IBM Support

Error: 'This file is password-protected...' when attempting to open a protected file using Lotus Spreadsheets

Technote (FAQ)


You create a password-protected Microsoft® Excel spreadsheet and when attempting to open the file using Lotus® Spreadsheets, you receive the following error message:

    An error occurred while loading this document. This file is password-protected. Remove the password-protection and reopen the file.

You are never prompted by Lotus Spreadsheets to supply the password to unlock and access the Excel spreadsheet data.


This situation occurs because Excel encrypts these files with the password embedded in the .xls file format. Lotus Spreadsheet do not know the encryption algorithms and is not acquainted with the Excel file format about password protection.


This issue was reported to Quality Engineering as SPR# DLYN74T8S6 and the possibility of a fix is being evaluated for a future release.


Utilize OpenOffice version 2.0 to open the Excel spreadsheet file and save it without password protection. At this point, the file is accessible in Lotus Spreadsheets.

NOTE: OpenOffice 2.0 succeeds in opening the protected data because it locates the password embedded within the .xls file and opens it. You will not be prompted to supply the password to unlock the document using OpenOffice 2.0.

Document information

More support for: IBM Notes
Embedded Symphony

Software version: 8.0

Operating system(s): Linux, Windows

Reference #: 1268062

Modified date: 22 August 2007