Word 2010 randomly deleting spaces between words

Continuing discussion from this thread . Original problem is quoted below:

 

I have no printers of any type installed on my system (and haven't had in the past on this install of Windows 7 64-bit, so there's nothing to clean out). My system is thoroughly maintained (I run a site called TweakGuides.com - I know how to keep a Windows system in tip-top condition).

I've also disabled a range of options in Word to ensure that basic documents remain as basic documents, free of smart tags and other unnecessary embedded data. I even disable all autocorrect functions as a matter of course.

I still find that any document I create in Word 2010 will display randomly missing spaces when viewed in Word 2007. It makes no difference if I save the document with compatibility mode on or off, the spaces will repeatedly disappear. If I view the document using Windows Wordpad, I can see that the spaces haven't actually been deleted, so it seems to be a Word 2007-specific issue.

As such, I'm convinced it's a compatibility bug, as within Word 2010 itself these space deletions never appear, only when viewed or edited in Word 2007. This is fairly serious as you can imagine, because it means documents I send to people using Office 2007 (a large proportion of Word users) look sloppy as a result. Editing them is also pointless because as soon as they're saved in Word 2010 and sent back, a similar number of random spaces are deleted.

 

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Now continuing with reply to the suggested answers from the previous thread:

 

@TerFar - I understand what you're saying, however obviously Word does not need a specific printer driver, or comes with a generic one built-in, or uses a Windows-based generic driver, because I don't have a printer and have never attached one to my system(s), nor installed any such driver - not even a virtual printer like Adobe Acrobat - on this current installation of Windows 7. In fact I have my Print Spooler service set to Disabled because of this.

I haven't had any problems running and using the full functionality of Word 2003, 2007 and now 2010. In Word 2010 under the Print tab it just says No Printer. Selecting it, or selecting a print function anywhere in Windows takes me to a prompt to set up a printer, which I cancel. So there is no explicit third party printer driver installed on this system, of that I am certain. Hence the bug may even be with the generic Office print device.

 

@Doug - thanks for the offer, however the documents in question vary and the one causing the problem right now is a 300+ page book which I'm loathe to share. I have however seen it with a shorter document of around 20 pages which I and another person with Word 2007 were editing back and forth recently for a project (again not open for sharing). Every time I'd fix it up and save it in Word 2010, send it to him, he'd note that spaces were being deleted, and either he or I would fix it, and it would occur again. I'll create a brief two-page document, save it and send it to you instead to hopefully demonstrate it.

 

Right now I've installed Word 2007 alongside Word 2010 and I'm going to play around to see if I can figure precisely what is causing them. This is the first major bug I've run across which I can't really get a decent workaround for. I'd prefer not to have to switch back to Word 2007, but it may be necessary if this bug is not resolved in Word 2010 in one form or another.

 

Answer
Answer

I am a Microsoft employee, I lead the Program Management team for Office Sustaining Engineering.

This is a known issue with Word 2007.

The issue has already been addressed in a release that first appeared on September 25, 2008. The "non-security fixes" section of the article describes the behavior. The knowledge base article and solution for the problem are located under the link. For Office 2007 users who will receive your documents, ensure they are current on updates for Office. Specifically, ensure the patch referenced in the link above is installed, or ensure the user of 2007 has installed Office 2007 Service Pack 2.

The easiest way to obtain the fix is to install Office 2007 Service Pack 2.

This is an issue related to opening files that we discovered and fixed before the shipment of Office 2010. It was important enough for us to push the fix through the security update channel. At Microsoft we were able to re-produce the problem on machines which did not have the patch installed for Office 2007, and we are unable to reproduce the problem on machines that have the patch installed.

Yesterday we re-tested this problem based on the information being reported in the forums and on various blogs. There are a few details worth noting:

- If you have already saved the document in an unpatched version of Word and the spaces are missing, unfortunately there is no way to recover them.
- When you send the file to other users from Office 2010, unpatched 2007 users who edit the document may cause the spaces to disappear. It is important to ensure Office 2007 users are patched with this update, and ensuring that can be done by turning on Automatic Updates.

Related to the forum post on this topic:
- In our testing, turning spooling services on and off did not affect the problem.
- Additionally, the presence (or not) of a specific printer driver or any printer driver did not solve or cause the problem.

As has been reported on various blogs, the Open XML standard is not the cause of the issue. This is an issue with Word 2007, and we believe a solution has been available since 2008.

We certainly regret any inconvenience this issue may have caused.

If you patch your 2007 installation to the current update level, and you are authoring documents on patched versions of Word 2007 (or 2010), and you still experience this problem, please don't hesitate to contact us.

This is our team blog: http://blogs.technet.com/b/office_sustained_engineering/.
This is our Twitter stream: http://twitter.com/officeUpdates

You can send feedback or requests for help regarding files that submit this behavior (for patched versions of Word) via the email link on my blog:http://blogs.technet.com/gray_knowlton. We are very interested to know if users are still experiencing this problem after systems are patched.

Regards,

Gray Knowlton
Group Program Manager
Office Customer and Partner Engineering Services

The quality of software should improve over time.

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Last updated March 1, 2021 Views 127,844 Applies to: