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Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files

Tootler 18 Feb 11 - 07:34 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 18 Feb 11 - 07:40 PM
Geoff the Duck 19 Feb 11 - 10:32 AM
Tootler 20 Feb 11 - 12:11 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 20 Feb 11 - 12:31 PM
Geoff the Duck 20 Feb 11 - 01:09 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 20 Feb 11 - 01:36 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 20 Feb 11 - 01:41 PM
JohnInKansas 20 Feb 11 - 02:03 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 20 Feb 11 - 02:21 PM
Tootler 20 Feb 11 - 03:37 PM
The Fooles Troupe 20 Feb 11 - 05:53 PM
JohnInKansas 20 Feb 11 - 05:53 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 20 Feb 11 - 07:18 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 20 Feb 11 - 07:30 PM
JohnInKansas 20 Feb 11 - 10:53 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 21 Feb 11 - 03:44 AM
Tootler 21 Feb 11 - 07:02 AM
Geoff the Duck 21 Feb 11 - 12:01 PM
Tootler 21 Feb 11 - 12:13 PM
GUEST,Chris Peacock 09 Jun 11 - 05:47 PM
Tootler 09 Jun 11 - 07:36 PM
GUEST,SRD 10 Jun 11 - 05:14 PM
GUEST 21 Jun 12 - 12:30 AM
GUEST,Keystone 08 Jul 12 - 04:26 PM
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Subject: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Tootler
Date: 18 Feb 11 - 07:34 PM

My daughter has a number of word processor documents from an old PDA saved in Microsoft Pocket word (.psw) format which she would like recover and save in a format she can use.

Microsoft Office will open these files, apparently but we don't have MS Office any more and are certainly not prepared to buy a copy just to open about 20 files.

I have tried Word Pad and MS Word Viewer but though these do open the files they treat them as text so all the formatting codes and the binary encoding are there as a jumble of characters. While it is possible to recover the text from that, it is a tedious job and only as a last resort.

I saw mention of a site called Media-Convert but it was down or otherwise inaccessible and I found one other online converter but it threw an error so I am no further forward.

Ideally what I would like is some free software that will convert these files to something we can read. We use Open Office so MS .doc format will be fine as Open Office reads that and the files are really just formatted text (rich text files will be just as good if it comes to that).

I shall keep hunting but in the meantime if anyone knows of a suitable converter then I will much appreciate it if they can let me know.

Thanks in advance


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 18 Feb 11 - 07:40 PM

How big are the PSW files? Are they email-able? If there are only 20 or so of them, do you know someone with Office you could email them to, who could return them as Word docs? This seems the easiest solution for a small, finite number of pages. (That is, assuming all you have to do it open them and "Save As" a .doc file...?)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Geoff the Duck
Date: 19 Feb 11 - 10:32 AM

My copy of open Office lists .psw as one of the formats it will open.
Have you tried just opening the file directly using Open Office?
Quack!
GtD.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Tootler
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 12:11 PM

Good suggestion, Bonnie. I hadn't thought of that.

GtD: My daughter implied she had tried OOo but without success. However, I checked and tried again. On my computer a test file started to load but then it failed and gave an error message and OO then crashed. However my computer is running Linux so I tried on my daughter's computer which is running Windows Vista. The files appeared to load OK but all that you saw was a blank page. If you loaded with the file type set to "all files" then it loaded the file as plain text with all the formatting encoding showing as plain text characters.

It appears the Media-Convert website has closed down but I did find another online converter but that gave an error message which basically said it was unable to convert the file. That makes me think that the files might have been corrupted in some way or are based on an older version of Pocket Word and MS have changed their format.

The files will open in Word Pad with all the format encoding showing as plain text characters. It is possible to extract the basic text from this, reformat and save which is what my daughter is now planning to do, though I might follow up Bonnie's suggestion. It's a matter of finding the right person.

I did try opening one of the files on my computer using the Wine version of Word Pad. The file did open but as soon as I tried scrolling down then it caused Wine to crash. Tends to reinforce my feeling that there is a problem with the files and that converting them may not be straightforward so the tedious process of extracting the text may well be what has to be done.

