Word to WordPerfect Conversion: How to Strip Formatting

If you’re a Corel WordPerfect aficionado, chances are you’ve been frustrated by the “hidden” codes in Microsoft Word documents.

While there are various ways to see Word’s “hidden” formatting, sometimes it’s just easier to strip the formatting out.  Here’s how:

  • Start WordPad*
  • Select File, Open…
  • If you are converting a .doc file – change All WordPad Documents (*.rtf, *.docx, *.odt, *.txt) to All Documents (*.*).  If you are converting a .docx file, there is no need to change this setting.
  • Browse to locate the Word file.  Double-click to open it.
  • Select File, Save as.  Choose Plain Text Document.
  • This warning appears:2014-09-11_15-12-38
  • Click Yes.
  • Close WordPad.
  • Open the file in WordPerfect.  If you receive a prompt to convert file format, click OK.  Format your document as desired in WordPerfect.

*WordPad is a free text editor/basic word processor that ships with Windows.  Find it quickly by using Search all programs and files.

[All Rights Reserved 2014 Beverly Michaelis]

Opening or Converting Old Forms – Tips for Mac Users

As Mac users know, not all legal forms are Mac-friendly (especially older forms).  For untitledexample, what if a colleague sends you a document created in Microsoft Word 97/Windows?

If you have Pages, you should be able to open a Word 97 document without a file converter. Try these steps.

If you have Microsoft Office for Mac, you can search the Download Center for a file converter, but the only one I could spot was the Microsoft Word 97, 98, and 2000 Converter for the Macintosh.  Office for Mac 2011 users report there is no converter for newer versions of office and old files created on the Windows platform do not open.  If you’re an Office user, what should you do?

  • Open the old form in Pages first, then resave it.
  • Try the Insert > File or Insert > Object > Text from File… command.  Launch Word, select Insert > File or Insert > Object > Text from File… browse and find the old form, click Insert.  Inserting a text file into a blank document in Word strips out formatting.  It often works better than using File > Open to access a document created in a non-compatible word processing program.
  • Ask the colleague who provided the form if he or she can resave it for you.  Options include: a newer version of Word for Windows, Word for the Mac, Rich text format (.rtf file), or PDF.  If a PDF is created electronically or scanned then OCRd, you should be able to copy and paste text from the body of the PDF into Word 2011 for the Mac or Pages.  You can also save a PDF as a Word document in Acrobat.
  • Try an online file converter, such as ZamzarOnline-ConvertCloud Convert, or Convert Files.

Final Words of Wisdom

Old forms may be “old” and not converted to a newer platform or software version for a reason – they are old and shouldn’t be used.  Before going to all this effort, be certain this is a form worth converting, meaning it is valid and still legally viable.

All Rights Reserved [2014] Beverly Michaelis



WordPerfect Office X6 and PDF Fusion – FREE WEBINAR

The Professional Liability Fund is conducting a WordPerfect webinar from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, September 17, 2013. This free webinar will cover:

  • How to open and save Word documents
  • Bates numbering
  • Other new features of WordPerfect X6

There will also be a demonstration of Corel PDF Fusion, software that allows you to view, assemble, and create PDFs.

System Requirements for access to Webinar

PC-based attendee requirements:
Windows® 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server

Macintosh®-based attendee requirements:
Mac OS® X 10.6 or newer

Mobile attendee requirements:
iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ phone or Android™ tablet

How to Register

To register and to receive the link for the seminar, please e-mail Dee Crocker at deec@osbplf.org.  Deadline: September 16, 2013.

Avoid Strife, Strip Out Coding in Word

Are you a WordPerfect user in a Word world?  Would you rather give a key note address to an audience of strangers than convert a Word document?  You are not alone!  What appears to be an easy task is actually quite deceiving.

First, let me refer you to Jan Berinstein and her excellent blog.  Jan’s tips and tricks will go a long way toward helping.  And if you want the definitive guidebook on using Word in the law office, consider Jan’s books:  Formatting Legal Documents with Microsoft Word 2007 or Formatting Legal Documents with Microsoft Word 2010.  Read more here

Why does the migration from Word to WordPerfect pose a problem?  Isn’t it just a matter of opening your Word document in WordPerfect and wa-la!  Off you go?  Unfortunately, no. 

While we don’t commonly think of Word as using “codes” to control formatting, it most certainly does.  And when you open a Word document in WordPerfect you unwittingly inherit Word’s embedded styles and other formatting – which can cause strange results.  What should you do? 

Setting aside third-party options, the easiest approach is to use WordPad as a bridge to strip out Word’s formatting.  The result?  A clean, code-free document.  In Windows XP, you will find WordPad under your Start Menu > All Programs > Accessories.  Here are the steps:

  1. In WordPad, select File, Open…
  2. In File, Open… change the setting under “Files of Type” to All Documents [*.*].
  3. Open the Word® file you wish to strip codes from.
  4. Select File, Save As.
  5. Change the setting under “Save as type” to Text Document [*.txt].
  6. When you see the warning:
    “You are about to save the document in a Text-Only format, which will remove all formatting.  Are you sure you want to do this?” 
    Click Yes.
  7. Close WordPad.
  8. Open the file in WordPerfect.®
  9. The Convert File Format box will appear. Click OK.
  10. Format your document as desired in WordPerfect.

My thanks to Dee Crocker, practice management advisor extraordinaire for the idea.

Copyright 2010 Beverly Michaelis