Unable to open .doc files from hotmail

haley111 Posts 6 Registration date Wednesday September 10, 2008 Status Member Last seen September 11, 2008 - Sep 11, 2008 at 05:47 AM
 Coug - Oct 29, 2009 at 06:56 PM
I am suddenly unable to open a MSWord document sent to me through hotmail. When I click the link, the file download box appears, but never gets past 'getting file information'. I'm pretty sure I havent added any new programs or changed any settings recently and up til today this has worked fine. HELP!
Thanks in advance

27 responses

narutolegend Posts 10 Registration date Tuesday August 26, 2008 Status Member Last seen March 31, 2009 6
Sep 11, 2008 at 09:39 AM
hey there,

make sure that your firewall or any antivirus you are using isnt blocking access to the mail you are wanting to open
I was wondering how to check to see if Norton is suddenly blocking things. We may have had a Norton update that is causing the problem.

Thanks so much~
haley111 Posts 6 Registration date Wednesday September 10, 2008 Status Member Last seen September 11, 2008
Sep 11, 2008 at 12:59 PM
Thanks but that doesnt seem to be the issue. I disabled both for a short period but this didnt help. In the end I have done a system restore which seems to have resolved it....
I am also experiencing the exact same problem. This came on suddenly and I do not think anything has changed on my computer. I may have had some auto-updates, but really don't know. It is extremely frustrating as I am not able to open word documents or adobe, pdfs, etc. Photos do seem to be coming through in emails for the most part, but I can't open the attachments. Please help! How do you perform a system restore? I don't want to mess anything up...
Thanks so much!!
it seems that its a windows problem. try using a download manager such as download accelerator plus (dap) it wil take the downloading from windows over and open or save the file for you
Thanks for the advice. The download accelerator works nicely, and I can download ALL attachments now, without problems.
Thank you! It resolved the problem!!:)

Didn't find the answer you are looking for?

Ask a question
Jan 7, 2009 at 04:53 AM
For last couple of days, I am unable to open word & excel file attachments through my email. I am using MS Office 2007. Secondly, If I want to save that file first and then open, I found the message that cannot be copied from the source file.

Please suggest me the solution. I already removed my antivirus from the system. If I open the same file on another system having another configuration, the file opens there.
Just wanted to say thank you!! The Speedbit accelerator mentioned above fixed the problem, was an easy install and works great.
jmp59 Posts 29296 Registration date Tuesday June 8, 2004 Status Contributor Last seen November 25, 2015 257
Oct 3, 2008 at 11:40 AM
Thanks so much. Still so frustrated. Oh dear...now forwarding my hotmail emails to my yahoo account just to open attachments [and I hate yahoo!]....

Whatever MSN/Hotmail/or whomever did, I do wish they would send an alert as to how to fix. I am finding multiple stories with google search of the exact same issue happening to other hotmail users. I've had my hotmail account since I first went online many years ago. It has been my favorite and is far better than yahoo/aim/aol/ and my cable email account combined. I stick with the old version since the new one stinks, but the old version works just fine.

This computer may be tossed into the yard if I cannot fix this problem soon!! I hate 'bugs'...need an exterminator quickly!!
xpcman Posts 19530 Registration date Wednesday October 8, 2008 Status Contributor Last seen June 15, 2019 1,832
Oct 11, 2008 at 10:48 PM
I had this problem - and found that my "normal.dot" file was corrupted. It's a file that WORD uses to store a profile of your data/computer. When it's corrupted in will not allow you to dbl click to open a file.

Make sure Word is closed.
use windows search to find ALL copies of normal.dot rename them normal.xxx (I think a right click will open a dropdown menu).

Open Word - it will recreate normal.dot (in the background)

Double click open of Word files should then work.

I have this problem too.

I tried your solution but I don't have any normal.dot files when I do a search.

Is this possible?


