Using files from previous versions of Word

Even though documents created in Word 2007 and subsequent versions have the same .docx extension, the file format of the 2016 version is slightly different from the previous formats as it includes some new features from Word 2016. Documents created in versions older than Word 2007 use the extension .doc. It is nevertheless possible to save a document in Word format from versions 97 to 2003 or even open a document created in a pre-Word 2016 version. If you have Word 2003 you can still open a document you have created in Word 2016.

Saving a document in Word 97-2003 format

A document created in Word 2016 can be saved in Word 97-2003 format so that it can be opened in the 97-2003 versions of Word. Note, however, that if the document has been created using functionality that was not available in previous versions of Word, this functionality is lost when the document is saved for previous versions. In addition, if you open, in Word 2016, a document saved in a previous version of Word, you will not be able to use the new functionality (themes, for example); they are greyed out to show that they are unavailable.

Click the File tab then Export.

Next click Change File Type and double-click on the Word 97-2003 Document option.

You will notice that the Word 97-2003 Document (*.doc) option is selected in the Save as type list that appears.

If it is a new document, select the file location, then choose the File name in the relevant text box.

If the document already exists, you can change the file location then the name; ...