JorgeA

Word 2007 files take forever to open in Vista (was: Will an SSD help?)

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Hi JorgeA,

I was just thinking again (still don't know if that's a good thing or not), but since you do not really need extra storage space, I wondered if you don't have a friend with an external drive with about 200 GB free (I guess the image will be about the same size as the data?), who can lend it to you for a couple of days. It seems a bit of a waste to spend money on something you only need for a couple of days. Unless you can use it for something else thereafter.

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I don't mind trying to help (not that any of my ideas worked yet)

BlouBul,

You're giving yourself MUCH less credit than you're due! :yes:

For one thing, the Office Diagnostics tool did work. In the next test the file took a full minute less to load. Moreover, the tool found a problem with my Office setup and fixed it. That wouldn't have happened without your involvement.

For another, even with the ideas that haven't panned out I am learning a lot. Thanks to you I have discovered a bunch of concepts and settings (such as DDE and repagination) that I had no clue about before.

So -- THANK YOU.

And now, let's continue. :)

--JorgeA

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Hi JorgeA,

I was just thinking again (still don't know if that's a good thing or not), but since you do not really need extra storage space, I wondered if you don't have a friend with an external drive with about 200 GB free (I guess the image will be about the same size as the data?), who can lend it to you for a couple of days. It seems a bit of a waste to spend money on something you only need for a couple of days. Unless you can use it for something else thereafter.

BlouBul,

Another good idea. I've decided, though, to go ahead and get the new drive, for two reasons: One, I can use it to keep images of the hard disk, as a "super-backup" on top of the normal data backups that we are all advised to make. Kowing that (if disaster should strike and my computer gets fried) I can still re-create my computing environment with everything in it, really does give a sense of security. The more I think about it, the more that to my mind this is what PC backups should be all about in the first place.

The other reason is that it will give me flexibility in terms of our TV viewing. (Huh?!? Read on.) We've been toying with the idea of ditching the cable company's crappy digital video recorder and going to a "home theater PC" setup where the cable line would go into the computer and a (new) PC would serve as channel tuner and recorder. A 1TB drive would be great for that -- giving about 4 times the amount of recording time as the current DVR. It would take my wife longer to fill it up. ;) If for whatever reason I decided that this would be a better use for that external HDD, we'd already have that part of the setup.

One way or the other, the new drive won't go to waste.

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA
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I hadn't noticed Google was giving a shot ito Latin, too!

Well, it gets near, but not enough. :D

It should be "Helps more he who doesn't hinder" or something like it.

It is amazing what one can do through the internet (and free!!!) these days. Not in the too distant past one would either had to take a course in Latin (after you figured out which language it was :ph34r: ), or looked for a dusty dictionary somewhere in the university library.

Anyway, thanks for the translation (for some reason I always wonder about these things).

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Thanks to you I have discovered a bunch of concepts and settings (such as DDE and repagination) that I had no clue about before.

You're welcome. (and thanks for all the thanks blushing.gif) Actually repagination was allen2's idea

Thanks to you I've discovered the sameyes.gif

Another good idea. I've decided, though, to go ahead and get the new drive, for two reasons: One, I can use it to keep images of the hard disk, as a "super-backup" on top of the normal data backups that we are all advised to make. Kowing that (if disaster should strike and my computer gets fried) I can still re-create my computing environment with everything in it, really does give a sense of security. The more I think about it, the more that to my mind this is what PC backups should be all about in the first place.

The other reason is that it will give me flexibility in terms of our TV viewing. (Huh?!? Read on.) We've been toying with the idea of ditching the cable company's crappy digital video recorder and going to a "home theater PC" setup where the cable line would go into the computer and a (new) PC would serve as channel tuner and recorder. A 1TB drive would be great for that -- giving about 4 times the amount of recording time as the current DVR. It would take my wife longer to fill it up. ;) If for whatever reason I decided that this would be a better use for that external HDD, we'd already have that part of the setup.

One way or the other, the new drive won't go to waste.

I've got an external hdd full of movies that is connected to a multimedia player, which connects to my normal tv. Great for watching movies (and the kids can't damage the dvd's), as well as backup, so I agree that is a good choice if you can use it for something else.yes.gif

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BlouBul (and also @dencorso),

I have two items:

One, I ordered the 1TB Western Digital HDD. We should resume the discussion when the drive arrives from amazon.com in a few days -- due to my terminal cheapness, I had it sent to me via free Super Saver Shipping.

(dencorso, the company in the U.S. is called amazon.com. Is the company's Brazilian branch named mississippi.com? :whistle: )

And two, I tried loading the big file in Word again, this time with the Task Manager open and set to list processes by their CPU use, so that I could see what was taking up the PC's resources during file loading. By far the biggest chunk of CPU cycles during loading went to WINWORD.EXE: usage hovered between 40 and 50 percent most of the time, with a single spike up to 65%. Nothing else went above even 3% in the 3:02 that the file took to load.

Does this affect any of our hypotheses? As I said, I don't mind "repurposing" the 1TB drive, so we needn't use that purchase as a sole reason for proceeding with the surgery. I'm thinking that it all (or mostly) has to do with Word somehow, especially in light of the trial with Works where the file took only 1:12 to load.

