Problems opening Lotus-123 files (.WK1) as Excel 2002 (.XLS) spread-sheets

Posted on 2004-04-18
Last Modified: 2012-06-27
This is  on Windows XP (Home Edition).

I am trying to open Lotus-123 data files (.WK1) using Excel 2002. Almost everything seems to transfer fine except a critical field. Also when opening in Excel, it shows "Cannot Read record" followed by some garbage and I when click OK it reports that there was 1 error. I do not know Lotus-123 at all and have no idea how to track down what the value of this field is.
Since I have to open hundreds of such files and then save them as .XLS spread-sheets I do not want a manual solution.

BTW, I cannot even figure out which version of Lotus-123 I am using. When I run 123.exe I get an empty spread-sheet with READY in the top left column. I tried running through all the Menu options to see if there is "About" or some such but no luck.

Pleaser help !

Question by:dshanko
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LVL 45

Expert Comment

ID: 10854810
Are you saying that you cannot open these files using Lotus123?

Author Comment

ID: 10854865

No, that is not what I meant.
I can open them in Lotus-123 but not in Excel 2002.

As mentioned earlier, I am not looking for a manual solution.
So something like this is _NOT_ an option for me:
1. open a file in Lotus-123,
2. open the same file in Excel 2002
3. visually compare all fields in Lotus-123 with those in Excel
4. figure out which field is missing and then enter that value in Excel.

I want an "automatic" solution. Hope I am not too vague.

Accepted Solution

suesloan earned 75 total points
ID: 10907193
1) It would appear your problem is with Excel and not with 1-2-3. If Excel says it can handle 1-2-3 files, it should do so without error. But you may find it is better to open the .WK1 files with 1-2-3 and then use File, SAVE AS the files into an Excel format.

2) You can find the version under Help on the top menu bar using the About 1-2-3 option.

Sue Sloan
LVL 10

Assisted Solution

eternal_21 earned 25 total points
ID: 10910977
> "...123.exe I get an empty spread-sheet with READY in the top left column."

This sounds like Lotus 1-2-3... for DOS.  Are you running a Windows version?

Author Comment

ID: 10913016
Sorry for not checking earlier.

Yes, I am using the Lotus 1-2-3 for DOS. But on Windows XP. Just recently, I purchased the Lotus Smart Suite which comes with Lotus 1-2-3 N9.8.0208.1200.

It was able to read the old data files just fine and now my problem is solved.
This question can now be closed.
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LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 10999926
Hi Sue! Thanks for dropping by!  ;-)
I just read your profile. I didn't realize you signed in in 2000 already!

In it is explained how to close a question. If you need more info, please let me know.
Unfortunately you make your last comment sound as if you have already chosen the 5th option: leaving the mess to somebody else. There is a chance that I'll be that person, so I'll take the liberty to make a recommendation to you now....

Not knowing the version that you were using, suesloan suggests using 123 to convert your file to an Excel format. That is a very common solution to solve incompatible file issues.

Then there's eternal_21's observation of you using a DOS version. I can imagine that it was this comment that lead to your purchase of the windows version (where suesloan's suggestion proved to work).

Why not split point between these two experts?

I could help you close (PAQ) the question and refund your points if you have a good motivation for it and the participating experts have no objection to that. If this is your choise, please leave us a comment.

Page Editor

LVL 45

Assisted Solution

patrickab earned 25 total points
ID: 11000470
I guess dshanko has chosen the lowest cost solution as it is possible to buy Smart Suite on the net for about USD20. The alternative for others not willing to pay even that amount is to send such files to Lotus123 users who can save the files in Excel format. I does say a lot Microsoft's attitude to providing useful tools for users of Excel.
Points refund - I suggest.
LVL 45

Expert Comment

ID: 11003607
CRAK - thanks - Patrick
LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 11003947
You're welcome, but I didn't assign points or close the question.
LVL 45

Expert Comment

ID: 11004157
dshanko - Many thanks - Patrick

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