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.doc or .sxw preferable?

 
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xanton
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 4:21 am    Post subject: .doc or .sxw preferable? Reply with quote

Hello.

After using OO Writer for a while, I have the impression, that when I have saved a document that I created before in .doc format, then it takes less time to save it again after having made changes, than with the Writer's default .sxw format.

So, I would like to ask, if you think it is better to save Writer files in .doc than in .sxw format, or more generally which format you would suggest, regardless of the compatibility issues with MS Office. Are there any reasons, apart from the file size of course, to choose one or the other?
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RGB
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 4:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sxw is an open format, the base for the oasys standard that will come with OOo 2. That means many things, not only compatibility: in fact, if you have a problem and cannot open the file, you are able to unzip it and recover the contents, something not possible with word. On the other hand, as doc format is closed, the programmers of the filter can only guess many things: in some aspects, the way in with OOo works with doc documents is a "hack", a really good one, but a hack, light years distant from a proper format. sxw maybe is slow, but is more reliable if you use writer: doc is only reliable inside ms word (and this could be discussed... Wink )
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RonIA
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 5:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would echo the previous statements. The Word format is constantly changing and the only people who really know what is going on inside it is Microsoft. The fact that Word version 2 can not open Word 2003 documents is that they continually change the file format. These changes are "secret". If you want to be sure you will be able to use these files as time goes on you are better off with the sxw.

I have read some news articles about companies and governments concerned about archiving their data in Word format. They will need to maintain a version of Word that will read those files indefinitely. With the sxw format anyone who has access to the files and access to the format definition will be able to open and view the documents exactly as they were intended to be, regardless of whether they have OpenOffice.org or not.
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xanton
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 5:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

RonIA wrote:
The fact that Word version 2 can not open Word 2003 documents is that they continually change the file format. These changes are "secret". If you want to be sure you will be able to use these files as time goes on you are better off with the sxw.


But you must also admit that word 2000 can open a file from word 2, as that OOo 1.x wont be able to open any files created with every new version of OOo in the future. So i don't really think this argument can convice the everyday user who would always upgrade "upwards" ( e.g. from word 97 to word 2000 and not vice versa) to save files in sxw format rather than in doc. My question would then be if sxw format as working format with OOo can be of any advantage NOW, considering that doc format, again as working format with OOo and not with MS word, could still be accepted as standard by more people than sxw.
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Gabor
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:39 am    Post subject: taste Reply with quote

It is rather a question of taste - a taste concerning ideas and ideals.
I have been using OOo --and before that SO5.2-- for over three years as a person dealing with texts (not in the sense of format but contents, i.e. I am anm editor) ) and I have not met a single person who used it also.
Everybody is stuck with legal or illegal copies of MS Office. I chose it for home because it is free. (I also installed it on my office machine for sake of compatibility with my own self. But I have always used doc, except for some really private doucuments and even so only for fun.)
So compatibility alone calls for the doc format. Besides it saves much faster and opens reasonably faster - but I have little experience with document larger than 20 thousand characters.[/quote]
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ladymecha
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2005 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I often use DOC but use SXW to save space on older files.
whenever a doc file of mine is over a month old, I convert it to SXW...
and when I want to do some more advanced checking like gammar check I will put it back to doc...
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Michael A. Kearsley
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2005 5:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

xanton wrote:

But you must also admit that word 2000 can open a file from word 2, as that OOo 1.x wont be able to open any files created with every new version of OOo in the future.

There is apparently going to be a patch for OOo 1.x and 1.1.x to enable it to open the new Oasis formats, so far as MS Office XML files goes, the software to enable free viewing for this won't run on anything less than that required for MS Office 2003 so they are already abandoning a lot of their MS Office XP users and all those using DOS Based Windows including Windows 98SE and Me, and Windows NT4 so far as providing support for even viewing the files.

If you want to share files with people who don't have OOo\Star Office or KOffice then you are probably better using the MSOffice formats, but inevitably saving in other than the main formats in any application risks loosing information - the MS Office format files won't save any OOo Basic macros for example, although OOo is set by default to preserve vba code in MS Office format files although it can't run that code.

If you want to archive old files you may well be best using a 7-Zip file or some such format that could compress them much more significantly.
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