PC Doctor October 31, 2014
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Dear PC Doc,
My son has a Mac and I have a PC. Sometimes we need to share files (documents and pictures). Is there a "universal" format that will work for both of us? This is sort of related...will my PC recognize his flash drive and items on it?
I’m guessing you mean sharing files via e-mail or flash drive, and not by having a Mac and PC networked together and sharing files that way. (That’s possible, too, but I’ll save it for another column.)
If you have iWork on the Mac, the Mac will be able to read almost any PC file. It will open Word files in Pages. It will open Excel files in Numbers. It will open Powerpoint files in Keynote. There may be a few superficial formatting changes, but the information will all be there.
The PC, however, can’t open the Mac files. So, if you want to share a file created in a Mac program with a PC, you can do one of the following: You can export it as the PC version and then e-mail it as an attachment or save it to a flash drive. To do this, go to your “File” menu, choose “Export As” and then choose the file format you want. If you want the recipient to be able to edit the file, choose Excel or Word. If you want the file to stay exactly the same, you can choose to export it as a PDF. Save it to your desktop or flash drive and then share by your preferred method.
If your file was originally a jpg or PDF, you can e-mail it between the two kinds of computers or share it via portable media (flash drive, etc.) without doing anything else to it. Both platforms can open those files. Hope that helps!
Until next time…Happy Computing!