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Open Office File Extension Question..Can You Help?

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by Nalapombu, Dec 11, 2008.

  1. Nalapombu

    Nalapombu Millennium Member

    Likes Received:
    Oct 21, 1999
    Spring, TEXAS....USA
    Hey all,

    OK, I took a lot of advice from friends and online forums and installed Open Office on my rather limited laptop instead of the BLOATED and HUGE MS Office. I have used Office my entire computing life and am pretty familiar with it. I'm no expert, but I can get by rather well.

    Anyway, I used Open Office for the first REAL time the other day when I had to write a couple of letters. Everything was fine and so far there were no surprises or problems. When I was finished I went to save my document and the DEFAULT file extension I had in Writer was *.ODT, Open Document Text. I had never seen that extension before and I started wondering about it.

    I was wondering whether or not I would be able to Open, edit, print and save my new WRITER document with that funny file extension in MS Office that I have and use on my MAIN computer. I haven't tried it yet so I don't know. I wanted to ask and see if that file extension is the one I should be using. I was under the impression that all of the documents I created in OO, regardless of the application, would have the same file extension. I checked the default extension in the OO Spreadsheet program and it's *.ODS. So they aren't the same.

    In my version of Office MS Word saves in *.DOC and Excel saves in *.XLS, that's what I am used to and have been used to.

    Can you all explain all this to me? The version of Open Office I have is 3.0. Is there a file extension I SHOULD be using in OO that I'm not? If so, what is it and how do I get it as the DEFAULT extension across all of the applications?
    As it is now, I would like to be able to go back and forth with my version of Office, BUT it isn't mandatory. I can get by if I can't use Office with any of the documents I create with OO, I would just like to have a uniform system so in the future I wouldn't have to separate documents and try to remember what applications can be used on which documents.

    Please explain.....then I'll be good to go. I THINK.

    Thanks for your time and help.

  2. IndyGunFreak


    Likes Received:
    Jan 26, 2001
    You can save in MS Office file formats... Just click File/Save As.. then click File type, and go through there, and all the MS formats are there.

    That said, I always save in Open Office default file types. I've heard of there being some formatting issues when you save as MS Office file types... I'm not sure if MS Office can read Open Office file types or not, I'm guessing it could.

    If you can swing it, I'd just switch all PC's to Open Office, and kick MS office out the door, unless there's something that MS Office does, that Open Office does not do, and you absolutely must have that feature.


  3. fwm


    Likes Received:
    May 31, 2006
    Near Central US
    I use OpenOffice and MS Office for the same files all the time for Word, Excel and Powerpoint documents

    My wife is a 'Power User' on MS Office. (20 years as Manager and Director of large OR's will do that to you, as well as several post grad degrees.) She taught me several technical things in the OpenOffice Calc program without ever looking at it before. Talk about interchangeable!

    She uses OpenOffice now at home on my Mac and sends the 'advanced' files to work for reference on MS Office on Win XP machines without any problems.

    Welcome to the world of PC freedom. Using OpenOffice, you are now qualified to use a MAC or Linux based machine.

    ETA Just be sure to use the MS extension names when you save the documents if you want compatibility.
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2008