I took a VBS class online. I had an XP Pro laptop and all was well, then I purchased a new laptop with vista I could no longer download from the college site. Then I added the college to the trusted sites and it worked for one day. Now it does not work again. I can download from other sites. I installed FIREFOX and I was able to get my assignments, but after FIREFOX downloaded the scripts it crashed after each one. At least I got them.

What a mess. I also get thet GETTTING FILE INFOMATION and it has no est time or anything. It just hangs.
I am suddenly unable to open a MSWord document sent to me through hotmail. When I click the link, the file download box appears, but never gets past 'getting file information'. I'm pretty sure I havent added any new programs or changed any settings recently and up til today this has worked fine. HELP!
Thanks in advance
Configuration: Windows XP
Internet Explorer

Dear Peggy,
As you can see from some of the responses here on the same problem, it is not an easy thing to fix. I've given up after trying every suggestion here and elsewhere. I now forward my Word document attachments to a different email address [aim/yahoo], open and print them there. Interesting that other modes of attachments open just fine in hotmail, like movie files, excel files, photos, and others. It's only the word documents that will not open. Tres annoying....thanks microsoft...
Best of luck,
I found that the only solution is to use Firefox browser. That does work.
UAGLT > Campbell
Feb 15, 2009 at 12:49 PM
I run XP on three different computers and use Yahoo Classic Mail with Firefox on all of them. On all of them, when I click on an attachment, Yahoo mail scans the attachment for viruses.

On two of the computers a pop-up appears giving the option to open or save the attachment.
However, on one computer, I only have the option to "download" the attachment and it is downloaded to a folder where I can then open it buy clicking on it.

Really weird - the configuration of the three computers is very similar..............
Hi all,
I did some research on this because I was having the same issue on my home computer.
I am runing Vista with IE7.
I noticed that when I did the download on an XP machine with IE7 it worked so I started drilling down until I found the following:
On the machine with XP my version of IE7 was different.
On my Vista machine it was higher than on the XP machine
I uninstalled the following IE7 updates

Rebooted after each

Now I can open word and excel documents without a problem.

PLEASE keep in mind.. I don't know what secuirty updates are built into these that may leave your machine open for other things however, it is a way to fix it. I can't garuntee that you won't see other issues depending on what these items update.
So sorry.. I forgot to add


both are updates for IE7 in Windows Vista
You may not have these or your updates may be different numbers if you are running XP
You may need to check your installed updates to figure out which ones to install

again... can't garuntee what else this will uninstall so please be careful if you go this route.
The broken behavior I am looking for is a download box with only Save and Cancel. Mine has Open, Save, and Cancel options.

I am having trouble recreating the problem. My friend has the problem on Vista 32-bit but my system does not.
I am running Vista 32-bit and have those updates installed (KB958215, KB960714, KB958215, kb956390). I created a hotmail (well live.com) account and sent myself a thisIsATest.doc file. I was able to open in OpenOffice.org writer with no problems. I don't have the latest copy of MS Word and don't plan on installing my old copy of Microsoft Word 2000.

I found several locations that specify which application opens an extension.
1. In Windows Explore, Right click a file and goto properties. There is an open with option.
2. Vista has a default programs under control panel.
3. Internet Explorer (IE7) has a tools->Internet Options button. Then security tab->custom with some options to allow downloads. The defaults seem to work ok. Turning off the download only give me an error message stating I am not allowed to download now.
4. IE7 Tools->Manage Add-ons has a lot of stuff. Is something in there causing problems for people. Maybe something should be disabled, removed, added, or updated. Everything is enabled for me.
5. The IE7 Phishing and PopUp setting don't have any effect on the behavior that people are seeing.
6. It sounds like the .dot recreation appoach does not do anything to solve the problem.

It sounds like those security updates revealed the problem. Removing security updates does not sound like a wise solution. If the problem appears with those updates, it's probably not a virus.

