This article was previously published under Q286847
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In the Mail Merge Wizard, when you attempt to sort or filter the Mail Merge Recipients list, you may receive the following error message:
Word could not re-establish a DDE connection with Microsoft Access to complete the current task.
When you click OK to clear the message, the first record in the Mail Merge Recipients list appears twice.
This behavior can occur if you are using the Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE) method to connect to your data source.
To refresh the Mail Merge Recipients list and get rid of the duplicate first record, follow these steps:
Proceed to step 5 of the Mail Merge Wizard, and then click the scroll buttons to preview the recipients.
The list now appears without the duplicate first record.
Click Next, and then complete the merge operation.
NOTE: Do not clear the check box beside one of the duplicate first records. Because both copies of the first record have the same unique identifier, canceling one has the effect of preventing both copies from being included in the mail merge operation.
Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section.