EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

06.19.08

Microsoft Office Says ODF Files Are Corrupt

Posted in Formats, FUD, Office Suites, Open XML, OpenDocument, Standard at 10:33 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Steve Ballmer on ODFShades of DR-DOS FUD tactics

One day ago we wrote about ways in which Microsoft seems to be discouraging the use of ODF. It’s a must-read for background. We promised some screenshots and we finally have them thanks to Eruaran. Here is the portion of the IRC discussion which explains what you see at the bottom.

<Eruaran> The first one is what comes up if you try to open an .odt in MS Word 2007 (after I clicked ‘details’)
<schestowitz> Thanks!
<Eruaran> no problem
<Eruaran> so, you click ok and you get the second one
<schestowitz> And the third…?
<Eruaran> so, you click ‘yes’ to ‘recover the contents’ of this document and you get the third
<Eruaran> third shows after I clicked ‘details’
<Eruaran> click ‘ok’ and thats it
<schestowitz> “the file is corrupt,” eh? The last time I checked it’s Microsoft that corrupted Swedish folks for OOXML.
<Eruaran> try to open the same document back in OOo or KOffice and its perfect

[...]

<Eruaran> “Microsoft Office cannot open this file because some parts are missing or invalid” ~translation~ “Microsoft Office could open this file but wont because some parts are missing (you know, those binary blobs that keep you dependant upon us), so we’ve decided your choice of file formats is invalid”.

Dialogue 1:

ODF diagloe

Dialogue 2: (click to enlarge)

ODF error

Dialogue 3:

ODF FUD

Thoughts?

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

12 Comments

  1. Shane Coyle said,

    June 19, 2008 at 12:50 pm

    Gravatar

    It looks like they fed Word an ODT file, but implied (or word assumed) that it was OOXML – Dialogue 3 says it’s a malformed OOXML file, which it likely is. It’s also likely a malformed mpeg file, if you try to feed it to mplayer as such.

    What ODF plugin is being used here? Word doesn’t support ODF natively, yet, right?

    When you had the open file dialog, what filter for file type was applied, or was it all files? Then, did it ask you to choose a file type because this format was unrecognized, or did it just assume it was OOXML?

    I know MS said that ODF support was coming, fulfilling the last of Stafford Masie’s prophecies, but it’s not here yet that I noticed – something about a service pack, I don’t use Office so I dunno. We’ll also have to wait and see on how well it is implemented, I suppose.

  2. Stephane Rodriguez said,

    June 19, 2008 at 3:39 pm

    Gravatar

    The dialog boxes show that Word 2007 tries to open a Word 2007 file, and does not find the parts it expects. This is not conclusive, other than the fact that Word 2007 does not support .ODT natively.

    Is that worth a blog post? Who said Word 2007 natively supports .ODT ?

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 19, 2008 at 3:50 pm

    Gravatar

    The reader expressed his concerns about the textual contents of the dialogue/message.

    I’m not sure if you read the previous post. We show here only the fairly intimidating dialugues that discourage ODF use or at least introduce doubt (even for future use). We also mentioned how this relates to the fiasco around DR-DOS in this IRC Chat (full logs posted this morning)

    A reader wrote to tell me about another example a couple of hours ago (E-mail):


    In regards to this one ( or another on the same topic )
    http://boycottnovell.com/2008/06/19/microsoft-mso-mocks-odf/

    I’ve noticed, second hand, that MSIE gives a ‘security’ warning when accessing Gmail.


    See those ‘smoking gun’ from DR-DDS again. This may not be deliberate this time around, but it does not help, either.

  4. Roy Bixler said,

    June 19, 2008 at 3:56 pm

    Gravatar

    You could say that the error message is deceptive because MSO is interpreting a format that it does not support as if it does support it. That would certainly confuse someone who is not technically savvy or who is unaware of ODF and that it is a distinct format from OOXML. It’s not as if ODF was unknown when MSO 2007 was released. At best, I would say that Microsoft was negligent and made a bad assumption that every XML file must be an OOXML file. More likely is that, given Microsoft’s history, they would regard it as “not a problem” or even desirable if their error message caused confusion, all while giving them plausible deniability.

  5. Victor Soliz said,

    June 19, 2008 at 5:34 pm

    Gravatar

    It looks to me that they are just assuming any “unknown” (to them) XML file is OOXML that needs to be repaired, well the way to prove would be to feed it a random XML file and see what happens. I hope some of the readers actually have office 2007…

  6. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 19, 2008 at 5:37 pm

    Gravatar

    I hope some of the readers actually have office 2007…

    I’m not sure about the word “hope”. :-)

    Either way, about half of the visitors of this Web site use GNU/Linux.

