Word 2011 Crashes on fully loaded 2011 MBA

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Windowsrefugee, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. macrumors regular

    I got my fully loaded MBA and ACD 4 months ago and LOVE IT. It is my only machine and it does everything I need (web, PDF, create & edit Power Point and Word documents). BUT, the MS Office is a headache. My biggest problem is that when I open and edit a 100-500 page Word document (<100MB on the disk), over a few hours, it continually balloons and swells up to 2GB of system memory for Word + more than 1-1.5G of "active memory" (I have 4GB) and ultimately crashes, losing some of my most recent work. This has happened on a number of documents, even smaller ones. I have spoken at length to Apple and Microsoft but I have gotten no satisfactory diagnosis or treatment for the problem. Microsoft just suggested that I turn off all of their useful features, like track changes, spell check, auto save, etc. I have worked on similar size documents in Windows on my PC and never had this problem. So, overall, the MBA has handled anything I can throw at it EXCEPT editing larger Word documents.

    Any idea of what is going on here? :confused:
  2. uwetodd, Mar 14, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2011

    macrumors member


    Just some friendly advice... Since you already posted this question via another thread, I'd recommend deleting one so as not to cause confusion for yourself and those responding.

    BTW, are these massive files graphic heavy?

    EDIT: I have the loaded 13" with Office '11 and never experienced this problem (even while running multiple apps). Have you updated the Office software to its most recent? Since this happens on both large and small documents (and guessing the files were produced using Office), I'd side on caution and say re-install it. Just my 2 cents.
  3. macrumors regular

    Word 2011 Crashes on fully loaded 2011 MBA

    Sorry, I am more of a newbie to this site than you are and new to blogs. How do I delete the first one and keep this one?

    They do have figures and graphs, but not really large graphics. What do you think?
  4. macrumors newbie

    Similar issue - new Macbook Pro

    My new Macbook Pro (my first mac bought 1 week ago) is giving me similar grief with Word. Messages keep popping up about insufficient memory, and it has frozen a few times requiring a force quit. I am editing a large document (500 pages, under 2mb) and losing pages of editing/time/money - its driving me nuts...

    Some clear answers for a non-technical computer person would be so greatly appreciated...

  5. Windowsrefugee, Mar 19, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2011

    macrumors regular

    Yup, this sounds like the problem I am having with my MBA. This strongly suggests that the problem lies with our 'friends' at Microsoft since it is happening on two different systems. Using Activity Monitor, I can watch the size to the 1 or 2 MB Word file swell to 2 Gigs over a few hours with all of the "free" memory going to "used" and then Word crashes. It is REALLY FRUSTRATING. The only good news is that with the SSD, I can reopen it really quickly with most of my work intact in autosave. I wish I knew what was going on. Have you talked to Microsoft? I got no satisfaction from them, but it might be worth a try.
  6. MRU


    Have you installed the latest update for Office 2011 14.0.2 ?
  7. macrumors regular

    Yes, that is one of the first things I did :D. I have also uninstalled and re-installed Office 2011 and tried all of the suggestions in the MS support blog, including deleting preferences, fonts, etc. and trying it under a New User ID. None of this made any difference. Anyone else have any ideas?
  8. macrumors 6502a


    Downgrade to Office 2008.
  9. macrumors regular

    If you are doing anything complicated, Office 2011 is very buggy. Word crashes on large files, Outlook rules do not work, Excel VBA crashes... And those are just the things that really bug me.
  10. macrumors 68030

    ...until you get your MS word issues worked out, why not download Openoffice for free for any word documents you need to run?


