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Excel Help Malfunctioning?

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    Excel Help Malfunctioning?

    Yesterday I consulted Excel help to learn how to use Frequency. I followed the instructions for copying and pasting an array formula. (Copy formula, select cells to display results, press F2 then Ctrl, Shft, Enter.) It wouldn't work. I tried 6 times and the formula pasted the 6th time. I created a new formula for another data column but the pasting method will not work any more. Today I opened Excel help, typed in "Array Formula" and a list of topics displayed. I selected the first topic. Although the main topic opened I cannot open any links within the topic. I tried many help topics but can't select sub topics or "See Also," or "Examples." Nothing happens when I click the links. I use Excel 2002, SP3. Any advice greatly appreciated.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wisgro
    Yesterday I consulted Excel help to learn how to use Frequency. I followed the instructions for copying and pasting an array formula. (Copy formula, select cells to display results, press F2 then Ctrl, Shft, Enter.) It wouldn't work. I tried 6 times and the formula pasted the 6th time. I created a new formula for another data column but the pasting method will not work any more. Today I opened Excel help, typed in "Array Formula" and a list of topics displayed. I selected the first topic. Although the main topic opened I cannot open any links within the topic. I tried many help topics but can't select sub topics or "See Also," or "Examples." Nothing happens when I click the links. I use Excel 2002, SP3. Any advice greatly appreciated.
    Hi,

    I presume that you have done the customary re-start of Excel and then re-boot of the system, next would be (with Excel closed), in the Windows 'Start'

    Start, Run,
    EXCEL.EXE /unregserver

    followed by
    Start, Run,
    EXCEL.EXE /regserver

    Let me know how you go
    ---
    Si fractum non sit, noli id reficere.

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    excel help malfunctioning?

    Thank you for responding. Tried your suggestion. No luck. Last night I ran windows diagnostics. Nothing found. reinstalled Excel but that didn't help either. Ran virus check (AVG 7.5 and Windows Defender). Negative results.
    Searched known virus threats at Symantec and Microsoft for symptoms. None found. Searched Microsoft for Excel troubleshooting. No help there. Searched the web. No help found. Short of uninstalling/reinstalling MS Office I don't know what else to do. (P.S. I encountered a different problem recently with chart formatting that I still haven't been able to resolve. Have been using this version of Excel for years without problem until this month.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by wisgro
    Thank you for responding. Tried your suggestion. No luck. Last night I ran windows diagnostics. Nothing found. reinstalled Excel but that didn't help either. Ran virus check (AVG 7.5 and Windows Defender). Negative results.
    Searched known virus threats at Symantec and Microsoft for symptoms. None found. Searched Microsoft for Excel troubleshooting. No help there. Searched the web. No help found. Short of uninstalling/reinstalling MS Office I don't know what else to do. (P.S. I encountered a different problem recently with chart formatting that I still haven't been able to resolve. Have been using this version of Excel for years without problem until this month.)
    Hi,

    if you re-installed Excel then the .xlb file should be correct, but locate it and delete it anyway (search for any .xlb and remove).
    Also search for Personal.xls and hide/delete that fine, then re-start Excel.

    ---

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    Excel help malfunctioning?

    Thanks for responding Bryan. I opened windows explorer to search for xlb files. Much to my dismay when I click Search, the Search Companion window opens but a blank blue background is displayed. I attempted to use IE and experience trouble with that. If I click on any link on the download page I get a blank page. Instead of IE opening to nmy home page it opens to a blank, blue colored page and displays a URL that says "run once." No tool bar or menu bar is displayed. My neighbor works as a network administrator. He looked at the problem the other day and said IE was not working properly on my machine. He said he fixed IE but couldn't figure out what is wrong with Excel help. He said Excel help is managed by IE and it appears the IE malfunction effected Excel. (I have the latest version of IE.) Apparently IE was not fixed for long because it isn't working today. High Tech living eh?
    Walt

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    Quote Originally Posted by wisgro
    Thanks for responding Bryan. I opened windows explorer to search for xlb files. Much to my dismay when I click Search, the Search Companion window opens but a blank blue background is displayed. I attempted to use IE and experience trouble with that. If I click on any link on the download page I get a blank page. Instead of IE opening to nmy home page it opens to a blank, blue colored page and displays a URL that says "run once." No tool bar or menu bar is displayed. My neighbor works as a network administrator. He looked at the problem the other day and said IE was not working properly on my machine. He said he fixed IE but couldn't figure out what is wrong with Excel help. He said Excel help is managed by IE and it appears the IE malfunction effected Excel. (I have the latest version of IE.) Apparently IE was not fixed for long because it isn't working today. High Tech living eh?
    Walt
    I am not sure what the latest version is, I run IE 7.10.5730.11 with Excel 2003 on XP on a Dell GX150, which would be described as 'older' technology, but have few problems with it and nothing as described by you.

