XLSX File Conversion to XLS

By Cooper Temple

Excel is a spreadsheet program from Microsoft that is sold separately or as part of the Office suite of applications. Excel versions "97" through "2003" used the "XLS" file extensions for spreadsheets and workbooks created with the program. Beginning with Excel version "2007" and continuing with "2010," an "XLSX" file extension was utilized. In order to view XLSX files on computers using pre-2003 versions of Excel, you need to convert the file to an appropriate format. You can convert XLSX files to XLS by following a few steps.

Use the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack

Step 1

Download and install the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack (see Resources section). This will allow you to use Excel documents created using 2007 and 2010 versions using earlier versions of the program (1997-2003).

Step 2

Launch the earlier version of Excel. Open the XLSX file. Click the "File" menu and select the "Open" option. Use the "Look in" menu to access the location in which the XLSX file is saved. Select the file and click "Open."

Step 3

Save the file as an XLS document. Click the "File" menu and select the "Save As" option. Use the "Save in" menu to access the location in which you want to save the XLS file. Make certain the "Save as type" filed is set to "XLS." Type a name for the XLS file in the "File name" field and click the "Save" button.

Use and Online Conversion Service

Step 1

Go to an online conversion service, such as Zamzar (see Resources section). Services such as this can convert from one file type to another without the need of the source program, Excel.

Step 2

Click the "Browse" button on the "Convert Files" tab. Click "Look in" to find the folder in which the XLSX file is saved. Highlight the file name and then the "Open" button.

Step 3

Click the "Convert files" drop down menu, in the second section of the "Convert Files" tab. Select the "XLS" option. Enter the email address to which you want the XLS file sent, and click the "Convert" button.

Use a Free Conversion Program

Step 1

Download and install a free conversion program, such as Softinterface (see Resources section).

Step 2

Launch the program and click the "Convert Files" option. Click the "File" button in the "Input File" section to select the XLSX file. Click "Look in" to find the folder in which the XLSX file is saved. Highlight the file name and then the "Open" button. The file will display in the "Input Path" field.

Step 3

Select "XLS" from the "Convert to File Format" drop down menu. Click the "Folder" button in the "Output File" section to select a folder in which to save the XLS file. Click "Look in" to locate the folder and click the "OK" button. The folder will display in the "Output Path" field. Click the "Convert" button to complete the process of converting the XLSX file to XLS.