Thanks for your suggestions anyway.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 12:31 PM

Dunno if this general-info page is of any use (you'll need to copy/paste - I couldn't get it to blickify):

file:///Applications/Microsoft%20Office%202004/Office/Help/FileFormatsInWord.html

How big are your files?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Geoff the Duck
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 01:09 PM

Another one to check out. The Open Office project has hit some problems due to the company that sponsored the free project being bought up by another company. The Open Office development team has continued under a new name LibreOffice. The new project has some features not in Open Office. It may have a better compatibility (or not).
Quack!
GtD.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 01:36 PM

Is this someone new who bought it from Oracle? Or do you mean Oracle buying it from Sun Microsystems? Must confess I hadn't heard of LibreOffice - wonder how new it is?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 01:41 PM

Ah, think I've just found the answer to my own question:

http://kenai.com/projects/ooo-migration/pages/Home


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 02:03 PM

File Formats Supported in Office 2010 does NOT list .psw as a supported file type. Elsewhere it is stated that Office 2010 can open any file types used by earlier Office versions.

File Formats Supported in Office 2007 is essentially the same, not including .psw and claiming to support all prior versions formats.

The obsolete "Works" documents used a file extension .wps that is openable by both.

At Pocket Word files to Office 2007:

By default, Word or Excel documents that you create on your older Pocket PC are saved in a Pocket Word (psw) or Pocket Excel (pxl) format. Office 2007 cannot open psw or pxl formatted files. Furthermore, if you sync these files to a computer that runs Windows Vista /7, Windows Mobile Device Center (WMDC) has no way to convert these files from the Pocket format into a format that can be used with Office 2007.   

If you wish to use Pocket PC created office documents on your computer running Office 2007, you can save these files on the Pocket PC as regular office formatted documents.

·         Tap Tools > File > Save Document As

·         Tap the down arrow to the right of "Type"

·         Choose Word 97/2000 Document or Excel 97/2000 Document, as appropriate

Note: This would create copies of the original file in the new format.
--------------------------
Vinay G,
Microsoft Answers Support Engineer.


HOWEVER!!!:

Formats that are supported in Works indicates that the stripped down semi-program Works supplied with "minimal basic Windows" versions prior to the rise of the current civilization can open .psw files. Works might have been on some WinXP OEM computers, or you may need to find someone running something even earlier(???).

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 02:21 PM

John, what about MS Office 2004 (which includes Word 2004) in the Office For Mac edition (OS 10.5.8, if you speak Applese)? Word docs on this computer will convert into the Open Office I have, with no problem. Or else making it into a PDF might be a possibility. Or RTF's.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Tootler
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 03:37 PM

John,

While your information is undoubtedly correct, in a search round the internet before I posted my original query I found some sites that suggested that it was possible to download a filter that enabled MSOffice to open .psw files. I don't know whether it is true or not as it was not a lot of use to us as we use Open Office in our house.

Bonnie,

This Wikipedia site http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LibreOffice probably gives as good an account as any of the circumstances that led to the breakaway that led to the creation of LibreOffice.

I think the link you posted just now is about Oracle moving Open Office to a new (Oracle owned?) site.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 05:53 PM

Bonnie - the general info URL you posted is merely a link to some file on your own PC - not on the web - the "file" bit at the start is what that means.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 05:53 PM

Microsoft Pocket appears to be the OS(?) used on the Windows Phone.

The "word" used in Pocket was able to export (save as) Word documents in the format used in Office 98 thru Office 2000, but you had to save as .doc on the "phone" in order to export it to any Windows Office Program.

With Win98 (and possibly before) Microsoft and most OEM builders did NOT PROVIDE ANY OFFICE PROGRAMS with the most basic Windows - nor did OEMs with the Windows preinstalled on the many computers.

With the basic computers, a program set called WORKS was generally included. The word processor in WORKS was barely better than DOS Edlin, and was apparently similar to the "Pocket Word."