    Your Excel 2002 could be the problem.

    To locate a file you could open a DOS window (START, Run, CMD)
    and type

    CD \
    DIR *.XLB /s /p

    and then
    DIR Personal.xls /s /p

    then try
    START, Run, Excel.exe /unregserver

    followed by
    START, Run, Excel.exe /regserver

    Let me know how you go.
    ---

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    Excel Help Malfunctioning?

    Thanks Bryan. Am I spoiled? Completely forgot DOS which was the OS when I started using computers. I completed the routine you sent and it didn't help. I have IE7. The browser displays a symptom that I thought could be indications of a browser hijacker: IE ignores my home page setting, goes to MS run once and displays a blank page with blue background. I ran Hijack This and CWShredder but uncovered nothing. Seems like an Excel file has blown a fuse.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wisgro
    Thanks Bryan. Am I spoiled? Completely forgot DOS which was the OS when I started using computers. I completed the routine you sent and it didn't help. I have IE7. The browser displays a symptom that I thought could be indications of a browser hijacker: IE ignores my home page setting, goes to MS run once and displays a blank page with blue background. I ran Hijack This and CWShredder but uncovered nothing. Seems like an Excel file has blown a fuse.
    sounds like a IE problem, you could try a remove and re-install of 7, or just check that you have the latest updates. Is IE 7 set to auto-update as required?

    ---

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    Excel Help Malfuntioning?

    We have a saying around here when people ask directions: "You can't get there from here." I loaded IE and the blank page is displayed then "run once" is displayed in the URL window. I can't go anywhere. Can't even find the auto update settings. Tried the MS home page but IE froze up. Had to use Program Manager to shut it down. Opened Firefox but of course MS requires that IE5 or above is opened in order to download updates. Just discovered the problem is on my laptop and desktop: no excel help and IE won't run correctly. Is it safe to remove IE7 using Add/Remove Programs? I would like to avoid wrecking MS Office if possible and any other programs that rely on IE.
    Walt

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    Quote Originally Posted by wisgro
    We have a saying around here when people ask directions: "You can't get there from here." I loaded IE and the blank page is displayed then "run once" is displayed in the URL window. I can't go anywhere. Can't even find the auto update settings. Tried the MS home page but IE froze up. Had to use Program Manager to shut it down. Opened Firefox but of course MS requires that IE5 or above is opened in order to download updates. Just discovered the problem is on my laptop and desktop: no excel help and IE won't run correctly. Is it safe to remove IE7 using Add/Remove Programs? I would like to avoid wrecking MS Office if possible and any other programs that rely on IE.
    Walt
    Normally I would say OK to remove any product by Add/Remove, but in your case probably 50-50, still, what have you got to lose?

    Backup all data files and then try the Remove, perhaps locate your 'Complete Sytem Reload' cd first (just in case).

    The appearance of the 'RunOnce' indicates that a registry setting erred during installation, the program wishes to run some option (of installation) that it cannot find.

    Did the login that tried the Install (IE7) have sufficient login rights?
    Is your C: fragmented / full ?
    Have you run a 'cleanup' or deleted IE temporary files recently?

    Any other clues?
    ---

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    Excel Help Malfunctioning?

