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    What do you do about Word Perfect documents? (2002 SP-2)

    The law firm I work for uses Word 2002, and we frequently receive documents from the outside world that were originally created in Word Perfect. I was wondering what your users are expected to do when they receive a WP document. For the most part, they have no idea how to open these documents. I have told them in the past to save the document from the email to their desktop, open a blank document in Word, then do Insert - File and open the document that way. Most of my users cannot/do not remember to do this, so I get several emails a day asking to open documents for them.

    I would be interested in hearing what method you have suggested to your users and why (is my way bad?, should I just let Word try to convert them??).

    Thanks so much,
    Becky

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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: What do you do about Word Perfect documents? (2002 SP-2)

    As far as I know, Word cannot or will not open WordPerfect documents that were created with versions later than 6; and therefore most documents you receive, unless deliberately saved to an older format, or converted by the sender to DOC or RTF, will create difficulties in Word. Either way, Word's converters do not necessarily create stable documents.

    If you need to exchange documents for a billable matter, it pays to purchase copies of WordPerfect for the affected users. The software is currently very inexpensive, and by keeping a file in its native format, you minimize the risk of corruption. If the sender doesn't mind receiving Word documents in return, the safest approach is to copy and paste special as unformatted text. Yes, it's way more work, but for any document that has an extended life (e.g., will endure numerous revisions, will be re-used with Save As down the road), it is safest.

    You probably have heard all of this before. <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>

    One other possibility is to add the relevant file extensions to the registry so that users can double-click to open the WP file attachments. This assumes that they will have a consistent extension, such as WPD. You can add them manually using the File Types dialog (Windows Explorer: Tools>Folder Options...>File Types) or automatically with a logon script (using VBScript and the Windows Script Host; or a .reg file). This does risk them using "Save" (potentially overwriting the attachment in the message) or "Save As" (potentially creating a future corruption problem) unless you also create a global template that applies special handling to such files when opened. I actually don't know what the template could do after detecting the file; would be interesting to think that through.

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    Re: What do you do about Word Perfect documents? (2002 SP-2)

    Hi Becky:
    I assume that you don't have Word Perfect. I suppose that you could associate .WPD with Word. Then double clicking the file would open it in Word in the same manner as Insert/File. I realize that all Word Perfect docs don't have that extension as WP people used to use the extension to identify the type of file (e.g. .LET for letter). But it would work for most of the files & cut down on the calls.

    Without intending it as criticism of users, I think most users don't want to be bothered with learning how to use applications. Unless they use the application all the time & are very happy with their job, it's easier to use passive resistance. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

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    Re: What do you do about Word Perfect documents? (2002 SP-2)

    Phil

    "Without intending it as criticism of users, I think most users don't want to be bothered with learning how to use applications. Unless they use the application all the time & are very happy with their job, it's easier to use passive resistance"

    You don't know how accurate you are!

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    Re: What do you do about Word Perfect documents? (2002 SP-2)

    Your way is good because it does strip a bunch of WP junk out of the document. The best way is the Paste Special - unformatted text.

    You can Shift + Right Click on a document to get the Open With... command - but they probably won't remember this either.

    I would put the Insert File command on their toolbar next to the open button (you can change the image, etc) and then they can navigate to where they stored the file. (They do need to remember to display files of all types to see the file.)

    You could probably write some code to open a blank document, open the insert file dialog box, and then take them to the correct directory, and to search for the correct file type.

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