According to the Microsoft pages linked, NO WINDOWS OFFICE PROGRAM has ever been able to "import" or "open" a Pocket Word .psw file. Pocket Word could, however, save a .psw as a .doc in the format used in Office 98 thru Office 2000/2002/2003. The .doc produced by the phone running Pocket Word could be opened in OFFICE Word.

The "stripped down emasculated simulated pseudo-emulation of a word processing program" included in WORKS CAN import a .psw file (or that's what Microsoft claims).

If you can find someone who once had a computer with Works on it, it's worth knowing that installing OFFICE (with real Word) commonly did not remove the Works program, although most who upgraded to OFFICE probably never noticed that it was still there. Someone who got really short on hard drive space may have let disk cleanup remove "installation files," and that might have removed the Works files, although I can't be sure of that.

Someone who has a Win98 machine still running might be willing to poke into C:\Programs ... and see if they can find the Works word. If it's there, it should run. If it runs, they should be able to open your .psw files and save them as .doc files in the correct "language" for Office Word to open them.

Once converted to Word .doc files, Open Office should be able to open the .doc files.

It seems reasonable to believe that someone would have produced a "converter program" for salvaging .psw files, but my brief Google explorations didn't show anything that looked helpful. I did find numerous sites offering "Pocket Word" for sale, but be advised that my Norton flagged about 10% of those sites as "hazardous to lethal." I could not find anything about what operating systems might be able to run the program (i.e. why anyone would want to buy it), other than whatever OS was on the "Windows Phone."

Queries at the Microsoft "social network" - their replacement for tech support - indicated that any conversion from .psw probably will drop all images, mangle most tables, and has a few "other deficiencies" that were vaguely described.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 07:18 PM

I have a back-up installation CD which has Works on it, but I'm not sure if it includes its word-processor because that same CD also has Word (plus Micro$oft Money, Encarta, AutoRoute and some other stuff). But I can't recall seeing another word processor on there, nor was there a second one on the computer anywhere. (It ran XP by the way, and not W98.) Works did include a photo-editor, I recall. I bought the M$ stuff separately because the puter didn't come with much ("Norman" Anti-Virus, anyone??).

John - if you can remember - what would the word processor in Works have been called? I'm going to go dig the CD out and see exactly what's on there.

My partner used to have the Works word processor on an old computer of his, and I believe it saved stuff as .wrk files (the Luddite didn't bother to learn Word until it became absolutely unavoidable). I think that machine has now gone to cyber-Heaven (he'd probably still be using it otherwise...)

"...stripped down emasculated simulated pseudo-emulation of a word processing program..." Hee hee hee, love it. Gonna tell him.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 07:30 PM

The Works folder on the disc (separate from those for Word, Encarta and the other stuff) contains subfolders headed:
Common
Data
Fonts
PFiles
PSS [Photo Standard?]
Redist
System 32
plus some other gubbins at the bottom, but those are the folders, and it's Works 2004 for XP.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 20 Feb 11 - 10:53 PM

I believe that Microsoft called the Word Processor in Works "Word" even though it bore very little resemblance to "real Word." If you didn't purchase an upgrade to the real Word that's part of Office, it's possible that the Word on the computer you backed up might be "Works Word."

We've had friends who were using Works and thought they had Office Word. I can attest to the differences via attempts to help them do something useful with what they had; but most of our "help" was by telephone without a chance to actually look at the installations.

Unfortunately for the present problem, I looked at the Works Word only once when my new Win95 arrived and (when the vomit stopped) immediately installed Office so that I'd never have to look at it again. And I've taken all my subsequent computers "out of the box" with Office (Premium, Professional, or Business) installed by the builder.

My recollection is that WinXP "starter installations" claimed to actually have a "real Word" (minus a few features?) in place of the "Works Word" of earlier deliveries, but it's too far back for me to be sure exactly when the change was made.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 21 Feb 11 - 03:44 AM

No, mine is real Word because I needed it and specifically had to buy it - it didn't come pre-installed. I know the differences (and share your opinion... really, vomit is such a bother to clean off the keyboard...) because in those days Michael used Works for the little word-processing he did. Mine saved files as .doc and his saved them as .wrk or something. I'd had Word on my previous W98 computer and was already familiar with it.

