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Working around MS Office with OpenOffice

Open source issues expert Maria Winslow describes how to use OpenDocuments with MS Word.

Help! My company uses Microsoft Outlook and Word and won't budge. I use OpenOffice at home and want to send files to myself at work. Also, more and more people are sending me OpenOffice documents as attachments at work. I can't open OpenOffice documents that are sent to me at work. Is there a way that will let me open OpenOffice attachments in Outlook and save them in Word? I heard that there's a group calling for open document standards. Could they help me?

The best thing to do for now is to install OpenOffice alongside Microsoft Office, if possible. The most recent versions of OpenOffice and StarOffice support the Open Document Format, sponsored by OASIS. But until Microsoft's office suite supports the standard, it won't really be a standard. There is progress, however, the state of Massachusetts had mandated that the format be in place for state systems by 2007.

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