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ITsVISTA KB-Link: KB960644

When you click a file protocol-based hyperlink that points to a 2007 Office system file in Windows Vista or in Windows Server 2008, an application that is associated with the file may not start

Consider the following scenario that occurs on a Windows Vista or Windows Server 2008-based computer:

  1. You create a file protocol-based hyperlink that points to a 2007 Microsoft Office system file on a file server.
  2. You add a bookmark by using a number sign (#) to make sure that you can load the 2007 Office system file and that you can scroll to the location that contains the bookmark:


    Note: The placeholder bookmark_name is the name of the bookmark in the file to which you want to link.

In this scenario, when you click the hyperlink, the application that is associated with the 2007 Office system file may not start. Additionally, you may receive the following error message in the application that contains the hyperlink:

General failure. The URL was:
“file://\\server\share\document.docx#bookmark”. The system cannot find the file specified.

For example, you create the following URL for the hyperlink in an Outlook e-mail message:


The URL is displayed as follows:


In this example, when you click the hyperlink to access the document.docx file, the word.exe process may not start, and you may receive the error message. Additionally, if you copy the URL to the address bar in Windows Explorer, you may receive an error message that resembles the following:

Windows cannot find ‘file://\\server\share\document.docx#bookmark’. Check the spelling and try again.

Note: This problem does not occur in either of the following scenarios:

  • The file uses pre-2007 Microsoft Office system file name extensions, such as .doc, .xls, .ppt.
  • You click the hyperlink within the application that is associated with the 2007 Office system file. For example, if you click the hyperlink in the Word document that was mentioned earlier, everything works fine.
There is a download that resolves this issue. See Hotfixes for details.
32-bit Download: Contact Microsoft
64-Bit Download: Contact Microsoft

For more information on this issue, including potential causes, workarounds, and resolutions, see: Microsoft KB Article KB960644.

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