12/27/2021»»Monday

Lately Microsoft Word Keeps Crashing On My Mac

12/27/2021
  1. Microsoft Word Keeps Crashing Mac
  2. My Microsoft Word Keeps Crashing

Word keeps crashing or freezing on Mac OS X Hello all, I am a university student and this problem has been making it very difficult for me to do my work lately. I have Microsoft Word for Mac, Version 15.40 (171108). Troubleshoot email problems in Mail on Mac. Problems sending messages. If you can’t send emails. If people don’t receive emails you send. Problems receiving messages. If you can’t receive emails. If emails aren’t displayed or look strange. If junk mail filters aren’t working.

I'm not sure if this is related to Zotero, but I have Word 2016 and get spinning beach balls every 5-10 minutes, and a complete crash with loss of data every hour. If I update the references in a document, Word becomes similarly non-responsive for up to 1 - 2 minutes. Also, adding a new referenced results in ~20 seconds of non-responsiveness. Is this expected behavior?
  • I have Word 2016 on my Mac and adding/updating references is practically instant. It does crash every now and then when I try to do complex operations such as copying advanced footer fields into the header or running macros. This was an issue even before using Zotero, though. Maybe you should try uninstalling the MS Word plugin and reinstalling it.
  • Like @m4rouf says, Word 2016 for Mac has some stability problems for its advanced functions, including the fields function that Zotero uses. This usually only happens when there are a lot of such features in use (i.e., many Zotero citations, lots of figure captions, cross-references, etc.). How many citations do you have in your document?
  • edited December 30, 2016
    Thanks for the responses. I have about 50 citations. Zotero/Word 2011 were slow together (much slower than the Windows counterparts), but usable. This combination of Zotero/Word 2016 is nearly unusable for me.
    'adding/updating references is practically instant' Do you have a multi-core i7? I'm using a Core m5 on the 2016 retina MacBook. This should have enough processing power as my (very old) XP era laptop worked very quickly with Zotero and Word 2010.
    I don't know how to uninstall the Word add-in? I can't find any option to do so. When I go to into Templates and Add-ins, I see Zotero.dot there, but the minus sign to remove this is grayed out.
  • Sorry to double post, I didn't know if I needed to create a separate post for the error reporting. My original post -
    http://forums.zotero.org/discussion/63666/word-2016-mac-crashing
    I've been having problems with Zotero crashing Word on my mac for a long time. I've had this problem before with Word 2011, but after upgrading to Word 2016, the crash frequency has increased to a nearly unusable amount.
    I'm not sure if there is a memory leak or what. However after using Word/Zotero on a document with ~ 50 references for about an hour, I start getting hangs in Word that last up to a minute. Eventually, Word (but not Zotero) goes to 100% CPU usage and has to be force quit. This force quit occurs about once every two hours resulting in data loss. This also happened on Word 2011, but only about once a day. I should note that this has happened on two separate computers MacBook Air and a 2016 Retina MacBook.
    Unclear if this is related, but all of the autorecovery documents generated by Word when using Zotero are corrupted and can't be opened.
    At this point, I'm considering moving to another reference manager, but I would prefer to keep using Zotero if possible. However, I feel stuck in a situation in which the Microsoft forums say stop using Zotero and Word will work fine, and this forum in which no one else seems to be experiencing my crashing issue.
    Any help is appreciated. I really like Zotero an used it on the Windows OS for years without problems. Since switching to Mac, I've had numerous problems, making writing documents a really unpleasant challenge.
  • You're saying this happens when you're just using Word, not only when you insert/update citations? Because the Zotero Word plugin doesn't do any work when Word is just open, so if Word is unstable then, that's entirely a Word issue — even if it happens only in documents with citations, Zotero is simply adding Word fields to the document, which Word obviously is supposed to be able to handle.
    (Slowness when inserting/updating citations is another matter. That's never been speedy in Word for Mac, but what you're experiencing sounds way too slow for 50 citations.)
