How To Convert Microsoft Works (WPS) Files to Word (DOC)

If you get a Microsoft Works WPS file, here’s the easy way to convert it to Microsoft Word DOC or DOCX format.

Now and then, someone emails a document with a WPS extension. WPS files are word processor documents created by Microsoft Works, and whenever I get one of these, I feel like someone just handed me a cassette tape with their demo on it—come on, this isn’t 1980 man! Where am I supposed to find something to play this thing?

UPDATE: Two things: Cassette tapes have made a major comeback among hipster indie bands and Microsoft no longer offers the Microsoft Works 6-9 File Converter for download. Microsoft Word 2016 has some built-in MS Works .wps conversion capabilities, so I suggest getting a copy of Word 2016 (free trial of Office 365‘s a good idea) and trying to open your .wps file in that. Barring that, you can still download the Microsoft Works 6-9 File Converter from some semi-shady file hosting sites. I can confirm that I got a legitimate copy from FileHippo.

If you download something from one of these sites, be sure to verify the MD5 hash is C288290A866B2F92A11FB07F7077F42C.

I like to use a program called QuickHash to check MD5 sums. Also, make sure the software is digitally signed by Microsoft.

Graham Mayor has also made a Microsoft Works Converter for Works version 6 and earlier. This program is not an official Microsoft product, but it might be worth a try.

Anyway, if you’re like me, and you have Microsoft Word 2007 or Microsoft Word 2010 on your computer but no time machine to take you back to the year 1991 so you can run Microsoft Works, that WPS file will be about as useful to you as a wax cylinder full of piano rags. But instead of firing back a snarky email to the person who sent you the WPS (or perhaps a fax would get through to them in the old-fashioned manner to which they are accustomed) asking them to re-send the file in a format suitable for the 21st century, you can do the polite thing and convert it – which is exactly what I’ll show you how to do in this groovyTutorial.

But first, let me show you how not to convert your WPS file:

PSA: Do Not Use Zamzar

Google “Convert WPS to DOC” and your top hit is going to be I’ve used Zamzar in the past, and it’s a pretty good service. But I don’t like that they collect your email address. They promise that they won’t rent or sell your personal information but intentions are one thing and being targeted by hackers is another.

zamzar alternative for conveting wps

I’m not saying that Zamzar isn’t as good a steward of your personal data as they say they are, I’m just advocating not taking any undue risks. It’s also best practice not to be uploading any potentially sensitive documents, even if Zamzar does offer encryption. Finally, it’s a pain to have to wait for 10 to 15 minutes for Zamzar to convert your file and email it to you.

The Easy Way to Open WPS Files in Microsoft Word

Never use a third-party service when there’s an official solution. That’s my motto. And with the WPS issue, there is one. It’s called the Microsoft Works 6-9 File Converter (link defunct), and you can download it for free from Microsoft. See the update at the top of this post.

Step 1

Download and install the Microsoft Works 6-9 File Converter. This process is pretty straightforward; just run the MSI and follow the on-screen instructions.

covnert wps to doc

Step 2

After the installation is complete, locate one of those pesky .wps files and Double-click it.

wps to doc conversion

Step 3

Now you will have a dialog that reads “Windows can’t open this file: ….” It’ll continue, saying, “To open this file, Windows needs to know what program you want to use to open it,” etc., etc.

open .wps in microsotf office 2007

Choose the second option: Select a program from a list of installed programs and click OK.

Step 4

In the Open with dialog box, select Microsoft Word. Check Always use the selected program to open this kind of file and click OK.

open wps in word 2010

Step 5

Enjoy your WPS file in Microsoft Word. If you feel like saving it in another format, just Click File > Save as and choose a different format.

convert wps to docx

Problem fixed—permanently! Now, all you have to do is Double-click.WPS files in Windows Explorer to open them. No more uploading your junk to Zamzar.

microsoft works 6, ms works 7, works 9 in word



  1. Jill

    January 4, 2012 at 7:11 am

    Hello Jack,

    Thank you for the article. It was very helpful. My 60 year old mother still uses Works and calls me about once a month with these types of issues. What I was looking for was a way for her to convert the works files into word rather than having the recipient do the converting. I don’t think that this is possible without her having actually having Word. Do you know of any solutions other than me shelling out the $100 to buy Word? She rarely uses the computer and only needs Word and email.

