Word cannot start the convertor mswrd632

By | 2009-12-15

I have written a command line application that, among other things, converts Word Documents to HTML using the Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word library.

I haven’t used it for a while, and recently had to re-run some conetnt and found this error:

“Word cannot start the convertor mswrd632” occurring quite frequently.

Apparently Microsoft released a security update on 2009-12-08 that prevented some of the access 3rd party programs used to have.

You can re-enable this functionality by:

  1. Open Regedit and browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionApplets
  2. Create a key “Wordpad” if it is not already there (as a child of Applets)
  3. Add a DWORD Value with a name of “AllowConversion” and a value of “1”

Here is an article on technet describing the issue:


And here is the KB article from Microsoft support:


*** Updated 2009-12-21 *** A comment was left suggesting that “Re-enabling the vulnerable converter that is designed to work with WordPad is probably not a good idea.” They give a couple other options that are worth considering before simply opening the door back up. ┬áPlease see the first comment below.

2 thoughts on “Word cannot start the convertor mswrd632

  1. Jeanne Sheldon

    Hello there, Scott – Re-enabling the vulnerable converter that is designed to work with WordPad is probably not a good idea. On machines where Word is installed, there is really no need to have a Word 6 converter for Word files and Word itself has no need for a converter to read Word 6 (Word 6 and Word 95) files. The problem occurs because the Windows converter remains registered as a shared system converter for files with a .DOC extension. When Word sees a file with contents that do not match the extension, it walks through all of the converters that are registered on the system, starting with those that are registered for DOC. Since the Windows converter was rendered non-functional, it throws an error, tossing your automation. There are really three options here. I’ll start from the two that are the most challenging, then end with my favorite. 1. Change your code to handle the error. Word will keep walking through the converters and succeed on the right one. It never did and never will actually use WRD632.WPC. Or, 2. Change the file extension to match the actual content of the file so that Word will not try to open the foreign file with a .DOC converter. 3. Nuke the registration for the WordPad converter (See http://support.microsoft.com/kb/973904).

    Hope this is helpful!

    1. sburton

      Thanks for the information and other options.


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