  7. Victor Soliz said,

    June 19, 2008 at 6:28 pm

    Gravatar

    Well, they could try WINE, wonder if anyone would actually bother try to run THAT.

  8. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 19, 2008 at 6:51 pm

    Gravatar

    It’s possible. Wine Reviews showed it some months ago.

  9. Eruaran said,

    June 19, 2008 at 8:44 pm

    Gravatar

    @ Shane Coyle

    “It looks like they fed Word an ODT file” – Yes I did.

    “but implied (or word assumed) that it was OOXML” – Microsoft knows what an ODT is. Word could simply report that the format is unsupported, but it doesn’t do that.

    “Dialogue 3 says it’s a malformed OOXML file, which it likely is.” – It was a simple text document that was not malformed at all. This supports my point – Microsoft’s dialogues have made an impression on you.

    “It’s also likely a malformed mpeg file” – I don’t know why you think that.

    No ODF plugin was used. Office assumes it is OOXML.

    You can also choose “recover text from any file”, and Word will spit out some revealing information: It correctly identifies the document type as an OASIS open document, it can output all of the meta data, it knows what version it is, but it absolutely will not at any time output the single line of text that the document contained.

    The purpose of this exercise was simply to show that Office will give the user information that is misleading in response to a perfectly good ODT file. It is easy enough to replicate.

  10. Eruaran said,

    June 19, 2008 at 9:01 pm

    Gravatar

    @ Stephane Rodriguez

    The purpose is to show that Microsoft Word is deliberately misleading.

    This is what Word will give you if you try to “recover text from any file”:

    mimetypeapplication/vnd.oasis.opendocument.textPK
    Configurations2/statusbar/PK
    Configurations2/accelerator/current.xml
    Configurations2/floater/PK
    Configurations2/popupmenu/PK
    Configurations2/progressbar/PK
    Configurations2/menubar/PK
    Configurations2/toolbar/PK
    Configurations2/images/Bitmaps/PK
    content.xml½–MoÛ0
    7Uz{oª±V`[Oô
    8i“#xyt4
    h
    styles.xmlÍZ[oÛ6
    D[\%R )_úëw
    ;˜±ÂÈ{“K×ã-[æP:Ut?V
    >èœl$IdQR
    ;(
    5S£]C
    =‹ªÞmGgÄn;àš$£jtnXæ
    RAm+Ã!ÉqÒ­tFS¹’ _3C
    UÁÜØH‡HóÏ€4^”Æ®åTl+º…%&ìB”+a
    SYé¬ÃòŒ2±•²°›å,Ì wi[K…U)
    M
    9Øjk_ñ^
    :yB
    OpenOffice.org/2.4$Win32 OpenOffice.org_project/680m12$Build-9286Agent Smith2008-06-20T11:32:54Agent Smith2008-06-20T11:33:141PT25SPK
    Thumbnails/thumbnail.pngë
    &+KV]i
    /ÝÙó´lþõyÇvÍÿ\5ãrfÌúã…ök’uNGðï~k ÷¹Tâùñs;ìïçÙÚÊ/8n=ßn]muŒ
    settings.xmlµYQWâ:
    -d*R-ÁbP-
    7ÞBë¤U¯/—ËÓåù)Êy½yuuU•o7C
    Y>k^6.
    qÂéoGy2d H
    g
    &__WtÜ‚ñ>íÈIEà’ _?*
    N]¥¡Ï£¹ ðŽ5&CTÑGn*
    -
    P5o¶æk-MQEM]
    META-INF/manifest.xmlµ•KjÃ0
    ‘Ú@,ƒ
    ¥Ð`žú(UŠq:bÎbqW
    *긓ý½_PrSõ4I7
    Z
    bþK|0H³c-2
    mimetypePK
    Configurations2/statusbar/PK
    Configurations2/accelerator/current.xmlPK
    Configurations2/floater/PK
    Configurations2/popupmenu/PK
    Configurations2/progressbar/PK
    Configurations2/menubar/PK
    Configurations2/toolbar/PK
    Configurations2/images/Bitmaps/PK
    content.xmlPK
    styles.xmlPK
    meta.xmlPK
    Thumbnails/thumbnail.pngPK
    settings.xmlPK
    META-INF/manifest.xmlPK

  11. Eruaran said,

    June 19, 2008 at 9:08 pm

    Gravatar

    Actually not all the info displayed correctly when I submitted it… but meh, you get the idea…

  12. Jose_X said,

    August 12, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    Gravatar

    >> The dialog boxes show that Word 2007 tries to open a Word 2007 file, and does not find the parts it expects. This is not conclusive, other than the fact that Word 2007 does not support .ODT natively.

