KB2589275 breaks Office/Word file associations in Windows 7

The recent Microsoft Windows Update KB2589275 has broken the file associations for some Office 2010 Starter/Professional Windows 7 users.

Office 2010 KB2589275 orange icons

I have had a lot of recent reports from my users that they have been unable to open their Word and other Office 2010 documents when double clicking since applying recent Microsoft updates.  The users have all been running either Office 2010 starter or professional editions and describe the following symptoms:

  • Their Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint icons turning from their normal color to orange.
  • Being prompted to activate or buy their Office application “activate, buy or try” when trying to open files.
  • Being told that they don’t have the necessary product to open the files “The Microsoft Office product necessary to open this file is not installed on your computer”.

The problem appears to be that the update adds Microsoft Office 2010 to the Program and Features area of your control panel.

The fix I have found works the best is to uninstall the version of Office 2010 most recently installed from your Program and Features. You need to be careful to only uninstall the most recent version, installed after 9th Sept 2010 and not the original program.

My Word/Excel/PowerPoint icons are no longer orange!

Once uninstalled you should then be able to open the files again and the icons should turn back to their original colors/pictures. Note you may need to reboot after uninstalling the new Office version.

Please feel free to leave a comment if you have found this information useful.

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