Typically, a doc file refers to just a document file which can be opened with one of the word processors like Microsoft Word and WordPerfect. If you do not own one of these software applications, you can also choose to open a doc file with WordPad even though some formatting may be absent in the latter.
One of the best things about doc files is that they can be developed for cross-platform use across Mac, Windows and Linux.
If you take your time to browse the Internet, you may even find converters which aid in conversion of basic text formats and rich text formats into doc formats.
The doc extension was created by WordPerfect in the early 1980s and was later adapted by Microsoft during the next decade. With a DOS operating system, the doc file was still in existence for over 15 years before Microsoft decided to replace the doc format with a sleeker docx format.
You will notice that earlier Microsoft products have trouble opening doc files but there are some third party applications that are compatible with them. Some known third party applications include Writer and AbiWord from SourceGear Corporation. You can ask this question – can you find out if a specific doc file was created with Microsoft Word or some other third party application?
The doc files that were created with Word would definitely have the blue “W” in the icon while other applications would create a file in the format but not with the same icon.
Since doc files can be incorporated with macros, this can cause them to be used for carrying worms and viruses. Therefore, they have to be scanned before you download them on to your computer. If you try to open a doc file upon which the computer says that it cannot be opened, you can be sure that your file has been corrupted.
However, it is possible for you to recover the contents of the file by opening it with WordPad in the RTF format. This removes all the formatting but it provides you with the content of the file.
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