We recently had a Support Ticket raised under the SharePoint banner that reported when some users hovered over a Contact Card in SharePoint, it caused Internet Explorer to “stop working”:

PF_Internet Explorer Crashing with Lync Contact Card_01

  • Immediately, I questioned the possibility of SharePoint being the root cause as it wasn’t affecting every user, unless they logged onto the same device. The issue was easily replicated and consistent in behaviour. In my experience, this pattern points to a problem with the device, browser or add-ons. Moreover, the Application Event Log had a “faulting application” entry (see bottom of this post). The environment in question was IE-only so I figured disabling the add-ons was the next logical step. From IE, click “Tools > Manage Add-ons” and find “NameCtrl Class” from the list. Highlight the row and then click Disable.

PF_Internet Explorer Crashing with Lync Contact Card_02

  • Although IE no longer displays a user’s Lync presence, it was a successful workaround as IE no longer crashed.

PF_Internet Explorer Crashing with Lync Contact Card_03

  • Let’s have a closer look at that add-on then. I was still sure SharePoint wasn’t at fault but as anyone who has worked with SharePoint in anger will tell you; never rule it out :) From the Manage Add-ons dialog, select the same row we just disabled in the previous step and right-click it. Select “More Information” from the context menu. We can see from the add-on Properties that it is part of the Office installation and is using ActiveX. Phew! Still happy it’s not a SharePoint issue.

PF_Internet Explorer Crashing with Lync Contact Card_04

  • I was lucky enough to have a sandbox machine that was able to replicate the problem so I dived right in and carried out a Repair installation of Office. For the sake of brevity, I will not cover the steps required but basically you can do it through “Control Panel > Programs and Features”. There is also a post here detailing some further reading for a similar problem http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w8itprogeneral/thread/64110778-436c-4134-8979-a032b666f194
  • Once Office had been repaired, I enabled the add-ons and repeated the process. Voila, the presence was showing an no crashing of IE!

PF_Internet Explorer Crashing with Lync Contact Card_05

Event Log except for the benefit of Search engines:

Log Name:      Application
Source:        Application Error
Date:          21/02/2013 14:40:41
Event ID:      1000
Task Category: (100)
Level:         Error
Keywords:      Classic
User:          N/A
Computer:      [COMPUTERNAME].Risual.com
Faulting application name: IEXPLORE.EXE, version: 10.0.9200.16482, time stamp: 0x50cfc9bf
Faulting module name: OLEAUT32.dll, version: 6.2.9200.16384, time stamp: 0x50108a69
Exception code: 0xc0000005
Fault offset: 0x00005ec2
Faulting process id: 0x1f64
Faulting application start time: 0x01ce10414a4761f7
Faulting application path: C:Program Files (x86)Internet ExplorerIEXPLORE.EXE
Faulting module path: C:windowsSYSTEM32OLEAUT32.dll
Report Id: a9f19502-7c34-11e2-beab-c485082fa3c2
Faulting package full name: 
Faulting package-relative application ID: 
Event Xml:
<Event xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">
    <Provider Name="Application Error" />
    <EventID Qualifiers="0">1000</EventID>
    <TimeCreated SystemTime="2013-02-21T14:40:41.000000000Z" />
    <Security />
    <Data>C:Program Files (x86)Internet ExplorerIEXPLORE.EXE</Data>