“Customization could not be loaded because the application domain could not be created” Error for Excel 2010 Resolved

When trying to load PowerPivot on Excel 2010 in a brand new install (with PowerPivot just added to my Excel environment), and after a reboot, I was unable to get the PowerPivot tab to load, and going into the add-in’s and trying to load the PowerPivot add-in for “COM Add-ins” wasn’t working.

After some digging, I followed the steps below to get the error to appear.

  • Open My Computer Properties
  • Click on Advanced Tab
  • Click on the Environmental Variable
  • Click on New User Variable
  • Add VSTO_SUPPRESSDISPLAYALERTS with value 0 press OK
  • Repair PowerPivot For Excel from add/remove program
  • Open Excel again, it will prompt an error message – that might lead you to a better understanding of the problem.

It turns out I was encountering the following error:

Microsoft.VisualStudio.Tools.Applications.Runtime.CannotCreateCustomizationDomainException: Customization could not be loaded because the application domain could not be created. —> System.TypeLoadException: Could not load type ‘System.AddIn.Pipeline.QualificationDataAttribute’ from assembly ‘System.AddIn.Contract, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=b03f5f7f11d50a3a’.

This error does not seem to happen because of any configuration to do with Excel 2010, the PowerPivot plugin, or anything to do with your machine not being up to date with Windows Updates.  I was able to resolve this error thanks to a post on powerpivotgeek.com.  Basically, all I ended up doing was going to the following web site, and downloading and installing the full MS .NET Framework 4. 


After installing this, I went into Excel (no reboot necessary) and enabled the plugin (or you should just be able to restart Excel) and the plugin loaded just fine.