Some Windows users are encountering the ‘Invalid Notebook Name‘ error when trying to create a new notebook inside the desktop version of OneNote 2019. This issue is only reported to occur on Windows 10.
After investigating this particular issue, it turns out that there are a couple of underlying causes for the ‘Invalid Notebook Name‘ error in OneNote. Here’s a shortlist of potential culprits:
- Outdated OneNote version – As it turns out, an outdated OneNote version is often the underlying cause for this error message. Several affected users that were previously encountering the same problem have managed to fix the issue by forcing the app to update itself to the latest version.
- Corrupted Office / OneNote installation – File corruption affecting the Office installation or the standalone OneNote app can also cause this error on a Windows 10 computer. If this scenario is applicable, you can fix the error by repairing the OneNote UWP app or repairing the entire Office installation if you are using the desktop version.
Now that you know every potential cause of this issue, here’s a list of methods that other affected users have successfully used to resolve the ‘Invalid Notebook Name‘ error in OneNote:
Method 1: Updating OneNote to the Latest Version
According to some users that we’re also seeing this error, this could be a symptom that you’re using an outdated version of OneNote. Keep in mind that by default, the app is configured to update itself, but there are some utilities that will actively block the auto-update function from kicking in.
If this scenario is applicable, you should be able to fix the issue by opening the OneNote app and forcing the app to update itself to the latest build available.
To make matters easier for you, we’ve put together a step by step guide that will walk you through this process:
- Open the OneNote app that is causing this error.
- Next, click on File from the ribbon menu at the top, then click on Account from the vertical menu on the left.
- Once you’re inside the account menu, click on the drop-down menu associated with Office Updates, then click on Update Now from the list of available options.
- If a new version of the app is found, follow the on-screen prompts to complete the installation of the newer version.
- Restart your computer and see if the issue is fixed once the next startup is complete.
In case you still end up seeing the ‘Invalid Notebook Name‘ error when trying to create a new notebook, move down to the next method below.
Method 2: Repairing the OneNote Installation
In most documented cases, this particular issue is related to some kind of corruption that is affecting the local OneNote installation. At the time of writing this article, Microsoft has already released a couple of hotfixes for this issue, but new user reports are still popping up signaling that the issue is still not resolved.
If you already followed Method 1 and the issue is still not resolved, the next logical step you should take is to try and repair the installation.
However, the steps of doing this will be different depending on if you’re using the classic desktop version (part of the Office suite) or the newer standalone UWP version.
To accommodate both potential scenarios that you might find yourself in, we’ve put together 2 sub-guides. Follow the one applicable to the OneNote version that you’re encountering the ‘Invalid Notebook Name‘ error:
A. Repairing the Office Installation (Desktop version of OneNote)
- Press Windows key + R to open up a Run dialog box. Next, type ‘appwiz.cpl’ inside the text box and press Enter to open up the Programs and Features window.
- Once you’re inside the Programs and Features window, scroll down through the list of installed applications and find the Office installation. When you manage to locate it, right-click on it and choose Change from the context menu that just appeared.
- Wait until the initial scan is complete, then click on Quick Repair from the list of available options, then confirm the process by clicking Repair at the prompt.
Note: If the quick repair procedure doesn’t identify a problem with your office installation, go for an Online Repair instead.
- Wait until the repair process is complete, then reboot your computer, open OneNote once the next startup is complete and see if you still see the ‘Invalid Notebook Name‘ error is now fixed.
B. Repairing the OneNote UWP Version
- Press Windows key + R to open up a Run dialog box. Next, type ‘ms-settings:appsfeatures’ inside the text box and press Enter to open up the Apps & Features menu of the Settings app.
- Once you’re inside the Apps & Features menu, move over to the right-hand section of the screen and use the search function to search for ‘onenote’.
- Next, from the list of results, click on OneNote for Windows 10 and then click on the Advanced options hyperlink under the name.
- Inside the Advanced Menu of OneNote for Windows 10, scroll down to the Reset tab and click on the Repair button.
- Wait until the repairing process is complete, then launch OneNote once again and see if the problem is now fixed.