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AutoRecovery Question

On Microsoft » Microsoft Word

14,549 words with 6 Comments; publish: Fri, 06 Jun 2008 13:30:00 GMT; (30093.75, « »)

Word 2000

Before I state my question, let me say that I did not personally witness

what the user did, or what happened in the aftermath. I got my report

second hand, so it's hard to say what truly transpired. That being said,

here is what I was told...

A few weeks ago one of the users that I support lost several hours of work

because Word crashed unexpectedly and he had not saved his document, and

then Word failed to recover his file when it restarted. The user has Word

set to save autorecovery information every 10 minutes. When Word did not

recover the file automatically after being restarted, the user attempted to

find the .WBK file, but was not able to locate the file.

With regards to the .WBK file, I suspect that the user was looking in the

wrong location because the file location for autorecover files is different

than the document and startup file locations, and the user is not

sophisticated enough with Word to know how to find the correct file

location. However, in theory the file location should not matter, and Word

should have been able to recover the file. But alas, I know that theory

does not often match the real world. This might be something of a broad

question, but what are the possible causes of Word's failure to recover the

file, and how might I go about making the autorecovery operation more

reliable?

--Tom

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  • 6 Comments
    • The .WBK file is not the file created by the Autorecover utility. It is the

      file that is created if the "Always create backup copy" box is checked under

      Tools>Options>Save.

      The autorecover file will have a name the same as the file name except that

      the first two characters of the filename will be replaced by ~$.

      If Word really did crash (and it was not the operator) then Word does

      usually (and in my experience, quite reliably) recomver such files.

      If the ~$ file still exists, it can (sometimes) be opened to provide some

      usable text by using the "Recover text from any file" option in the Files

      of type pulldown in the File>Open dialog.

      Hope this helps.

      Please reply to the newsgroup unless you wish to avail yourself of my

      services on a paid consulting basis.

      Doug Robbins - Word MVP

      "Thomas M" <NoEmailReplies.ms-word.questionfor.info.Please.com> wrote in message

      news:Og52eIijFHA.1968.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...

      > Word 2000

      > Before I state my question, let me say that I did not personally witness

      > what the user did, or what happened in the aftermath. I got my report

      > second hand, so it's hard to say what truly transpired. That being said,

      > here is what I was told...

      > A few weeks ago one of the users that I support lost several hours of work

      > because Word crashed unexpectedly and he had not saved his document, and

      > then Word failed to recover his file when it restarted. The user has Word

      > set to save autorecovery information every 10 minutes. When Word did not

      > recover the file automatically after being restarted, the user attempted

      > to

      > find the .WBK file, but was not able to locate the file.

      > With regards to the .WBK file, I suspect that the user was looking in the

      > wrong location because the file location for autorecover files is

      > different

      > than the document and startup file locations, and the user is not

      > sophisticated enough with Word to know how to find the correct file

      > location. However, in theory the file location should not matter, and

      > Word

      > should have been able to recover the file. But alas, I know that theory

      > does not often match the real world. This might be something of a broad

      > question, but what are the possible causes of Word's failure to recover

      > the

      > file, and how might I go about making the autorecovery operation more

      > reliable?

      > --Tom

      >

      #1; Fri, 06 Jun 2008 13:32:00 GMT
    • I think you are confusing the "owner" file (~$lename.doc) with the

      AutoRecovery backup file (AutoRecovery Backup of <filename>.asd).

      Suzanne S. Barnhill

      Microsoft MVP (Word)

      Words into Type

      Fairhope, Alabama USA

      Word MVP FAQ site: http://word.mvps.org

      Email cannot be acknowledged; please post all follow-ups to the newsgroup so

      all may benefit.

      "Doug Robbins" <dkr.ms-word.questionfor.info.REMOVEmvps.org> wrote in message

      news:um96%23VijFHA.3448.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP12.phx.gbl...

      > The .WBK file is not the file created by the Autorecover utility. It is

      the

      > file that is created if the "Always create backup copy" box is checked

      under

      > Tools>Options>Save.

      > The autorecover file will have a name the same as the file name except

      that[vbcol=seagreen]

      > the first two characters of the filename will be replaced by ~$.

      > If Word really did crash (and it was not the operator) then Word does

      > usually (and in my experience, quite reliably) recomver such files.

