How to test viewing Office documents using the Office Web Apps 2013 viewer

In the following blog, I am going help you verify that WAC Server is working via circumventing a WOPI Host (IE ruling SharePoint as the potential culprit).  This is helpful when you want to test Office Web Apps viewing capability independent of SharePoint, Exchange or Lync.


1.   By default the Office Web Apps new farm configuration does not set OpenFromURLEnabled to True.  Set to True by running the command below in Powershell on the WAC Server.

Set-OfficeWebAppsFarm -OpenFromURLEnabled

2.   Add a workbook to a folder (and then Share that folder) on the WAC Server. 

Example: Create a folder called "Test" on the root of C: (C:\Test\Test1.xlsx)

Share the folder with Everyone.

If this location is on another Server (Not the WAC Server), you need to Share this folder with the WAC Server (the Computer Account (follow below screenshot on how to do this)).

After you have chosen Computers, you need to WAC Server name > Check Names (make sure it resolves) > OK

3.   We now need to generate a http:// URL to that folder.  Open IE and browse to http://<ServerName>/op/generate.aspx

Use the URL that is next to "InternalURL" when you perform Get-OfficeWebAppsFarm

If you are not using an "InternalURL" then you will obviously have to use "ExternalURL"

In the below example the URL is: http://wacserver/op/generate.aspx

4.   Enter the UNC location of the workbook. \\<Servername>\test\test1.xlsx

In the below example the UNC location is \\wacserver\test\test1.xlsx

5.   Click " Create Link " and then click "Test this link."

If this works, then you know the WAC Server can render the workbook and something else is configured incorrectly.

If this fails, you may want to considered quickly rebuilding your WAC Server the below blog:

NOTE:For this testing feature to work with Windows Server 2012 R2, NET Framework 4.5.2 is needed. (

Office Web Apps 2013 – Rebuild your Farm in a few Easy Steps!

Comments (12)

  1. Anonymous says:

    Just in case anyone is reading, Server 2012 R2 is now listed as supported if you’re using Office Web Apps Server SP1.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Great post. Thank you.

  3. Steven says:

    Any word on Office Web Apps Server compatibility with Windows Server 2012 R2?

  4. Anonymous says:

    Problem with Office Web Apps viewer With the continued adoption of Windows Server 2012 R2, more issues

  5. Pat Richard says:

    Steven – Still not listed on the planning page:

  6. Emilio Meira says:

    Guys, we just installed on our network and it’s a great product, congratulations! We’re building a new system and would like to use the Office Web Apps WITHOUT SharePoint (as a shared system still needs that on the network drive). The only thing preventing
    us from doing it is the security concern related to opening the Office files as the machine account instead of the user’s credentials. Any way to use this viewer, but enforcing user credentials instead of the WAC server’s computer account?

  7. vilas says:

    how to test over the WOPI protocol

  8. Pat Richard says:

    Just a note that this does seem to work with 2012 R2 now.

  9. Mike Barrett says:

    FYI – Updating the application pool account for OpenFromURLHost and OpenFromURLWeb to a domain account will let you share with that account instead of the machine account.. That said, for some reason these will be changed back to NetworkService if you

  10. ML49448 says:

    For anyone having issues with 2012 integration with SharePoint a couple of issues I had:
    Need to add the NET-WCF-HTTP-Activation45 feature as per this post:—machines-are-always-reported-as-unhealthy – this fixes the event log issues and makes it show as healthy.
    If running as the farm account (or system account) the previews won’t work from SharePoint – ULS logs show it couldn’t get profile identity and it then fails to show preview – works fine for non system user – good to know this!

  11. Bhupendra Chauhan says:

    How can generate link to edit/save office document online?

  12. Ariel says:

    I have been encountering this error "A website request did not return an OK status." stating a timeout on the internal Url.

    though the office web app server is healthy and the master machine is reachable thru ping. The alerting url is also reachable

    What other things should I look at to resolve this?