This problem may occur if the Ignore other applications that use Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE) check box in Excel options is selected.
When you double-click an Excel workbook in Windows Explorer, a dynamic data exchange (DDE) message is sent to Excel. This message instructs Excel to open the workbook that you double-clicked.
If you select the "Ignore" option, Excel ignores DDE messages that are sent to it by other programs. Therefore, the DDE message that is sent to Excel by Windows Explorer is ignored, and Excel does not open the workbook that you double-clicked.
To correct this setting, follow these steps:
On the Tools menu, click Options.
Click the General tab.
Clear the Ignore other applications that use Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE) check box, and then click OK.
Note For more information about how to turn off DDE, see the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article:
211494 "There was a problem sending the command to the program" error in Excel
If these steps do not resolve the problem, go to Method 2.
If you are running Update User Experience Virtualization (UE-V), install hotfix 2927019. To do this, see the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article:
2927019 Hotfix Package 1 for Microsoft User Experience Virtualization 2.0
If you are not sure whether you are running UE-V, examine the program list in the Programs and Features item in Control Panel. An entry for “Company Settings Center” indicates that you are running UE-V.
If these steps do not resolve the problem, go to Method 3.
Excel and COM add-in programs can also cause this problem. These two kinds of add-ins are located in different folders. For testing, disable and isolate the conflict by turning off each add-in one at a time. To do this, follow these steps:
On the File menu, click Options, and then click Add-Ins.
In the Manage list at the bottom of the screen, select COM Add-Ins item, and then click Go.
Clear one of the add-ins in the list, and then click OK.
Restart Excel by double-clicking the icon or file name for the workbook that you are trying to open.
If the problem persists, repeat steps 1-4, except select a different add-in in step 3.
If the problem persists after you clear all the COM Add-ins, repeat steps 1-4, except select Excel Add-Ins in step 2, and then try each of the Excel add-ins one at a time in step 3.
If Excel loads the file, the add-in you last turned off is causing the problem. If this is the case, we recommend that you visit the manufacturer's website for the add-in to learn whether an updated version of the add-in is available. If a newer version of the add-in is not available, or if you don’t have to use the add-in, you can leave it turned off.
If Excel does not open the file after you turn off all the add-ins, the problem has a different cause.
If these steps do not resolve the problem, go to Method 6.