      > If the ~$ file still exists, it can (sometimes) be opened to provide some

      > usable text by using the "Recover text from any file" option in the Files

      > of type pulldown in the File>Open dialog.

      > --

      > Hope this helps.

      > Please reply to the newsgroup unless you wish to avail yourself of my

      > services on a paid consulting basis.

      > Doug Robbins - Word MVP

      > "Thomas M" <NoEmailReplies.ms-word.questionfor.info.Please.com> wrote in message

      > news:Og52eIijFHA.1968.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...

      said,[vbcol=seagreen]

      work[vbcol=seagreen]

      Word[vbcol=seagreen]

      not[vbcol=seagreen]

      the

      >

      #2; Fri, 06 Jun 2008 13:33:00 GMT
    • To add to what Doug has said, see

      http://word.mvps.org/faqs/general/AutomaticSave.htm

      Suzanne S. Barnhill

      Microsoft MVP (Word)

      Words into Type

      Fairhope, Alabama USA

      Word MVP FAQ site: http://word.mvps.org

      Email cannot be acknowledged; please post all follow-ups to the newsgroup so

      all may benefit.

      "Thomas M" <NoEmailReplies.ms-word.questionfor.info.Please.com> wrote in message

      news:Og52eIijFHA.1968.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...

      > Word 2000

      > Before I state my question, let me say that I did not personally witness

      > what the user did, or what happened in the aftermath. I got my report

      > second hand, so it's hard to say what truly transpired. That being said,

      > here is what I was told...

      > A few weeks ago one of the users that I support lost several hours of work

      > because Word crashed unexpectedly and he had not saved his document, and

      > then Word failed to recover his file when it restarted. The user has Word

      > set to save autorecovery information every 10 minutes. When Word did not

      > recover the file automatically after being restarted, the user attempted

      to

      > find the .WBK file, but was not able to locate the file.

      > With regards to the .WBK file, I suspect that the user was looking in the

      > wrong location because the file location for autorecover files is

      different

      > than the document and startup file locations, and the user is not

      > sophisticated enough with Word to know how to find the correct file

      > location. However, in theory the file location should not matter, and

      Word

      > should have been able to recover the file. But alas, I know that theory

      > does not often match the real world. This might be something of a broad

      > question, but what are the possible causes of Word's failure to recover

      the

      > file, and how might I go about making the autorecovery operation more

      > reliable?

      > --Tom

      >

      #3; Fri, 06 Jun 2008 13:34:00 GMT
    • I do NOT have the "Always create backup copy" box checked. The only options

      that are checked on the Save tab of the Options dialog box are the "Allow

      background saves" and "Save AutoRecover info every" boxes.

      Here is what I did as a test.

      1) Set the AutoRecover interval to one minute

      2) Closed Word and then opened it again

      3) Typed a line in Document1 and then waited two minutes (to make sure

      the AutoRecover information had a chance to be saved)

      4) After two minutes, and without first saving the file, I literally

      pulled the plug on the machine

      When I powered the machine back up I found a file called "AutoRecovery save

      of Document1.wbk". When I opened Word the file was recovered as I would

      expect.

      The same user that lost the document says that he lost another one today.

      However, today he said that he might be hitting a key down on the bottom row

      of the keyboard. I thought that maybe he hit a shortcut key that closed the

      document, but he maintains that he did NOT get a prompt to save the document

      (which a user would see if they were closing the document without saving),

      and I could not find any key combinations that close the document without

      prompting the user to save it first.

      Suzanne posted a link to an article on the various Save options in Word, and

      it looks the AutoRecover feature does not work in the way that the user

      things it should. I may try the SaveReminder add-in from Graham Mayor in an

      effort to train the user to save his work periodically.

      --Tom

      "Doug Robbins" <dkr.ms-word.questionfor.info.REMOVEmvps.org> wrote in message

      news:um96%23VijFHA.3448.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP12.phx.gbl...

      > The .WBK file is not the file created by the Autorecover utility. It is

      the

      > file that is created if the "Always create backup copy" box is checked

      under

      > Tools>Options>Save.

      > The autorecover file will have a name the same as the file name except

      that[vbcol=seagreen]

      > the first two characters of the filename will be replaced by ~$.

