Microsoft Word/MS Word 2003 docs


I currently have Windows XP on my desktop pc and it has MS Office/Word 2003. I plan to get a new computer soon, but won't be buying MS Word for it, I just don't need it and am told there are 'viewers' to download for free. But if I open up a doc on the new computer that was created with Word 2003, I'm guessing I won't be able to see it and it will just be a blank page? Or will the old docs somehow be viewable, since they were already created?  Thanks

Hello Lee,

Thank you for your question.  

Here are 3 ways to open a Word 2003 document without installing Microsoft Office 2003.

1. Google Docs - If you've received the document by e-mail, download it, go to Google Docs and upload it. Note that you'll need to sign-up for a Google Account first - this is FREE! Simply browse to the file you want to upload and it will open automatically in Google Docs. From there you can edit it in much the same way as you can in Word and send it by e-mail directly from your Gmail account.

2. Open Office - Download the free Open Office suite and you can open documents in Writer. This method offers you far more editing power than Google Docs although because it requires downloading and setting-up the suite, is marginally more lengthy and complicated. However, when Open Office is installed, you've got yourself a fully functional Office suite that's comparable to MS Office absolutely free!  Here is the link:

3. Microsoft Word Viewer - This is a purely viewing only software offered for free by Microsoft which enables you to open Word documents but not edit them. This is fine if all you want to do is read a document but don't need to fill in any details, change it or basically edit it in any way.  Here is a link to the viewer download:

I sincerely hope that this helps you.

Kind regards,

Mary Lindsey
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This topic answers questions related to Microsoft Word stand-alone or Microsoft Office Word including Word 2003, Word 2007, Office 2000, and Office XP. You can get Word help on formatting text, tables, tabs, fonts, styles, general Word layouts, bullets, headings, and outlines, using templates, toolbar modifications, and using Track Changes. You may also find tips on linking Word and Excel embedded objects including charts. This site does not provide a general Word tutorial nor the basics of using a word processor. It provides specific answers to using Microsoft Word only. If you do not see your Word question answered in this area then please ask a Word question here

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Mary A Lindsey


I can answer all Microsoft Office 2000 to 2007 Word questions regarding formatting, styles, shortcut keys, simple macros, templates, forms, TOC, TOA, Index, Cross-References, etc. NO VBA.


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