Fun with Office 2007

Microsoft Office 2007 - The Crash VersionSo I decided I would upgrade my work machine to Office 2007 today. Boy, that was a great idea. First off, I should have known not to upgrade, but to perform a clean install.

Right off the bat upon launching Outlook I started having problems. It would crash if I closed it. It would crash if I tried to view my calendar. Crash, crash, crash… crash! These are the exact same type of errors I had when I tried to use the Outlook 2007 beta, although all of the other apps worked fine without error (Word, Excel, etc…).

Naturally, I tried to uninstall it, then remove all of the old garbage and give it another go. That’s when everything started to go really bad. I could not get the uninstaller to complete. I received:

error:1402 Cannot open registry key UNKNOWN/.pps/persitantHandler. Verify that you have sufficient access rights to the registry….

Hmm, not sure how that would be since I am an administrator on the box. So I pop open regedit and take a look – sure enough, the Administrator has lost permission to modify that registry entry, so I change it to full control and start again. Oops. Now I get:

error:1402 Cannot open registry key UNKNOWN/.rtf/persitantHandler. Verify that you have sufficient access rights to the registry….

Great. So rather than mess around with whether or not there are more of these keys floating about, I simply changed the entire HKEY category to give the administrator full control over it. I’m not sure yet whether or not that will turn out to be a good move…

Tools that help

I was looking around for other folks that had the same experience and there were a few, and I also ran across a blog entry by Scott Hanselman, and his OOBE with Office 2007. Knowing that Scott is a very smart dude, I read it and came up with a couple of very helpful tools to assist me in my quest. First I grabbed myUnist so I could take a look and see what else was installed that MS wasn’t telling me in the Control Panel. It listed quite a few more things than what I had been shown previously, including some of the beta bits that had been installed from the Office beta I was using.

I also looked for a tool to get at the registry and clean up temp files, etc… And what I came up with is CCleaner. This is a cool, small little app, and it found something like 700mb worth of junk to get rid off, this included temp files, log files, etc… With running CCleaner I also noticed references to both Office XP and Office 2003 on my machine. WTF?! I have never even had Office XP on this machine. It has been rebuilt within the last year, so unless XP installs office bits by default – I am unsure how this stuff even got there.

With that knowledge, I figured I better see if there is a better way to get rid of old Office data, and I found the Office 2003 Resource Kit. So I ran OFFCLEN.exe under Tools\Removal Wizard in the ORK directory. It found a couple hundred remnants, and it only added up 58 mg of stuff, but I removed it all, by selecting the Completely remove all my previous version of Microsoft Office Applications. It even found some left overs from when I installed Visual Studio; yeah, I nuked those too.

I did look about for a 2007 Resource Kit, but all I found was a bunch of articles and resources; no tools.

My juggernaut continues….

After running through all of these steps, I run the uninstall wizard on Office 2007 one more time. HUZZAHH! It uninstalls, I never thought I would be so happy to get a program to uninstall itself as I am right now.

Just to be safe, I run the office cleanup tool one more time, as well as CCleaner, to make sure I got it all.

Both Programs found a bit of junk, and I removed it, albeit it wasn’t much. Now, back to the disc to reinstall it. Let’s keep our fingers crossed eh? If all else fails, I will be upgrading to the latest Adobe Suite (CS3) when it arrives, so I may just rebuild my whole damned machine then. We will see. Maybe I will even go to Vista….

The install completes fine, and I toddle off to Microsoft Update to get the latest fix for their brand new application set. Wow! What a surprise, there are updates, one update for the Office System, and another for the Junk Mail filter. I slate it for download, and off I go.

And… none of that helps, Outlook still crashes like it’s cool…. gah! It crashes If I do anything but leave it in mail view, click on calendar, notes, tasks, my face; whatever – it crashes. I can send and receive email though. I may just say bag it and go back to outlook 2003….

Other Stuff

I also did find some notes about specific add-ins that can give Outlook 2007 some fits, and Acrobat 6 is one of them. I’m not surprised considering it’s a few  years of now, and Acrobat 8 is available with CS3 – so I will disable that for the time being. There are others, but as I have never selected an add-in to install on purpose (without it being bundles with an application), I’m not bothering to go to deep into that unless I have to.

Here is a list of the published Known Issues with the Office system.

I’m not sure where else to go with this, and I am finding more questions than answers.

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