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a very important document(my finishing thesis) that I have been writing using openoffice 3.1.1(its a .odt document) kept crashing everytime I opened it. So I downloaded openoffice 3.2.1 and opened the file. But it crashed again! What should I do? It says the prog has crashed due to an undefined error. Help pleaese

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Simple, just use your last backup.... hahaha nobody actually has backups. But on a more serious note, you might want to post the file or a link to the file. – Daisetsu Jul 1 '10 at 18:27
thank you, hope you had fun =) – merve Jul 1 '10 at 18:48
@Daisetsu: hi. Nobody has backups until they lose something vital and realise that actually, they need backups. I have backups, now :( – Phoshi Jul 1 '10 at 18:49

Try copying the .odt file and renaming it with the extension .zip. You may then be able to open the zip file and view the contents. If it opens, then extract the content.xml file. It will at least contain your text, but also much formatting information.

You can view the content.xml file with a text editor or web browser. I found that opening it with Konqueror (in Linux) left out the formatting and retained the text.

You can also extract images from the .zip file Pictures folder.

Plain text is better than starting over. And who knows? You might be able to play around with the .zip file contents, rename the .zip to .odt and be able to open it again. Play around on a copy.

And file a bug report with OpenOffice Bugs. You might also try the OpenOffice forums and get some help. Good luck!

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okay, will try that. thank you so much – merve Jul 1 '10 at 18:49
You might try reinstalling Java too. It might not be an OpenOffice problem. – W_Whalley Jul 1 '10 at 19:06
If the zip file opened and you were able to get the content.xml file, here's another option. Create a new .odt file, rename it to .zip, open it with a zip utility and delete the content.xml file. Add your content.xml file to the zip archive. Save it and rename it .odt. I tried it on a small file and the text with at least some formatting was recovered. – W_Whalley Jul 1 '10 at 19:19

The easiest way to recover your document including all of its formatting is to import the document to Google Docs and then convert the Google Docs version of your document back to odt format and export it back to your computer.

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I had a similar error once. The fix then was to create a new document in OpenOffice, and then insert the old file into the new document. I don't recall the exact menu choices to make and don't have OpenOffice on the computer I'm currently on, but it should be somewhere under the Insert menu. Make sure to uncheck any "link", "refer to original" or similar options.

You might lose any customizations you have made to the page styles, but anything else (including pictures, figures and formatting) should be imported.

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