[Solved] Password Protection problem

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[Solved] Password Protection problem

Postby TownTalk » Fri Jan 25, 2013 2:03 pm

We have a document which was created in MS Word and password protected.

When we open this document in OO writer, it accepts the password, but opens the document as read only. If we go back and open the same document in MS Word, it opens as writeable.

We are not, and never have used the option to open in read only mode. In OpenOffice I removed the password, and the the document became writeable again. When I re-applied the password, the document opens in read only mode.

What is happening here?
Last edited by Hagar Delest on Fri Jan 25, 2013 7:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: tagged [Solved].
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Re: Password Protection problem

Postby Hagar Delest » Fri Jan 25, 2013 2:32 pm

Works fine for me on Ubuntu but it's biased since I don't open the file with MS Word.
NB: if you click the edit button in the toolbar, does it work?

Can you make a test file and upload it here (see How to attach a document here)?
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Re: Password Protection problem

Postby RoryOF » Fri Jan 25, 2013 2:40 pm

There are two password levels in OpenOffice: one is to prevent the entire document being opened, the other to prevent parts of the document being edited. The filters to open MS Office documents have been reverse engineered and differences in formattibg and general behaviour, as you are finding, are to be expected. OpenOffice does not present itself as an MS Office clone, contrary to popular impression; if exact compatibility is required you have no option but to stay with MS Office.

It is possible that you could unlock the Read-only setting, but it might be easiest to Ctrl A to copy the entire document and paste it into a new OpenOffice document. However, whatever difficulty you have with passwords in OpenOffice from Ms Office originated files, I would expect that you might have other difficulties with them when reverting to MS Office with OpenOffice originated files. I strongly suggest you check this carefully before trying to pass valuable work in either direction in passworded files.

Personally I don't use passworded files and always recommend users not to do so.
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Re: Password Protection problem

Postby TownTalk » Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:26 pm

Ok, here's a test file which exhibits the problem for us. It was created in MS Word 2010. The password is: letmein

I tried on 2 machines here which have OpenOffice installed. It open in readonly mode on both of them
Attachments
Password Test.doc
(21.5 KiB) Downloaded 76 times
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Re: Password Protection problem

Postby Hagar Delest » Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:31 pm

There is a section that is protected in the file. Perhaps it comes from that. I also see the read-only "problem" with your file. But removing the protection on the section seems to fix it.

Please add '[Solved]' at the beginning of your first post title (edit button) if your issue has been fixed.
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Re: Password Protection problem

Postby TownTalk » Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:55 pm

Yes, removing the password fixes the problem, but we dont want to be doing that every time we open a protected file.
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Re: Password Protection problem

Postby RoryOF » Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:59 pm

One possibility is to install OpenOffice on your current MS Office machines and use it for generating any password protected files you will need to edit on the OpenOffice machines. This is a low cost option, as OpenOffice is free. The high cost option is to use MS Office on the other machines (operating system permitting, of course).
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Re: Password Protection problem

Postby TownTalk » Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:17 pm

So is this a bug in OpenOffice?
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Re: Password Protection problem

Postby Hagar Delest » Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:49 pm

It's a problem with the .doc format. Remember that the .doc import/export filters have been reverse engineered. A section may be created at the import (or perhaps MS Word creates the section) because of the protection.

If you need to work in .doc, then use MS Office. That's the vendor lock-in policy. This is why it's important to use true open standards like ODF.
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[Solved] Password Protection problem

Postby TownTalk » Fri Jan 25, 2013 6:54 pm

It would be nice to use .ODF but we interact with a world which mainly uses .DOC So we need to do likewise. I can't realistically ask my users to work sometimes in .ODF and othertimes in .DOC either. But in this case, the problem would be fixed if we got everyone off MS Office and using Open Office.

We decided to use OpenOffice not for financial savings, but because we are not a big enough company to consider MS volume licensing. So historically we have purchased OEM copies of office whenever we bought new hardware. The result is that we have different versions of Office around the place which is confusing for anyone who uses a diferent pc from their own. I just wanted to get everyone using the same version of whichever office software we use.

Thank for your input guys
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Re: [Solved] Password Protection problem

Postby Villeroy » Fri Jan 25, 2013 6:59 pm

TownTalk wrote:It would be nice to use .ODF but we interact with a world which mainly uses .DOC So we need to do likewise.

Face it. You are forced to use WinWord and nothing else. That's the deal when working with proprietary file formats.
Please, edit this topic's initial post and add "[Solved]" to the subject line if your problem has been solved.
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