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Unspecified error in comments.xml, Line:0, Column:0 RRS feed

  • Question

  • A user has had the following problem with two different documents:

    1) He makes comments to a .docx file using Word 2013 and sends it to another party for review.

    2) The other party replies to the comments and sends it back.

    3) He opens the new document and gets the following error:

    "We're sorry. We can't open [filename] because we found a problem with its contents. Unspecified error. Location: Part: /word/comments.xml, Line: 0, Column:0"

    Other users now also have the same problem opening the revised document. We are able to run the recovery process on the document in order to open it, but the comments added in step 2 are not all there. The original document created in step 1 opens without error.

    I am able to open the comments.xml file in Notepad++ and see no obvious problems, although I'm not sure what I would be looking for. Obviously there is no Line 0, Column 0 to inspect.

    Any suggestions for figuring out what is causing the problem?

    Friday, September 9, 2016 8:42 PM

Answers

  • Hi, DavidS-RIMA,

    If your purpose is only to recover the contents of the original documents and the comments, then it seems that all have been recovered.

    If your purpose is to recover all the contents with formatting, as well as all other supplemental items, such as the tables, the images, then you need to repair the original corrupt Word document in whole.

    The Word docx file is actually a zip archive containing one main document.xml file and several supplemental files. You can find more detailed information about the Word docx file format by searching on Google with the keyword “Word docx file format”. If the archive file is corrupt, or the main items in the archive are damaged or corrupted, then you will not be able to open the file correctly with Word. In such a case, the first step is to try to use the built-in repair or recovery function in the Word, to see if it can repair or recover the corrupt file. If not, then you need to resort to a third-party Word recovery software to scan the corrupted file and repair Word data for you. It is also possible to find a data recovery expert or company to do the task, but in most of the cases, they will also use a third-party tool to do the recovery for you.

    The main difference between using the software by yourself and by a third-party service company is:

    (1)          The company is familiar with the data recovery industry so he knows which software is the best one. While you need to search and compare the software online by yourself, which is time-consuming.

    (2)          The company purchases the software for multiple usages, while you purchase the software for one-time usage only. So normally the service fee may be cheaper than the license fee for the software.

    (3)          DIY will keep your data confidential while do the recovery via a company may cause data breach.

    If you want to perform a DIY recovery, then you can try the following methods:                                                                                                                                                                                                               

    1. First of all, you can try the recovery function integrated with Microsoft Word, as follows:

    1) On the File menu, click Open.

    2) In the Look in list, click the drive, folder, or Internet location that contains the file that you want to open.

    3) In the folder list, locate and open the folder that contains the file.

    4) Select the file that you want to recover.

    5) Click the arrow next to the Open button, and then click Open and Repair.

    You may find more information about this at:

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/recover-the-text-from-a-damaged-document-HP005189610.aspx (for Word 2003)

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/893672/en-us (for Word 2007/2010/2013)

    2. Second, since Word 2003, it provides a ""Document Recovery"" or ""AutoRecover"" mechanism so that when Word is shutdown abnormally, the Word file being edited will be recovered when Word is launched next time, which makes the file recovery possible.

    See below:

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/316951/

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/827099/

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/do-you-want-to-view-recovered-files-again-HA010354297.aspx

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/automatically-save-and-recover-office-files-HP010140729.aspx

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/recover-your-office-files-HP010354299.aspx

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/use-the-document-recovery-task-pane-to-recover-files-HP003078411.aspx

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/word-help/use-the-document-recovery-task-pane-to-recover-your-files-HP010140613.aspx

    for more detailed information.

    3. If the above methods do not work, then you can try DataNumen Word Repair at:

    https://www.datanumen.com/word-repair/

    I have used the tool in the past and it helps recovering some valuable data for me. The tool has a free demo so that you can try to see if it works on your file or not before you buy.

    If your purpose is to find out the reason of the problem, then please tell me more detailed info about your comment. How many characters are there in your comments for step 1) and 2)? And if possible, please upload the comment file as well.

    Sometimes Word will report misleading error messages. So normally I can get clues from these messages, but will not completely rely on them. I will normally see the actual comments.xml to see what is the problem.

    Hope that helps!




