Error message when you attach a data source or insert a database in Word 2007: "Word could not re-establish a DDE connection"


Symptoms


When you attach a data source to a mail merge main document in Microsoft Office Word 2007, you may receive the following error message:
Word could not re-establish a DDE connection to program name to complete the current task.
You may receive the same error message when you insert a database into a Word 2007 document.

Note In this error message, program name is the program that is associated with the data source or the database.

Cause


This issue may occur if one of the following conditions is true:
  • Word 2007 and the data source or the database are not communicating through Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE).
  • You try to insert a Microsoft Office Access 2007 database into the Word 2007 document. However, the database is opened "exclusively". To open a database exclusively, you use the Open Exclusive or Open Exclusive as Read-Only option when you open the database.

Resolution


To resolve this issue, use one of the following methods, as appropriate for your situation.

Method 1: Use a different conversion method

If this issue occurs when you are using the MS Access Databases via DDE (*.mdb; *.mde) conversion method, use a different conversion method. For example, use the OLE DB Database Files conversion method.

To use a different conversion method, click the conversion method that you want to use in the Confirm Data Source dialog box, and then click OK.

Note To configure Word 2007 to show the Confirm Data Source dialog box when you attach a data source or insert a database, follow these steps:
  1. Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Word Options.
  2. Click Advanced.
  3. Under General, click to select the Confirm file format conversion on open check box.
  4. Click OK to close the Word Options dialog box.

Method 2: Do not open the Access 2007 database exclusively

If this issue occurs if you are using an Access 2007 database that is opened exclusively, follow these steps to open the database in Access 2007:
  1. Close the Access 2007 database.
  2. Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Open.
  3. Click the Access 2007 database that you want to open, and then click Open.

    Note Make sure that you do not click Open Exclusive or Open Exclusive as Read-Only. To view these options, click the arrow next to the Open button in the Open dialog box.

More Information


To insert a database into a Word 2007 document, you must add the Insert Database command to the Quick Access Toolbar. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click Word Options.
  2. Click Customization.
  3. In the Choose commands from box, click Commands Not in the Ribbon.
  4. Click Insert Database, and then click Add.
  5. Click OK to close the Word Options dialog box.