How do I Open a DOCX File online in Windows and MAC with a free .docx editor

File type: Microsoft Word Open XML Document


What is a DOCX File?

DOCX files were first used by Microsoft in the 2007 Microsoft Word program. It is a “Microsoft Word Open XML Format Document”.

The Open XML standard used by the new document file version of Office Word was intended to represent word processing files, presentations, charts, and spreadsheets. The Office Open XML file format specification became an open and free standard in 2006. Microsoft implemented its version as a successor to the earlier binaries of its applications and to the Office 2003 XML format files.

What makes DOCX really special is that you can use it for a variety of projects. These include; newsletters, flyers, resumes, reports, documentation and cover letters.

DOCX format do not only comprise of text, but they may also consist of a variety of objects, images, formats and styles. Another thing that makes DOCX better than traditional DOC files is that they are much smaller in size.

They are also more compatible than DOC files.


To open a DOCX file using Microsoft Word, you need to use the 2007 version or higher. As mentioned earlier, you can make use of the Word Viewer to open DOCX files even if Microsoft Office is not installed on your PC system.


DOCX can be opened and edited using any of;

  • OpenOffice Writer and
  • Kingsoft Writer.


Web-based Programs for opening and editing DOCX files


#1: Google Docs

 You can also use Google Docs to open and edit DOCX files. The good thing is you do not need to download Google Docs as it is an online program. You only need to upload the DOCX to your personal Google Drive account. This has to be done before you can use Google Doc to open and then edit the DOCX.


#2: Microsoft Word Online

 You can use Microsoft Word Online to open as well as edit a DOCX when you are online. Microsoft offers this service and the overall appearance of the interface is similar to the standard Microsoft Word on a Windows OS PC. This Microsoft online service is also absolutely Free.


#3: Chrome Browser Extension

 Another way to view and edit DOCX files is to use a Chrome browser extension by Google. This is also a free web-based program for opening and editing DOCX. You can open them straight on your Chrome browser. What’s more, you would not need to first download the DOCX before you can view it on the Chrome browser. This helps if you want to first check the DOCX file before downloading it to your hard drive.


In Conclusion


DOC and DOCX  have come to stay. They make it easy for you to share large documents in a variety of formats including PDF format.

By having large files compressed in a ZIP file, these documents can be sent via email to a number of recipients. Having any of the programs in this article would help you in opening and editing DOC files.

If you are on the internet, then you can use the free Chrome browser extension, Microsoft Word Online or Google Docs to access your DOC files.

Category: Text Files
File format: Proprietary
Open with Windows:
  • Microsoft Word 2007,
  • Word 2000, XP, and 2003 with the Compatibility Pack installed,
  • Panergy docXConverter,
  • OxygenOffice Professional,
  • with Odf-Converter,
  • NativeWinds Docx2Rtf
Open with Linux:
  • OxygenOffice Professional,
  • with Odf-Converter
  • Beginning with the Microsoft Office 2007,
the ECMA-376 (OOXML format) became the default format for all Office Word document files. Microsoft Office 14 would be the first commercially available productivity suite to employ the ISO/IEC IS 29500 specification compliant edition of the Office Open XML.
Before the market launch of the Microsoft Office 2007 suite, the central applications incorporated in the productivity package included Word, PowerPoint, and Excel.
These applications, by default, saved data in binary files which lacked interoperability functionality making them difficult to access from other applications in the same category.
The problem arose from the absence of a publicly available royalty-free data which would allow access to the specifications of file formats.