    I wonder if you have some very large abstracts or other fields in your items? You could try disabling 'Store references in Document' in the Zotero plugin's document preferences and click the Refresh button to see if that helps.
  • edited December 31, 2016
    As for deleting Zotero.dot (or at least testing that), you just need to delete it via the Finder from the Startup folder — I think it tells you where that is in the Templates and Add-ins window, or maybe in the preferences. But, again, it's not doing anything when you're not using its functions.
  • Thanks for the information. The crashes occur when I'm typing and not when I'm adding a reference. It's difficult to be certain, but I'm pretty sure I'm only getting crashes in documents that have Zotero references added. I think Word may be running through all of the information added by Zotero and then crashes.
    It's good to know that zotero isn't active outside of adding references. I will try changing the store references in document setting. Does it require that I remove all the references from the document to see an effect?
    The abstracts are only the length allowed in Pubmed so I doubt there are very large field there.
    I will see if deleting the add-in helps too. I just don't know why this would occur on two separate machines using two versions of Word: 2011 and 2016.
    The Microsoft forums are of course implicating Zotero as the reason for the instability and they suggest not using the add-in. The challenge is that I have three grants due and all of my references are in Zotero.
    I'd be willing to try uninstalling and reinstalling everything, but I've found that on macOS I can never remove all of an Office install.
  • edited January 1, 2017
    'Store references in Document' is checked and grayed out. Is there any way to modify this? Thanks again.
    I just noticed something. Do I need to save all documents as .doc and not .docx? I just noticed the language about .doc in the 'Format using' settings. Could using a .docx default format be causing the problems I'm having?
  • no, doc and docx should both work.
    For the 'store references' -- have you tried unchecking it. I'm surprised it'd be greyed out ever. Is it for a new document?
  • It's a gray checked box that I can't uncheck in all the previously made documents I've checked. New documents allow me to uncheck the box.
  • My guess would be it's checked because the document is relying on the embedded data -- i.e. some items are missing a link to an existing Zotero icon. Any way that could have happened? E.g. have you deleted duplicate items in Zotero?
  • It's definitely possible. I try to delete duplicates regularly.
    Of note, last night I copied all the text from one of my documents that had the icon grayed out into a new document and saved that. This new document allowed unchecking of the icon.
    Interestingly, I've been having a problem where Word auto-recovery files made with Zotero are all corrupted and can't be opened. This also happened with the newly copied document from above. However, when I changed the auto-recovered document to .doc, it opened correctly.
    So I think I might be getting documents corrupted when moving between Word 2011 and 2016 and it may have something to do with Word compatibility mode.
  • of tangential importance, but you should use merge duplicates (either in the Duplicates view or by selecting both items and right-clicking) not delete to get rid of duplicates. Otherwise you end up with 'orphaned' metadata in the documents that still allows you to format citations, but can't be changed (e.g. to fix a typo in the title or so).
  • I see. Thanks for the information, I didn't know that was a problem. Could that explain the file corruption issue?
  • Not really, no -- documents should run without issues entirely off stored metadata.
  • Just wanted to post an update. I did multiple things at once that seem to have resolved the problem, but I don't know which was responsible. I'm posting this in case anyone else encounters a similar issue.
    I moved all the text from a corrupted document to a new word document and unchecked 'store references'. Additionally, I converted the document so that it no longer was in compatibility mode. Finally, I removed the bibliography that was inserted at the end of the document, which seems to massively increase the speed of adding a new reference.
    I'll have to see if this process works with the other documents that were causing the crashes.
    Thanks again for the suggestions.
Word