I've got an external hdd full of movies that is connected to a multimedia player, which connects to my normal tv. Great for watching movies (and the kids can't damage the dvd's), as well as backup, so I agree that is a good choice if you can use it for something else.yes.gif

I'm glad to get the "proof of concept"! :D

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA
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Word in particular or Office in general are my prime suspects, too, since you reported your result with Works, which is a very noteworthy finding. In any case, if at all possible, I'd like to ask you to pursue that suggestion BlouBul gave you of opening the big file in the same version of Word/Office, preferably under Vista, in some friend's machine. Since we now know processor and memory are irrelevant, the median time of opening in this other machine ought usefulf to comparable with that obtained in your machine. Whatever the result may be, it should be interesting and tell us about the existance of misconfigurations or other issues. As of now, my main idea is to re-register Word and tweak it and Office quite extensively, after making sure it has *all* apposite extant MS updates applied to it. But since it'll be some major tweaking, I guess having a known-good image of the system as-it-is is a necessary insurance against things going wrong.

I'll be less available than usual these next 2 or 3 days, so don't be surprised if I don't post at all, rest assured I've not lost interest.

In the meantime, let me point you to some of my previous musings about images, which I think both of you'll find interesting: I, II and III. I think in them I've said things I didn't say here and, even if some of the stuff is specific to Norton Ghost, most of it is general and applicable to all images and the programs used to acquire/deploy them.

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In the meantime, let me point you to some of my previous musings about images, which I think both of you'll find interesting: I, II and III. I think in them I've said things I didn't say here and, even if some of the stuff is specific to Norton Ghost, most of it is general and applicable to all images and the programs used to acquire/deploy them.

Thanks dencorso,

You explained it very well in those links. Now I can't claim that I don't know too much about imaging anymore. :)

I'll be less available than usual these next 2 or 3 days, so don't be surprised if I don't post at all, rest assured I've not lost interest.

We have to wait anyway for the hdd to come. As long as you come back afterwards (we need you for the tweaks):hello:

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dencorso,

Thank you immensely for the links to the discussions of disk imaging and backups. The first link in particular is the clearest, most satisfying explanation of the issue that I have ever come across. It could be extracted and put into one of those "stickified" threads so that it doesn't get buried under newer topics.

It does lead me to a question, that I hope you'll answer when you come back. My wife has a Seagate BlackArmor WS 110 drive to create system images. We bought it because they claim it can do a "bare-metal restore" on a new HDD in case of catastrophic failure of the old HDD. But now that I read your description, it sounds like the BlackArmor is creating the "common disk image" (or, rather, partition image) that you indicate may not be good enough. Should I tell her that she's not as well protected as we had thought?

Thank you for pursuing the issue with my Word file. You and BlouBul and I will regroup in a few days when the new HDD comes in. In the meantime I'll see about loading that file in Word on another modern computer, and post the results.

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA
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BlouBul,

I have some more data bits on Word file loading.

First, I tried loading that same big file on my Windows 98 tower (Office 2000). The time was -- 0:40. Can you believe it?? :o

Next I got my wife to let me put the file on her new Windows 7 PC and try loading it into Word 2007 a couple of times (no more). The first time was 1:43; the second, 1:45.

And last, I finally persuaded a friend to let me use up one of his precious Word launchings (he's hoarding the 25 free launchings he got from his Office 2007 trial) on his Vista laptop. He finally relented when I explained that even though I wanted to open the file 7 times, I would only be using one launch since I could open Word and one other (small) file, then open and close my test file as needed from inside the program and the one Word session would remain intact.

The times on the Vista x64 laptop were:

3:31

3:31

3:32

3:32

3:33

3:36

3:43

Pretty consistent, eh? But, interestingly, these values are not that far off from those of my Vista tower. And he doesn't have the laptop stuffed with applications and running processes, it's a lightly used computer.

This hints at the possibility that the root of the problem may lie with Vista as such, rather than with any accumulated registry crud. I suppose it could still be due to Office settings, but if somebody else has a standard installation and it acts the same, then we're looking at making it into a non-standard (that is, probably less functional) installation.

--JorgeA

Edited by JorgeA
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That certainly points to Vista x64 so far (but although the Win 7 takes half the time, win 98 again takes 40% of that time with a much slower processor) Does your friend also have Norton? Is the file a doc or docx? Does it help if you convert it to the other format?

Is your laptop also vista x64? Is it win 7 x64 or x86?

It would help to have more tests on different systems to see if we can see a trend. Since the results are fairly consistent, I think you can just do one or two test on each system to get a feel for what is fast/slow (eg 3-5 min(Vista x64+Office 2007), 1-2 min(Win7+Office 2007 & Vista X64+Works), 30sec-1 min(Win 98 +Office 2000 on old computer), less than 10 sec(hopefully final answer). Do you have more pc's (maybe @ your work) where you can test it? (Maybe on Xp?)

