Technology Knowledge base
|Knowledge Base - Opening Office 2007 files|
|by Monica Brainard|
by Brad Weaver
October 4, 2007
For the first time in many years, Microsoft changed the default file format in the newest version of Microsoft Office: Office 2007. While this change has many long-term benefits, in the short term it creates some issues with opening these files in older version of Office.
It's easy to identify a file created in Office 2007: the extension has changed slightly, in most cases with an 'x' at the end. For example, Word 2007 files end in .docx, Excel files .xlsx, and PowerPoint .pptx. However, if a document contains macros, the extension is .docm, .xlsm, or .pptm. There are a few other variations; a complete list is available on Microsoft's web site.
At Wabash, Windows computers in computer labs, classrooms, and offices all run Office 2003. In order to open an Office 2007 document in Office 2003, you must first install the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint 2007 File Formats. This is available as a free download from Microsoft. Instructions for installing the update are available here.
Note the Compatibility Pack is already installed on computers in labs and classrooms. You will only need to install this yourself on office computer personal computer.
MacOS users running Office 2004 for Mac need to install the Microsoft Office Open XML File Format Converter for Mac. Instructions for installing this program are available here.