Excel And .tmp Files

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Joined: Nov 20, 2003
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Thu Jun 17, 2004 6:13 pm    Post subject:

I have a user running Windows XP Pro with Office 2000. She’s accessing files on a Windows 2000 server at another location. As she opens an excel file, (for example, sheet.xls) makes changes and then saves and close the file, at times, .tmp files would then appear in the same directory as the excel file. The .tmp file name appears as “sheet.xls~RF5fdee76.TMP”. (It’s always RF and .TMP, but the characters in between changes for different files.) At the same time, if I open Computer Management on the server and look at Open Files, the excel document sheet.xls, is being shown as opened, (although the file has been saved and closed already) with no locks and with an Open Mode as No Access. When I close this file in computer management, the .tmp file in the directory disappears.

At this time, I don’t see this causing problems, but it is annoying to the users who are constantly seeing these .tmp files.

I’ve done numerous searches but I can’t seem to find out why this is happening and how to stop if from happening.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks for you time!
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Joined: Dec 07, 2002
Posts: 35

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 1:16 am    Post subject:

The autosave feature is probably enabled. A backup copy of the worksheet is saved at a predetermined interval that can be change under TOOLS, AUTOSAVE. With this option turned on you can potentially recover a worksheet, or at least up to the point of the last save, if the computer happens to crash. It's saved me a number of times.
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Joined: Jan 14, 2003
Posts: 5065

Location: UK

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 7:52 am    Post subject:

As jaybo said Excel creates tmp files by design. Most applications create tmp files or some sort of temporary file even word does.
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Joined: Jun 18, 2004
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 1:11 pm    Post subject:

Try changing the 'AutoRecover Save location'.

I use Excel XP. In this version the AutoRecover setting is under - 'Tools', 'Options', 'Save' .

Set the location to the local PC's temp location.

This is also helpful in preventing temp file buildup inside the Users profile, which can cause issues whether UserProfile size limitations are in effect, or not.

Accomplish the same setting in Word at - 'Tools', Options', 'File Locations'.

Also remember that these settings are UserProfile specific. You would need to set them for each user, on each PC.
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Joined: Nov 20, 2003
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 1:47 pm    Post subject:

Thanks for your help guys, but it doesn't look like that could be it. In Office 2000, the Autosave is an add-in and this is not installed on the user's machine. A couple other things is that, the .tmp file is not created all the time and it is never created when accessing excel files on another server. Only this one server and at sporadic times.

Thanks again.
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Joined: Jun 18, 2004
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 2:06 pm    Post subject:

Is this installation of Office fully patched?

Does the file contain a Macro(s)? Any 3rd Party add-ins? How about VB Code, in the Excel file, that creates the tmp file?

Have you scanned the PC, and the server share, for Macro type virus's?
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Joined: Nov 20, 2003
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 2:13 pm    Post subject:

I do know there are macros but the user chooses disable each and ever time she opens the spreadsheet. I doubt there is vb code in the sheets, these are just your ordinary accounting users who created the files. I'm pretty sure I scanned the pc in the past, but I will do it again just in case I missed it.

I will have to look into the patches and 3rd party add-ins.

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Joined: Aug 10, 2003
Posts: 1556

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 3:19 pm    Post subject:

Yeah, it autosaves your document periodically as a tmp file, and when you close the file they are deleted. If your computer crashes before you save & close the document, you can recover your document from the tmp file which will still be on the computer.

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Joined: Jun 25, 2004
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Fri Jun 25, 2004 10:45 am    Post subject:


I am having the exact same problem with numerous users on our network. These .xls****.tmp files keep appearing on network shares on only one particular server.

PCs are running Windows XP with Office XP fully updated and serviced packed. I have posted requests on variuos forums. If I find an answer I will post here. I have been trying to solve this problem for a week now!! ahhhhhh! Wink
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Joined: Jun 10, 2004
Posts: 29

PostPosted: Fri Jun 25, 2004 3:21 pm    Post subject:

check this article (if you haven't already):

from experts-exchange:

Try either re-registering Excel :

Close Excel and
Start Button|Run
excel /unregserver

then Start Button|Run
excel /regserver

or maybe:

turn off DDE for XLS files:

Windows Explorer
Tools | Folder Options
File Types
Find XLS in the list
Click into Advanced
Click on Open and Edit
Uncheck "Use DDE" and make sure the "Application Used" entry is something like:

"C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office\EXCEL.EXE" "%1"

complete with the quotes around the path to the program and the %1 bit.
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Joined: Jun 25, 2004
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Tue Jun 29, 2004 10:25 pm    Post subject:


Have solved the problem on the offending machines. I am still puzzled at to what has gone on, but since the desktops running XP I restored the settings to a previous restore point before these files were appearing. This was a last resort.

I tried what Threenorns suggested but this did not solve the issue.

I know this does not give us any indication to what caused these files to appear, but at least they have stopped appearing for now. Fingers crossed!!

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Joined: Jul 29, 2005
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Sat Jul 30, 2005 12:48 am    Post subject:

Just a thought - backup software. We have set up synchronization of certain directories between two locations. Synchronization takes place every 5 minutes. If users are in excel files, the AA000 type files and ~tmp ~xxx.tmp files are created.
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