    These diagrams seem to indicate Word doesn’t support ODF yet, but consider the following.

    That is the problem with a monopoly. When most businesses and users use a specific product, the vendor calls the shots. What the user sees is “an illegal …blah blah….” They know next time if they want to “preserve” their work to use Monopolyware and not take chances with other products. This is FUD that helps keep the monopoly together to be leveraged another day.

    The user also eventually will recognize the .odt ending and avoid it like the plague.. so much that those advocating it will have another hurdle to overcome to get their legitimate message across or sell their product.

    [Hypothetical] Without a monopoly, it would be much clearer to many users that this product was badly designed in assuming OOXML formatting and in not adequately supporting ODF by this time. Rather than to hold the monopoly fort, in such a hypothetical case, this product would rightly lose marketshare. Thus, even this “innocent” error interaction serves to strengthen the monopoly, and few would claim Monopolysoft was playing dirty. Most would attribute this to incompetency, sloppiness, negligence… point is, all of these natural human failings help support the monopoly automatically.

    Better formats and products get marginalized severely as long as you have a monopoly. It pressures vendors of new products and those contemplating format changes to do so on the monopolist’s terms and timeline. This defeats major advantages of innovators.

    And who can outmarket a Monopolysoft backed by its cashcows and controlled marketing venues (your *desktop* and the many partners kept in line through fear and NDA secrecy).

    Monopolysoft has numerous interlocking monopolies not just one.

    [IMO] Monopolysoft will fight ODF by helping to create the appearances of ODF products and documents that “don’t work”. This is a major facet of what they mean by “supporting” ODF today but “OOXML is the future”. They will partake in the poisoning of the ODF well until they have “fixed” ISO OOXML and changed their software to “match” it.

What Else is New


  1. The Death of Software Patents and Microsoft's Coup Against Yahoo! Made the Company Worthless

    A look at what happens to companies whose value is a house of software patents rather than code and a broad base of users/customers



  2. Munich Attack Mentioned by EPO But Not Ansbach

    The EPO does the usual right-wing thing (exploiting disaster/emergency for domestic crackdowns), but some bemoan the omission of the explosion at Ansbach (also in Germany)



  3. Kluwer Thinks People Are Clueless About the Unitary Patent System and Pretends It's Business as Usual

    Flogging the dead UPC horse at times of great uncertainty (enough to bring the UPC to a standstill)



  4. Almost Everything That the Government Accountability Office Says is Applicable to the EPO

    The Government Accountability Office in the United States produces reports which can serve as a timely warning sign to the European Patent Office, where patent quality is rapidly declining in order to meet 'production' goals



  5. Microsoft Says It Loves Linux, But Its Anti-Linux Patent Trolls Are Still Around and Active

    Highlighting just two of the many entities that Microsoft (and partners) use in order to induce additional costs on Free (as in freedom) software



  6. Links 26/7/2016: Microsoft Growing Desperate, Linux 4.8 Visions

    Links for the day



  7. Links 25/7/2016: Linux 4.7 Final, PostgreSQL 9.6 Beta 3

    Links for the day



  8. Leaked: Boards of Appeal Face 'Exile' or 'Extradition' in Haar After Standing up to Battistelli

    A look at some of the latest moves at the European Patent Office (EPO), following Battistelli's successful coup d’état which brought the EPO into a perpetual state of emergency that perpetuates Battistelli's totalitarian powers



  9. The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) Comes Across as Against Software Patents, Relates to the EPO as Well

    Some analysis of the input from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) with focus on the EPO and software patents



  10. In the US, Patent Trolls Engage in Patent Wars and Shakedowns, Whereas in China/Korea Large Android OEMs Sue One Another

    Highlighting some of the differences between the US patent system and other patent systems



  11. Links 24/7/2016: Elive 2.7.1 Beta, New Flatpaks and Snaps

    Links for the day



  12. Links 23/7/2016: Leo Laporte on GNU/Linux, Dolphin Emulator’s Vulkan Completion

    Links for the day



  13. Links 22/7/2016: Wine 1.9.15, KaOS 2016.07 ISO

    Links for the day



  14. Haar Mentioned as Likely Site of Appeal Boards as Their Eradication or Marginalisation Envisioned by UPC Proponent Benoît Battistelli

