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Microsoft Office to OpenOffice Migration Guide
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File formats

This section gives a simplified overview of OpenOffice.org’s file format.

OpenOffice.org stores its files in a compressed (zipped) XML format. This format is humanly readable when unzipped. It is openly documented and is publicly available under the GNU License (https://www.gnu.org).

For details about XML formats, see https://books.evc-cit.info/book.php.

Note

Some compression utilities only check the file extension and may not recognize the file as being compressed. To open an OpenOffice.org file with such a compression utility, you can rename the file to have the extension .zip.

By contrast, Microsoft Office files are stored in a proprietary format which is not human readable and not publicly documented. This causes problems for software developers writing filters for importing and exporting in Microsoft Office formats.

In OpenOffice.org 2.0 there has been a small change in file format and extension from that used in OpenOffice.org1.1.x. The change is due to decisions by the open standards committee OASIS. Other applications, for example KOffice, are also using the same format.

Table 1. File extensions for OpenOffice.org 2.0. (OOo 1.1.x extensions are shown in brackets).

Document type

Application

Extension

MS Office equiv

Text

Writer

odt (sxw)

doc

Text Template

Writer

ott (stw)

dot

Master Document

Writer

odm (sxg)

doc

HTML document

Writer

html

html

Spreadsheet

Calc

ods (sxc)

xsl

Spreadsheet Template

Calc

ots (stc)

xst

Drawing

Draw

odg (sxd)

N/A

Drawing Template

Draw

otg (std)

N/A

Presentation

Impress

odp (sxi)

ppt

Presentation Template

Impress

otp (sti)

pot

Formula

Math

odf (sxm)

N/A

Chart

Chart

odc

N/A

Database

Base

odb

mdb

Note

OpenOffice.org can open Microsoft Office files. The reverse is not true: at this time, Microsoft Office can not open OpenOffice.org formats.

If you need to send files to someone using Microsoft Office, save your file first in the native OpenOffice.org format, then save it to one of the many supported Microsoft Office formats. By doing this, you ensure that even if the filter can not translate perfectly, you have your original in its native format.

OpenOffice.org can not open or convert Microsoft Access files (.mdb) files directly, however it can access the data in the tables using DAO and ODBC. See the Database Guide for more information.

Microsoft Office to OpenOffice Migration Guide
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  Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License Design by Interspire