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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    VBA Vulnerability Patch and Off97 SR2b (Office 97 SR2/SR2b)

    Hello:

    We have run into a bizarre problem on one of our computers, and I'm wondering if anyone has experienced related issues.
    Configuration: Windows XP / Office 97 SR2b

    The user was complaining that Word would freeze up (requiring a Ctrl-Alt-Delete to end the process) when opening certain documents.
    Upon close investigation I found the problem occurred when opening documents that were last saved in Page Layout View, and that contained a Table Of Contents field.
    If the document was saved in Normal View and had a Table Of Contents field it would open without issue.
    Likewise, if the document was last saved in Page Layout View, but did not have a Table Of Contents field, it would open fine.
    Also, if the document was opened using the /a switch, it would also open without problem. But, if it was opened using the /m switch it would freeze.

    In addition, we found the document would opens fine without issue on other machines.
    AND if I logged in under a test account on the suspect machine it would also open with out issue.
    Note, both the main user and the test account already have "Administrator" access rights on the suspect machine.

    So, then I started to look at what may be the difference between machines.
    Recently we had installed the VBA vulnerability patch issued by Microsoft, however, this patch was also installed on the other machines.

    After all else failed... I resorted to uninstalling and reinstalling Off97 and all the patches, here's what I discovered...
    If the VBA vulnerability patch is installed AFTER the SR2b patch, then the problem is reproduced.
    However, if the VBA vulnerability patch is installed BEFORE the SR2b patch, then we're able to open the document without issue.
    However, on the other machines, that are able to open the document in any case, they would have had the VBA patch installed after SR2b (as that was the standard procedure for all the machines).

    What is going on?? Anyone have any thoughts?? Has anyone run into similar issues relating to the recent VBA patch.



    P.S.: My apologies if this has been covered in the forum already. Without a search function it's somewhat impossible to check it out. Any hope that this forum will have a search function reintroduced. There's a wealth of information here, but I find now that it's impossible to make any use of it unless you happening to be watching the forum on a specific day (sorry, but who has time to go through page after page to browse previous postings?). Of course, if there is a search function somewhere and I'm just to dense to see it - please be so kind as to point it out - I would gladly use it!

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: VBA Vulnerability Patch and Off97 SR2b (Office 97 SR2/SR2b)

    We are all eagerly waiting for the moment we will be able to search again. Unfortunately, there is still no indication when that will be.

    There is no "hidden" search function within the Lounge itself. Some Loungers have kept their e-mail digests of one or more forums, so they can search those in their e-mail program.

  3. #3
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: VBA Vulnerability Patch and Off97 SR2b (Office

    The fact that it opens properly on other machines & if the /a switch is used tends to make me suspicous of normal.dot, although an add-in is possible. Take a look at the first two steps in <post#=197827>post 197827</post#> & see if that helps.
    Cheers,

  4. #4
    New Lounger
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    Re: VBA Vulnerability Patch and Off97 SR2b (Office

    Thanks for the quick response Phil.

    However, I've quite certain it has nothing to do with the normal.dot template (that was my initial thought too).

    We use a custom normal template that is downloaded to the user's machine each time they login (if it differs from the copy on the server).
    At login the local machine is also checked to ensure there are no extra normal.dot files floating about - if any exist they are deleted.
    Global tempates are treated the same way - thus all machines are using the exact same normal.dot template and same global templates.

    For good measure, after the reinstall I did manually replaced the normal.dot file just to be sure.

    During testing, all Auto macros (AutoExec, AutoNew, etc.) executed properly.
    The freeze occurs after these are all completed --during the document pagination process.
    (I removed all global templates during testing so I know they are not the culprit either)

    The freeze occurs ONLY if these two conditions are met:

    1. The document was saved in Page Layout View
    2. The document contains a TOC field

    Otherwise, all other documents/templates/macros function normally. Unfortunately, just about every report has a TOC and is saved in Page Layout View!

    And, as I mentioned, once I ran the reinstall and installed the VBA patch BEFORE the SR2b patch (instead of the other way around), the problem disappeared.
    Which doesn't make sense since the SR2b patch was out LONG BEFORE the VBA vulnerability patch was released.
    (Post reinstall we are using the same normal.dot template and same global template as before - again reinforcing the theory that it's not a corrupt template).

    There appears to be a tie-in with the VBA patch and I suspect it is overwriting something it shouldn't when installed over the SR2b patch... but that doesn't explain why it doesn't reproduce on all machines, as the patch installation procedures were identical. I also thought it maybe a registry issue regarding user access to the local machine, but that shouldn't be the case if the user has Admin access rights.

  5. #5
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: VBA Vulnerability Patch and Off97 SR2b (Office

    Well, I'm at a loss. When you say you manually restored normal.dot, you mean you deleted or renamed it & let Word build a new one? The winword.exe /a switch bypasses both normal.dot & all add-ins, coms, & .wll libraries. That's why it sounds so much like it's something there. I suppose you could try deleting & rebuilding the DATA key, as I mentioned in that post, but it doesn't sound like a corrupt key (but one never knows). <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

  6. #6
    New Lounger
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    Re: VBA Vulnerability Patch and Off97 SR2b (Office

    No, I just copied over server copy of normal.dot.

    Unfortunately, now that it's 'working' I can't test by deleting the normal.dot and letting Word rebuild it. However, I would imagine that if it were the template that was corrupt, it would continue to be now too.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: VBA Vulnerability Patch and Off97 SR2b (Office

    I realize this is completely tenuous, but what about the printer drivers? Printer drivers are always a potential culprit in repagination situations. Printers could be different between different users, but it's less clear why /a would make a difference. Do you have any event handlers that touch the document when it is opened (e.g., headers and footers, document numbers)?

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