1.2 Open XML Format and Filename Extensions – Intro to Excel 2016

1.2. Open XML Format and File name Extensions
Starting with the 2007 Microsoft Office system, Microsoft Office began using an XML-based file format, which changed the Office file extensions to .xlsx, .docx, and .pptx. These file name extensions apply to Excel, Word, and PowerPoint respectively. We will briefly discuss key benefits of the XML format. The Open XML Formats include many benefits — not only for developers and the solutions that they build, but also for individual people and organizations of all sizes.
Benefits of XML Format (Excel 2007 – Present)

  • Compact files: Files are automatically compressed and can be up to 75 percent smaller in some cases. The Open XML Format uses zip compression technology to store documents, offering potential cost savings as it reduces the disk space required to store files and decreases the bandwidth needed to send files via e-mail, over networks, and across the Internet. When you open a file, it is automatically unzipped. When you save a file, it is automatically zipped again. You do not have to install any special zip utilities to open and close files in Office.


  • Improved damaged-file recovery: Files are structured in a modular fashion that keeps different data components in the file separate from each other. This allows files to be opened even if a component within the file (for example, a chart or table) is damaged or corrupted.


  • Better privacy and more control over personal information: Documents can be shared confidentially, because personally identifiable information and business-sensitive information, such as author names, comments, tracked changes, and file paths can be easily identified and removed by using Document Inspector.


  • Better integration and interoperability of business data: Using Open XML Formats as the data interoperability framework for the Office set of products means that documents, worksheets, presentations, and forms can be saved in an XML file format that is freely available for anyone to use and to license, royalty free. Office also supports customer-defined XML Schemas that enhance the existing Office document types. This means that customers can easily unlock information in existing systems and act upon it in familiar Office programs. Information that is created within Office can be easily used by other business applications. All you need to open and edit an Office file is a ZIP utility and an XML editor.


  • Easier detection of documents that contain macros: Files that are saved by using the default “x” suffix (such as .docx, .xlsx, and .pptx) cannot contain Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) macros and XLM macros. Only files whose file name extension ends with an “m” (such as .docm, .xlsm, and .pptm) can contain macros.
Module 1 completed. Take quiz for Module 1 here