Microsoft KB Archive/107349

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General Protection (GP) Fault Running Word 6.0 Help


The information in this article applies to:

  • Microsoft Word for Windows, version 6.0


A general protection (GP) fault error may occur when you start Help in Word for Windows. Your system may hang (stop responding), requiring you to restart your computer.


The GP Fault occurs if the PATH statement (located in your AUTOEXEC.BAT file) contains more than 128 characters. The SHARERES.DLL file, supplied with Word, does not support a PATH statement longer than 128 characters.

You might have a PATH statement longer than 128 characters if you run Microsoft Windows NT version 3.1. If you are running MS-DOS version 6.0 or 6.2, you can use a SET statement in your CONFIG.SYS file to set a PATH longer than 128 characters. Some third-party applications, such as NDOS, by Norton Utilities, or 4DOS, by JP Software, Inc., support longer PATH statements.


Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in Word for Windows. This problem was corrected in version 6.0a of Word for Windows. To obtain Word 6.0a, call the Microsoft Order Desk at (800) 360-7561 and request Word version 6.0a for Windows. If you are outside the United States, contact your local subsidiary. To locate your subsidiary, see the Microsoft World Wide Offices Web site at:


  • Shorten the PATH statement in your AUTOEXEC.BAT file to 128 characters or less. Microsoft recommends this workaround, as it requires the least modification to your system.


  • Disable your third-party programs (such as 4DOS or NDOS) by replacing that application's COMMAND.COM file with the MS-DOS COMMAND.COM file. The disadvantage of this workaround is that it requires that you stop using a third-party application.

Additional query words: 6.0 online cbt msdos gpf third word6 winword party officeinterop custsales

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Last Reviewed: November 4, 2000
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