SOLVED

Question .xls and .xlsx

%3CLINGO-SUB%20id%3D%22lingo-sub-2736888%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3EQuestion%20.xls%20and%20.xlsx%3C%2FLINGO-SUB%3E%3CLINGO-BODY%20id%3D%22lingo-body-2736888%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3E%3CP%3Erecent%20purchase%20of%20new%20computer%20with%20Office%20365%20(Personal)%20-%20can't%20open%20.xls%20files%20that%20were%20saved%20to%20external%20drive%20and%20downloaded%20onto%20new%20unit.%20Is%20there%20a%20way%20to%20convert%20.xls%20to%20.xlsx%20or%20otherwise%20open%20them%3F%20I'm%20a%20very%20basic%20user%3C%2FP%3E%3C%2FLINGO-BODY%3E%3CLINGO-LABS%20id%3D%22lingo-labs-2736888%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3E%3CLINGO-LABEL%3EExcel%3C%2FLINGO-LABEL%3E%3C%2FLINGO-LABS%3E%3CLINGO-SUB%20id%3D%22lingo-sub-2736957%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3ERe%3A%20Question%20.xls%20and%20.xlsx%3C%2FLINGO-SUB%3E%3CLINGO-BODY%20id%3D%22lingo-body-2736957%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3E%3CP%3E%3CA%20href%3D%22https%3A%2F%2Ftechcommunity.microsoft.com%2Ft5%2Fuser%2Fviewprofilepage%2Fuser-id%2F1151185%22%20target%3D%22_blank%22%3E%40ArtH2404mentions%3C%2FA%3E%26nbsp%3BI'm%20on%20the%20latest%20Excel%20version%20and%20can%20still%20open%20xls%20files.%20They%20are%20ancient%20but%20it%20should%20not%20cause%20any%20problems%20to%20open%20them%20and%20save%20them%20back%20as%20xlsx.%3C%2FP%3E%3C%2FLINGO-BODY%3E%3CLINGO-SUB%20id%3D%22lingo-sub-2737078%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3ERe%3A%20Question%20.xls%20and%20.xlsx%3C%2FLINGO-SUB%3E%3CLINGO-BODY%20id%3D%22lingo-body-2737078%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3ESir%3CBR%20%2F%3Ethe%20Excel%20files%20that%20were%20on%20my%20external%20drive%20as%20.xls%20now%20appear%20as%20.xlsx.%20When%20i%20click%20on%20a%20file%20to%20open%20it%2C%20Word%20Pad%20comes%20up%20and%20the%20page%20just%20shows%20a%20jumble%20of%20letters%2C%20numbers%20and%20symbols.%20Thanks%20for%20your%20patience%20-%20as%20i%20said%2C%20i'm%20a%20very%20basic%20user.%3CBR%20%2F%3E%3C%2FLINGO-BODY%3E
New Contributor

recent purchase of new computer with Office 365 (Personal) - can't open .xls files that were saved to external drive and downloaded onto new unit. Is there a way to convert .xls to .xlsx or otherwise open them? I'm a very basic user

6 Replies

@ArtH2404mentions I'm on the latest Excel version and can still open xls files. They are ancient but it should not cause any problems to open them and save them back as xlsx.

@ArtH2404mentions 

What exactly means "can't open" ? You see some error (if so which one) or what?

Sir
the Excel files that were on my external drive as .xls now appear as .xlsx. When i click on a file to open it, Word Pad comes up and the page just shows a jumble of letters, numbers and symbols. Thanks for your patience - as i said, i'm a very basic user.
best response confirmed by allyreckerman (Microsoft)
Solution

@ArtH2404mentions 

You need to associate this file type with Excel. If you are on Windows 10 when

Win -> Settings - Apps -> Default apps -> Choose default application by file type (at the bottom of the page) - find .xls and select Excel for it

image.png

Change default programs in Windows 10 (microsoft.com)

Windows 10: Associate a File Type with a Specific App | Password Recovery (top-password.com)

 

 

Thank you very much for the information. I was able to follow your clear instructions and see what needed to be done. Have a good day!

@ArtH2404mentions , you are welcome, glad it helped