    Sunday, September 11, 2016 4:01 AM

All replies

  • Hi, DavidS-RIMA,

    If your purpose is only to recover the contents of the original documents and the comments, then it seems that all have been recovered.

    If your purpose is to recover all the contents with formatting, as well as all other supplemental items, such as the tables, the images, then you need to repair the original corrupt Word document in whole.

    The Word docx file is actually a zip archive containing one main document.xml file and several supplemental files. You can find more detailed information about the Word docx file format by searching on Google with the keyword “Word docx file format”. If the archive file is corrupt, or the main items in the archive are damaged or corrupted, then you will not be able to open the file correctly with Word. In such a case, the first step is to try to use the built-in repair or recovery function in the Word, to see if it can repair or recover the corrupt file. If not, then you need to resort to a third-party Word recovery software to scan the corrupted file and repair Word data for you. It is also possible to find a data recovery expert or company to do the task, but in most of the cases, they will also use a third-party tool to do the recovery for you.

    The main difference between using the software by yourself and by a third-party service company is:

    (1)          The company is familiar with the data recovery industry so he knows which software is the best one. While you need to search and compare the software online by yourself, which is time-consuming.

    (2)          The company purchases the software for multiple usages, while you purchase the software for one-time usage only. So normally the service fee may be cheaper than the license fee for the software.

    (3)          DIY will keep your data confidential while do the recovery via a company may cause data breach.

    If you want to perform a DIY recovery, then you can try the following methods:                                                                                                                                                                                                               

    1. First of all, you can try the recovery function integrated with Microsoft Word, as follows:

    1) On the File menu, click Open.

    2) In the Look in list, click the drive, folder, or Internet location that contains the file that you want to open.

    3) In the folder list, locate and open the folder that contains the file.

    4) Select the file that you want to recover.

    5) Click the arrow next to the Open button, and then click Open and Repair.

    You may find more information about this at:

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/recover-the-text-from-a-damaged-document-HP005189610.aspx (for Word 2003)

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/893672/en-us (for Word 2007/2010/2013)

    2. Second, since Word 2003, it provides a ""Document Recovery"" or ""AutoRecover"" mechanism so that when Word is shutdown abnormally, the Word file being edited will be recovered when Word is launched next time, which makes the file recovery possible.

    See below:

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/316951/

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/827099/

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/do-you-want-to-view-recovered-files-again-HA010354297.aspx

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/automatically-save-and-recover-office-files-HP010140729.aspx

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/recover-your-office-files-HP010354299.aspx

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/use-the-document-recovery-task-pane-to-recover-files-HP003078411.aspx

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/word-help/use-the-document-recovery-task-pane-to-recover-your-files-HP010140613.aspx

    for more detailed information.

    3. If the above methods do not work, then you can try DataNumen Word Repair at:

    https://www.datanumen.com/word-repair/

    I have used the tool in the past and it helps recovering some valuable data for me. The tool has a free demo so that you can try to see if it works on your file or not before you buy.

    If your purpose is to find out the reason of the problem, then please tell me more detailed info about your comment. How many characters are there in your comments for step 1) and 2)? And if possible, please upload the comment file as well.

    Sometimes Word will report misleading error messages. So normally I can get clues from these messages, but will not completely rely on them. I will normally see the actual comments.xml to see what is the problem.

    Hope that helps!




    Sunday, September 11, 2016 4:01 AM
  • Sorry for the delayed response. We were waiting to see if the problem occurred with other documents, and unfortunately it does. In this latest case there were no replies to the document comments. 

    I can't post the document or the comments, because we are a law firm and the documents are confidential client information. Is there another way to troubleshoot?

    Monday, September 26, 2016 8:22 PM
  • Hi,

    Normally when you got the error message, this means the file is damaged.

    I suggest you try this method of this article about how to manually fix content problem:

    https://bhrnjica.net/2014/01/23/how-to-manually-fix-content-error-in-microsoft-word/

    Please Note: Since the web site is not hosted by Microsoft, the link may change without notice. Microsoft does not guarantee the accuracy of this information.

    Please try it and check the result.


    Regards,
    Emi Zhang
    TechNet Community Support

    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help and unmark them if they provide no help.
    If you have feedback for TechNet Subscriber Support, contact tnmff@microsoft.com.

