Automating conversion from .doc to docx. format on Mac

I receive many Word documents in the old .doc format, which does not work well in Word for Mac and needs conversion to work in Word for iPad.

Is there a way to automatically convert the format (e.g. with Hazel) when files are downloaded?

Thanks in advance for any suggestion.

If you want a Word independent (i.e. not installed and so not scripting that app), I’d recommend making use of the ubiquitous Pandoc. It’s designed for document conversions … though I suspect Word might do a better job on more complex documents.


Tank you, @sylumer, I will try Pandoc. However, I have Word for Mac installed on my computer through my university’s subscription. If it is scriptable, it would be great. What I would prefer is no to convert every file manually.

Okay. Maybe take a look at these then.

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Thank you. They can be an starting point to write an script.

I have also fund an app for Mac: Batch Doc Converter However the trial version does not work well on High Sierra.

You might be able to chain this (from build in automater) with either pandoc or other tools:

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Thank you, @Inuk. It is an useful idea.

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Pedro - did you find a good solution for this?

I have several hundred .doc files that I’d like to convert to .docx so that they play nice with iOS.

Perhaps this article will give you some ideas. If you’re familiar with Word VBA then the first method is very practical, and it’s what I used a number of years ago. I was using Word for Windows then, but most of the VBA commands work on the Mac version of Word also.

Joe Kissel’s Take Control of Automating Your Mac has instructions for doing this in Keyboard Maestro. It’s a good example for learning how to use KM, but it’s also just a fancy implementation of the textutil command, which you could use straight from the command line, if you’re comfortable with that.

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Given that this was a rather old thread that was revived, it might be useful to know that there was a related post about using textuil to convert from DOCX to TXT. I’m sure the referenced solution there could be easily converted by simply switching some of the format parameters.

thanks all.

I’ve got pandoc installed now and can use it to convert a file or two as needed. But i’m hoping to integrate it with hazel to automatically covert some files when they get put in a folder. So it’s time to learn a bit more about Bash scripting.

You can use a free online service to do the conversion