You can open those old corrupted document files!

You can open those old corrupted document files!

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A while ago, I decided that I was going to work hard to do a final update to my “Blythe Genealogy” database and site, revisiting sources and media, and adding all of the previously unlinked media and sources I’d been collecting.

 

I’ve slowly been working my way through them and I’m dismayed to realize just how much work is involved. In my estimation, I’m looking forward to at least a year finishing up.

 

As I’ve dug in, I’ve come across some old Microsoft files dating back to as early as MS Office 2003. Unfortunately, when I tried to open them with the newest version of MS Office, all I got was a corrupted file. I persevered, however, and discovered that I could open those old corrupted document files – and this is how (see below).

 

Apparently corrupted file viewed with MS Word.
This is how the apparently corrupted file looked in standard text editors WordPad and MS Word.

 

I spent hours researching online for file viewers compatible with the older versions of MS Word, but was unsuccessful.

 

Today, I finally found a solution and it’s FREE!

 

In the past I have used Apache OpenOffice and been very impressed with it – and it’s ability to convert other data files.

According to the Apache OpenOffice site:

Apache OpenOffice is the leading open-source office software suite for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases and more. It is available in many languages and works on all common computers. It stores all your data in an international open standard format and can also read and write files from other common office software packages. It can be downloaded and used completely free of charge for any purpose.

Apache OpenOffice is the result of over twenty years’ software engineering. Designed from the start as a single piece of software, it has a consistency other products cannot match. A completely open development process means that anyone can report bugs, request new features, or enhance the software. The result: Apache OpenOffice does everything you want your office software to do, the way you want it to.

Apache OpenOffice is easy to learn, and if you’re already using another office software package, you’ll take to OpenOffice straight away. Our world-wide native-language community means that OpenOffice is probably available and supported in your own language. And if you already have files from another office package – OpenOffice will probably read them with no difficulty.

Best of all, Apache OpenOffice can be downloaded and used entirely free of any license fees. Like all Apache Software Foundation software, Apache OpenOffice is free to use. Apache OpenOffice is released under the Apache 2.0 License. This means you may use it for any purpose – domestic, commercial, educational, public administration. You may install it on as many computers as you like. You may make copies and give them away to family, friends, students, employees – anyone you like.

So, remembering how much I liked this office suite in the past, I downloaded and installed it.

The result?

I now feel like a genius because since downloading OpenOffice, I’ve been able to open the file pictured above and below, and several other old document files that couldn’t be opened in MS Office.

 

Seemingly corrupted file viewed in Apache OpenOffice.
Seemingly corrupted file viewed in Apache OpenOffice.

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