    Thanks, Jill

    • Andy

      January 31, 2012 at 3:38 am

      You can also use OpenOffice which is free to download and very compatible with Office.

      • Andrea

        January 14, 2015 at 9:43 am

        I am still unable to open .wps files and I have OpenOffice. When I try to open .wps files with it, it just seems to draw a blank. Any suggestions?

        • Jim Alexander

          May 31, 2016 at 5:41 pm

          I have the same problem with W 10. I can get doc’s open on my PC sometimes by using 6-9 but my Next Book, where i store my poems so I can take them with me still won’t open some of them. So, I have the MS Snipping tool and so I just make the text just fit into a page and take a picture of it with the snipping tool and save it to my desktop…then just drag it onto the poem folder in the NextBook. It comes out great as a picture.

  2. Ro

    January 10, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    U can try open libreoffice Jill. Its the open source solution to your problem.

    • Rebekah

      September 10, 2015 at 12:22 pm

      Thank Ro – I used Libreoffice and it’s opening up all my files! Great program.

    • Al

      May 14, 2018 at 5:14 am

      LibreOffice !!! Stick it to the man–in this case, Bill Gates and crew! hahahahhahahaha! This works great for Works .wps files! Allelujah!

  3. Ro

    January 10, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    Sorry typo just libreoffice. Not open libreoffice lol

  4. Joleen

    February 10, 2012 at 2:04 pm

    Thank you so much for this info. It really helped and you made it easy for this ‘ol gal to get those old files open. :)

  5. Scott Pilzer

    March 21, 2012 at 10:39 am

    thanks it worked great.

  6. Tintin

    March 24, 2012 at 4:58 pm

    Dude. Thank you! So fine.

  7. Annette

    April 18, 2012 at 7:20 am

    When I double-click one of my wsp files as instructed in Step 2 for the 6-9 convert, Word just opens the document!

    • Maximus

      October 24, 2013 at 7:30 am

      wsp stands for Washington State Patrol. What your opening is your ‘Arrest Warrant’. If on the other hand, your out on bail and looking for a conversion for a .WPS [Works] to Word [.DOC] file, I would suggest the free OpenOffice.[10/2013]

  8. SAK

    April 18, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    How do you convert Works spreadsheet and database documents to Word or Excel? I tried making Word tables out of my Works spreadsheets but the data doesn’t fit, even with adjusting the columns, making the font smaller, etc.

  9. mike

    April 23, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    Failed. Downloaded both works 4 and 6-9 converters and still tells me I need a more current version.

  10. ANGELA

    May 2, 2012 at 8:52 am

    is Doxillion a good program to download to convert works files to word files? I need a program that is the best but also free!

    • Johnno

      February 29, 2016 at 5:51 am

      I recall downloading Doxilllion into a laptop (sadly now bust) and it did convert Works wps files. My problem is I have several years of family history research written up ready to print which have photographs inserted into the pages and may have to upgrade my desktop and am uncertain if I can transfer these files in a way they will still open, can be edited further or new sections inserted without having to do the work all over again. I have a disc with Office 2010 which I am told will do this but I understand it re-formatts.

  11. Monica

    August 13, 2012 at 11:11 am

    That would be lovely, save that apparently the converter isn’t compatible with my system for SOME reason. So I can’t install that converter. Ugh. Back to goggle..

  12. adam gibson

    August 29, 2012 at 4:53 am

    Absolutely Brilliant, Thank You. I’ve been trying to upload my CV to varios Temp Agencies without success until I had your help. Adam Gibson.

  13. Rob

    October 23, 2012 at 8:53 am

    Downloaded to microsoft 6-9 converter but ultimately a message box that is titled ‘usage’ appears with a list of stuff I can’t understand but I click ‘OK’ anyway but nothing changes

  14. dave

    January 9, 2013 at 11:47 am

    I tried following your instructions (which I think are awesome the way you put them together) but was unable to open up any of my wps documents. I get a pop up window saying that “there is not enough memory or disk spce to convert this document” which is bogus since there is plenty of memory available. What do I do ?

    • Jack Busch

      January 13, 2013 at 1:01 pm

      Do you get that error when you try all WPS documents, or just the one?
      Do you have multiple versions of Office installed?