Everyone should keep trying to solve the problem. Hope this info guides you to the correct solution.
Thank you for the link. I will try that over the weekend to see if it cures the problem. I wish I could figure out what is causing it though. Any ideas?
jmp59 Posts 29296 Registration date Tuesday June 8, 2004 Status Contributor Last seen November 25, 2015 257
Oct 3, 2008 at 01:13 PM
Yeah ! "Misteries of Windows". Also called "Bugs".
I also have the same problem, downloading ANY kind of attachment in Hotmail, using IE. The only work around I have come up with so far, is to use a different browser (Opera in my case), to download the attachments. Then I sign out and go back to IE (it still handles better than with other browsers).

Hope some one finds the cure soon!
It is really annoying, since silly forwarded jokes or movie files open just fine, it's the word documents/pdfs, etc. that will not open. They just hang there, as if they are opening, with the flying envelope, into eternity. I have been forwarding everything to my yahoo account and opening them there. The only other browser I have is AOL and I don't like it, but it's worth a shot to see if it works with that browser.

I have the same problem. Also affects Windows Live Mail and downloading files on Internet Explorer. I've uninstalled recently installed serurity updated, lowered security settings in IE browser, switched off firewall and antivirus programs, all to no avail. I have a work around though:

Run Hotmail on Firefox (or other non MS) browser. I can access all forms of attachments and dowloads using this browser. They don't disappear into the ether as with IE7.

Funny thing I noticed with Windows Live Mail. I can drag and drop the attachment files (from open email to an open documents folder) with no problems and the files are present. Why this works and not the "save as" or "run" options is something only God can answer!!

Hope this helps but it's still a giant pain in the ass!!!

I have this problem using Windows XP and IE 7 with BT Yahoo mail. . I use AVG as a security protection. All was OK until about two weeks ago. I have not changed anything that I can think of. Could there me a malicious piece of software going the rounds causing this? Not only are Word files affected but Excel files too. Anything zipped in Win Zip is OK.

What is the best solution to this problem. I am having to forward stuff to my husband's PC to get files printed out!
The funny part is it is only happening on one of my laptop, the second one is opening the .doc or xls files, I think it is something to do with security settings.

I really hope someone can help us in this matter
I have given up on trying to fix it. It seems to be a Windows Explorer browser problem, and in my case, happens with my Hotmail account. What I have done [which is a pain in the neck], is forwarded all of my attachments to an alternate email account and opened them there, or I just use an AOL browser. Both seem to work that way, but I hate using AOL browser because it 'hangs' forever, whereas my XP does not. Mine happened after an 'update'.
Darn those stupid updates. Now I routinely ignore them [if they are not safety related].

I like the medical model: If it aint broke, don't fix it.
kirk748 > capecodlady8
Dec 12, 2008 at 08:50 AM
Have you tried "Download Accelerator Plus"? (See #11 & 14 above). I received the advice from Jeff, and it seems to work nicely for me. It's a free download at: http://www.speedbit.com/dap/
Of course, they have more powerful updates you can upgrade to, but the free one works great.

I agree with you on the Windows updates. A lot of times they create more problems than they solve.
I've had the same problem downloading OR saving files from yahoo. It opens the 'Getting File Information' window & it never opens or saves the file - the little document just flies into infinity.

This only happened with Office documents (.doc, .xls, etc.) and not zipped files or photos. I could zip the same .doc file & it would download OK. What a PITA.

I does seem to be a IE 7 glitch. I believe this problem (among others) started after I installed XP SP3.

I tried the normal.dot procedure in #12. Note, you have to go to the advanced options in your search engine & also search the 'hidden & system files'. I had 3 normal.dot files. I renamed them all to normal.xxx, opened Word & it did re-create a new normal.dot file. I restarted my computer, but still the same problem, it would not download the files from yahoo. Arghhh!!

So, I downloaded & installed the free Download Accelerator as in #20 and voila'!! My .doc files now download & open into Word, or save to my HD! And my computer is faster as a bonus.

Thank you so much!
Am not able to download only word file rest of the files are getting downloaded easily...i have removed ma antivirus also (avast).Previously it was working fine but now with any browser am not able to download. I am really in a MESS ..Please help me! Uday
  • 1
  • 2