An Ultimate Guide to Repairing a Damaged or Corrupt Word File

Corrupted files may bring the system to a halt, and hence, it is imperative to fix them as soon as possible. There are several reasons that might damage your important documents and make you unable to access the necessary information.

Have you been stuck in such a situation and looking for a way out? Scroll down the page and get a rundown of the ultimate solutions to repairing a damaged or corrupt word file. Also, we have rounded off the best tips to avoid this hassle later on. 

Part 1: How Do I Open And Repair A Word Document For Each Version?

There are several methods to open and repair word documents for each version, such as you can open the file in Draft Mode, making sufficient free memory and disk space, changing the word document format, and more. The users can also use the “Open and Repair” command to eliminate the error with ease.

corrupted file

You can also open the document with Notepad and access the information contained in it. Here’s the step-by-step guide to executing this method.

  • Go to the File Explorer and open the folder where you have stored the damaged file.

  • Right-click the corrupted file and choose “Open with”.

  • Now, select “Notepad” as a tool to open it.

open file with notepad
  • Wait until the Notepad opens the document.

It is the most effective method to access the damaged or corrupted word document for each version.

Part 2: Reasons For Such Kind Of Problem

There are plenty of reasons that may damage or corrupt the word document. Some of them are listed here.

  • Abrupt System Shutdown: MS word file gets corrupted if the user abruptly powers off the system. It terminates the document forcefully, thus damaging the file by leaving it partially written.

  • Virus Attacks: Virus or spyware attack is yet another common reason that triggers such a problem. Different types of malware can make your file inaccessible or unreadable.

  • Change in metadata: The document gets damaged if the header or any other meta component of the file has been removed or corrupted. To resolve this error, you can opt for third-party tools like Wondershare Repairit.

  • Corrupt Storage: A corrupt storage unit or system’s drive can also tamper with the quality of documents, further leading to damage.

  • Modification in the file extension: A change in the file extension also triggers this problem and makes the document inaccessible. If you forcefully modify the file’s extension, the application might not recognize the file and face trouble while encoding the document.

  • Multiple file conversions: The overuse of file converters and multiple file conversions of the document from one format to another affects the data, leading to file corruption.

Part 3: Method To Repairing A Damaged or Corrupted Word File

Method 1: Open in the draft mode without updating links

Microsoft has introduced the Draft Mode in MS Word 10. Before using this method, make sure the Draft Mode is enabled on the word application. Follow the steps given below to carry out this method effectively.

  • Launch Microsoft Word. Go to the View tab and select “Drafts.”

  • Tap the “File” menu and click on “Options” and then “Advanced.”

draft mode open file
  • There, you need to locate the “Show Document Content” section. Click on it and select the “Show Picture Placeholders” and “Use draft font in Draft and Outline Views.”

show document content
  • Now, scroll down to the “General” tab and clear the checkbox saying “Update Automatic Links at Open.” Select Ok and close the Word options window.

  • Go to the menu and select “View” and then “Draft”. Now, all documents will open in the Draft Mode. Close the window.

view file in draft mode
  • Now, relaunch the MS word application and select the “File” tab and click Open.

file open
  • Navigate to the corrupted word document and open it.

open damaged file
  • Wait for a while. The application will either repair the word document or display the error message.

Method 2: Insert the document as a file in a new document

Inserting the damaged document into the new one might help in repairing the corrupted file. Check the step-by-step procedure here.

  • Open the word application and select the “File Menu.” Click “New” and choose the “Blank Document” and then “Create.”

create blank document
  • Now, go to the “Insert” tab and select Insert Object> Text from File.

select text from file
  • Locate the damaged document in the Insert dialog box and then tap “Insert”.

Method 3: Create a link to the damaged document

Still, looking for repairing a damaged or corrupt file? Carry out the solution mentioned below step by step and check if it can fix the document.

  • Open Word and select the “File” menu.

