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4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 4:50 am
by easyrider645
I am running windows 10 professional 64-bit version 1803, build 17134.523
and have just updated AOO to 4.1.6. I tried to update JREs both 32 and 64
versions but do not know how to verify

AOO
4.1.6 open office will not open my spreadsheets and write files that were created in the previous versions of AOO
there is nothing in those files of any complexity.
INSTEAD
I get a text import form or an ascii filter option in response to an open request

and I do not know how to covert that back to my file.

If the topic has been raised before, please point me at it.

Jim

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 6:11 am
by FJCC
Getting the ASCII filter dialog is a sign that the file is corrupted. Updating the AOO version should not touch the files you created.
What folder or folders are your files stored in? It is probably something starting with C:\Users, which is good.
It sounds like all of your files are affected. Is that true?
Has there been a Windows update since you were last able to access your files?
Can you upload an affected file? To do that, click Post Reply and look for the Upload Attachment tab just below the box where you type a response.

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:21 am
by Zizi64
Try to open them with a portable version of the LibreOffice.

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 12:03 pm
by RoryOF
Just to confirm: are these files on the original computer on which they were made/edited, or have they been transferred from another computer?

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 1:05 pm
by John_Ha
All of your files cannot have been damaged - there is a vanishingly small probability of that happening.

easyrider645 wrote:I get a text import form or an ascii filter option in response to an open request

That means you are not opening a well formed .odt, .ods or .odp file - the file is a flat ASCII file like a .csv or .txt file. You can open such a file with Notepad.

Search any forum with ascii.

Please upload a file showing the problem so that it can be analysed. Use the Upload attachment tab below where you type (128 kB max); or use a file share site, Dropbox or Google Drive for a larger file.

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:04 am
by easyrider645
In answer to the several responses:
there are 350 files spread all over my C: directories that cannot be opened and show as last modified on jan 15 2019 in the evening -- SO it seems that something happened on 15 Jan 2019 to hundreds of files dated on that date whether xls, doc, oft, odt, pdf and AOO of a sudden does not look guilty
1: the date of the AOO program files in the Program/ (x86) directory is Jan 19, 2019
2: all of the files I am having trouble with were created on this computer and still reside on
this computer
every file in one directory shows a modified date of 1/15/2019. All of the files files were created in feb of last year and certainly not all of the files were modified on 1/15/19
14 files out of 20 in subdirectory 2018banking/december2018 are dated modified on 1/15/19 and will not open - 16 are xls files 3 are ods and 1 is pdf
i am uploading the following files for analysis NPI OLOL.odt, DENTURE CLAIM.odt, md networks.ods

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:50 am
by RusselB
One thing I thought of to check real quick, if you can, is to see what, if any updates were done on your system on that date.
As we are about 3 weeks past that date, I suggest you check that quickly so that a more recent set of updates doesn't screw things up even more.
I had a similar problem years ago with a Windows update, where the last modified date was changed to the current date.... I complained to Microsoft at the time and was given detailed instruction on how to reverse the update, which, in turn, put all the dates back correctly... I then just told Windows to ignore that update.
No promises that your situation will be resolved as easily, but figured it couldn't hurt to put it out as an option.

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:37 am
by RoryOF
The coincidence of all files being redated to the one date suggests that either a Windows Update or a system restore took place about then.

These two threads may be informative
https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/10/08/microsoft_windows_10_pulled/
https://ask.libreoffice.org/en/question/168795/is-there-a-fix-for-libreoffice-not-working-after-windows-10-fall-update/

It may be that for some reason that responsible update (if it is that update) was not applied to your computer until later.

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:45 am
by robleyd
All the uploaded files above have no recoverable data in them. Unusually they aren't filled with null bytes, but each is full of one, different in each file, value.

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:57 am
by RoryOF
in addition to robleyd's findings, the files are not now .zip archives, as they should be.

 Edit: Normally, a corrupt OpenOffice file is a .zip archive, with various informations in it, but the content section has been zeroed out (i.e., prepared for text insertion, but nothing inserted). These files do not now have that form; they are long blocks of a repeated character, without even the ancillary information we would expect in a corrupt OpenOffice file. This suggests an event at the system level, be it file restoration or something else. 

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:53 pm
by easyrider645
thanks to all of you for your responses and information.
the last cumulative update to windows 64 (1803) before the 1/15/19 date occured on 1/8/19,
then 2 more updates on 1/18 and 1/20/19. I suppose I need to go to Microsoft or their community
to ask about this phonom. Again, thank you all

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 7:44 pm
by John_Ha
I have never seen AOO create files of this form no matter how bad the corruption. I am 99.9% certain that Windows or user action has corrupted these files. I would believe almost anything about Windows 10 messing up a user.

DENTURE CLAIM.odt has nothing but the character " j " repeated endlessly.

md networks.ods has nothing but the character " à " repeated endlessly.

NPI OLOL.odt has nothing but the character " D " repeated endlessly.

Clipboard01.png

The only rational conclusion I can come to is that the files have been erased by deliberately overwriting them with a single character. This is a feature of many Drive Wiper or Securely Delete File programs such as CCleaner. It does not explain why the characters are different in the three files.

Another thought.
easyrider645 wrote:In answer to the several responses:
there are 350 files spread all over my C: directories that cannot be opened and show as last modified on jan 15 2019 in the evening -- SO it seems that something happened on 15 Jan 2019 to hundreds of files dated on that date whether xls, doc, oft, odt, pd

Could it be ransomware? But ransomware normally encrypts the files to allow the file to be recovered after the ransom has been paid - these files are not encrypted. Maybe this was spitefulware ...

Thought 2. Try Recover Previous Versions - instructions are at [Tutorial] How to find and un-delete AOO temporary files. Unfortunately I think any System Restore containing a previous version of the files will itself have been overwritten by a later System Restore. But there is no harm in trying...

Re: 4.1.6 tries to open SS and write files as text

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:04 pm
by John_Ha
John_Ha wrote:I would believe almost anything about Windows 10 messing up a user.

See Automated Windows 10 updates deleted all my documents and files which says

I am in a state of shock.

I was already using windows 10 and last night automated updates started without allowing me to stop them.

This morning my computer is cleaned out with all those very important document deleted!!! Microsoft can do that??? How can I recover them ALL?????

There are 93 responses and 715 "I have the same question" so, while it is of little comfort, you are not alone. Searching the Windows.old folder may be the best bet but read the thread.

John_Ha wrote:Maybe this was spitefulware ...

It appears it was spitefulware - Windows 10!