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Office Open XML

Office Open XML (OOXML) file format was proposed by Microsoft in 2006 as a competitive standard to PDF format from Adobe. Open Office XML structure is described in ISO/IEC 29500 and ECMA-376 standards.

Microsoft introduced partial support of Office Open XML standard in Microsoft Office 2010. Starting with Microsoft Office 2013 full support of ISO/IEC 29500 and ECMA-376 was introduced to Microsoft Office package.

Office Open XML standard uses XML as a language to describe structures, content and other internal details of the documents. That makes it easier to read and understand for developers and other users who need to look inside the file. Many development tools and even browsers allow viewing XML file in an easy to read and explore representation. That made OOXML format easier to adopt and widely used in enterprise environment.

To compress content OOXML standard uses ZIP compression format which works very efficiently on XML-based content. This makes OOXML storage mechanism quite efficient when working with large documents.

Office Open XML supports features made specifically for enterprise document workflow. These features include metadata tagging, search, document assembly and data reuse.

Office Open XML is a competing standard to OpenDocument Format which has many similarities to OOXML.

For applications which do not deviate from OOXML format Microsoft added a promise not to sue for OOXML standard patent infringement: “Microsoft irrevocably promises not to assert any Microsoft Necessary Claims against you for making, using, selling, offering for sale, importing or distributing any implementation to the extent it conforms to a Covered Specification “

Below is a list of software capable of working with OOXML file format:

  • LibreOffice supports import of Office Open XML files
  • Apache OpenOffice version 3.0 or later can import Office Open XML files
  • Softmaker Office 2010 can import and export DOCX and XLSX documents
  • KOffice version 2.2 or later can import OOXML files
  • Calligra Suite can import OOXML files
  • NeoOffice 2017 or later can import and export OOXML files
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