I have an old dying hard drive which I could not recover files from using TestDisk, so I instead used PhotoRec to scan the HDD to recover whatever files I can.

I ended up with a lot of Word documents (.doc files) that seem to be corrupted. When I open them, I get the following window:

Is there some way I can scan the directory of Word documents so I end up with only the valid (non-corrupted) Word documents? This will save me from opening and checking each document individually.


The first 32 bytes of data in each of these .doc files was the same ...

D0 CF 11 E0 A1 B1 1A E1 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 3E 00 03 00 FE FF 09 00

The file signature, D0 CF 11 E0 A1 B1 1A E1, tells me that these are Microsoft Office documents. I tried to open one of the files with the following extensions: DOC, DOT, PPS, PPT, XLA, XLS, WIZ. In every case, an error was produced.

  • Try running a TrIDNet scan on the files first to see if they really are Word documents. – Vinayak Sep 17 '14 at 2:51
  • I downloaded the CLI version of the app (so I could use the wildcard * with the -ae switch). It did not re-name any of the word documents. The program wasn't really useful for me in this case, but it may come in handy in the future - thanks! – cornflakes24 Sep 17 '14 at 3:18
  • Make sure you downloaded the current definitions for TrID as well. It won't work without the definitions file placed in the same directory as trid.exe. Ignore this comment if you've already done that. – Vinayak Sep 17 '14 at 3:24
  • I've already done that. I also just downloaded Remo Repair Word and it tells me the documents are invalid. What I really need is a tool that will look at all my .doc files and tell me which ones are valid and which ones I can toss. Otherwise I will be spending hours opening each file (and most of the files will show an error like above). – cornflakes24 Sep 17 '14 at 3:34
  • 1
    Could you take a look at about 5 random files with a hex editor and edit your question with the first 32 bytes of each of those 5 documents? – Vinayak Sep 17 '14 at 3:42

You can use Antiword to try and read DOC files. You can get the Windows version from here.

Unzip Antiword to C:\antiword\ and navigate to that folder using the command prompt.
You may then use the command:

antiword PATH_TO_DOC_FILES\*.doc > tmpfile.txt

Antiword will output the plain text content of the DOC files it was able to read to tmpfile.txt and you can then sort the ones that you need and delete the corrupted files.

The output from Antiword might look something like this:

Document 1.doc
                                Sample Document 1

This is a sample Word document.

Document 2.doc
                                Sample Document 2

This is another sample Word document.

Corrupt Document.doc

Another Corrupt Document.doc

You could then maybe use grep or do some regular expression matching to find the names of the corrupt documents and delete them.

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