You are on page 1of 4

Doc (computing)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ambox current red.svg
This article needs to be updated. Please update this article to reflect recent
events or newly available information. (October 2009)
Word Document
MS word DOC icon.svg
Filename extension


Internet media type


Uniform Type Identifier (UTI)

Developed by[2][3]


Latest release
(4 September 2015; 15 months ago[4])
Type of format

document file format

Container for

Text, Image,Table

Extended to Microsoft Office XML formats, Office Open XML

Open format?


In computing, DOC or doc (an abbreviation of 'document') is a filename

extension for word processing documents, most commonly in the proprietary
Microsoft Word Binary File Format.[4] Historically, the extension was used for
documentation in plain text, particularly of programs or computer hardware on
a wide range of operating systems. During the 1980s, WordPerfect used DOC
as the extension of their proprietary format. Later, in 1983, Microsoft chose to
use the DOC extension for their proprietary Microsoft Word format. These uses
for the extension have largely disappeared from the PC world.

Contents [hide]

Microsoft Word Binary File Format


Application support



Other file formats

See also


External links

Microsoft Word Binary File Format[edit]

Binary DOC files often contain more text formatting information (as well as
scripts and undo information) than some other document file formats like Rich
Text Format and HyperText Markup Language, but are usually less widely

The DOC files created with Microsoft Word versions differ. Microsoft Word
versions up to Word 97 used a different format from Microsoft Word 97 - 2003.

In Microsoft Word 2007 and later, the binary file format was replaced as the
default format by the Office Open XML format, though Microsoft Word can still
produce DOC files.

Application support[edit]
See also: Comparison of word processors
The DOC format is native to Microsoft Word. Other word processors, such as Writer, IBM Lotus Symphony, Apple Pages and AbiWord, can
also create and read DOC files, although with some limitations. Command line
programs for Unix-like operating systems that can convert files from the DOC
format to plain text or other standard formats include the wv library, which
itself is used directly by AbiWord.

Because the DOC file format was a closed specification for many years,
inconsistent handling of the format persists and may cause some loss of
formatting information when handling the same file with multiple word
processing programs. Some specifications for Microsoft Office 97 binary file

formats were published in 1997 under a restrictive license, but these

specifications were removed from online download in 1999.[5][6][7][8]
Specifications of later versions of Microsoft Office binary file formats were not
publicly available. The DOC format specification was available from Microsoft
on request[9] since 2006[10] under restrictive RAND-Z terms until February
2008. Sun Microsystems and reverse engineered the file format.
[11] On February 15, 2008, Microsoft released a .DOC format specification[4]
[12][13] under the Microsoft Open Specification Promise.[14][15] However, this
specification does not describe all of the features used by DOC format and
reverse engineered work remains necessary.[16] Since 2008 the specification
has been updated several times; the last change was made in September

Other file formats[edit]

Some historical documentations may use the DOC filename extension for plaintext file format. The DOC filename extension was also used in historical
versions of WordPerfect for its proprietary format.

Some software applications use the name "DOC" in combination with other
words (such as the name of software manufacturer) for different file formats. As
an example, on the Palm OS, DOC is shorthand for PalmDoc, a completely
unrelated format (commonly using PDB filename extension) used to encode
text files such as ebooks.

See also[edit]
De facto standard
Dominant design
Jump up ^ "Registion of a new MIME Content-Type/Subtype application/msword". IANA. 1993-07-22. Retrieved 2012-06-20.
Jump up ^ Uniform Type Identifiers Reference (PDF), Apple, retrieved 2012-0620
Jump up ^ "System-Declared Uniform Type Identifiers (Mac OS X v10.4)". Apple
Developer Connection. Apple Inc. 2008-04-08.

^ Jump up to: a b c MS-DOC: Word (.doc) Binary File Format, 2015-09-04,

retrieved 2015-11-09
Jump up ^ "Comparing ODF and OOXML" (pdf). 2006. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
Jump up ^ Beware of Geeks Bearing Gifts, 2006, retrieved 2011-05-23
Jump up ^ "A Word 8 converter for Unix". Retrieved 2011-05-23.
Jump up ^ "Microsoft Word 97 Binary File Format". Retrieved 2011-05-23.
Jump up ^ "Royalty-free specifications for Microsoft Office binary file formats".
Retrieved 2011-05-23.
Jump up ^ "Mapping documents in the binary format (.doc; .xls; .ppt) to the
Open XML format". 2008-01-16. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
Jump up ^ "Microsoft Compound Document Format" (PDF).
Jump up ^ Microsoft Office Binary (doc, xls, ppt) File Formats, 2008-02-15,
archived from the original on 2008-02-18
Jump up ^ "Microsoft Office Word 97 - 2007 Binary File Format Specification
(*.doc)" (PDF). Microsoft Corporation. 2008.
Jump up ^ "Microsoft Open Specification Promise". Microsoft Corporation.
March 23, 2009.
Jump up ^ "How to extract information from Office files by using Office file
formats and schemas". Retrieved 2011-05-23.
Jump up ^ Joel Spolsky. "Why are the Microsoft Office file formats so
complicated? (And some workarounds)". Archived from the original on 2013-1014. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
External links[edit]
DOC, XLS, and PPT specifications
How to obtain the latest Microsoft Word Viewer
Microsoft Compound Document Format -