5 Ways To Fix Excel OLE Header Corruption

Does the corruption of OLE header prevent you to perform any activity in your Excel file?

We all know it’s very common to encounter such a corruption issue in Excel files. But have you ever questioned yourself, why such corruption issue occurs?

Check out this article to get answers to such questions and to find out the best possible solutions to fix Excel OLE header corruption.

Practical Scenario:

I have several old Excel files that got corrupted when a server had a power surge. I attach one here. They were being used on a Windows 7 client and I have tried to fix it with disk utility, many excel file repair packages on mac and pc and online, tried also opening in alternate software like open office and JMP to no avail. Is there any hope for this data?

Source: https://chandoo.org/forum/threads/corrupt-excel-xls-file-ole-header-corruption.27361/

Why OLE Header Corruption Occurs?

Various causes impart to this OLE header corruption, some of them are listed here:

  • Sudden power cut-off may cause corruption issues.
  • The file is not well supported by the MS Excel version you are currently been using.
  • Unknown virus and malware attack on the MS Excel workbooks.
  • Downloading a corrupted Excel spreadsheet from attachments.
  • Sudden hard disk failure or when the Excel file is kept in such a bad sector of the hard disk.
  • The occurrence of some issue in the operating system that won’t let you open your Excel file.

Whenever the Excel application detects any corrupted Excel workbook on opening, it automatically turns on the file recovery mode to repair the workbook.

If this File Recovery mode won’t start automatically, then use different manual methods to recover Excel workbook.

Note: doing this will set the security option back. So, make sure you don’t open any unsafe files.

How To Fix OLE Header Corruption In Excel?

You can fix or handle the corrupt ole header by following the below manual methods. Some of the manual methods are listed here, so just check that out:

Method 1: MS Excel Open And Repair Feature

Make use of the inbuilt Open and Repair tool to repair corrupt Excel files.

Try the given instruction to do so:

  • Open Excel sheet > click File > Open.
  • Now select the corrupted Excel file
  • And click the arrow next to Open button > Click Open and Repair.

repair corrupt excel file

  • If this is your first attempt for manually recovering workbook > click Repair in the resulting dialog box.

open and repair tool

  • I Hope Excel will repair the file, but if something goes wrong, Excel will not recover any data from the corrupt Excel workbook.
  • Well, in this case, click the second option Extract Data.

However, in many cases, it is seen this fails to repair the severely damaged or corrupted Excel file.

Method 2# Remove The Protected View

Follow the below steps to see your precious .xls data in MS Excel.

  1. Open the Excel application.
  2. Tap the File-> Options from the ribbon.
  3. Hit the Trust Center and then click on the Trust center settings.
  4. Tap the Protected view tab.
  5. Un-tick all the options present within the Protected View dialog box. Make confirmation by pressing the OK button.
  6. Restart your Excel application and try opening the OLE header corrupted Excel.

Note. For complete safety, it’s better to save the document with a new office format i.e. XLSX.

Method 3# Export Personal Macro Workbook

Just like other VBA codes, Excel macros saved in the Personal.xlsb can easily be exported to the .bas file.

For exporting Personal Macro Workbook, perform the following steps:

  • Now hit Alt+F11 to open the Visual Basic Editor (VBE).
  • Now press Ctrl + R to use the Project Explorer > locate module you want to Save
  • And right-click the module name > select Export File

Set the Calculation Method to Manual

  • Close VBE > exit Excel
  • Close the VBA Editor and get out of Excel.
  • For importing .bas file which is shared by someone. Make a right-click on the module present in the PERSONAL.XLSB within which you are willing to store the macros. After then choose the Import File option.

Doing this will help you to recover macros from corrupted Excel file. This solution has worked for many users, so try it.

Method 4 # Recover Lost Excel File With Restore Previous Version Option

This method is very helpful to restore lost Excel spreadsheets. Let’s know how it is to be used?

  • Open the File Explorer on your PC and search for your Excel file.
  • Choose your lost data Excel file and make a right-click over it. From the list of options choose “Properties”.

Recover Lost Excel File With Restore Previous Version Option

  • Tap to the “Previous Versions” tab and after that choose the preferred version in which you want to get back your Excel file.

Recover Lost Excel File With Restore Previous Version Option 1

  • At last click on the “Restore” button.

By using these steps you can restore lost Excel file from older versions of Microsoft windows.

Method 5# Retrieve Lost Excel File With Excel “Recent Option”

You can easily try this method to recover lost Excel file 2016 & 2019 by using a ‘recent’ option. Following are the steps to recover disappeared data in Excel :

  • First, launch MS-Excel and then select the “file” option from the top.
  • Press on “open”

  • Then, select the “recent” option and select on recover unsaved workbook.

recover unsaved workbook

Try Instant Solution To Fix OLE File Header Corruption:

When all these above-listed manual methods fail to work, then also you need not get worried. You can still rectify the OLE file header corruption with the automated solution.

Just use the Excel repair software to fix any type of corruption issue that occurred in the Excel files. With this ultimate utility tool, you can easily repair damaged xls or xlsx file.

The advanced algorithm of this utility tool is well designed to fix any kind of error that occurs due to corruption. The software supports all Excel versions 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016 & 2019. Its user-friendly interface is best for native users. Just try the demo version of this Excel repair software.

* Free version of the product only previews recoverable data.

Steps to Utilize Excel File Recovery Tool:



Hopefully, this post answered all your queries regarding OLE header corruption. I have tries my best to provide every possible detail and solution to fix Excel OLE header corruption.

If, in case you have any additional questions to ask regarding xlsx/xls file recovery, then visit my Repair MS Excel Facebook, Twitter page.

Good Luck….

Priyanka is an entrepreneur & content marketing expert. She writes tech blogs and has expertise in MS Office, Excel, and other tech subjects. Her distinctive art of presenting tech information in the easy-to-understand language is very impressive. When not writing, she loves unplanned travels.