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Open .xlsx files automatically on Mac using Safari

Posted on 2014-02-10
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Last Modified: 2014-03-25
We have a simple Intranet with lots of .xlsx files (basically a file server but users access via links).  I know, it's a horrible design but the CFO demands we keep it in place.  In the past, he was using Windows and when he clicked on the link, it would automatically open the file.  Now he has a Mac and when he clicks on the link, it downloads to a folder (and he has to manually go into that folder and open the file).  I know this is by design (Safari safe list) but is there a way around it?  I read something about adding a .plist file into the preferences folder but that didn't work for me.  Any ideas?  Thanks in advance!
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Question by:vianceadmin
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Eoin OSullivan earned 2000 total points
ID: 39847946
What plist file did you edit?  
Was it the "com.apple.DownloadAssessment.plist" file in the User's Library/Preference folder?

As far as I know .. xls, doc and ppt work but the newer xlsx, docx and pptx do not even if you add them to this plist file.  The problem is that Safari does not properly identify the filetype and therefore will not pass it to Excel.

There used to be a way using the RCDefaultApp System Preference to 'help' Safari identify certain filetypes but I've never tested it with xlsx files
http://www.tikirobot.net/wp/2006/12/03/automatically-opening-your-own-downloaded-files-with-safari/

The only solution I can offer is to switch to Firefox which allows you to set an Application associated with any downloaded file and open it automatically
https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/change-firefox-behavior-when-open-file#w_adding-download-actions

If you have all these files linked on your web server you may be able to edit the settings on your Server for mime types to "fool" safari into thinking XLSX files are XLS files.
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by:Eoin OSullivan
ID: 39847966
If you're using Apache as the web server ... the config file under mime types should have the following line
application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.spreadsheetml.sheet       xlsx

if you change it to
application/vnd.ms-excel xlsx


This will identify the new xlsx files as standard XLS files and Safari "should" allow you to open them in Excel again.
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