Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I want to convert PowerPoint (.ppt) and Excel (.xls) files to a plain text format (.txt) from the command line on a server running Linux. The server does not have xorg or similar libraries installed, and installing them is not an option.

I have tried 'catppt' from catdoc, but it did not work for me.

~$ catppt presentacion_16x9.ppt 
Violación de segmento

(The message means "Segmentation fault")

What software should I use for this conversion?

share|improve this question

You are probably going to need to use XSLT to convert the files to anything you need. See this blog: for lots of details.

In short, you would write an XSLT that can handle the fields that you want out of the PPT/XLS files and print them in the format you want to a TXT file. It's a bit to learn, but that is the only way I know how to do it.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.