      > If Word really did crash (and it was not the operator) then Word does

      > usually (and in my experience, quite reliably) recomver such files.

      > If the ~$ file still exists, it can (sometimes) be opened to provide some

      > usable text by using the "Recover text from any file" option in the Files

      > of type pulldown in the File>Open dialog.

      > --

      > Hope this helps.

      > Please reply to the newsgroup unless you wish to avail yourself of my

      > services on a paid consulting basis.

      > Doug Robbins - Word MVP

      > "Thomas M" <NoEmailReplies.ms-word.questionfor.info.Please.com> wrote in message

      > news:Og52eIijFHA.1968.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...

      said,[vbcol=seagreen]

      work[vbcol=seagreen]

      Word[vbcol=seagreen]

      not[vbcol=seagreen]

      the

      >

      #4; Fri, 06 Jun 2008 13:35:00 GMT
    • Suzanne,

      Thanks for the link. That explains a lot, and I will use that link to help

      explain to the user how the AutoRecover feature works. I may also try the

      SaveReminder from Graham.

      --Tom

      "Suzanne S. Barnhill" <sbarnhill.ms-word.questionfor.info.mvps.org> wrote in message

      news:O0hDLIkjFHA.1444.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...

      > To add to what Doug has said, see

      > http://word.mvps.org/faqs/general/AutomaticSave.htm

      > --

      > Suzanne S. Barnhill

      > Microsoft MVP (Word)

      > Words into Type

      > Fairhope, Alabama USA

      > Word MVP FAQ site: http://word.mvps.org

      > Email cannot be acknowledged; please post all follow-ups to the newsgroup

      so[vbcol=seagreen]

      > all may benefit.

      > "Thomas M" <NoEmailReplies.ms-word.questionfor.info.Please.com> wrote in message

      > news:Og52eIijFHA.1968.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...

      said,[vbcol=seagreen]

      work[vbcol=seagreen]

      Word[vbcol=seagreen]

      not[vbcol=seagreen]

      > to

      the

      > different

      > Word

      > the

      >

      #5; Fri, 06 Jun 2008 13:36:00 GMT
    • Going as far back as Word 2.0, which actually had a feature misleadingly

      named AutoSave, this feature has behaved in (more or less) the same way. In

      no case did it save a copy of the document if the file was manually,

      intentionally closed without saving. It was always intended only to save

      files in case of Word hangs, system crashes, or power outages, and that's

      what it still does.

      It does it *much* better than it used to, to be sure; if Word hangs, it

      graciously saves a copy of the current document *while* it is closing down

      and presents that, along with any previously saved AutoRecovery backups,

      when you restart Word (in fact, I think it restarts Word for you). It also

      tells you which of the three files (your own last save, the last regularly

      scheduled AutoRecovery backup, and the backup saved during the crash) is the

      most recent.

      I think this is pretty spectacular. But it does nothing to help the user who

      closes a file intentionally without saving, and that is the message I keep

      trying to get across to users.

      Suzanne S. Barnhill

      Microsoft MVP (Word)

      Words into Type

      Fairhope, Alabama USA

      Word MVP FAQ site: http://word.mvps.org

      Email cannot be acknowledged; please post all follow-ups to the newsgroup so

      all may benefit.

      "Thomas M" <NoEmailReplies.ms-word.questionfor.info.Please.com> wrote in message

      news:evHqCQXkFHA.3608.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP12.phx.gbl...

      > Suzanne,

      > Thanks for the link. That explains a lot, and I will use that link to

      help[vbcol=seagreen]

      > explain to the user how the AutoRecover feature works. I may also try the

      > SaveReminder from Graham.

      > --Tom

      > "Suzanne S. Barnhill" <sbarnhill.ms-word.questionfor.info.mvps.org> wrote in message

      > news:O0hDLIkjFHA.1444.ms-word.questionfor.info.TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...

      newsgroup[vbcol=seagreen]

      > so

      witness[vbcol=seagreen]

      > said,

      > work

      and[vbcol=seagreen]

      > Word

      > not

      attempted[vbcol=seagreen]

      > the

      theory[vbcol=seagreen]

      broad[vbcol=seagreen]

      recover

      >

      #6; Fri, 06 Jun 2008 13:37:00 GMT