Microsoft Word Keeps Crashing Mac

I'm not sure if this is related to Zotero, but I have Word 2016 and get spinning beach balls every 5-10 minutes, and a complete crash with loss of data every hour. If I update the references in a document, Word becomes similarly non-responsive for up to 1 - 2 minutes. Also, adding a new referenced results in ~20 seconds of non-responsiveness. Is this expected behavior?

My Microsoft Word Keeps Crashing

  • I have Word 2016 on my Mac and adding/updating references is practically instant. It does crash every now and then when I try to do complex operations such as copying advanced footer fields into the header or running macros. This was an issue even before using Zotero, though. Maybe you should try uninstalling the MS Word plugin and reinstalling it.
  • Like @m4rouf says, Word 2016 for Mac has some stability problems for its advanced functions, including the fields function that Zotero uses. This usually only happens when there are a lot of such features in use (i.e., many Zotero citations, lots of figure captions, cross-references, etc.). How many citations do you have in your document?
  • edited December 30, 2016
    Thanks for the responses. I have about 50 citations. Zotero/Word 2011 were slow together (much slower than the Windows counterparts), but usable. This combination of Zotero/Word 2016 is nearly unusable for me.
    'adding/updating references is practically instant' Do you have a multi-core i7? I'm using a Core m5 on the 2016 retina MacBook. This should have enough processing power as my (very old) XP era laptop worked very quickly with Zotero and Word 2010.
    I don't know how to uninstall the Word add-in? I can't find any option to do so. When I go to into Templates and Add-ins, I see Zotero.dot there, but the minus sign to remove this is grayed out.
  • Sorry to double post, I didn't know if I needed to create a separate post for the error reporting. My original post -
    http://forums.zotero.org/discussion/63666/word-2016-mac-crashing
    I've been having problems with Zotero crashing Word on my mac for a long time. I've had this problem before with Word 2011, but after upgrading to Word 2016, the crash frequency has increased to a nearly unusable amount.
    I'm not sure if there is a memory leak or what. However after using Word/Zotero on a document with ~ 50 references for about an hour, I start getting hangs in Word that last up to a minute. Eventually, Word (but not Zotero) goes to 100% CPU usage and has to be force quit. This force quit occurs about once every two hours resulting in data loss. This also happened on Word 2011, but only about once a day. I should note that this has happened on two separate computers MacBook Air and a 2016 Retina MacBook.
    Unclear if this is related, but all of the autorecovery documents generated by Word when using Zotero are corrupted and can't be opened.
    At this point, I'm considering moving to another reference manager, but I would prefer to keep using Zotero if possible. However, I feel stuck in a situation in which the Microsoft forums say stop using Zotero and Word will work fine, and this forum in which no one else seems to be experiencing my crashing issue.
    Any help is appreciated. I really like Zotero an used it on the Windows OS for years without problems. Since switching to Mac, I've had numerous problems, making writing documents a really unpleasant challenge.
  • You're saying this happens when you're just using Word, not only when you insert/update citations? Because the Zotero Word plugin doesn't do any work when Word is just open, so if Word is unstable then, that's entirely a Word issue — even if it happens only in documents with citations, Zotero is simply adding Word fields to the document, which Word obviously is supposed to be able to handle.
    (Slowness when inserting/updating citations is another matter. That's never been speedy in Word for Mac, but what you're experiencing sounds way too slow for 50 citations.)
    I wonder if you have some very large abstracts or other fields in your items? You could try disabling 'Store references in Document' in the Zotero plugin's document preferences and click the Refresh button to see if that helps.
  • edited December 31, 2016
    As for deleting Zotero.dot (or at least testing that), you just need to delete it via the Finder from the Startup folder — I think it tells you where that is in the Templates and Add-ins window, or maybe in the preferences. But, again, it's not doing anything when you're not using its functions.
  • Thanks for the information. The crashes occur when I'm typing and not when I'm adding a reference. It's difficult to be certain, but I'm pretty sure I'm only getting crashes in documents that have Zotero references added. I think Word may be running through all of the information added by Zotero and then crashes.
    It's good to know that zotero isn't active outside of adding references. I will try changing the store references in document setting. Does it require that I remove all the references from the document to see an effect?
    The abstracts are only the length allowed in Pubmed so I doubt there are very large field there.
    I will see if deleting the add-in helps too. I just don't know why this would occur on two separate machines using two versions of Word: 2011 and 2016.
    The Microsoft forums are of course implicating Zotero as the reason for the instability and they suggest not using the add-in. The challenge is that I have three grants due and all of my references are in Zotero.
    I'd be willing to try uninstalling and reinstalling everything, but I've found that on macOS I can never remove all of an Office install.
  • edited January 1, 2017
    'Store references in Document' is checked and grayed out. Is there any way to modify this? Thanks again.
    I just noticed something. Do I need to save all documents as .doc and not .docx? I just noticed the language about .doc in the 'Format using' settings. Could using a .docx default format be causing the problems I'm having?
  • no, doc and docx should both work.
    For the 'store references' -- have you tried unchecking it. I'm surprised it'd be greyed out ever. Is it for a new document?
  • It's a gray checked box that I can't uncheck in all the previously made documents I've checked. New documents allow me to uncheck the box.
  • My guess would be it's checked because the document is relying on the embedded data -- i.e. some items are missing a link to an existing Zotero icon. Any way that could have happened? E.g. have you deleted duplicate items in Zotero?
  • It's definitely possible. I try to delete duplicates regularly.
    Of note, last night I copied all the text from one of my documents that had the icon grayed out into a new document and saved that. This new document allowed unchecking of the icon.
    Interestingly, I've been having a problem where Word auto-recovery files made with Zotero are all corrupted and can't be opened. This also happened with the newly copied document from above. However, when I changed the auto-recovered document to .doc, it opened correctly.
    So I think I might be getting documents corrupted when moving between Word 2011 and 2016 and it may have something to do with Word compatibility mode.
  • of tangential importance, but you should use merge duplicates (either in the Duplicates view or by selecting both items and right-clicking) not delete to get rid of duplicates. Otherwise you end up with 'orphaned' metadata in the documents that still allows you to format citations, but can't be changed (e.g. to fix a typo in the title or so).
  • I see. Thanks for the information, I didn't know that was a problem. Could that explain the file corruption issue?
  • Not really, no -- documents should run without issues entirely off stored metadata.
  • Just wanted to post an update. I did multiple things at once that seem to have resolved the problem, but I don't know which was responsible. I'm posting this in case anyone else encounters a similar issue.
    I moved all the text from a corrupted document to a new word document and unchecked 'store references'. Additionally, I converted the document so that it no longer was in compatibility mode. Finally, I removed the bibliography that was inserted at the end of the document, which seems to massively increase the speed of adding a new reference.
    I'll have to see if this process works with the other documents that were causing the crashes.
    Thanks again for the suggestions.