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Troubleshooting Error Messages in Windows

Generic Error Message

There is probably nothing more annoying than getting an error message when using your computer which you can't resolve. I have excellent troubleshooting skills and in the examples of the Sage and Royal Mail below I had never used these programs before but I was still able to fix them. Furthermore, all of the problems were solved in less than an hour so none of the customers faced large bills!

So, next time your computer throws up an error message or some program isn't working properly give MCS a call and see if we can resolve it for you. And remember in the unlikely situation that we can't fix it, you won't pay a penny.

Unable to Open Microsoft Office Applications

A customer was unable to open any office applications such as Word, Excel and Outlook. When he tried to open Word he got the following error message:

Windows cannot find 'C:Program Files (x86)Microsoft OfficerootOffice16WINWORD.EXE'. Make sure you've type the name correctly, then try again. 

It was a similar message for other Office applications.


When I went to this file path the WINWORD.EXE was present and double clicking the file resulted in the same error message. A Google search indicated the problem might lie with a program called AVG PC TuneUp, which my customer did have installed. I went into the Registry and deleted the winword.exe entry from:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindows NTCurrentVersionImage File Execution Options

After restarting the PC, Word opened up without any problems. This indicated that AVG PC TuneUp was the cause of the problem. However, when I tried to uninstall the program I got another error message saying that it couldn't find the right file to start the uninstallation! When I went to the file path the whole folder was missing! I couldn't uninstall the program because it no longer existed. To resolve this issue I reinstalled AVG PC TuneUp and then all the Office programs opened normally again. I decided to uninstall the program anyway as the customer found it to be annoying at the best of times and he never noticed it improve the performance of his PC. As is often the case with these sorts of programs they cause more problems than they solve!

Unable to open Sage Backup File

An accountant in Marlow was having problems trying to restore a backup Sage file. He was getting the following error message:

'Error opening file' 'Error creating file' 'Error writing to file' 'Queue.dta is in use' or 'File in use'

The Sage knowledge base gave a number of possible answers and out of the long list I decided to look at the antivirus software the customer had installed. The computer had Avast installed so I uninstalled it. Uninstalling it wouldn't leave the computer open to threats because Microsoft Defender, built into Windows 10, would take over. Uninstalling the program immediately solved the issue and the customer was able to restore his Sage backup.

Royal Mail Print Assist

A small company in Maidenhead were using Royal Mail software to print out address labels via Click & Drop. The process had been working perfectly on their laptop but wasn't working well on a second computer which had been setup exactly the same. When a label was generated in click & Drop it should have automatically been printed via the Royal Mail Print Assist software. All the settings in the software seemed to be correct but it wasn't working.

After a lot of checking and testing and comparing things with the working laptop I discovered another bit of the Print Assist software was not installed. Unfortunately, Royal Mail didn't provide any link on their website to download it. Fortunately, I found a copy on the original laptop and was able to copy it across to the new laptop via a USB stick and then install the program. Once installed the printing of address labels worked perfectly and the customer was very happy.


Remote Computer Support

All of the above errors were solved via a remote login session. It's easy to setup and 100% secure. See our Remote PC Support page for more details.

remote pc support

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