22 May

Word cannot start the spelling checker

Problem

When you open a certain document in Word for Mac 2011, you get the following error:

“Word cannot start the spelling checker. The spelling checker files may be missing. Make sure the spelling checker files are installed or use the Microsoft Office Installer to install the spelling checker.”

Cause

The document may have been originally created from another version of Word and contain incompatible formatting.

Solution

If you cannot quit Word:

  1. Press cmd + alt + Esc to show the Force Quit window.
  2. In the list, click Microsoft Word.
  3. Click the Force Quit button.

Update Microsoft Office 2011:

  1. Open Word.
  2. On the top menu, click Help, then Check for Updates.
  3. Click the Check for Updates button.
  4. Install all available updates until there are no more.

If that doesn’t work:

  1. Open a blank document in Word.
  2. On the top menu, click Word, then Preferences.
  3. On the first row, click Spelling and Grammar.
  4. Under the Spelling heading, uncheck “Check spelling as you type”.
  5. Under the Grammar heading, uncheck “Check grammar as you type”.
  6. Click OK.
  7. Open the document that you were previously having trouble with.
  8. Press cmd + A to select all text in the document.
  9. On the top menu, click Tools, then click Language.
  10. Select your preferred language in the list and click OK.
  11. Save the document.
  12. If you wish, you can revert the settings that you changed in steps 4 and 5.

35 Responses to Word cannot start the spelling checker

  1. Thank you so much!!!!!! you saved my day!!!!

  2. it helps!! thank u so much i was so helpless 🙁 !!

  3. thank you so much!!

  4. it was very helpful thank you

  5. AWESOME!!!!!! THANKS FOR YOUR HELP

  6. Many thanks, you helped me very much

  7. great help!! thanks a million

  8. Thanks alot! it solved my problem!

  9. I have tried your advice, but when I re open my word application the same file opens and the same warning appears: “Word cannot start the spelling checker. The spelling checker files may be missing. Make sure the spelling checker files are installed or use the Microsoft Office Installer to install the spelling checker.” I tried to change the file from its location, but it does not work, please help!

  10. YOU JUST SAVED MY LIFE. THIS WAS SO HELPFUL! THANK YOU!!

  11. kalyani ajrekar September 12, 2013 at 12:25

    thanks a million for this help ! may the Lord bless you !!

  12. Awesome, it worked great. Thank you

  13. I have problem: “Word cannot start the spelling checker. The spelling checker files may be missing……”
    I tried to follow the instruction given. But the problem I cannot open Word, as soon as I opened it, this message is attached simultaneously and then I have to force quit again. I tried to go to Preference but this is disabled. What can I do?

  14. I tried but to no avail…! The same document opens up whenever I reboot my mac, I tried using the Force Quite Button, which does close the word, but when I open word again, the same document appears on the screen with the same popup icon which states: “Word cannot start the spell checker….use the Microsoft Office Installer to install the spelling checker.”

    Is there any other way for the Word to work again? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Sincerely,

  15. thank you so much. this is a great information.

  16. Awesome.. The best way ever…. Great infromation, U just make my days… THANKS!!!

  17. Thanks you so much 😀

  18. This was so good. Thanks guys. Keep up the good work in saving lives.

  19. it helps !!! thank you !!

  20. Thank you very much for the breakdown instructions. They were really helpful! 🙂

  21. U SAVED MY LIFE AND MY WORK THANK YOU SO MUCH! 😀

  22. It has worked in solving the problem. Thank you for saving me, my job was at stake. Be blessed.

  23. Perfect! Thanks! 😀

  24. Thanks very much

  25. thanks a ton… i was frustrated as hell

  26. Thank so you. It’s working for me.

  27. Thank you so much.

  28. Thank you!! since yesterday I have been facing this problem 🙂

  29. It is working, thanks…..

  30. Thank you so much ! You helped me !

  31. thanks for the super helpful tricks

  32. tks very much.

  33. Thanks !! It’s helpful !!

  34. I just encountered this problem. I just deleted the word document that caused it. Now it`s working fine.

  35. Thank you for the solution.

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