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For security reasons, I need to reduce a document to a common format, thereby removing any Macros, metadata, cleaning embedded images, and reducing risks the attachment may pose. Even though the links above are for image vulnerabilities, I'm interested in document issues as well.

I am interested in an EXE or that does this, even GPL* is fine. I just need to permit commercial use of the app.

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migrated from Feb 22 '12 at 19:02

This question came from our site for professional programmers interested in conceptual questions about software development.

I've edited out the request for APIs and web services, to make the question on topic for Super User, as the question is more suitable for Super User than Programmers Stack Exchange. – Yannis Feb 22 '12 at 19:01
For DOC files, I like JavaCool’s Doc Scrubber. – Synetech Feb 22 '12 at 19:08
up vote 1 down vote accepted

These conversions will vary by file type. An image will store metadata differently than a document, which will store metadata differently than a video. Even different files types of similar things (for instance, BMP and JPG) store their metadata differently.

As such, you'll need unique applications for each of these.

For images you should be able to use IrfanView, which will be handy because it can batch process large numbers of files easily.

For documents, MS Office has certain capabilities or processes, as defined by MS, how to minimize metadata included in the documents. Unfortunately, the MS documentation mostly deals with old versions.

For versions 2003 there is a MS tool for removing the metadata:

For pre-2003 versions MS has documents on how to remove this info:

For new versions of office, Payne Consulting Group has a cleaner (I worked at a large lawfirm that used this for Office 2010) but I'd imagine it's horribly expensive. There is also iScrub and another cleaner documented in a Tech Republic article:

I found a MS article about inspecting and cleaning documents without using any other tools. It's manual, but it's included in the MS products already, and the solution works in version 2010:

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There are commercial products that do this, for exactly your purpose, in an enterprise setting. The product I have seen allows a variety of settings for the level of scrubbing, etc. The one I am aware of is called "Workshare Protect," but I'm sure there are others.

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When you learn to scrub gigabyte data rendered into half pixel ab-user will make it 2x2px...

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