Windows 7/Vista trouble with SharePoint’s Explorer view and Office documents – freezing or prompting for user credentials

March 25th, 2010 | Categories: SharePoint

If you’re having trouble with editing Office documents from SharePoint in Windows 7 or Vista, here’s one reason and fix:

Reasons (besides Windows7 and Vista):

  1. WebClient service not started
  2. SharePoint domain has dots (.) in the name
  3. Your IE is trying to resolve LAN/Proxy settings


Important! Part of solution is also modifying your registry. Please if you’re not sure how to modify registry, get help from an expert. I will not assume any responsibility for possible errors that may result from editing your registry. This solution is not done on server, but on every client that has this kind of trouble.

1. Tell your WebClient Service to where to provide your credentials. By default the WebClient service provides credentials only to sites that don’t have dots in url – presuming they’re in your intranet. Any SharePoint site that has dots in url is presumed in Internet for WebClient. Here’s how:

  1. Using registry editor, open the following registry subkey:
  2. Next create new Multi-String Value (menu Edit –> New –> Multi-String Value)
  3. Name the value AuthForwardServerList
  4. After the key has been created, modify its value (Right click it and select Modify).
  5. Enter full URLs of your SharePoint sites (one per line).
  6. Save and exit registry editor.
  7. If you use Windows Vista, you have to request a special hotfix for this resolution to work.

Detailed instructions and hotfix request available on Microsoft Support site.

2. Start / Restart WebClient Service

  1. Open the "Run" prompt (key combination Start+R)
  2. Type services.msc and press Enter.
  3. Locate WebClient service
  4. Make sure your service startup mode is set to automatic (right click it, select "Properties", and under "General" tab select "Automatic" from the "Startup Type" dropdown"
  5. Start the service or restart it if it’s already running. (restart in any case for step 1 to take effect).

This part is summed from this link (at the end)

UPDATE: Another reason could be auto-detection of proxy if there is none present.

The way to turn this off is in Internet Explorer:

  1. In Tools select Internet options.
  2. Select Connections tab
  3. click Lan settings button
  4. under Automatic configuration clear the Automatically detect settings checkbox.