Microsoft Word For Mac Not Working After Update

11/27/2021by admin


Office 365 ProPlus is being renamed to Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise. For more information about this change, read this blog post.


Existing Office 2016 for Mac customers will be seamlessly upgraded to 64-bit versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneNote as part of the August product release (version 15.25). This affects customers of all license types: Retail, Office 365 Consumer, Office 365 Commercial, and Volume License installations.

A bunch of my apps stopped working after Catalina, including all my paid Microsoft apps - I know they are old but I still paid $100 for them and no free update to replace them after the update. Question: Q: Microsoft Word not working after Catalina update More Less Apple Footer This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. If you downloaded Office from the Mac App Store, and have automatic updates turned on, your apps will update automatically. But you can also manually download the updates: Open the Mac App Store from your Dock or Finder. Click Updates on the left side menu, then click Update All, or the Update button next to the apps that you want to update. Open Microsoft Word. In the top toolbar, select Help and click “Check for Updates.” Install the update if there is one. Additionally, you can turn on Microsoft auto-updates using the same dialogue box so that whenever Microsoft Office detects a new version, it will offer you an opportunity to install it. Another way to update Microsoft. After reading this guide, you would be able to fix issues like Microsoft Word won't open on Mac for sure. We have come up with three working solutions on Word won't open on Mac problems and have provided a stepwise solution on how to open Word on Mac.

Deployment options for the 64-bit update

AutoUpdate (MAU)

Customers who use Microsoft AutoUpdate (MAU) to keep their Office applications up-to-date will see a 'regular' monthly update notification when their selected channel is upgraded to 64-bit builds. Depending on which version is installed on the local computer, MAU will offer either a delta or full update. The update package size does not change between 32-bit and 64-bit versions. Also, MAU can deliver a delta update when applicable to update a user from 32-bit to 64-bit applications. Therefore, customers won't experience a sharp increase in download activity. For the release to the Production channel, customers will see '(64-bit)' in the update title to make them aware that this is a 64-bit update.

For information about how to use the MAU, see Check for Office for Mac updates automatically.

Manual updates

The August release of Office for Mac is available for manual download. The following file provides a 64-bit package to replace existing 32-bit applications with 64-bit variants during installation:

Download the Microsoft Office 2016 for Mac August update package now.

Virus-scan claim

Microsoft scanned this file for viruses, using the most current virus-detection software that was available on the date that the file was posted. The file is stored on security-enhanced servers that help prevent any unauthorized changes to it.

Volume License Service Center

Volume License customers typically get their Office 2016 software from the Volume License Service Center (VLSC). These builds are refreshed infrequently and are typically aligned with new language editions. The VLSC will continue to offer 32-bit installers (15.23) until November 2016. However, all updater packages that are released after August will be based on 64-bit builds. Therefore, a VLSC customer who updates either manually or through AutoUpdate will be transitioned to 64-bit builds.

More Information

64-bit only

The Mac operating system has been 64-bit for several years. Unlike for Windows, there's no choice between running a 32-bit or 64-bit version of the Mac operating system. Similarly, we won't offer a choice between 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Office 2016 for Mac. After each 'channel' is transitioned per the rollout schedule, only 64-bit builds will be available.

Effect on third-party applications and add-ins

Microsoft Word For Mac Not Working After Update Download

The transition to 64-bit Office for Mac was announced in April 2016. IT Pros will want to understand which compiled add-ins are deployed to the users whom they manage so that they can assess the effect of the upgrade. The following Microsoft Office website summarizes the issues that affect the more common add-ins that are used together with Office 2016 for Mac:

Tools for inspecting product architecture

To verify the architecture of an Office application (that is, to understand whether you have a 32-bit or 64-bit build), start the application, open the Activity Monitor, and then enable the Kind column.

You can also use the file command in a terminal session to inspect the binary. For this use, type file -N <path of binary>.This method can be used with for any binary file, including third-party add-ins.

The file command returns one of three values.

