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Cannot save large document RRS feed

  • Question

  • When I attempt to save a large Word file (predicted size: 50MB) with several figures and tables embedded in the text, Word attempts to save, shows progress bar, yet hours later, nothing has happened (still no progress is shown).  In response, I thought I would leave the file open, and simply save it as a different name-disappointingly, this leads to the same result.

    Curiously, Word never locks up or shows any issues of lag or anything of the like.  When using save as, it creates a file of 0 KB in size (presumably it intends to write the file to this name) and again, nothing ever happens (continuously displays the "Word is Saving..." progress bar w/o any progress to speak of.  Even more curiously, when you click the file listed at 0KB, it opens as if there is no problem w/ the file, even though the file appears to not exist (0 KB in size).  I predict that when I close out the file, it will no longer be able to open the file just created under save as.  

    For this reason, I have yet to close out of the file, as I'm worried that I'm going to lose my work.  The file has a high degree of formatting in it (table of contents, multiple levels of text outlined) and I would rather not have to recreate it.

    Attempts to access the files created that are 0KB in size (because Word failed to ever save) on a different computer are not successful.  Again, this is why I predict that when I close out the file, it will no longer be able to open the file just created under save as.  Also, due to the fact that the save feature is not working, I list a predicted size to the Word document.  I actually do not know the size of the document, just that it is larger than when I previously successfully saved it.

    Working on the dissertation, so any help would be much appreciated.

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014 6:01 AM

Answers

  • It's possible the document has acquired some form of corruption. Corrupt documents can often be 'repaired' by inserting a new, empty, paragraph at the very end, copying everything except that new paragraph to a new document based on the same template (headers & footers may need to be copied separately), closing the old document and saving the new one over it.

    Cheers
    Paul Edstein
    [MS MVP - Word]

    • Marked as answer by Steve Fan Tuesday, June 24, 2014 6:43 AM
    Wednesday, June 11, 2014 10:55 PM

All replies

  • I am using Windows 8.1 Pro 64bit and Microsoft Word 2013.
    Wednesday, June 11, 2014 6:04 AM
  • Word can handle file sizes of up to 512Mb, so I doubt that's the issue here. You might be able to preserve most, if not all of your work by copying & pasting it to into WordPad and saving the file from there. After that, use Task Manager to kill Word. Then repair the Office installation (via Programs & Features > Microsoft Office > Change in the Windows Control Panel) and re-start Word. It should recover your document up to the last auto-save point; if not, at least you'll still have the WordPad version.

    Cheers
    Paul Edstein
    [MS MVP - Word]

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014 1:10 PM
  • Just for reference sake:

    Even more curious, when I attempted to save the document as a ".doc", the document successfully saved.  Yes, I lost some formatting associated with equations, but all in all, not bad.  I still have all the applied styles and formatting at least (I'm reasonably confident this would have been lost in Wordpad).   When I attempt to save the document in ".docx" aftewards, the same thing happens as before.  I'll note that the file has never been saved as a ".doc" extension before, but if and when this happens to other people, this may be your best solution.  Not a home run fix but at least a base hit.

    By the way, the file as a ".doc" is 20MB.  So it really doesn't make much sense to me as to what has went wrong with Word here.

    Wednesday, June 11, 2014 2:50 PM
  • It's possible the document has acquired some form of corruption. Corrupt documents can often be 'repaired' by inserting a new, empty, paragraph at the very end, copying everything except that new paragraph to a new document based on the same template (headers & footers may need to be copied separately), closing the old document and saving the new one over it.

    Cheers
    Paul Edstein
    [MS MVP - Word]

    • Marked as answer by Steve Fan Tuesday, June 24, 2014 6:43 AM
    Wednesday, June 11, 2014 10:55 PM
  • I found a successful solution/work around to this:

    Go to File > Share > Email > Send as attachment. 

    For some strange reason the file attaches and has the correct file size. This can then be a backup. Once I did that and closed Word, it crashed, recovered itself, asked if I wanted to repair the normal document template (I said yes), and it opened my prior files.

    Further background: Windows 8.1 with Word 2013

    I have experienced the exact same problem (the file size was only 700KB but did have tracked changes, tables, extensive formatting).

    No matter how many times I saved it it created 0 byte files, yet those would open on my machine as long as I left Word open.

    The suggestion of creating a new paragraph, copying it to new document based on same template resulted in same error for me.

    Thursday, November 6, 2014 8:09 PM
  • Hi

    We have had problems trying to save various unsaved documents in Word 2010 and now again in Word 2013.  It's intermittent and can't find a cause as of yet.  Anyway I just wanted to share my solution.

    The solution we have found to work for complex documents containing lots of section breaks, headers and footers was to save in RTF format.  Then we have been able to resave the file in .DOCX format.  Saving in RTF format means that most of the complex formatting remains intact.

    Like your earlier answer I agree that saving the file in DOC format also works.

    Wednesday, December 3, 2014 3:57 PM