    Good luck!
  11. macrumors 6502

    There's something wrong with the document. There's no way text and graphs should be anywhere near 100 MBytes of file size. What kind of graphics/charts are these? What application did you use to create them?
  12. macrumors 6502a


    I haven't had the Excel VBA crashes, but have had the others. Outlook is such a POS, that my wife removed it and went back to Mail. I'm real close to doing the same.
  13. macrumors regular

    I am working with rather large Word files-- in the range of 100-500 pages, often with embedded tables and graphs. I have abandoned Outlook because of its sync problems. So, what do you suggest?:confused:
  14. macrumors regular

    Just soi you all know I had the same thing happen last night while working MS Word 2011 on my Air. I also have problems with the Contact in Word 2011 when using mail merge on my PC with Win 7.

    So it seems MS has shipped a problem in Office 2011 and we can expect a fix sometime soon?

    Yes open office does work well.
  15. macrumors 6502

    Again, there's something wrong with your files. Even 1,000 pages won't come anywhere near 100 MB, even with tables and graphs. Only massive images will give you that kind of file size.
  16. macrumors regular

    I have worked on more a dozen documents like this and none of the other reviewers (all on WinTel machines) have had any problems. So, I do not think the problem is with the documents, per se. It may be something about the way Word 2011 handles the documents compared to the PC version of Word. I am using track changes, but that is an essential and routine word-processing tool. The really odd thing is that Word opens at more than 80MB with no documents open. Then, when I open a 4 MB document, it starts at around 100 MB. Over the course of 1-1.5 hours, the Word utilization of RAM increases steadily more than 10 fold-- to 1-1.5GB and ultimately crashes. The Word memory use can balloon to 2GB. It just keeps growing and growing until Word crashes due to lack of resources. It is REALLY frustrating.:eek::mad:
  17. macrumors newbie

    Word 2011 Crashes on MBP with 8GB of RAM

    I have encountered Word 2011 crashing on my MBP. The machine has 8GB of RAM, with large complex documents, it crashes often so Word is set to Auto Save every 5 minutes and create a backup copy when it saves.

    Before I do any formatting or work that would change more than a page or even just rebuild the Table of Contents I will save the document first.

    Today, it crashed approx 4 times on a document that had 3 lines of text. Each time the when it restarted it gave me the error that there was insufficient memory and I should save my work when I tried to continue working on the document.

    I used Activity Monitor to check the memory space. 7.75GB was free each time I got the Insufficient memory error.

    One thing I noticed this time, Word had flagged a city name as misspelled and I was trying to add it to the dictionary when the crashing started. I had the default dictionary and my own custom dictionary loaded. I deleted my custom dictionary and set the language to English [US] from English [Canada].

    After these changes or some reason, it stopped crashing and I completed my document which was just 1/2 a page in length.

    Not sure whether it was the dictionary, or the language that affected the crashing. Word appears to be definitely unstable.
  18. panzer06, May 11, 2011
    Last edited: May 11, 2011

    macrumors 68030


    What version of OS x are you guys running? I've seen some issues with 10.6.7 on the latest MBA systems.

    If all of the users reporting this problem have 10.6.7 it would be interesting to see if the problems persist on older versions. I stayed on 10.6.5 and do not have any word issues but don't have any documents over 15mb with graphics.

  19. macrumors regular

    I am still using 10.6.6 and it is still eating up memory and crashing even with small Word documents. I have not gotten any satisfactory answers from either Apple or MS tech support. I am probably going to go in to their stores to get someone to look at it hands on. Anyone else see this problem or have a solution?
  20. macrumors 6502a


    My MBA only has 2GB RAM and I have been using it with Office 2011 quite a bit recently to edit a 450 page information memorandum, which contains an awful lot of grpahs, charts pictures etc.

    I found the file size was pretty unmanageable until I compressed the pictures embedded in the document. You should be able to do it down to a fairly low res but still more than good enough for most print (say 200dpi). That will bring down the size of your document considerably.

    And since I did that i've been able to manage with a far larger document and half the memory than you seem to be struggling with, so it is do-able.
  21. macrumors regular

    Have you guys tried using Open Office instead, you can export the files in word format! :apple:

    Hope that helps a bit until it gets fixed!

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