Cannot Import Word XP

OK, just updated to Scrivener 1.8. I looked at some of the needed bug fixes, and knew I wanted them.

And then I discovered that the d@mn thing no longer supports imports from Word XP.

I don’t own, and don’t want to fork out $$$$ for Word 2010. XP does all I need.

How the bleeping h-lls am I going to go back and forth between Word and Scrivener if Scrivener no longer supports XP?

The only thing that’s changed with the import/export is that it no longer defaults to using Word’s libraries for the conversion on systems that have Word 2007+ installed. That option would never have been available with an older installation of Word anyway, so it shouldn’t be affecting anything. Scrivener still supports importing DOC files such as you’d create in Word 2002. Could you provide further details on the file type you’re importing and what the results are? If you’re getting an error message, a screenshot of that would be helpful. Just use the PrintScreen key to take the snapshot, then paste into MS Paint and save as a file to attach here.

The convert goes as it should, although I am also suddenly having Word 2010 try to install itself every time I click on a .doc file in Scrivener. (I had gotten rid of Word 2010’s attempts to install by telling the system to open .doc with Notepad. The problem is back. I’ve just gone and tried to re-set it and will see if that gets rid of the problem.)

Then, it hands me this error, as attached.

And then creates a blank text file with the name of the file I was trying to import.

I did get my files imported, by saving them to .RTF. But it’s a pain in the neck.

I am using, FYI, Win 7 Pro, and used the clipper to get the screen shot.

DOC files should be converted as part of bringing them into Scrivener, so from this you mean that the installation starts when you select a DOC file to import?

In Tools > Options, click the Import/Export tab and then the “Import converters…” button. Select “DOC” from the list on the left and then “Scrivener” from the list on the right if it’s not already selected. Click OK twice to save the changes and exit out of options, then try the import again. Does that fix it?


No. Sorry.

Do you have a sample document you could share, either here or sending to AT literatureandlatte DOT com? I’ve just done some testing with 1.8 on XP using Word 2002 (Microsoft Office XP Pro) and I’m not having any problems importing DOC files with any of the import converter options. There may be some specific formatting in the documents you’re trying which is causing the problem, so testing with the same file will help narrow down the issue. On the flip side, if the import works in a different test environment, we can focus on your system setup and what might be preventing the import.

I’ll send one. These are part of a story which has been worked on for the last 30 years – it’s TRADITIONAL to do it only at Christmas!

It looks to me like you have a relatively new PC with a trial version of office 2010 “installed”. MS have tricked it out so that if you touch a file that windows recognises as a word or excel format, it tries to install MS Office. That happened to my wife, and the d**n thing would not uninstall. I had to go through the registry and set all the MS word file associations to point to the old version of word (or excel). This is not for the faint hearted, but it may give the programmers something to look for in the code.

As an alternative, right click on each file type (eg .doc, .rtf) that you use, select Open With, scroll down the list to the old version of word (you may need to select “Browse the file system”), check the box that says “always use this program”, and that will set the file association in registry. Once you have done it for a particular file extension, you should not need to do it again - or at least until something triggers the MS Office 2010 install again.

good luck


You are correct. This lap top, a Toshiba, is about 8 months old. I had beaten the stupid installation thingie into submission by pointing my file selections to the old Word which I added. But putting in 1.8 appears to have broken that, and I can’t seem to get it to “take” again.

I try very hard not to poke around in the registry unless I absolutely HAVE to.

An additional piece of strangeness. My files all have the curly quotes in them.

The curly quotes are not coming into Scrivener as Times New Roman, despite the fact that that is what they are in the Word file.

They are coming through in Gill Sans MT Ext Condensed Bold.

Some other oddments and endments are, too. Like any character I’ve entered with Alt+whatever.