Last call for AppleWorks users

In recent Mac 911 entries I’ve looked forward to what will and won’t work with Lion (and swore I’d stop doing it). So now, a brief look back. And yes, I mean you die-hard AppleWorks users. If you want to use a Mac running Lion, your time has run out. AppleWorks won’t work. So, what to do with those AppleWorks documents?

If you have a copy of iWork, you can easily open your word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation files in Pages, Numbers, and Keynote respectively. Select an AppleWorks word-processing file in the Finder, press Command-I to bring up the Info window, click on the Open With pop-up menu, and choose Pages from the list that appears. Click the Change All button and now all your AppleWorks word processing documents will open in Pages. Do the same thing with any AppleWorks spreadsheet files except choose Numbers instead. Similarly, for the six people who created and still keep AppleWorks presentation files, you can use this trick to open them in Keynote.

Regrettably there’s no path nearly so easy for your AppleWorks database files. FileMaker has a tutorial that tells you how to move these files to Bento, but it’s inelegant. Essentially you save your file as ASCII text and add a .tsv extension to it. Then within Bento you choose File -> Import -> File, click Choose in the resulting Import window, and then select your .tsv file. You’ll lose your AppleWorks templates, but your data will move over.

AppleWorks painting files can be converted to a variety of graphics formats including jpeg, .png, and TIFF. Regrettably this is something you have to do via a Save As command. You can’t simply change the file’s extension.

And AppleWorks drawing files can be opened and edited with the $95 EazyDraw. It’s not an inexpensive option, but it’s one that doesn’t require that you futz about with converting files.

Although this should go without saying, if you’re still using AppleWorks today to generate files and wish to stay current with Apple technology, it’s time to set AppleWorks aside and start using up-to-date tools. Continue using it and you’re only generating more work for your future self.

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