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I have what seems to be a very strange file association problem that has me baffled. One particular association has never worked on my system. ** Solved - see added comments at the bottom of this post **

I started with Office 97 and Windows 98, and I recently upgraded to Windows ME and Office 2000 Premium. I then installed the service updates to Office 2000 and the problem has persisted throughout.

Here is the problem:

If I double click on an excel spreadsheet file (example.xls), Microsoft Excel starts, but then gives an error message that it cannot find the file. I can then use File/Open and open the file just fine. I can also just start Excel and open the file using either File/Open or pick it from the most recently used file list. But double clicking on the file consistently starts Excel then gives a 'cannot find file' message after Excel is started.

What I have tried:

Aside from the upgrades above, I have deleted and re-established the association several times. I have tried editing the association in the advanced screens based on some things I found on the Microsoft support site related to other association problems. Using the Excel 2000 software I created a brand new spreadsheet for testing, in case my problem was related to the older files, but I get the same symptoms. None of the above fixed my problem.

One extra thought:

When the error comes up it does not give the name of the file it cannot find - it just says something like 'cannot find file'. I have assumed that it is my spreadsheet file that it can't find, since it doesn't open my file, but perhaps there is a system file of some kind it is looking for and therefore it is aborting the file-open process. Perhaps the association isn't the problem (yikes).

I guess I could totally delete and re-install Excel, but I'm not sure it is safe to do that since I have installed the two big service packs and a number of smaller updates to Office 2000 already.

Any ideas, comments, thoughts or help? thanks, John A

** No sooner did I post the above than I found the answer elsewhere in the forums by searching differently. In case someone else runs into this, the solution was to go into Excel, select Tools/Options, and uncheck a box labelled 'Ignore other applications'. I don't understand it, but it works. :)
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