Save file extension from .ods to .xlsx

My associates cannot open spreadsheets saved as .ods files. I need to know how I can save my spreadsheets in a universal file extension.

What is “universal file extension”? is it some sort of standardized file format? then ODS is the one - and it’s a pity that your associates cannot open formats that are standardized by ISO.

If you want to save to a format native to another office suite - say, MS Office - then don’t call it “universal”, and use file type selector in Save As dialog.

File extensions are mere letters. It is just one stupid thing invented by Bill Gates for DOS/Windows and it is unknown to most other operating systems. As Mike Kaganski points, you have to choose an appropriate file format compatible with your associates’ spreadsheet application. Ask them which file format is suitable.

SueKL, Mike Kaganski and gabix have addressed your question, but I would like to clarify if I might.

FIRST, let’s answer your question:

  1. In LibreOffice Calc, click File > Save As.
  2. In the Save window, click on the All Formats list box and select the .xlsx format.
  3. Choose the file name and path and click the Save button.
That's all there is to it. Now the file should open in Excel with no problems.

SECOND, let’s address what appears to be a misconception. The ods file format stands for “Open Document Spreadsheet.” It is one component of the universally-recognized and non-proprietary Open Document Format standard set of file formats. Basically, that means that many different software applications recognize and use these file formats and can freely exchange files saved in these formats.

Microsoft Office file formats (including xlsx) are proprietary and are NOT universally recognized. Widely used, yes – but not universally recognized by other software applications in order to freely exchange files.

THIRD, let’s discuss problems you may encounter when exchanging files with your associates and how to avoid them.

Your question doesn’t indicate the operating system you are using but your question seems to imply a couple of possibilities:

  1. Your Calc file had no file extension assigned and you are using the Linux operating system on your computer. Linux does not require (or automatically add) a file extension appendage, while Windows does.
  2. Your associates tried to open your ods file directly from Windows Explorer without proper file association (the file extension tells Windows the application to use to open the file, based on the file associations set on the Windows computer).
Assuming proper file associations on the Windows computer, an ods file extension would tell Windows to open the file using Excel. However, Microsoft Office will probably tell you the file is corrupted and offer to "fix" it for you. This is because Microsoft only pays lip service to the Open Document Format standard. As I understand it, Microsoft uses a form of ODF that is not quite compatible with that used by most of the rest of the world.

If you stop at the warning, you may indeed believe you are unable to open the ods file using Excel. Accept Microsoft’s offer to “fix” the file and it may open just fine after a moment.

On the other hand, simply save the ods file to xlsx format in LibreOffice Calc and Microsoft will likely open it in Excel without an objection. This is because LO has converted the file to Microsoft’s particular specifications. (LO will open an xlsx file with no problem, but may urge you to save any changes to the ods file format in order to prevent losing special features that may be unique to Calc.)

THE BOTTOM LINE, then, is that you should open xlsx files from your associates in Calc and save to ods while working with on them, then save back to xlsx and quickly check to see if everything looks okay before transmitting the files to your associates. (Make sure the xlsx file being transmitted includes the “xlsx” file extension in the file name.)

I hope this helps.

Please clck the check mark beside the response you believe best answers your question.

Thank you. I actually work on a MAC using macOS High Sierra. I work remotely and my associates work on ether OS or Windows 10 using Google Chrome or Internet Explorer browsers. I resent my files after your analysis of my problem. I will know tomorrow if they had any translation issues on their end. I did recheck the .xlsx format and the files seemed solid. Thank you again. I appreciate your tremendous analysis of my problem.

What software do they use that cannot open .ods? MS Office 2007 and newer can open it. If they are using MS Office 2003 then save as .xls instead.

If they have MS Office 2007 or newer but cannot figure out how to open files, then perhaps you can show them how. In LibreOffice, it’s File → Open, and I believe it used to be that way for MS Office 2003 as well. I do not know the steps needed for the ribbon interface.

However, if the issue is that they can open as .ods but want .xlsx, then go to File → Save As, as others have noted

No matter what format you choose, there may be differences when the file is opened in MS Office.