Edited by BlouBul
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My wife has a Seagate BlackArmor WS 110 drive to create system images. We bought it because they claim it can do a "bare-metal restore" on a new HDD in case of catastrophic failure of the old HDD. But now that I read your description, it sounds like the BlackArmor is creating the "common disk image" (or, rather, partition image) that you indicate may not be good enough. Should I tell her that she's not as well protected as we had thought?

Not yet. Read its documentation/user manual crefully first. While only "dumb", byte-by-byte images are the most foolproof solution, they're also the longest and most tedious solution to use. I always do *one* such whole disk image of any important disk, be it mine or one I'm about to service. Once having it, I proceed to do backups by partition imaging, since they're faster and usually things change only in the system partition of a multipartitioned system (there's little gain however, when, as in your case, the system partition *is* also the data partition). If things get really ugly, I can always restore the full disk image first, an then update it with the newer partiton image to get back to the point i was when things went wrong. Now, "intelligent" images are not useless, but you must be sure the application doing them supports th OS you're intending to backup. If you look in that documentation for DiskWizard I pointed you to some posts above, you'll find out it supports XP and Vista, but not Win7. So, in principle, its "intelligent" partition backups should be enough to use, most of the time, for your Vista. However, it's not clear whether they mean "both x86 and x64" or just x86, so, some testing might be in order before trusting the "intelligent" images. But, in any case, only the "dumb" images would be adequate for Win7, since that version of DiskWizard has not enough knowledge to be "intelligent" about it. All this said, it's irrelevant whether you have good usable images if you don't have the means to put them back. So some bootable device (HDD or CD/DVD) is needed too, for a backing up system to be really useful. I'm certain the BlackArmor system must cater for all this, or, at least, should. I don't know. But you shall, after you read the documentation, with those above points in mind. I trust you'll then let me know. :)

The times on the Vista x64 laptop were:

3:31

3:31

3:32

3:32

3:33

3:36

3:43

Pretty consistent, eh? But, interestingly, these values are not that far off from those of my Vista tower. And he doesn't have the laptop stuffed with applications and running processes, it's a lightly used computer.

This hints at the possibility that the root of the problem may lie with Vista as such, rather than with any accumulated registry crud. I suppose it could still be due to Office settings, but if somebody else has a standard installation and it acts the same, then we're looking at making it into a non-standard (that is, probably less functional) installation.

Or lie with the Office 2007 x86 under Vista x64 specific combination/interaction? :ph34r:

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All this said, it's irrelevant whether you have good usable images if you don't have the means to put them back. So some bootable device (HDD or CD/DVD) is needed too, for a backing up system to be really useful. I'm certain the BlackArmor system must cater for all this, or, at least, should. I don't know. But you shall, after you read the documentation, with those above points in mind. I trust you'll then let me know. :)

dencorso,

Yes, I did make an emergency boot disk under the BlackArmor wizard when I set up that external HDD for my wife. Would that be enough? The manual claims that it is.

Or lie with the Office 2007 x86 under Vista x64 specific combination/interaction? :ph34r:

Hmm... What sorts of things could be going on with that?

--JorgeA

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That certainly points to Vista x64 so far (but although the Win 7 takes half the time, win 98 again takes 40% of that time with a much slower processor) Does your friend also have Norton? Is the file a doc or docx? Does it help if you convert it to the other format?

Is your laptop also vista x64? Is it win 7 x64 or x86?

It would help to have more tests on different systems to see if we can see a trend. Since the results are fairly consistent, I think you can just do one or two test on each system to get a feel for what is fast/slow (eg 3-5 min(Vista x64+Office 2007), 1-2 min(Win7+Office 2007 & Vista X64+Works), 30sec-1 min(Win 98 +Office 2000 on old computer), less than 10 sec(hopefully final answer). Do you have more pc's (maybe @ your work) where you can test it? (Maybe on Xp?)

BlouBul,

Oh yeah, I forgot to report that my friend also has Nortom 360 on his Vista x64 laptop.

The file is a .doc file, as my customer only has Office 2003 and can't create or read .docx files.

Unfortunately I don't have access to more PCs. My office is at home, so I've tried it on all the computers we have here. (Well, O.K., I tried it on my Windows for Workgroups 3.11 system running MS Word 6.0, but it couldn't read the file at all. ;) )

I'm wondering if the issue might be related to Grammar Check. I won't get a chance to try it tonight, but next chance I get I'll see if I can turn off that feature, at least temporarily and for this file, and then see how long it takes to be ready.

--JorgeA

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Yes, I did make an emergency boot disk under the BlackArmor wizard when I set up that external HDD for my wife. Would that be enough? The manual claims that it is.

Yes. It should be. But do make sure BlackArmor claims to support Win 7, just to be on the safe side.

Or lie with the Office 2007 x86 under Vista x64 specific combination/interaction? :ph34r:

Hmm... What sorts of things could be going on with that?

Well, many. Nothing documented, that I know of. Then again, cluberti, CoffeeFiend or PuntoMX would be better than myself to dream up scenarios where things may go wrong, since they know the x64 NT-OSses much better than I do.

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