Microsoft KB Archive/108009

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GPF: Opening WinWord 1.x or 2.x Document in WinWord 6.0

PSS ID Number: Q108009 Article last modified on 11-01-1994



The information in this article applies to:
- Microsoft Word for Windows, version 6.0


You receive a general protection (GP) fault when opening a Word 1.x or 2.x for Windows document into Word 6.0 for Windows.


Typically, this problem occurs because the original Word 1.x or 2.x document is somehow damaged (corrupt).


To determine whether a Word 1.x or Word 2.x document is damaged and possibly recover the document for use in Word 6.0, complete the following steps:

  1. Reopen the document into Word 1.x or 2.x (whichever represents the document origin).
  2. Save the document with a new name as Rich Text Format (RTF).
  3. Open the RTF version of the document into Word 1.x or 2.x and resave as a Word document with a new name.
  4. Open this new document into Word 6.0 and repeat the same steps that previously resulted in a GP fault.

If you no longer receive a GP fault, the original Word 1.x or 2.x document was indeed damaged in some way, and you corrected the problem by converting to and from RTF format. You should now be able to work with the document in Word 6.0 without issue.

If instead Word 1.x or 2.x fails to save the document in RTF format or fails to reopen the document from RTF format, the original document is indeed corrupt. In such case, you can recover the document text (without formatting) for use in Word 6.0 by completing the following steps:

  1. Reopen the document into Word 1.x or 2.x.
  2. From the File menu, choose New and choose OK to create a new document window.
  3. Return to the original document window, highlight the entire document with the exception of the final paragraph mark, and copy the contents of the selection to the Windows Clipboard.
  4. Paste the contents of the Clipboard into the new document window and resave as a Word document with a new name.

You should be able to open this document successfully into Word 6.0, but you will have to reconstruct the formatting originally applied to the document text.


Possible forms and causes of document corruption in a Word 1.x or 2.x document potentially vary to the extent that Word’s internal reader cannot anticipate and avoid the cause in every case. Consequently, a GP fault may be received when opening a damaged document into Word 6.0.

The internal RTF reader in each version of Word is designed to ignore instructions within an RTF data stream that it does not understand. If you therefore write (save) a damaged Word document to RTF format and then reopen that file into Word, invalid instructions within the RTF file will most often be ignored (removed) during the file open process. This explains why saving and reopening from RTF format can result in recovery of a damaged document. If the document is too severely damaged, the RTF save or open process may fail, resulting in the need to pursue the second workaround described above.

KBCategory: kbinterop KBSubCategory: Additional reference words: textconv conversion converted converts transfer transfers translation translate gp fault gpfault gpf general protection failure problem 6.00 ============================================================================= Copyright Microsoft Corporation 1994.