Return valueMeaning
Mach-O 64-bit executable x86_6464-bit binary
Mach-O executable i38632-bit binary
Mach-O 64-bit executable x86_64FAT binary (compatible with both 32-bit and 64-bit processes)
Mach-O executable i386FAT binary (compatible with both 32-bit and 64-bit processes)

Options for reverting to 32-bit installations

There may be situations in which the customer has to change code that's not 64-bit ready. If customers can't immediately move forward to 64-bit builds, we will make available a one-time 32-bit update for the 15.25 release in addition to the default 64-bit updates. The 32-bit updates will be available only for manual download from the Office CDN.

The latest 32-bit release of Office 2016 for Mac (15.25.160818) can be downloaded from


Customers who manually install the 32-bit release won't be offered the 64-bit version of 15.25 through MAU. However, MAU will offer the 64-bit version of 15.26 in September 2016. Therefore, customers have a limited time to remain on 32-bit builds.

If a customer has already upgraded to the 64-bit update of Office for Mac 15.25 and wants to revert to the 32-bit version, follow these steps:

  1. Exit all open Office 2016 applications.
  2. Start Safari, and then browse to to start the download of the 32-bit installer.
  3. Double-click the downloaded package, and then follow the instructions.

The 64-bit installation has a build date of 160817. The 32-bit version has a build date of 160818.

Is there anything more frustrating than typing lag or slow-loading documents when you’re on a deadline? Unfortunately, while Microsoft Office (now known as Microsoft 365) is one of the most widely used application suites for all kinds of projects in the modern office, it doesn't always show excellent performance.

When Microsoft Office slows down, showing you spinning wheels and requiring long wait times, it breaks your flow and concentration, ultimately affecting your productivity.

Upgrade Microsoft Word For Mac

Thankfully, there are a few proven ways to speed up Microsoft Office on your Mac, and most of them are as simple as tidying up. If Marie Kondo has taught us anything, it’s that clutter can cause unnecessary stress in life. And this applies to hard drives as well!

Why is Microsoft Office slow?

While there are a few different symptoms indicating that Microsoft Office isn’t doing its best, such as a painfully slow opening of a program or Microsoft Word slow typing, the question stands: why is Microsoft Word so slow?

There are a variety of reasons Microsoft Office may run slowly, freeze, or cause the much-dreaded typing lag. Often, the issue stems from a build-up of corrupted or temporary files that are meant to be automatically deleted but, for whatever reason, have failed to do so. Of course, the application suite could also be out of date or attempt to load corrupted files. But, very likely, it’s just a large number of small problems that have snowballed and are now causing noticeable issues. Here’s how you can fix it.

Refresh go-to templates

The template file is created by Microsoft Word and stored automatically on your computer. It saves all the default settings of the application. So each time you change your settings, the preference is added to This way, the next time Microsoft Word opens a new document, your preferred settings load automatically. However, if your file becomes corrupted or too complex to load, it can make Microsoft Word slow.

Deleting the existing file will force Microsoft Word to create a new one. Starting fresh will be easy for most users, as most of us don’t stray too far from the default settings. However, for those who change their default settings in complex ways, make sure you back up your normal dot files to a flash drive to avoid losing important settings permanently.

To find and delete manually:

  1. Quit MS Word and open Finder.
  2. Type into the search field.
  3. Wait for all results to load. It’s not uncommon to have more than one file. They may also appear as normal.dotm.
  4. Select all and normal.dotm files and delete them.
  5. Empty your Trash.
Microsoft Word For Mac Not Working After Update

Finally, reload the application and see if the process has managed to speed up Microsoft Word.

Delete temporary files

All Microsoft Office programs will create temporary files to prevent you from losing your work. However, if the automatic removal of these files fails, they can build up and make Microsoft Office slow.

You can easily seek out and remove these files:

  1. Determine which temporary files you want to delete. Microsoft’s website lists different types of temporary files that Microsoft Office produces automatically. The files you are looking for will be searchable using the trine sign ~*.doc, ~*.dot, or ~*.tmp.
  2. Use Finder to search for files with ~*.doc or another marker.
  3. Select files to delete.
  4. Drag them to the Trash and empty it.

