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WD2000: Error Message: "Word Cannot Start the Converter <File Name>" with a Mail Merge from Outlook

This article was previously published under Q243088
This article has been archived. It is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.
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
When you try to do a mail merge from Microsoft Outlook to Microsoft Word, you receive the following error message, and you cannot perform the mail merge:
Word cannot start the converter file name.
where file name is the file name of a Word converter file (for example, Doswrd32).
The file name referred to in the error message is a missing or corrupt converter file. However, it is not necessarily one you are trying to use. When Word begins the merge operation, it validates the converter files found on the computer against their pointers in the registry. If there is a discrepancy, this error message is generated.
To correct this problem, use one of the following methods appropriate for your situation.

Method 1: Reinstall the Converter

If you need the converter referred to in the error message, reinstall it on your computer.

Method 2: Uninstall the Converter

If you do not need the converter listed in the error message, uninstall the converter.

Method 3: Reinstall the Converter

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 reinstall the converter that Microsoft Office installs, follow these steps:
  1. Quit all Microsoft Office programs.
  2. Click Start and then click Run.
  3. In the Open box, type regedit and then click OK.
  4. Browse to and select the following registry key:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Shared Tools\Text Converters
  5. On the File menu, click Export, and then export the registry key to your Windows desktop.
  6. After you export the registry key, click Delete on the Edit menu to remove the key from the Windows registry.
  7. On the File menu, click Exit.
  8. Right-click Start, and then click Explore on the shortcut menu.
  9. In Windows Explorer, browse to and select the following folder:
    C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\TEXTCONV
  10. On the File menu, click Delete to delete the Textconv folder.
  11. On the File menu, click Close to close Windows Explorer.
  12. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel. (In Windows XP, click Start and then click Control Panel).
  13. Double-click Add/Remove Programs. (In Windows XP, click Add or Remove Programs).
  14. In the installed programs list, select Microsoft Office 2000 (Microsoft Word 2000), and then click Add/Remove. In Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (Me), Microsoft Windows 2000, or Microsoft Windows XP, click Change.
  15. Select Repair Office, and then click Next.
  16. Select Repair errors in my Office installation, click to select the Restore my shortcuts check box, and then click Finish.
For additional information about performing a mail merge from Microsoft Outlook, click the article numbers below to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
192258 OL2000: How to Mail Merge Using Contacts
243055 OL2000: Error Message: 'Word Could Not Start the Converter...'
For additional information about how to install or uninstall the text converters for Microsoft Word 2000, click the article numbers below to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
212265 WD: Additional Text Converters and Image Filters Available in Converter Pack
236051 WD2000: Text Converters Installed During an Install Now Setup

Article ID: 243088 - Last Review: 12/05/2015 16:08:13 - Revision: 1.0

Microsoft Word 2000 Standard Edition

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