There’s light at the end of the tunnel for all of you who don’t know where to turn for Microsoft Office problems. When the Microsoft Knowledge Base is a dead end, turn to TechRepublic’s Technical Q&A, which gives you fast access to the insight of thousands of IT professionals. That’s exactly where TechRepublic member tomp decided to go upon experiencing a recurring error in Microsoft Excel 2000.

Excel S.O.S.
When starting Excel, tomp encountered the following error message: “Excel caused an invalid page fault in module Excel.exe at 017f:30026d69—then hex dump.” This member uninstalled and reinstalled Office 2000, ran registry checks, and scanned for viruses (and subsequently removed a jd/Trojan virus). Tomp found the Microsoft Knowledge Base to be no help.

Safe mode
DKlippert suggested starting the application in safe mode, thus bypassing any possible problem files in an Excel startup folder. Using the following file path, C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office\Excel.exe/s, will start the app as if Office setup had just been completed.

Fast-fix blues
Using the app in safe mode is a viable solution but proves to be just a fast fix. After taking DKlippert’s advice, tomp asked, “Excel started fine, but what will fix it permanently? By starting in safe mode each time, the settings are not saved.”

DKlippert responded, “Since Excel starts with the /s switch, I would take a look at the XLStart folder (Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office\XLStart).” Unfortunately, this turned out to be no help as well, as tomp’s XLStart folder turned up empty.

Try a thorough uninstall/reinstall
PC Help Canada believed the root of the problem was the virus that appeared in tomp’s computer. This member advised tomp to perform a complete uninstall of “everything related to Excel…and to Office.” Then PC Help Canada advised running Scandisk, defragmenting and fixing any errors on the hard drive, and completely reinstalling the software.

“A real stumper…”
After uninstalling Microsoft Office completely, tomp employed Norton’s System Works 2001 to fix any errors and defragment the hard drive. Member Deja Vu suggested using the Office 2000 CD1 File and Registry Eraser Utility to remove any remaining Windows Registry settings or problematic files. But after a reinstallation of Microsoft Office, the Excel error continued to appear. After several attempts to fix the problem, tomp seems to be left without a fix.

Still on the case, DKlippert offered a last suggestion, asking, “Have you checked what appears under Tools | Add-Ins?” DKlippert also suggested looking for an alternate startup directory (Tools | Options).

If those suggestions don’t help, and assuming that the Detect And Repair function (in the Excel Help menu) provides no relief, it’s time to put out an all-points bulletin to try to help tomp solve this problem. Take a minute now to check out tomp’s struggle with this error and see if you can offer the perfect solution.

Calling all Excel experts

Do you have a solution to this Excel error? Know of someone or some site that does? Post a comment to this article and share your thoughts or visit TechRepublic’s Technical Q&A section and show off your IT prowess.