    Tuesday, September 27, 2016 8:54 AM
  • Thank you for the link. In fact it was that link that prompted me to open my problem files in Notepad++ in the first place.

    In the case described there, the error referred to line 2, column 0. My error refers to line 0, column 0, and of course there is no line 0.

    Also, I am less interested in fixing the documents that have been corrupted than in determining the root cause of the problem. This has now happened with multiple documents. Interestingly, there seems to be only one user who is having the problem and he is using the same remote desktop session host as other users who seem unaffected. What are the most likely causes of corruption that would generate this particular error?

    Tuesday, September 27, 2016 9:17 PM
  • Did the problem user using the same version of Word to open as other users?

    Normally if the file contain any incompatible content, control, formatting for different versions of Word, this also might be the reason for this problem.

    I once had a problem to convert Word .docx to .doc, when I opened the .doc file I got the same problem.

    I found my problem file contain many lists, then I copied and pasted the content as text to another file and converted again. Everything worked fine in .doc file format.


    Regards,
    Emi Zhang
    TechNet Community Support

    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help and unmark them if they provide no help.
    If you have feedback for TechNet Subscriber Support, contact tnmff@microsoft.com.

    Friday, September 30, 2016 3:04 AM
  • Today I had the same problem. Did you find a solution or the root cause?
    Tuesday, May 9, 2017 8:58 AM
  • No, but I believe it may be related to the document comparison software we use (Litera Change-Pro 10). At least some of the documents that got corrupted were ones that had been run through that software package.
    Friday, May 12, 2017 7:37 PM
  • I know that this is an old thread but I keep having the same problem so I'm hoping someone will start looking into this. Apologies if I shouldn't be in this forum!

    My documents are usually quite long (300pp), with tracked changes and some styles added but no formulas or mathematical equations. I use Office 365 Home edition and I work alone. I don't use comparison software.

    In the past my documents have been repaired by a very nice man on the MS forum and he pointed out that hidden bookmarks had been added at some point - but not by me. These don't always show up when I check the .docx (with Hidden Bookmarks ticked) but do when I save it as a .doc.

    I now take the precaution of saving all my documents as either .doc or .rtf as they don't seem to get corrupted.

    • Proposed as answer by Alatiq Friday, October 6, 2017 8:45 AM
    • Unproposed as answer by Alatiq Friday, October 6, 2017 8:54 AM
    Thursday, August 17, 2017 5:14 PM
  • I had the same problem and found a solution to work around and repair.

    Open the corrupt document via the recovery option, then "save as" in rtf format accepting all the changes required, then "save" as again back to docx format and the error is removed.

    I hope this helps.

    • Proposed as answer by Alatiq Friday, October 6, 2017 8:54 AM
    Friday, October 6, 2017 8:54 AM
  • "Open the corrupt document via the recovery option, then "save as" in rtf format accepting all the changes required, then "save" as again back to docx format and the error is removed."

    I hope this helps.

        Well done! This worked for me. Although I tried a slightly different technique since my document was already created and had all its content I couldn't open it in recovery mode. However, I did re-saved the document in a rtf format and then re-saved it in a docx format and next time when I opened it, it opened up without any error. 

    Cheers!!


    Abhi

    Tuesday, January 2, 2018 3:49 AM
  • Alatiq,

    Who is the really nice man that helps you repair the documents?  I've tried all of the options that are discussed in this thread - and we still can't repaid the issues.  That includes buying the program the second poster suggested to no avail.  Its a line 0 column 0 issue, and the lawyer did use the comparison software of Litera Change-Pro.  Need help!

    Wednesday, February 28, 2018 10:24 PM
  • I had the same problem and found a solution to work around and repair.

    Open the corrupt document via the recovery option, then "save as" in rtf format accepting all the changes required, then "save" as again back to docx format and the error is removed.

    I hope this helps.

    This worked for me as well! Thanks Alatiq
    Monday, March 26, 2018 4:52 PM
  • I have the same issue. I used "Save as..." and used the old .doc format. I accepted the small amount of functionality loss, then saved again as .docx. All good now!
    Tuesday, June 19, 2018 2:54 AM