      • dave

        January 14, 2013 at 11:11 am

        I get the error message with all of the wps docs. Looking back on it, I thought they were all word docs, could there be a virus or something that was done that converted all the word to wps ?

        • Jack Busch

          January 14, 2013 at 6:20 pm

          The only other thing I can think of is reinstalling the converter. Make sure you uninstall any other versions of Office, including trial versions before you install the converter.

          If you’d like, you can send me one of the WPS files and I can try it. Or you can try Zamzar with one of your files. If it works, you know there’s nothing wrong with the file.

  15. Alex Perez

    March 8, 2013 at 8:07 am

    I downloaded the converter in Windows 7. What seems to happen is you run the application and get the license agreement prompt (EULA). Acknowledged it then nothing happens.

    I went into Word 2010 and tried opening the file – you need to change the file type to 6-9 converter. Then the wps file will appear. Click on it and it should open.

    Save it as a word doc.

    (Note, you may have to right click and select a compatibility mode for the converter applicaiton.)

    • Andrea

      January 14, 2015 at 9:51 am

      This is what is happening to me:Get the license agreement and then it just disappears without opening. I have no microsoft works or word on my computer. When I double-click (open) the .wps file, it has a box asking me to choose a program to open the file. (As it should.) I can’t open it with OpenOffice. When I choose that program, it does nothing. I can’t open .wps files with OpenOffice. So, now what?

  16. Vogl Thomas

    March 17, 2013 at 10:33 am

    Help => is there a converter version for MS-Works 3.0 or older => the recommended options in this only deal with MS-Works Converter 6-9 or MS-Works Converter 4.

    My question : is there a converter available for MS-Works Converter 3 ?

    Many Thy in davance


  17. Maria

    May 1, 2013 at 8:01 am

    I don’t know if I’m having a problem, or I’m not understanding something but I don’t have an MSI file, the download is .exe, and after I open it, says that it’s installing, and then closes. Help?

  18. Ron

    May 11, 2013 at 11:07 pm

    Excellent information. Question: is there any way to convert *multiple* works files into Word, instead of doing one file at a time, peacemeal. I’ve got hundreds of Works files saved from years ago! Any help would be really appreciated.


  19. Tina

    July 14, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    Have 100s of Works 4.5 documents and spreadsheets to convert to Word/Excel.
    I downloaded the file conversion but still have to open each doc, save as version 97-2003 then open the 97-2003 doc and save it to Office 2010 version.

    Is there any way to select all documents and convert all at once to version 97-2003…then again to Office 2010 docs?

  20. Tina

    July 14, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    This is the conversion file I used:

    Download Microsoft Works 4 File Converter from Official Microsoft Download Center

  21. adam

    August 7, 2013 at 9:11 am

    I also am trying to convert hundreds of wps files to doc or docx format. Converting each individually is not a feasible option. I have read that sites like zamzar are not secure. Is there any other way that you can convert in mass, securely?

  22. Yuhong Bao

    August 7, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    Actually, just checked Word 2003 and it has this wizard too.

  23. Annie

    September 1, 2013 at 5:42 am

    Great stuff! Many thanks. It worked, just when I was about to give up.

  24. patricia ann davey

    June 29, 2014 at 11:25 am

    Hi there
    Just been reading the above and was a bit dismayed to see that you are crIticising Microsoft Works and calling it ancient.
    I bought a desktop…top of the range I might add…and this was on it in 2003 and a laptop a few years later and this was also on it.
    Have managed ok now with files sent to people with a few exceptions.
    Of course, technology is always changing but you should have no trouble converting the files.
    I can do it and I’m a novice!

    • robin

      February 11, 2016 at 10:44 am


    • Jan

      September 15, 2016 at 11:20 am

      I can’t get my Microsoft works documents to open in Microsoft word. I have 2003 Office. Do you have a suggestion ?

  25. Dante

    July 12, 2014 at 12:31 pm

    Hi, i followed every step of your detailed instructions. I have corverter 6.9 on my desktop. BUT when I double click on the wps. document, it DOES not open the dialog that you describe on STEP 3. so, please can you let me know WHAT to do next.
    Thanks so much.

    • Andrea

      January 14, 2015 at 1:33 pm

      Me, too!

