• Modify and Save Excel 2 spreadsheets with Excel 2016

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    #2501554

    My mother-in-law passed away several months ago. When she wrote her book for her her PhD degree I helped her with the many spreadsheets that were needed. I have now inherited all of her old files. The spreadsheets are in Excel 2 format. When I open the security setting in Excel 2016 I see that I can open these old files, but I cannot modify or save them in a more modern format. Is there a way to get around this?

    Thanks for any help.

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    • #2501646

      You might want to try LibreOffice to see if it will allow you to modify and store Excel files in a modern format. LibreOffice seems to be fairly flexible.
      https://www.libreoffice.org/
      Here’s the portable version:
      https://www.libreoffice.org/download/portable-versions/

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    • #2501715

      If you try Libre Office, do your experimentation with a COPY of your file(s), not the original, in case Libre Office does not preserve the Excel formatting correctly.

      That advice might also go for Excel 2016 until you are confident that it works correctly.

    • #2501753

      I’m mildly surprised that Excel 2016 won’t allow you to save, or more importantly, ‘save as’ an Excel 2 file.  But then, that’s Microsoft ‘enforcing’ the end of their support for old products.

      As geekdom indicated above, download the free LibreOffice and open the spreadsheet program and load the Excel 2 spreadsheet.

      Then do a ‘save as’ or whatever it’s called (I don’t OpenOffice on this computer) and it will provide a range of file formats, including several versions of MS Excel.  It may ‘sqwak’ a bit that certain features will be unavailable, etc, but so what?  I’d also change the file name (other than the .XLSX) to make it easy to identify.  Switch over to Excel 2016 and open it.  Shouldn’t be any problem at that point.

    • #2501773

      When I open the security setting in Excel 2016 I see that I can open these old files, but I cannot modify or save them in a more modern format.

      This looks like the security (protected) actions on the Excel file.

      After you open it select the Review tab in the ribbon above and see if Unprotect Sheet icon is available (which means it is protected). Pressing that Unprotect Sheet button may allow you to unprotect it unless it is password protected.

      If that doesn’t work then upload to Google Sheets (Google’s “Excel” app) which will remove all protection. Download the file as a .xlsx file which should open and allow modifying in your Excel 2016.

      HTH, Dana:))

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