Excel 2016 for Mac when launched it says open last saved file or cancel, then it opens the new file.

Occasional Contributor



Am facing an issue on excel 2016 for Mac .

That is every time a launch an excel it throws an error message says open last saved file or cancel,

If I say open then it opens up all the file which are in recent list which becomes totally mess.if I say cancel then it launches a new excel.



Kindly suggest a solution for the same.




21 Replies
best response confirmed by EUC Lead (Occasional Contributor)

My issue got fixed using the below procedure thanks for Richard.





Please try make sure you have data back.


If you want to try something that has worked for me and someone else I'll share this with you. Just please understand that all of your preferences for Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook will be removed and you will have to reset them.

Before starting the process you must quit all Office applications, including Outlook, Excel, Word and PowerPoint... and remember "closing" is not "quitting" on a Mac. If you are unsure about whether an Office application is still running it would be best if you restarted your computer. You will also need to know your sign in ID for your Microsoft Office account if you obtained it via an Office365 subscription.

When you are ready, go to this location and move to the trash the MicrosoftRegistrationDB.reg file that is located there. This is a locked file so you will need to confirm your request to delete it.

/Users/<your  home directory name>/Library/Group Containers/UBF8T346G9.Office

Now restart Word and when it opens it will display the document gallery page and you will notice that you are not signed in. You should go ahead and do that with your Microsoft Office sign-in ID.

Your recent list will probably be empty but go ahead and start a new document and save it. Quit Word and reopen it and then check the Recent List. Hopefully it will have repopulated with at least some of your previous files and also hopefully it will continue to do so.

Please let us know if this helps.

Richard V. Michaels
Author of productivity add-ins for Mac-Office and Win-Office.

This worked for me, and I'm running Office 365 for Mac with latest updates of the OS and Office 365. Thanks!

I cannot find the directory you mention in your post.....nor the file. Can you help further? This message is driving me crazy!

When you are ready, go to this location and move to the trash the MicrosoftRegistrationDB.reg file that is located there.


Hi Rosalina,


I just successfully completed the instructions by going to /Users/<your  home directory name>/Library/Group Containers/


and deleted the UBF8T346G9.Office file followed by restarting Word and logging back in to my Office 365 subscription.


After doing so my Excel problem disappeared :-)


Succes! Cheers Barend


I cannot find the subdirectories under USER that are mentioned here. Could that file be in another location?

Hi Carrie,

Try opening a new terminal window and copy+paste this below command (all in a single line) exactly at the prompt

rm $HOME/Library/Group\ Containers/UBF8T346G9.Office/MicrosoftRegistrationDB.reg



open a Finder window and search for "MicrosoftRegistrationDB.reg" selecting "This Mac" as the scope for search. It can help identify the file on your system if it exists.

Ok...thank you. You second suggestion worked. I really appreciate it.

Thank you that worked after multiple other suggestions from different forums didn't work. Strange thing it showed last updated in 2015 when it is 2018. I deleted the file opened up and it showed the new file for today and no more window asking for recovering old file. Hooray and thank you!

I've followed these steps but it did not work.


Once I opened Excel/Word again I was still logged in from the previous registration and the same files continued to open.


Ideas on next steps?

Excellent procedure.  Quick fix for a problem I have been struggling with for a few days.

Many thanks,


I am running Mac (Dec2014), Office 365 all latest updates etc, had issue on both Excel and word, although word had more spinning wheels then opening loads of old auto recovered files and previous files. followed steps, worked for me. (been driving me nuts for 2 months)

Just do this one file, that does the trick, no need to delete everything in the folder and remove all your preferences.

Be careful -- following this advice will delete your entire Outlook:Mac email database.

If you can't see the location in Finder; go to your Home directory in Finder, then on the Finder "View" menu, click "Show View Options", and then, in the View Options window, check the box for "Show Library Folder" (toward the bottom).

The Library folder when then appear and you'll be able to find the path to the file you need!


Your mantra whilst doing this is: "Macs are easy."