Saturday, January 17, 2009

Zamzar: Online File Conversion

A faculty member recently inquired "My office computer used to be able to read Works, but that capability seems to have disappeared with the appearance of Word 2007. Can someone point me to what I need to do to get Works working for me?"

As a test, she sent me a couple files and I went to and easily converted them. The site is loaded with pop-ups and advertising (and it you stay on the site long enough, your computer will start talking to you ("you've won..."). Just ignore all that and you'll see the 4-step process to convert a file from one format to another. In this case, I converted a .wps file to a .doc.

Zamzar can convert to and from a variety of formats (video, graphic image, document, music, archive). Once you make your selection and identify the file, Zamzar uploads it and then emails you the converted file. There are file size limits (depending on the type of file) and it does take a few minutes to convert and then email the converted file to you.

As always, use at your own risk. I would not use for highly sensitive data (there's a copy out there somewhere) that might be used or abused. Zamzar will of course try to sell you a premium service. It's an option if you use the service frequently and want faster turn-around.

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