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An exec error may appear when an executable file with an EXE extension encounters a problem or has corrupt data that prevents it from loading and running. Examples of Exec error messages are "Fatal Exec. Engine Error," "Compile error in hidden module: AutoExec" and "Excel has performed an error in module excel.exe and will be closed." Exec errors occur when saving a program with an EXE file name extension. They are caused by improperly installing or uninstalling software, cookies and temporary files stored by an Internet browser, third-party browser extensions and incompatible spyware or computer anti-virus software. Installing Software o Every time you install or uninstall a program on your computer, you are changing the PC's registry. If this is done without first creating a Restore Point or the System Registry is not changed by the PC when the program is uninstalled, it can cause Exec errors to occur. This can be fixed by downloading Microsoft Security Essentials and running the program (see Resources). Exec Engine Error o A fatal execution engine error happens when an app attempts to access an Exception object in a scripting engine. Usually this occurs when the wrong apps or programs have been added to the "Startup items" list in the "System Configuration Utility" of the computer. This can be fixed by going to the "Start" menu. Type "MSCONFIG" into the search text box and press "Enter." The System Configuration Utility will open. Click the "Startup" tab to go to the "Startup Items" list. The programs and apps listed in the Startup Items list are loaded by the computer whenever it is turned on. Click on the arrow to expand the column. Examine the list and begin a process of elimination by unchecking one startup item to disable it. Restart your computer and continue unchecking the programs until the computer starts up and you no longer get the Exec error. Uninstall the app or program that is causing the error. Adobe o Some Adobe users will encounter the Exec error when attempting to run Microsoft Office or Microsoft Excel. This is caused by the startup folder of Office or Excel containing the Adobe Acrobat PDFMaker add-in template files Pdfmaker.dot and Pdfmaker.xla. This can be resolved by downloading the Adobe PDF maker updates from Adobe.com, or moving the PDFmaker.dot and Pdfmaker.xla files out of the Excel or Office Startup folder and into the My Documents folder. Other Causes o Clear all of the cookies and temporary files from your Internet browser cache as this may be the cause of the Exec error. Another cause of the error is Norton AntiVirus software. Download updates for Norton AntiVirus from Symantec.com or uninstall the software and download Microsoft Security Essentials, which has anti-virus software on it. An alternative is to download a free open source anti-virus software such as Avast! from Avast.com.