“There was a Problem Sending the Command to the Program” Excel Error

Windows users experience the "there was a problem sending the command to the program excel'' error. Learn how to solve this error by disabling it.

Typically, Windows users experience “there was a problem sending the command to the program excel” error. So, you are not alone. Windows usually send commands to the MS Office using the Dynamic Data Exchange. However, when Windows OS fails to connect with Microsoft Excel, then this annoying error is triggered. 

When you click, OK, the problem is solved. However, the error pops up again when you restart your PC. Take note that if the error persists every time you open a file, then you must resolve the issue. 

This guide demonstrates how users of excel can solve there was a problem sending the command to the program excel effortlessly.

How to fix there was a problem sending command to the program in excel


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Fix there was a Problem Sending the Command to the Program Error

“There was a problem sending a command to the program” usually indicates that a window has failed to connect with the MS Office Applications (such as Excel, Word or Access database etc.) in the process of sending DDE (Dynamic Data Exchange) commands to the MS Office applications. When this error occurs every time you try to access your Excel file try the following solutions:

Solution 1: Disable or Uncheck Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE)

According to the users of Windows, the Dynamic Data Exchange may cause there was a problem Sending the command to the program excel 2007, 2010 and 2016. 

The good news is that you can permanently disable this command.

 Follow these quick steps:

  1. First, open Excel Microsoft Office Program causing this error
  2. Next, click the File menu and select Options
  3. Now, from the Excel Options dialogue windowclick Advanced
  4. Scroll down to the “General” section. 
  5. After that, uncheck the “Ignore other applications that use Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE)
  6. Click OK to confirm the changes and then restart your Office program .
How to disable DDE in excel

Tip: If the option is already unchecked, enable it and restart your Office application. Then disable it.

Double-clicking an Excel spreadsheet using Windows OS sends a Dynamic Data Exchange command to Excel. Usually, the command is an instruction to open the needed Excel file that you have double-clicked.

If you select “Ignore other applications that use DDE” all the commands sent to DDE by Windows are ignored. As a result, Excel fails to open the document you require, and the error pops up. 

Go to solution two if the steps stipulated above fail to remove the program error.

Solution 2: Change other Excel Program settings

If disabling the DDE option fails to work, you can still change a few settings and see if they solve the error. Now, you need not change all the options at once. Instead, replace them one by one and be sure to confirm if the settings work.

  1. First, open Microsoft Excel Program.
  2. Click the File Menu.
  3. On the Excel Options, select the Trust Center.
    Trust center
  4. Now, click the Trust Center Settings
  5. Select External Content from the Trust Center dialogue box
  6. Ensure that you enable both the security settings for Data Connections and Workbook links.
    Trust center settings
  7.  Click OK to confirm the changes. 


If this option does not work, proceed to save the following changes:

  1. First, select Trust Center from the Excel Options.
  2. Next, click Trust Center Settings.
  3. From the Trust Center dialogue box Window, select Macros Settings.
  4. Now, on the Macro Settings, select Enable all macros (not recommended; potentially dangerous code can run) Option.
  5. Also, check the Trust access to the VBA project object model checkbox.


  • Click OK to confirm the changes and resolve the error. 

If changing trust center settings fails to work, then disable hardware acceleration in the advanced settings. 

  1. First, click Options from the Excel File Menu.
  2. Now, an Excel Options dialogue box Window opens.
  3. Click on Advanced
  4. Under the display section, check “Disable hardware graphics acceleration” box.
    Disable hardware graphics accelerator
  5. Click OK to save changes and fix the error. 

The good news is that this problem will resolve your error. However, the bad news is that your performance will drop significantly.

However, if the problem fails to resolve, uncheck this option and try the next solution. 

Solution 3: Disable "Run as an Administrator" Option

At other times the error occurs if the "Run as administrator" option is enabled in the Excel program. When there was a problem sending the command to the program excel 2010, 2007 and 2016, follow these simple steps: 

  1. Type the name of the problematic program on the Start Menu.
  2. For this scenario, type Microsoft Excel.
  3. Right-click on Microsoft Excel and select the Properties option.
  4. If you can't access Properties, select Open file location from the drop-down menu.
    Open file location
  5. Another window opens. Select and right-click on Excel. 
  6. From the drop-down menu, select the Properties option. 
  7. Now, click on Compatibility from the Excel Properties dialogue box 
  8. Disable all options including “Run this program as an administrator”
  9. Click OK to confirm changes and fix the error.
fix error

Solution 4: Repair Microsoft Office

Sometimes, if your MS Office is damaged, then there was a problem sending the command to the program error occurs. When this error occurs, it is advisable to repair the Microsoft Office. 

It is easy to repair your Microsoft Office if there was a problem sending the command to the program excel 2016. Once you’re done, confirm if the solution helps. These steps are also applicable to Excel 2007 and 2010. 

  1. First, in the search box, type Programs, and Features and hit Enter
  2. Next, select the Microsoft Office, causing this annoying error. Right-click and select Change 
  3. After that, click on Repair and then click the Continue Button

However, if this solution fails, consider uninstalling your Microsoft Office. One of the best free software tools is IObit Uninstaller. Removing Office ensures that all the errors are permanently fixed. After that, be sure to reinstall your Office.   

Solution 5: Disable your Anti-Virus Software 

If there was a problem sending the command to the program excel 2007, your anti-virus might be the cause. The answer is, therefore, to disable the software temporarily. 

If you don’t have software like Norton, disable your Windows defender.

  1. On the Start menu, type Windows Defender and open
  2. A Windows Defender window opens
  3. Click on Settings and disable real-time protection

If this fails to fix the problem, then consider removing your anti-virus permanently.

Nonetheless, consider changing your anti-virus if this solution solves the error. 

Solution 6: Switch Off Excel Add-ins

Although Add-ins create exciting features in Excel, at times, they cause such command errors. We’d advise that you turn off all excel add-ins if you’re experiencing such a problem. Follow these steps:

  1. Launch your Microsoft Excel Program displaying the error
  2. Click File menu and select Options
  3. On the Excel Options, Dialogue box window click Add-Ins
  4. At the bottom of the window, Select COM Add-ins on the Manage section
  5. Click on Go
  6. From the available list given, clear one of the COM Add-ins and click OK
    COM add ins
  7. Now double click on the Excel workbook or sheet to restart the program
  8. If the problem continues, click another available add-in in the COM Add-ins list

However, if the error persists after trying all the available COM add-ins, use Excel Add-ins

  1. Click on File from your Excel Worksheet
  2. Select Options and Click Add-Ins
  3. Now, an Excel Options dialogue box window opens. 
  4. On the manage sections, select Excel Add-Ins 
  5. Click on Go
  6. An Adds-in Window pops up. Disable all the add-ins to confirm if these add-ins cause the error
    excel add ins
  7. If these add-ins are the cause, then enable the available Add-ins one by one to identify the problematic Add-in.
  8. Click OK once you’re through.
  9. Finally, click OK again to confirm the changes.



That said, you have successfully learned to solve there was a problem sending the command to the program excel. The problem is common to all users of Windows, so you need not panic. When the error occurs, choose any solution in this guide and solve it in the comfort of your home. Learn more about Microsoft Office errors Here

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