  26. Miranda

    September 21, 2014 at 8:59 am

    Haven’t been able to install the works 6-9 converter. I clicked on download but no dialogue box appeared. The .msi is listed in recent downloads: should I delete it and try again? Quite a few people seem to have this problem but Microsoft communities has no answer.

  27. Brian Tillman

    September 29, 2014 at 12:31 pm

    Time to update this article or delete it altogether because the web page for the Works converter doesn’t exist anymore.

  28. WhiskeyWolf

    October 30, 2014 at 2:15 am

    Okay, for those having problems with installing this thing, be it Works 4 or Works 6-9.

    Most important, make sure EVERY word process is actually turned off, including those in the background that tend to run even 30 seconds after you turn of the last word file. The same goes for Outlook if you use Word for writing e-mails.

  29. Neek

    January 20, 2015 at 9:55 pm

    Thank you, Jack, for sharing. However, after reading your comments about people who use Works as being primative; I felt the strong desire to comment. I use Works. I don’t want to, but after spending almost 2-grand on a home desktop & 2 laptops & a couple of tablets; I don’t have the dough to purchase the product key code Microsoft asks for when the trial period runs out. Just because a person uses Works doesn’t mean they are a relic. It could just mean they spent all their hard earned money on hardware, store extended warranty, anti-virus software & internet access (to search for & read your charming article). By-the-way, all my devices came with Works when I bought them in 2013 & 2014.

    • Steve Krause

      January 21, 2015 at 9:36 am

      Well said!

      Honestly, if something works for you — use it! Doesn’t need to have the “Brand” on it. Now that said — using Works on all your devices, what do you think of it? Does it get the job done?


  30. Ben

    February 3, 2015 at 1:17 pm

    Microsoft word was able to convert the file, but the file is not aligned right. It seems like the compatibility is off. Is there a way I can convert this without these issues?

  31. Catherine

    April 9, 2015 at 10:41 am

    Thank you!!!!! You are a genius!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  32. Q-Sama

    April 19, 2015 at 6:54 am

    This didn’t work for me. None of the same steps applied (I am using Windows 7). I was able to download the converter but it didn’t actually do anything– doesn’t automatically convert the old works files into word properly. :(

  33. Osvaldo

    May 29, 2015 at 12:03 am

    It doesn’t work. The converted file give me only a series of meaningless characters

    • Fred Smith

      May 30, 2015 at 2:28 am

      If you are gettings a bunch of meaningless characters in amongst some readable text, then it means that the document is in another format. Read through the other comments in this article. There is a link to the MS Works 4 converter, use that instead, then open the document from Office and save it into word format.

  34. Forrest

    June 2, 2015 at 11:56 am

    I was approached with the .wps dilemma from neighbor whose business is still all done from MS works documents. After many mis-turn with google solutions I found Word Viewer 2003 to do the trick to open the .wps file. Since most people are using office 2010 or later they won’t support the conversion tools referred to most often as the solution. I’m still looking for the right conversion tool for .wks works spreadsheet conversion.

    • robin

      February 11, 2016 at 10:53 am

      Thanks for asking. I do a lot of genealogy and have made several spreadsheets to organize information and these are .wks I still don’t know where to go for conversion. I LOVED and still love ‘WORKS’ It was easy to learn and I am so accustom to it, I HATE to change, but I can not share with others. I could say, “That’s THEIR problem” and let it go, but….it’s family! HELP Microsoft, this is YOUR program..give us some help!

  35. jayesh sahayata

    July 10, 2015 at 6:02 am

    Thank you

  36. MarpleMissMarple

    July 18, 2015 at 10:14 am

    Really helpful steps, thank you. Worked a treat :-)

  37. kk

    August 16, 2015 at 2:17 pm

    will this converter work with windows 10? Just bought new laptop w/windows 10 already in it. Wont convert wps file.
    Thank you.

  38. k smith

    August 16, 2015 at 2:19 pm

    will this converter work w/windows 10? Wont convert wps file….

    Thank you.

  39. Anil G

    October 4, 2015 at 10:52 pm

    Just use LibreOffice

    • Will W

      March 4, 2016 at 8:38 am

      Thanks Anil

      ” Just use LibreOffice

      LibreOffice opened a scrambled WPS that both the Microsoft converters failed to. I made a £10 contribution, it’s open-source freeware, nice people, their stuff is simple, reliable and works a treat.

      Your comment is awaiting moderation.