    Not only the Staff Union of the European Patent Office (SUEPO) is under severe attack and possibly in mortal danger; the increasingly understaffed Boards of Appeal too are coming under attack and may (according to rumours) be sent to Haar, a good distance away from Munich and the airport (half an hour drive), not to mention lack of facilities for visitors from overseas



  15. EPO Attaché Albert Keyack Viewed as Somewhat of a Mole, Reporting From the US Embassy in Brazil Until Shortly Before the Temer Coup

    Public responses to the role played by Albert Keyack on behalf of the United States inside the European [sic] Patent Office



  16. EPO Insiders Explain Why the EPO's Examination Quality Rapidly Declines and Will Get Even Worse Because of Willy Minnoye

    Public comments from anonymous insiders serve to highlight a growing crisis inside the European Patent Office (EPO), where experienced/senior examiners are walking away and leaving an irreplaceable bunch of seats (due to high experience demands)



  17. Patents Roundup: BlackBerry, Huawei, PTAB, GAO, Aggressive Universities With Patents, and Software Patents in Europe

    Various bits and pieces of news regarding patents and their fast-changing nature in the United States nowadays



  18. Glimpse at Patent Systems Across the World: Better Quality Control at the USPTO Post-America Invents Act (2011), Unlike the EPO Post-Battistelli (2010)

    While the EPO reportedly strives to eliminate pendency and appeal windows altogether (rubberstamping being optimal performance as per the yardstick du jour), the USPTO introduces changes that would strengthen the system and shield innovation, not protect the business model of serial litigants



  19. Blockstream Has No Patents, But Pledges Not to Sue Using Patents

    Blockstream says that it comes in peace when it comes to software patents, which triggers speculations about coming Blockchain patent wars



  20. Links 21/7/2016: Ubuntu 16.04.1 LTS, Linux Mint 18 “Sarah” Xfce Beta

    Links for the day



  21. Links 21/7/2016: An Honorary Degree for Alan Cox, Looks Back at DebConf16

    Links for the day



  22. EPO USA: Under Battistelli, the 'European' Patent Office Emulates All the Mistakes of the USPTO

    Conservative Benoît Battistelli is trying to impose on the European Patent Office various truly misguided policies and he viciously attacks anyone or anything that stands in his way, including his formal overseers



  23. Links 19/7/2016: ARM and Opera Buyout

    Links for the day



  24. Large Corporations' Software Patenting Pursuits Carry on in Spite of Patent Trolls That Threaten Small Companies the Most

    With unconvincing excuses such as OIN, large corporations including IBM continue to promote software patents in the United States, even when public officials and USPTO officials work towards ending those



  25. Battistelli Has Implemented De Facto EPO Coup to Remove Oversight, Give Himself Total Power, and Allegedly Give UPC Gifts (Loot) to French Officials

    Benoît Battistelli's agenda at the EPO is anything but beneficial to the EPO and suspicions that Battistelli's overall agenda is transitioning to the UPC to further his goals grow feet



  26. EPO Social [sic] Report is a Big Pile of Lies That Responsible Journalists Must Ignore

    A reminder of where the EPO stands on social issues and why the latest so-called 'social' report is nothing but paid-for propaganda for Battistelli's political ambitions



  27. Links 18/7/2016: Vista 10 a Failure, FreeType 2.7

    Links for the day



  28. Exploiting Perceived Emergencies/Disasters, Suspending the Rule of Law, and Suspending Judges: How Erdoğan is Like Battistelli, Except the Coup

    Pretexts for crackdown on law-abiding people or figureheads who are remote and independent the hallmark not only of Erdoğan but also the EPO's President, Benoit Battistelli



  29. The Impotence of Gene Quinn

    Attacking the enforcer of Alice v CLS because it's doing harm to his source of income, which makes him angry



  30. After the FTI Consulting-EPO Reputation Laundering Deal's Expansion in Germany Süddeutsche Zeitung 'Forgets' That the EPO Even Exists

    Relative apathy if not complete silence regarding the EPO at Süddeutsche Zeitung following reports of FTI Consulting's deal expansion (media positioning in Germany), with hundreds of thousands of Euros (EPO budget) thrown at the controversial task


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts