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One magic incantation that's allowed me to recover corrupted Word 97
files a few times goes like this:
1. Save the file in Word95 or RTF format (obviously, you have to be
able to open the file to use this trick.)
2. Open the file in Word95. It will still complain that it is
3. Save it in RTF format again. Often, the corruption error message
is replaced by a sprinkling of random damage, mostly to diagrams and
4. Shake your fist and Redmond and call the people in charge nasty
names. Tell your friends that "the most popular word processor in the
world" is even more odious than the most popular people in your high
school. Catharsis is good, and the people in Redmond who work on Word
don't mind. They're too busy trying to pick the locks of their
manacles and break free into the sunshine (if any, given the climate