Microsoft Office 2007 Service Pack 2 will officially add support for the Open Document Format ODF which is a free and open file format for electronic office documents. The format is already implemented in Open Office and users of Microsoft Office 2007 who want their product to be compatible can download the ODF plugin for Microsoft Office at Sun.
The current release of Microsoft Office 2007 Service Pack 2 is scheduled for the first half of 2009 which means that it will take about a year before Microsoft is adding the support officially. Common Open Document File extensions are .oft for word processing, .ods for spreadhsheets, .odp for presentations and .odg for graphics.
The Sun ODF Plugin for Microsoft Office gives users of Microsoft Office 2007 the ability to load, save and edit odf files. The plugin is also compatible to previous editions of Microsoft Office including Office XP, Office 2003 and Office 2000. The plugin integrates itself seamlessly into the Save and Load file dialogs and is translated into several languages including English, German, French, Spanish and a dozen more.
Update: The ODF Plugin is no longer available on the Sun or Oracle website.
Update 2: An Open XML / ODF Translator add-in has been released and is now available on the Sourceforge website.
The converter is based on XSL transformations between two XML formats, along with some pre- and post-processing to manage the packaging (zip / unzip), schema incompatibilities and the integration into Microsoft Office applications like Word, Excel and PowerPoint. We chose to use an Open Source development model that allows developers from all around the world to participate and contribute to the project.
The program is compatible with Office XP, 2003 and 2007 only and not with newer versions of Microsoft Office.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.