How to troubleshoot custom Smart Tags in Office

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SUMMARY

This article describes how to troubleshoot a custom-created smart tag that does not work as you expect.

Smart tag technology gives Microsoft Office programs the ability to recognize data that you enter. Office then offers on-the-spot access to actions that relate to that data. To develop smart tags, you can use Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications or Microsoft Visual C++ or Extensible Markup Language (XML).

The Smart Tag Does Not Work in One or More Office Programs

Verify that the recognizer is being loaded by Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Start Microsoft Office Word 2007 or Microsoft Office Excel 2007.
  2. Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Word Options or Excel Options.
  3. Click the Proofing tab, and then click AutoCorrect Options.
  4. Click the Smart Tags tab.
  5. Verify that the Label text with smart tags check box is selected and that your smart tag is both listed and selected in the Recognizers list.
  1. Start Microsoft Word 2002 or Microsoft Office Word 2003.
  2. On the Tools menu, click AutoCorrect Options.
  3. Click the Smart Tags tab.
  4. Verify that the Label text with smart tags check box is selected and that your smart tag is both listed and selected in the Recognizers list.
  5. Start Microsoft Excel 2002 or Microsoft Office Excel 2003, and repeat steps 2 through 4.

    Note In step 4, the check box is labeled Label data with smart tags.

The Smart Tag Is Not Listed in the Recognizers List

This behavior can occur for the following reasons.

An Office Program Was Running When the Smart Tag Was Registered

As long as one instance of Word or Excel is open, there is the potential that the smart tag will not be registered correctly with the Office programs. Outlook used with WordMail keeps an instance of Word open, so you must also quit Outlook when you install smart tags. Finally, Microsoft Internet Explorer may interfere with the installation if you browse to a page that contains smart tags.

The Security Settings Are Too Restrictive

Smart tags cannot run if they are unsigned and if your security settings are set too restrictively. To verify your security settings in Office, follow these steps:
  1. Start Word 2007 or Excel 2007.
  2. Click the Developer tab, and then click Macro Security in the Code group.
  3. Click the Add-ins tab, and then verify that the Require Application Add-ins to be signed by Trusted Publisher check box is not selected.

    Note Alternatively, you can click the Macro Settings tab, and then click to select the Disable all macros with notification option.
  1. Start Word 2002 or Word 2003.
  2. On the Tools menu, point to Macro, and then click Security.
  3. Click the Trusted Sources tab.
  4. Verify that the Trust All Installed Add-ins and Templates check box is selected.

    Note Alternatively, you can use the Security Levels tab to set your security level to Medium.
  5. Click OK, and then quit Word.
  6. Repeat this process in Microsoft Excel.

The Smart Tag Dynamic Link Library Stopped Responding

To find out whether your smart tag dynamic link library (DLL) has stopped responding and is disabled, follow these steps. Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
322756 How to back up and restore the registry in Windows
  1. Click Start, click Run, type regedit in the Open dialog box, and then click OK.
  2. In the Registry Editor, locate the Status value under the following key in the registry:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\Common\Smart Tag\Recognizers\your smart tag ProgId
    Note The preceding registry key is one path; it has been wrapped for readability.

  3. If the Status value is set to a decimal value of 1, your smart tag DLL crashed and is deactivated. If the Status value is set to a decimal value of 8, the DLL is deactivated in Microsoft Word. If the Status value is set to a decimal value of 16, the DLL is deactivated in Microsoft Excel.
  4. Select the Status subkey. On the Edit menu, click Delete. When you are prompted to confirm deletion of the value, click Yes.
  5. Quit the Registry Editor.
After you delete the Status value, start Word and Excel to reload the smart tag. In each program, point to AutoCorrect Options on the Tools menu, and then click the Smart Tags tab. Does your smart tag load correctly? If not, verify the Status value in the Registry Editor again to determine whether the DLL is disabled. If the Status value shows that the DLL is again disabled, there is a problem with the DLL code.

Registration of the Smart Tag DLL is Invalid

If you registered the smart tag DLL in the registry by using a Class ID (CLSID) that was generated by Visual Basic for Applications, it is possible that your DLL's Global Unique Identifier (GUID) has changed. This is because the generation of GUIDs in Visual Basic for Applications is determined by your project's compatibility settings. To verify your project's compatibility settings, follow these steps:
  1. Start Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications.
  2. On the Project menu, click Project name Properties, and then click the Component tab.
  3. In the Version Compatibility box, view the setting that is selected for your project. If No Compatibility is selected, a new CLSID is generated each time the DLL is compiled.
  4. Change this setting to either Project Compatibility or Binary Compatibility.
After you update the compatibility settings for the Visual Basic for Applications project, you must re-register the DLL on the computer. The following section describes how to re-register a DLL.

Re-Register the Smart Tag DLL

To ensure a clean registration of the smart tag DLL, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, click Run, type regsvr32 /u path\DLL name in the Open dialog box, and then click OK.

    In this example, path\DLL name is the location and file name associated with your smart tag DLL. This unregisters the DLL on the computer.
  2. Copy the file to a new location.
  3. Click Start, click Run, type regsvr32 new path\DLL name in the Open dialog box, and then click OK.

REFERENCES

For more information about how to create custom smart tag recognizer DLLs or action DLLs, refer to the Smart Tag Development Help file that is included with Smart Tag Software Development Kit (SDK). To obtain the Smart Tag SDK, see the following Microsoft Web site:
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=c6189658-d915-4140-908a-9a0114953721&languageid=f49e8428-7071-4979-8a67-3cffcb0c2524&displaylang=en
Or, click the link to open the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article:
286267 How to create a smart tag DLL in Visual Basic for use in Office XP


Properties

Article ID: 300950 - Last Review: April 13, 2007 - Revision: 5.4
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Excel 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft FrontPage 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Outlook 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Word 2002
  • Microsoft Visual Studio 6.0 Enterprise Edition
  • Microsoft Visual Studio 6.0 Service Pack 1
  • Microsoft Visual Studio 6.0 Service Pack 4
  • Microsoft Visual Studio 6.0 Service Pack 5
  • Microsoft Office Excel 2003
  • Microsoft Office FrontPage 2003
  • Microsoft Office Outlook 2003
  • Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003
  • Microsoft Office Publisher 2003
  • Microsoft Office Word 2003
  • Microsoft Office Professional Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office Standard Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office Student and Teachers Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office Small Business Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office Basic Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office Access 2003
  • Microsoft Office Outlook 2007
  • Microsoft Office Excel 2007
  • Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007
  • Microsoft Office Publisher 2007
  • Microsoft Office Word 2007
  • Microsoft Office SharePoint Designer 2007
  • Microsoft Office Access 2007
  • Microsoft Office Basic 2007
  • Microsoft Office Enterprise 2007
  • Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007
  • Microsoft Office Professional 2007
  • Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2007
  • Microsoft Office Small Business 2007
  • Microsoft Office Standard 2007
  • Microsoft Office Ultimate 2007
Keywords: 
kbtshoot kbsmarttags KB300950

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