Excel compatibility issues

u587162 used Ask the Experts™
I'm having issues with a work colleague who is not able to open the attached excel spreadsheet.  I am using Excel 2007 and he is using excel 2003.  However, the file (which contains macros) is saved in 2003 compatibility format.

Yet even when I open it, I get a warning "The file you are trying to open "[File Name].xls" is in a different format than specified by the file extension.  Verify that the file is not corrupted and is from a trusted source before opening the file.  Do you want to open the file?"

When I click yes, it opens fine.  When my colleague opens it, it opens as jibberish/garble.

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I suggest you open the file, save it again and then try sending it to the colleague.
Or "Save as" with a different name but the same extension.
From what I can tell - this file is actually a .xlsx file with the extension changed by hand to .xls
Or something to that effect.

I would suggest recreating the file (copying the sheet from the computer where it does work to a new excel document, saving the file as excel 2003 format).

Let me know if this works - otherwise, please answer the following questions:
Does this happen for other files as well on your colleagues computer? Or only this one?
byundtMechanical Engineer
Most Valuable Expert 2013
Top Expert 2013
I concur with Wiesje. Your file is actually a .xlsx file. If you rename the file with a .xlsx file extension, it will open without corruption issues.

Note that there are no macros in this file. That's because .xlsx file format does not permit them.

The problem most likely occurred because somebody saved the file with .xls extension using a macro. The .SaveAs method in Excel 2007 and later requires the use of the FileFormat parameter whenever you change the file type. The file extension is no longer sufficient (as it was in Excel 2003). The save will proceed, but the poor person trying to open the file will get the error message that you noted.


Thanks.  Yes it was the maco.  works fine when i rename or save file as xls rather than xlsx.

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