  40. robert smith

    February 6, 2016 at 11:17 pm

    no longer working link

    Is the converter archived somewhere?

    • Brian Burgess

      February 7, 2016 at 12:21 am

      The link works fine for me. Try a different browser. I have had major issues with Chrome and Microsoft sites lately.

  41. jo blue

    February 15, 2016 at 7:08 am

    I have a 4 year old HP laptpp which came with Win 7. and Works. I used it with a Galaxy Note 8.1. which recognises wsp.. Now I have bought a Galaxy Tab S2 , 9.7. This does not recognise Works docs, wsp,and so I am having to convert all my wsp files on the HP using Save as, to docx.Can I automate this or mst I do it one by one?

  42. Will W

    March 4, 2016 at 8:36 am

    LibreOffice opened a scrambeled WPS that both the Microsoft converters failed to. I made a £10 contribution, it’s open-source freeware, nice people, their stuff is simple, reliable and works a treat.

    • Gail Yon (Madison 1st Baptist Church)

      April 30, 2016 at 11:14 pm

      I am a dummy with this type of thing. I need to convert an old works spreadsheet to Excel so I can move it to a new computer that does not have works. This spreadsheet has lots of formulas. There is a LibreOffice program on the computer but most of the ladies at the church that uses the office computer likes Microsoft Excel/Word. Our problem is that we do not have internet yet. We are a very small church and have not had a need for internet. Can you walk me thru the steps. I do not know anything about LibreOffice. I am willing to try to convert because I know it will be hard to redo all the formulas. If you can will you email me the steps to my computer at home. Also if I will need to try the converter first can you tell me how to download it to a Memory Card. Any help you can give me will help.

  43. kevin james

    May 25, 2016 at 2:45 pm

    Valuable ideas ! I was fascinated by the points – Does someone know if my assistant could get a sample IRS 1065 copy to fill out ?

  44. PCS

    June 16, 2016 at 9:09 am

    So I tried opening the link with IE, Firefox, Chrome and Opera and all go to the Microsoft Site, but the site says the page is no longer available. Nor could I find the converter download anywhere on MicroSoft’s site. Sad news, and I have one that was sent to me to open and am not sure how to do it now. It doesn’t look like it has moved, but not sure why MicroSoft would make it hard to find or (at worst) remove it completely.

    • Tisha

      August 13, 2016 at 2:11 am

      I’m having the same exact problem. I’ve even tried searching their site and the converter does not come up. It makes no sense to not have such a handy program easily available.
      I use OpenOffice and can not open the .WPS files I was emailed.

  45. Ismail Yahya

    October 27, 2016 at 12:55 pm

    Links are obsolete. Not just Chrome – also IE and Firefox. Microsoft has no converters available on their site when you write in the search box “convert .wps to MS Word 2010′ . . . or “2007”

  46. Lisa Crowe

    January 26, 2017 at 4:18 pm

    Thanks so much. I have a problem though. Regrettably, I chose the option “always use this file type” when I chose Notepad to attempt to open a .wps file. Now I’m stuck. Any suggestions? Thanks!

  47. Mike

    February 1, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    I couldn’t get Word 2016 to open .wps files but I did find the “Microsoft Works 6-9 File Converter” on Microsoft’s site at

  48. Tim

    March 1, 2018 at 9:31 am

    Thank you so much. The libreoffice suite works fast and flawlessly and I was able to save a file back as Excel and send it to one very grateful person who will think I’m a genius!

  49. Darrell Eder

    May 26, 2020 at 2:33 pm

    Thanks worked great. You are the best. Darrell

  50. Red Yoder

    February 27, 2021 at 7:41 am

    I just used Zamzar and it didn’t require any email address (it was optional) and took about 30 seconds.

  51. Maggie Geehan

    November 19, 2021 at 12:22 pm

    I have tried many different things and they either didn’t work or was too slow.
    I found my original Works CD and reinstalled it into my Windows 10 and am now able to open my old wks files. I can, if I want to, copy each doc and paste it in my Word 2019 and save.
    I really don’t need to copy and paste because I can print out the original wks files.
    In order to reinstall your old works, you need your CD key # which is on the back of the CD and then it installs with no problems.
    Hope others still have their old Works CD and this is so easy.
    Thanks to everyone who has posted here as it helped me so much.

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