    I clean cache/temp files daily. The network between my laptop and desktop is set up properly. (I work from home.) My guess is that this is another in a never ending series of mysterious computer problems that won't make history, may never be resolved. I will explore the best way to remove IE7. (IE home page was no help with any of my questions.) I'm a research nut and will continue looking for an answer until I've exhausted possibilities. I plan to postpone any removal until then. Thanks very much for all of valuable your help.
    Walt

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    Quote Originally Posted by wisgro
    I clean cache/temp files daily. The network between my laptop and desktop is set up properly. (I work from home.) My guess is that this is another in a never ending series of mysterious computer problems that won't make history, may never be resolved. I will explore the best way to remove IE7. (IE home page was no help with any of my questions.) I'm a research nut and will continue looking for an answer until I've exhausted possibilities. I plan to postpone any removal until then. Thanks very much for all of valuable your help.
    Walt
    is the clean cache/temp 'daily' done on bootup? if so it could be removing the 'RunOnce' item required when installing.

    no other thoughts yet apart from that you could peek into the registry to see what 'RunOnce' is required.
    ---
    Last edited by Bryan Hessey; 06-26-2007 at 08:46 PM.

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    Excel Help Malfunctioning?

    No Bryan. I clean the cache manually. Thing is... if I type in a new URL IE freezes. I checked the MS knowledge base last night. It says if IE7 is uninstalled, IE6 is restored. Now I have to do deep breathing exercises to get ready to get ready. I hesitate because in my humble experience the only similarity between humans and computers is their resistance to change. I'll let you know what happens.
    Walt

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    Hi Walt -- I'd recommend waiting on the IE 7 removal, as IE 6 has several unpatched holes and if everything else on your system is fine, I'd hold off on moving back to IE 6 as a last resort.

    In fact, I use Google searches (plus these nice forums) anytime I need help with Excel functions

    As I follow security developments, there are some vulnerabilities and possibly even malware associated with malformed Excel help files (*.CHM extensions). Just to rule that out, you might try some of the online scanners out there.

    One of my friends owns this portal, which is full of cleaning tools. You might try on Left side of web page the Online Scanner section. Then run one like Trend's House Call or Panda's Active Scan

    http://www.virusintel.com/tiki-index.php

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    Below is a link that I just found which might also help:

    Links in HTML Help Topics Are Unavailable or No Longer Work
    http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=822989

    I wonder if the latest IE cummulative update this month may have triggered this?

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    Excel Help Malfunctioning?

    Thanks for all of your suggestions Harry. I went to Panda and... you guessed it. Must be using IE to run a scan. Ran a scan with Trend House Call and it found one grayware, one spyware and a vulnerablility in Adobe Macromedia. No virus or t horse. I thought if I roll back to IE6 I could then install IE7 again. I discovered today that the search function is working in Windows Explorer on my desktop. Otherwise it shares all the other problems with excel, help, IE7. I will try to digest the knowledge base articles. I'm afraid those articles reach a point where they either conflict with each other or are inconsequential. I've already tried a couple of suggested fixes and they didn't work. The MS knowledge base article on how to remove IE7 offers no warnings at all.

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    Hi Walt - I tried a few more searches on repairing CHM files and this is the best I could find.

    http://search.technet.microsoft.com/...aged+chm+files

    http://search.technet.microsoft.com/...xcel+chm+files

    Personally, I rarely use the built-in help, as Google searches can lead to online help with step-by-step examples in many cases. And about a month ago, I discovered this nice site, where I've been building my Excel knowlege quite a bit.
    Last edited by harrywaldron; 06-28-2007 at 04:31 PM.

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    Excel Help Malfunctioning?

    Thanks for the additional info Harry. I'll start reading later today. Since I wrote last I find that I have no help in any of the MS Office programs I use: Excel, Word, and Access. (I don't use power point) Also have lost the search function in windows explorer and IE7 is useless. Although I rarely use IE, some on line payments I make require IE. (Recall that Panda requires IE to run a free scan.) I'll get this fixed eventually.

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    Excel Help Malfunctioning?

    Harry... just an update... I looked at the tech article you linked that instructs how to locate and rename all chm file extensions to ".old" then reinstalling MS Office. First obstacle is that my windows explorer search function is not operating. So I looked up chm files with DOS and discovered there are 697 chm files on my system. The tech instructions say the chm files get renamed one by one. Phew. I looked for ways to rename a group of files with DOS but found nothing except file management software for sale. I uninstalled/reinstalled IE7 with no problem except... IE still won't work. It appears that the tech instructions aim at disabling current chm files then reinstalling them by reinstalling IE and Office. I can't imagine how long it would take to rename 697 files in DOS. (Remember, my windows search function has been disabled.)

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