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  1. #1
    Wild_Bill
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    Monday Morning Office 2K Bluesnd

    Platform: Office 2K SR1a on Win2K SP1 on Dell Latitude

    Ever since I rebuilt my laptop with Win2K over Christmas I have been suffering strange occasional crashes of Word, Outlook and Excel (possibly others but these are the three I use regularly).

    A few seconds after commencing work (as opposed to merely loading) with one of the programs it would produce a program error. For example "WINWORD.EXE has generated errors and will be closed by Windows. You need to restart the program. An error log is being created". WORD and EXCEL would die fairly quickly but, if I got it with OUTLOOK, it would hang in this state for a long time.

    Finally I've found out what the problem is and I want to share it with the community. As I said I get this on my laptop, which I usually take home over the weekend where I have configured it to use my home network printer as default. On Monday morning, half-asleep, I start WORD or EXCEL or OUTLOOK without remembering to reconfigure the default printer and bang, my office world crashes about my ears. The work I'm doing with the Office program doesn't have to have anything to do with printers or printing. Once I set the default printer to be one that is available in the office, the problem goes away.

    I don't know if this is an Off2K or a Win2K problem but I do know it has only manifested itself with the Office 2K programs, so far. It strikes me that this is an overreaction to the default printer not being available. Both printers are network printers, the one at home being served by a Win98 desktop, the one in the office being server by a Win2K desktop.

    I hope this helps anyone else who is suffering this annoyance.

  2. #2
    Gold Lounger
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    Re: Monday Morning Office 2K Bluesnd

    Have you tried setting your default printer to "Print to File"?

  3. #3
    Wild_Bill
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    Re: Monday Morning Office 2K Blues

    I'm sorry if I failed to make it clear but my point is that I have genuine and legitimate need to reset my default printer between home and the office. Office 2000 programs should not crash in flames with no indication of the problems just because the currently set default printer is a network printer which is no longer on "the network".

    Now that I know what the answer is, I can kick myself and put it right. But I was mighty puzzled by this behavior for a number of weeks and there may be others out there who are still puzzled when their Office programs die suddenly for no apparent reason. They could be having the same problem as I did.

  4. #4
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Monday Morning Office 2K Blues

    i do the same and don't crash - do you have 2 different logons, home and office?

  5. #5
    Wild_Bill
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    Re: Monday Morning Office 2K Blues

    No - my laptop is configured as a standalone worgroup machine and I use the same login at home and in the office.

    At home I have an HPDJ attached to a W98 desktop which is set up as a web gateway and thus acts as a psuedo-DHCP server. I configure the laptop to use DHCP and set the default printer. And all works well.

    In the office I have the same HPDJ model attached to a W2K desktop. All machines use fixed addresses and both machines are in a workgroup(not domain). (don't shoot me - I deliberately steer clear of any internal sysadmin work).

    So Monday morning always sees me reconfiguring my network settings but I don't always remember to reset the default printer. If I don't WORD, OUTLOOK or EXCEL fall over and die. In fact on checking this out again yesterday, OUTLOOK even causes Dr. Watson to fall over and die. I mean that the error message window is left on the screen and there is a DR Watson process running 45 minutes after the crash. This doesn't happen with WORD or EXCEL, which die quickly, cleanly and quietly.

    I'm willing to believe there is an underlying W2K problem here. I don't experience this problem at home if the laptop is still configured with the office printer as default. But I still say that these programs should not die just because they can't see the default printer.

    This is my experience, others may differ.

  6. #6
    New Lounger
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    Re: Monday Morning Office 2K Bluesnd

    A million thanks Wild_Bill. Thanks to your fix, I can work again!

    This is about the most absurd bug I have ever come across. I just put Office2k on a virigin Win2k laptop and I experienced exactly the same problem. [Strangely enough, I could work with Powerpoint and Excel with no problem whatsoever, but Word, Wordpad, Outlook and Photoeditor gave wouldn't start.]

    Isn't being able to work away from the network kind of the whole point of having a laptop?

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