Once you are done, reload the application to see if that did speed up Microsoft Word.

Keep Microsoft Office updated

Having an outdated version of Microsoft Office will eventually cause it to run slowly. Luckily, updating the suite is very easy:

  1. Open Microsoft Word.
  2. In the top toolbar, select Help and click “Check for Updates.”
  3. Install the update if there is one.

Additionally, you can turn on Microsoft auto-updates using the same dialogue box so that whenever Microsoft Office detects a new version, it will offer you an opportunity to install it.

Another way to update Microsoft Office is to download the latest one from the Microsoft website directly. But before you do, check that it’s fully compatible with your version of macOS.

Reset the application to default settings

Over time, all Mac apps accumulate lots of unneeded preferences that constantly rewrite each other. A good way to rule out that there’s anything wrong with the app is to do a factory reset — bring the app back to the state when it was brand new.

You can do a factory reset in two ways:

  1. Go to Finder.
  2. Press Shift-Command-G to open the Go to Folder menu.
  3. Enter ~/Library and click Go.
  4. Look for Microsoft Office files in the results.
  5. Delete all of them but the app itself.

Alternatively, you can do the same thing quicker and more thoroughly with the CleanMyMac X uninstaller utility:

  1. Download CleanMyMac X with a free trial.
  2. Go to the Uninstaller tab.
  3. Select Microsoft Office and choose Reset.
  4. Click on the Reset button.

Delete and reinstall Microsoft Office

The old IT adage “have you tried turning it off and back on?” applies here, but in this case, it’s about deleting the application and reinstalling it. To completely delete Microsoft Office, you will need to remove files from two different places on your computer: delete the app first and then find your Library folder in Finder to see the associated files that need to be removed.

  1. Head to the Applications folder and move Microsoft Office or Microsoft 365 to the Trash.
  2. Press Shift-Command-G and navigate ~/Library/Containers
  3. From Containers, move the following associated files to the Trash:
  4. Open the Group Containers folder as well and remove the following files:
    • UBF8T346G9.Office
    • UBF8T346G9.OfficeOsfWebHost
  5. Finally, remove Microsoft Office from the Dock and restart your Mac.

Once removed, head back to the Microsoft website, sign in to your account, and install the latest version.

Optimize documents for storage

Keeping Microsoft Office functioning properly means saving documents in their most optimized state. Resizing large images or graphics and not overloading your files with macros will help you maintain speedy performance in the long run.

Speed up Microsoft Office automatically in minutes

While all the above maintenance will help you speed up Microsoft Office, it can be time-consuming and finicky. Troubleshooting your app version, deleting and refreshing templates, and searching for temporary files is manual work and could eat up a few hours.

Word For Mac Not Working After Update

To make things easy, you can use optimization software like CleanMyMac X, which will automatically detect and remove temporary and unused files to get your Microsoft Office running smoothly. Here’s how to do it:

Microsoft Word For Mac Not Working After Update 2017

  1. Download CleanMyMac X.
  2. Drag it into your Applications folder.
  3. Open it and run a general Smart Scan to start.
  4. Then run Optimization and Maintenance scans (which you can choose from the left-side panel) to target specific areas, such as freeing up RAM and reviewing your login items.
  5. Repeat the process every month or so.

While following the above method of optimizing your Mac with CleanMyMac X is enough to remove any unnecessary clutter, the app’s sidebar menu offers even more options for increasing your Mac's speed and a handy uninstaller for quick and thorough uninstallations of apps you don’t need anymore.

Microsoft Word For Mac Not Working After Update 10

Ultimately, there are several ways to get Microsoft Office to run smoothly again. And although it’s entirely possible to manually do most of the cleanup manually, using an app like CleanMyMac X is a much faster and easier way to get rid of junk and ensure that your Mac performs at top speed.

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