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Fix Word Not Opening on Mac

Updated on Jan 19, 2019 by Jean to Mac File Recovery


When you try to open a Word document on Mac document, Word stops opening. If you are faced with this issue and are willing to solve it, then follow the 3 solutions. If you have data loss problem after fixing the Word not opening issue, EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac can do you a favor.

"Word 2016 on my Mac won't open. It flashes immediately by double-clicking and then closes unexpectedly. I didn't do anything or any change. How to fix it if Microsoft Word won't open at all?"

In addition to this situation, most users are also faced with these errors:

As Microsoft Word is widely used among people, owning some basic Word troubleshooting is recognized as an essential skill. Today you're going to learn three tricks in solving Word not opening on Mac. The given workarounds are applicable to all Word editions such as 2003, 2007, 2010, 2013 2016.

Read also how to open, repair and recover Word for Windows.

1. Run Repair Disk Permissions

Step 1: On the "Go" menu, click "Utilities". Start the Disk Utility program.

open disk utility on mac

Step 2: Choose the primary hard disk drive for your computer. Then, click the "First Aid" tab.

click first aid on mac

Step 3: Click "Run" to repair the disk volume errors and permissions. When it finishes, click "Done".

run the repair process and repair the disk error

2. Remove Word Preferences

Step 1: Open "Library". Usually, click "GO" > "Go to the folder", then type ~/Library

enter the mac library

Step 2: Locate a file named as "Preferences".

open the preferences folder

Step 3: Find a file named as com.microsoft.Word.plist. Move the file to the desktop.

find the microsoft,com file

Start Word, and check whether the problem still occurs.

If the problem still occurs, exit Microsoft Word, and then restore the "com.microsoft.word.prefs.plist" file to its original location. Then, go to Step 4.

If the problem seems to be resolved, you can move the file to the trash.

Note: If you do not locate the file, the program is using the default preferences.

Step 4: Exit all Microsoft Office for Mac programs. Then, Click the Word icon. On the left, click "Preferences".

open word prefernces

Step 5: Click "File Locations".

select mac word file locations

Step 6: Select "User templates".

select user template

Step 7: Locate the file that is named Normal, and move the file to the desktop.

locate and move normal file to desktop to fix the word not opening

You can also find the file named as Normal through this way: "Library" > "Application Support" > "Microsoft" > "Office" > 'User Templates" > "Normal"

Start Word, and check whether the problem still occurs. If the problem seems to be resolved, you can move the "Normal" file to the trash.

3. Try to Open and Repair Word

Step 1: Start Word. On the File menu, click "Open".

open word dialogbox

Step 2: In the Open dialog box, select the file that you want to open. Click the down arrow on the Open button, click "Open" > "Repair".

repair the word error

Recover Deleted and Unsaved Word on Mac

Do not worry if the "Word not opening" issue causes data loss disaster, you can recover unsaved Word document on Mac from its Temporary folder and AutoRecovery save. While for a deleted Word document on Mac, the easiest way of recovery is using a third-party Mac data recovery software.

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac also recovers Word document that is missing, deleted or lost due to formatting, virus infection and other misoperation, and the best part of using the software to recover Word is being able to preview the file entirety. 

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