We're sorry Aspose doesn't work properply without JavaScript enabled.

Free Support Forum - aspose.com

Having a problem converting an Excel 97-2003 file

I'm unable to convert an Excel 97-2003 file to text or XML.

The error message given is "This Excel files contains (Excel4.0 or earlier file format) records."

This is an erroneous message since Excel 4.0 is a format from 1992. This file was created in 2006 with Excel 2000.

Is there a workaround or sepcial API that can be used that will convert the XLS file to text or XML?

Please see the attached file.


I checked your template file and it is of “Microsoft Excel 4.0 Worksheet”. To confirm it, open the file into MS Excel 2003, now click Save As and your will see the save as type in the combobox of the Save As dialog box. For your information, Aspose.Cells supports BIFF8 or greater formats (Excel 97 - Excel 2007/2010).

I think you may try the following steps in MS Excel:

· Open your template file in MS Excel (e.g…,Ms Excel 2003 or 2007).

· Save the file As “Microsoft Office Excel Workbook”.

· Now you can use Aspose.Cells to open/manipulate the file to your required format for your requirements.

Thank you.

Hello Amjad,

Thanks for the response.

Your response implies the use of MS office client. However, this application will run on a server that will only have the Aspose DLLs and no MS office software installed.

Can your suggested workaround be done programmatically using the following Aspose APIs and without saving a local copy of the file?

<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

//Specifying the path of Excel file using ImportExcelFile method of the control


//Accesing a worksheet using its index

Worksheet sheet = gridDesktop1.Worksheets[0];


Well, I am sorry but there is no API available in any of the product provided by Aspose.Cells for .NET suit that supports BIFF7 or earlier formats (Excel 95 or earlier formats). We only support BIFF8 or greater formats (Excel 97 - Excel 2010). Moreover, our GridDesktop control also does not support older Excel version e.g (Excel 95 or Excel 4.0 etc.), your code will not work.

So, if you need to manipulate your template files, the only workaround is what I suggested you by manually re-saving the file in MS Excel, then use Aspose.Cells component to manipulate the file.

We are sorry for any inconvenience caused!


We recommend you to kindly try upgrading to and use latest version of the product which includes support for older BIFF7 (Excel 95/5.0 - 2003 Workbook) formats with enhancements now:

Also, see the document for supported input and output file formats by Aspose.Cells: