP or TMP environment variable can cause errors with Office programs. Make sure your temporary folders are correctly set up. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
  2. In Control Panel, double-click the System icon. When the System Properties dialog box appears, click the Environment tab.

    This tab lists the current System and User Variables. Look under User Variables for the TEMP and TMP environment variable settings. Ensure that the folders referenced by these variables exist and have valid folder names. Also ensure that the hard disk on which the folders are located has at least 20 megabytes (MB) of free hard disk space and that you have read/write permissions to those folders.

Temporarily Disable the Network

If you do not require network access to run or install the Office programs, temporarily disable the drivers that allow you to use the network. This troubleshooting step prevents the system from loading the drivers that are required to use the network when you restart the computer. Disabling the network drivers may reduce or eliminate system conflicts. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel. In Control Panel, double-click the System icon.
  2. In the System Properties dialog box, click the Hardware Profiles tab.
  3. Click Properties, and then click the Network tab. Click to select the Network-Disabled Hardware Profile check box, and then click OK twice.
  4. Restart the computer. To do this, click Shutdown on the Start menu. In the Shut Down Windows dialog box, click Restart the Computer, and then click Yes.
NOTE: To restore network access, repeat the preceding steps but clear the Network-Disabled Hardware Profile check box in step 3.

If disabling network access resolves the problem, follow these steps:
  • Contact your network interface card (NIC) manufacturer to obtain the most recent Windows NT 4.0 drivers for your NIC.
  • Ensure that you have the most recent Windows NT Service Pack. See the "Obtain the Latest Service Pack" section of this article.
  • Verify that your NIC is working correctly. To do this, either replace your NIC or try your existing NIC on another computer.

Properties

Article ID: 290367 - Last Review: February 27, 2014 - Revision: 1.3
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows NT 4.0
  • Microsoft Office XP Professional Edition
  • Microsoft Office XP Small Business Edition
  • Microsoft Office XP Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Office XP Standard Edition for Students and Teachers
  • Microsoft Office XP Developer Edition
  • Microsoft Access 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Excel 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft FrontPage 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Outlook 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Word 2002 Standard Edition
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