If you encounter the error the file is corrupt and cannot be opened, you might want to try the following steps first before buying any expensive recovery software.
Remove Disk Write Protection
By accident I found out about this. If you get the error the file is corrupt and cannot be opened it could be a problem related to file permissions.
Is the file on an external drive? If so, you should try to remove the disk protection. If you don’t and some process is trying to access the file you might also get the error message The file is corrupt and cannot be opened .
Disable File Protection / Unlock File
Is is an Excel or Outlook file? Try to remove the file protection. There are two guides that might help you to open the “corrupt” file.
- How to unblock locked files (blocked by file protection)
- How to unlock locked files (blocked by process)
Recover Corrupt Excel & Outlook Files
- Excel is unable to read file
- This file is not in a recognizable format
- ‘.xls’ cannot be accessed. The file may be read-only, or you may be trying to access a read-only location or, server the document is stored on may be not responding.
- EXCEL.exe has generated errors and will be closed by Windows. You will need to restart the program. An error log is being created.
Free tips how to recover excel files: