Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Choosing between .doc and .docx
Using the Compatibility Checker to determine whether converting to a different Word
version will cause a loss of information or features.
When moving in the other direction — checking a Word 2003 (or earlier) document for
compatibility with Word 2013 — the checker usually will inform you that “No compatibility
issues were found.” Note, however, that the Compatibility Checker doesn’t check when you
fi rst open a document formatted for Word 2003 (or earlier). It’s not until you try to save the
fi le that it warns you about any unlikely issues.
Choosing between .doc and .docx
Word’s options enable you to choose to save in the older .doc format by default. A person
may opt to do this, for example, if the majority of users in his or her organization still use
Word 2003 or earlier. That’s certainly a plausible argument, but consider one occasional
down side to Word’s binary .doc format. With a proprietary binary fi le format, the larger
and more complex the document, the greater the possibility of corruption becomes, and it’s
not always possible to recover data from a corrupted fi le.
Another issue is document size. Consider a simple Word document that contains just the
phrase “Hello, Word.” When saved in Word 97–2003 format, that basic fi le is 26K. That is to
say, to store those 11 characters it takes Word about 26,000 characters!
The same phrase stored in Word 2013’s .docx format requires just 11K. Make no mistake:
That’s still a lot of storage space for just those 11 characters, but it’s a lot less than what’s
required by Word 2003. The storage savings you get won’t always be that dramatically
different, but over time you will notice a difference. Smaller fi les mean not only lower storage
requirements but faster communication times as well.
Still another issue is interoperability. When a Word user gives a .doc fi le to a user of
WordPerfect or another word processor, it’s typical that something is going to get lost in
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