Exchange Server 2019 and Office Web App Server Error: “Sorry, there was a problem and we can’t open this document”

If you are using Exchange Server 2019, running on Windows Server 2019 and Office Online Server (Office Web Apps) running on Windows Server 2016 or older operating systems, you will get an error as shown below:

“Sorry, there was a problem and we can’t open this document. If this happens again, try opening the document in Microsoft Word.”

Step 01: Enable OOS ULS Logging

To troubleshoot the above, we need to enable logging on the Office Online Server (OOS). Please follow the steps to enable logging.

  1. Open up PowerShell and run the below command to enable logging.

    Set-OfficeWebAppsFarm -LogVerbosity “High”

  2. Restart the Office Online service by running the below command.

Restart-Service WACSM -force

Step 02: Check Logs

Upon going through the logs, map your Session ID with the log lines. In my case, the error noted a .NET exception where the connection was forcibly closed by the remote host, which is the Exchange Server.

ServiceHostLoader.GetCheckedBaseDocument: Caught a FileUnknownException: Microsoft.Office.Web.Common.EnvironmentAdapters.FileUnknownException: WOPI Check File —> Microsoft.Office.Web.Common.EnvironmentAdapters.UnexpectedErrorException: HttpRequest failed. —> Microsoft.Office.Web.Common.HttpRequestAsyncException: No Response in WebException —> System.Net.WebException: The underlying connection was closed: An unexpected error occurred on a send. —> System.IO.IOException: Unable to read data from the transport connection: An existing connection was forcibly closed by the remote host. —> System.Net.Sockets.SocketException: An existing connection was forcibly closed by the remote host

Step 03: Enable TLS and .NET Strong Encryption

Exchange Server 2019 only supports TLS v1.2 along with enhanced ciphers and hashing algorithms. Since the older operating systems may not be enabled with these settings, we need to manually enable them through registry.

  1. Verify that same TLS versions are enabled on both Office Online Server and Exchange Servers
  2. Backup the following registry paths
    1. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\.NETFramework\v4.0.30319
    2. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\.NETFramework\v4.0.30319
  3. Change/Add new DWORD using below

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\.NETFramework\v4.0.30319]

    “SchUseStrongCrypto”=dword:00000001

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\.NETFramework\v4.0.30319]

    “SchUseStrongCrypto”=dword:00000001

  4. Restart the Office Online service by running the below command.

    Restart-Service WACSM -force

That’s it. Now you should be able to see the documents and spreadsheets as expected.

Step 04: Disable OOS ULS Logging

To troubleshoot the above, we need to enable logging on the Office Online Server (OOS). Please follow the steps to enable logging.

  1. Open up PowerShell and run the below command to enable logging.

    Set-OfficeWebAppsFarm -LogVerbosity “”

  2. Restart the Office Online service by running the below command.

Restart-Service WACSM -force

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