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 Post subject: software near-independence strategy despite rare upgrades
 Post Posted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 5:42 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2007 10:36 am
Posts: 208
Problem solved; open for comment.

Since I don't want to upgrade software often enough to expect continuous version compatibility, my current protocol is to save files in generic non-native formats, such as text (*.txt). Even that can be problematic, as with paragraph markers that may, I think, be CRs (carriage returns), LFs (line feeds), or CRLFs, but a difficulty there should still allow fairly easy content recovery. Upgrading is still needed, as when hardware breaks down and is not easily replaced (e.g., the x86 upgrade path seems to have ended for Win OS purposes), but this should make productive work easier over the long term.


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 Post subject: Re: software near-independence strategy despite rare upgrade
 Post Posted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 8:13 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 04, 2007 11:44 am
Posts: 5751
While I also use text files a lot, I recommend using open-source software such as LibreOffice where possible, because not only the software but the file formats are openly supported. In addition it can read and write popular Microsoft Office file formats as well. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: software near-independence strategy despite rare upgrade
 Post Posted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 2:55 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 1:27 pm
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Location: Stowmarket, Suffolk England
Just to note that Libreoffice can read and write MS Works files, and Libre Office can be set to save in industry standard MS Office formats.


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 Post subject: Re: software near-independence strategy despite rare upgrade
 Post Posted: Sat Jul 26, 2014 2:36 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2007 10:36 am
Posts: 208
Good, but if it's been a long time, say 10 years, since a given native format was current, finding compatible software may be a challenge (if compatibility was dropped from a later version, with open source software earlier versions may still be available but they may still have to be downloaded and installed in order to find out if they even offer compatibility for a particular format). Compatibility may also depend on reverse engineering opposed (often legally and often technologically) by Microsoft and its proprietary competitors, limiting the quality of the compatibility. But using sophisticated features is far more efficient in native formats; so, in that case, a copy should also be kept as a generic file, which at least allows having the basic content and reformatting later.


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