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I have a couple decent sized excel files (one 18,442 KB, another 11,088 KB) that have passwords. Yesterday I could open them without problems. Today I found my computer had restarted itself after a forced Windows Update, and now these files will hang and tell me Excel is not responding.

If I copy these files to my hard drive they open instantly.

I have another file on the network drive that is only 56 KB but doesn't have a password. It would normally open it takes 5-7 seconds.

These are the updates that happened over night: - Microsoft Office File Validation Add-in - Update for Windows 7 (KB2552343) - Update for Windows 7 (KB2545698) - Security Update for .NET Framework 3.5.1 on Windows 7 SP1 x86 (KB2518869) - Update for Windows 7 (KB2547666) - Security Update for Microsoft .NET Framework 4 on Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 x86 (KB2478663) - Security Update for .NET Framework 3.5.1 on windows 7 SP1 x86 (KB2478662) - Security Update for Microsoft .NET Framework 4 on Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 x86 (KB2518870)

My suspicions make me think it's the File Validation Add-in. Microsoft's website for that update says a known issue is "Opening files from a network share that have many charts or points of data will take longer to open in Office 2003."

As you can guess, I'm using Windows 7 (32 bit) and Office 2003.

Does anybody have any info that would confirm my suspicions or help me figure out what's going on? I looked for the File Validation Add-in to uninstall it, and it's nowhere to be found.

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update: I left one of the files alone while excel was trying to open it, and it does eventually open. It certainly sounds like the File Validation Add-in is the culprit. – JCarver27 Jun 29 '11 at 15:43
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I am having the same issue but we have been successful in removing the "Microsoft Office File Validation Add-in" from Add-Remove programs.
Now when we open spreadsheets they open at normal speed. Before removing the add-in Excel took so long to open a file most users thought that Excel had crashed

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You, sir, are a genius! For some reason I didn't think to check the Add-Remove Programs section to remove it. Thank you! – JCarver27 Jun 29 '11 at 16:40
This is absolutely the reason+1 – datatoo Jun 30 '11 at 22:33

"Microsoft Office File Validation Add-in" caused dramatic slowdowns when opening Excel 2003 files from a network location. I removed it and got instantly better results (i.e. returned to normal). I checked the box on Microsoft Update to "not show me this again".

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