MS Hidden Data Removal tool not ready for prime time

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Microsoft’s “Remove Hidden Data” add-in is currently a mess.

I warned ya last week.

Microsoft’s “Remove Hidden Data” add-in is a mess. The add-in is supposed to strip all that potentially embarrassing hidden text out of Office files. In fact, it does a pretty good job most of the time, but it’s riddled with errors. Microsoft posted a Knowledge Base article with 15 known bugs. You folks have written to me with several more:

Dozens of you wrote to say that after installing the tool, Word, on exit, always says that “Changes have been made that affect the global template…”, even though no changes were made.

Office Watch reader JB went on to say: “now I can’t get rid of the “Remove Hidden Data…” item in the File menu (I tried using “ctrl-alt -” to delete the menu item but that didn’t work. The menu line doesn’t do anything but I just can’t seem to get rid of it.”

JDV: “You have to save the original file immediately before using the removal tool. Even if you have just opened the original file and haven’t made any changes. Also, it seems to have a memory leak or something. After about 3 – 5 uses, I usually get an “out of memory or disk space” error message when attempting to name the new file. Restarting Word clears the problem.”

AS writes that he tried to install it, but got the message “This product cannot be installed on this computer. This product requires Windows 2000 or later.” If you check the KB article, you’ll see that MS claims “The installation and the use of the Remove Hidden Data add-in on Microsoft Windows 2000 have not been tested by Microsoft.” So what is it?

CS writes: “Right out of the box it stalled on my first document.”

And so it goes….

 

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