Resolving “Word was unable to read this document” Error and Recovering Your Precious Word Document

Microsoft Office Word 2007Image via Wikipedia

Have you ever faced a situation in which your Microsoft Word document suddenly starts showing junk characters when you try to open it? Or at times you become unable to open the Word file? These are the clear indications of Microsoft Word document corruption! In addition various messages indicating corruption of Word document flash on your screen when you attempt to open a corrupt Word document. These are the unexpected data loss situations and happen to knock out valuable Word doc completely from your computer without any prior notice. However, if you have the backup of your Word document then you can very easily get over this problem but in the unavailability of proper backup third-party Word repair tool can do the needful.

Consider a practical scenario wherein you encounter the below mentioned error message while trying to open one of your most crucial Microsoft Word2003 document:

Word was unable to read this document. It may be corrupt.

Try one or more of the following:

* Open and Repair the file.

* Open the file with the Text Recovery converter.

(C:\Documents and Settings\...\test.doc)

This error appears every time when you try to open this Word document and thus, resists you to access your valuable data.


The very obvious cause of appearance of the above error message is corruption of your Word document. The Word documents gets corrupt due to several reasons and cannot be opened until it is repaired.


You may try the below mentioned steps to workaround the situation:

  • Make use of Open and Repair option of Microsoft Office to resolve the issue (as suggested in error too).

  • If Open and Repair utility of Microsoft Office does not solve the problem then you can resolve this problem by installing Microsoft Office 2003 Service Pack in your computer.

However, if both the above mentioned solutions unable to fix the issue then to repair Word file, you can use commercial third-party Word repair tool. These Word repair software can repair corrupt or damaged MS Word documents without changing their original formatting and objects including charts, test, images, headers, footers, etc. One such software is Word Recovery Software which can repair damaged/corrupt MS Word document and restore its various objects without any modification. The additional feature of this Word Repair software is that it can search for the corrupt Word document on the computer system. The software is compatible with Windows 7, Vista, Server2003, XP, 2000, and NT and supports MS Word 2010, 2007, 2003, 2002, and 2000.

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