Digital documents have become an essential component of our study and work. Whenever we need to write something or submit school or work assignments, it may be a must to open a word processor like Microsoft Word to create a digital file. Since DOCX documents grow in popularity today, here we introduce to you what DOCX is and how to open a DOCX file with simple words.    

What Is a DOCX File?

DOCX is a native file format of Microsoft Word along with DOC and it is the newer version of DOC. In the latest versions of Word (Word 2007 and later for Windows, Word 2008 and later for macOS), DOCX is the default format for saving a document. 

A DOCX file is created by Word and a few other word processing software. It can contain text, images, tables, charts, multimedia, and other elements, allowing users to format the content. DOCX files use the .docx filename extension.  

If you can’t open a DOCX file in Word, the possible reason could be the Word you are using is not updated. Word 2003 and older versions (Microsoft Word 2000, Office XP) do not support opening or viewing DOCX files without installing Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack.

What Program Opens up .docx Files?

While Microsoft Word is the office suite market leader, still a lot of people are not its users. In addition, if your business doesn’t work with digital documents regularly, investing in the program may not make much sense and cost you much. However, there are times when you receive a DOCX file and need to open it for viewing the content. Check the following list of some free programs to open up .docx files.   

  1. Microsoft Word: You can use Microsoft Word’sonline service, desktop program, and mobile app to open DOCX files for free via a browser, on Windows, Mac, iPhone, and Android.
  2. OpenOffice Writeror LibreOffice Writer: The free and open-source word processing software allows you to open and view a DOCX file on Windows, macOS, Linux, and some other OS.
  3. WordPad:WordPad is a built-in word processor included with almost all versions of Microsoft Windows, letting you open, view, and edit DOCX documents without installing anything.
  4. TextEdit: TextEdit text editor and word processorcomes included with macOS as a DOCX file opener and viewer.
  5. Google Docs: Google Docs provides a web serviceand mobile app for Android and iOS smartphones, which lets users open and edit DOCX, DOC, RTF, and some other types of files.
  6. Apple Pages: Pages is a pre-installed office productivity tool developed byApple Inc. Similar to Word, Pages can run on almost all Apple devices such as macOS, iPad, and iOS.

In terms of how to open a DOCX file with these programs, right-click on a DOCX file in the File Explorer, choose “Open with” from the context menu, and select the program you want to use. For online DOCX file openers and viewers, access an online tool’s web page and upload the file to open it.

These programs also have the ability to convert DOCX to PDF and other formats. The methods using them to do so are similar: open your DOCX document in them, go to “File” > “Save as” or “Print”, select the output format and location, and save it.

Charlotte has been in the software industry for 8+ years. She works for AWZWARE now as a passionate writer. She is good at providing simple guides to use various video, office and entertainment software. Charlotte also recommends many other useful tools to make your work and life easier. A food lover too.