  • Click on the “New” and choose “Blank Document” and tap on “Create”. Save it with the name like “Link to Document.

save blank document
  • Enter some text like “Link to document” in the newly created file. Select all the text and copy it by right-clicking and selecting “Copy”.

copy text
  • Open the New Blank Document and click on the drop-down menu under the “Paste” option. Choose “Paste Special” or press Alt + Ctrl + V.

select paste special
  • Select the “Paste Link” radio button in the Paste Special window and click on the “Formatted Text (RTF)” and tap “Ok.”

  • Now, right-click on the text in the document and select “Linked Document Object” and then “Links.”

select linked document object
  • Choose the file name of the linked document and tap on the “Change Source” in the Links dialog box. After that, select the word document that you are unable to access and then select “Open”. Click “Ok” to close the link dialog box.

open file
  • Now, right-click the linked text and select the “Linked Document Object” and then tap on the “Links.”

select linked document object
  • Select “Break Link” and click on “Yes” when the pop-up message appears on the screen.

Method 4: Run the Office Repair Utility to Fix Word- Wondershare Repairit

If the problem persists, look no further and download Wondershare Repairit to open and repair word documents. This third-party tool is a reliable solution to fix the corrupted word files and delivers efficient results.

Here’s the step-by-step guide to using this practical application.

Step 1: Load the documents on Wondershare Repairit

  • Launch the application on your Windows PC. Navigate to the “File Repair” section and click “Add” to upload the corrupted word file.

add file
  • This will take you to the browser window from where you can visit the location where the document is saved. It allows you to upload multiple documents at once. If you try to load the incompatible format, the tool will inform you by generating the relevant prompt.

  • Once you choose the word files, the application will start uploading them and display the progress on the screen.

start repair
  • As soon as the files are uploaded, you can easily check the details of the document, including name, size, location, and more.

  • Click on the “Trash” icon adjacent to the file if you have uploaded the document by mistake.

Step 2: Commence the File Repair Process

  • It’s time to begin the file repairing process. Take your cursor to the bottom and click “Repair” to get started.

  • The application will then scan all your word files and fix all kinds of major and minor issues related to them.

  • Additionally, it will display the progress of the file repair process on the screen. The tool also lets you know about the files that are completed or waiting to get repaired, or being scanned.

start repair
  • The tool will also notify the users when the process is completed successfully. It generates the relevant prompt indicating the total number of files repaired.

  • If the file is excessively damaged and the application is unable to repair word document, then it informs you about the same by prompting a pop-up message.

Step 3: Preview the files and save results

  • Once the tool is done with the File Repair process, you can then preview the results to check whether the error has been resolved or not. Click on the “Preview” option and see the results before saving any document.

  • Now, click on the “Save” button to export repaired files one by one. You can also opt for the “Save All” option to cut down the extra time and to export all documents at once.

preview and save
  • After that, select the target location where you want to save the documents.

  • The tool will automatically export the documents to the specified location and display the progress on the screen.

save file

Part 4: Tips to Avoid Word Corruption

Although you are now well-aware of the guide to repairing a damaged or corrupt file, it’s always good to take precautionary measures to avoid indulging in the trouble again. Here, we have listed some essential tips to follow.

  • Power-off: Never power off the system or application if the file saving process is still in progress. Let it complete correctly and then shut down the PC or leave the MS word application.

  • Backup: Always maintain a backup of all your word files on a separate external drive to safeguard the essential information.

  • Antivirus: Install the best antivirus software on your computer to protect the files from being corrupted or damaged.

  • Modifications: To avoid unnecessary modifications, make important word files as “Read Only.”Do not change the file into different formats over and over again to save the information.

  • Battery Backup: Make sure that the system has a battery backup to avoid unexpected shutdown.

Closing Up

This is all about repairing a damaged or corrupt file. We hope you’ve found this guide informative and helpful. Corrupt documents make users unable to access sensitive information, and hence, it is mandatory to fix them without further delay.

You can select any of the solutions listed above to open and repair word documents. However, if you are searching for the most effective method to resolve the error efficiently, then install the Wondershare Repairit application on your PC and get the job done right in no time. This powerful and user-friendly tool will repair the word files like a pro.

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