This CD has Word, Works, Encarta and other stuff - I only wanted Word but seem to remember that I couldn't buy just that, but had to get all that other stuff too, as a package - at increased cost, of course.

Anyway, what I think I'm hearing is that there's nothing on that disc which is going to help Toot (if he hasn't fallen asleep by now).


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Tootler
Date: 21 Feb 11 - 07:02 AM

Toot is here Bonnie and thanks for your efforts.

I came to a similar conclusion as JiK, in spite of some tantalising links on Google. Worse, the claimed online conversions did not work so Tootdottir has started the somewhat tedious process of importing as text and deleting all the format stuff. The files will import to Word Pad which comes with Windows and she can export as .txt as an intermediate stage. She will then have to import to OO and reformat to whatever font she wants to use etc. Fortunately everything is simply text. They were transcripts of out of print books from the 1920s & 30s which she used to put on a Pocket Word PDA and take them away with her to read. This was in the days before eBooks. I think she is planning to transfer them to her Blackberry using Word to Go. That has the virtue of preserving the Word formatting as I use it to keep the words of my songs on my Blackberry. I just have to remember to save as .doc and not as the default .odt :-)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Geoff the Duck
Date: 21 Feb 11 - 12:01 PM

Once you have removed the unwanted formatting and re-formatted the documents, you might want to consider saving a copy as a PDF file. If it is looking the way you want it to, the PDF will save the formatting for a more portable display. Of course, you can also keep the Open Office version should you want to re-edit, or save in more formats.
Mr. Google tells me that the Blackberry may need extra software installed to display PDFs, but beamreader clocks in around $15 with a 15 day trial version.
Another thing to check - if the books are out of copyright - is, are they available online (e.g. Project Gutenberg). If so, you may save yourselves a lot of editing time.
Quack!
GtD.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Tootler
Date: 21 Feb 11 - 12:13 PM

GtD,

Thanks, but Documents to Go (The suite that includes Word to Go) comes with a pdf reader - I have it on my Blackberry, and I have not found it particularly satisfactory. However Documents to Go does render Word documents pretty well - again, I use it. Also a version of Documents to Go came with the Blackberry so there is no need to buy anything.

I had wondered about project Gutenberg, though I am not sure whether the stuff she has - Schoolgirl stories - are likely to be high on their list of priorities. It's probably worth a quick look, though.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: GUEST,Chris Peacock
Date: 09 Jun 11 - 05:47 PM

Hi,

I've only just seen this thread as I had the same issue. I thought you might like to know that I found an application called TextMaker Viewer that can open Pocket Word documents.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: Tootler
Date: 09 Jun 11 - 07:36 PM

Thanks for the tip. Looks useful. Can you copy from it and paste to another document? My daughter is trying to recover the text of the files. At the moment she is opening them using Word Pad, stripping out the formatting codes so she is left with a plain text document then importing the resulting text file into open office writer.

Being able simply to copy and paste the text into another document would save her a lot of time.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: GUEST,SRD
Date: 10 Jun 11 - 05:14 PM

My copy of M$ Office Word 2003 opens .psw files, albeit with a warning. I also found that by simply editing the .prg files that are also generated by PDAs by changing the .prg suffix to .psw M$ Office Word 2003 would open them. It doesn't work with corrupted files though.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Jun 12 - 12:30 AM

Just tried Text Maker Viewer on my win7 machine an can confirm it works just fine. Thanks Mr. Peacock!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Opening MS Pocket word (.psw) files
From: GUEST,Keystone
Date: 08 Jul 12 - 04:26 PM

I use an ancient Mobile Pro 880 that has Pocket Word running on windows CE2.11 for writing my novels while away from my PC and the other laptop.
My equally ancient copy of Works opens it when nothing else will. (I will never own another copy of that Word trash)
OOo is my main wp for my manuscripts, but I have to strip out OOo's strange XML formatting techniques before uploading my books to Smashword's meatgrinder.
I have no problems opening PocketWord with Works.
It tells me it has to use a convertor when could be hazardous to the PC. However, i also don't use many pics or tables in my fiction novels. It hasn't screwed up my formatting yet.


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