OpenOffice + Excel files: Why bother with protection?


A

Ace70

Hello

Ironically I was led to discover and try OpenOffice becasue of a
"corruption" problem in Excel that gave me a message "Unable to read
file" . Turns out it was actually the result of a documented bug:
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?kbid=819853

OpenOffice not only opnened the same "corrupted" Excel file OK with no
erors (the PivotTables however were not recogniosed, as OpenOffice has
equivalents called DataPilots), but I discovered the seemingly well
known quirk that you can DEFEAT any Excel workbook/worksheet/VBA code
protection by opening it up in OpenOffice.

Does this basically mean that it is virtually a waste of time now to
even bother adding passwords to Excel workbooks/worksheets or even
creating Excel workbooks/worksheets/VBA Code thinking you are
"protrecting" any of your work?

How have things changed since OpenOffice allows you to open any Excel
file regardless of the protection level?

I mean, should anyone really bother with protection anymore except to
prevent purely "innocent" users from unwittingly mucking up a spread
sheet?

Ace70
 
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B

Bruce Sinclair

Hello

Ironically I was led to discover and try OpenOffice becasue of a
"corruption" problem in Excel that gave me a message "Unable to read
file" . Turns out it was actually the result of a documented bug:
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?kbid=819853

OpenOffice not only opnened the same "corrupted" Excel file OK with no
erors (the PivotTables however were not recogniosed, as OpenOffice has
equivalents called DataPilots), but I discovered the seemingly well
known quirk that you can DEFEAT any Excel workbook/worksheet/VBA code
protection by opening it up in OpenOffice.

Does this basically mean that it is virtually a waste of time now to
even bother adding passwords to Excel workbooks/worksheets or even
creating Excel workbooks/worksheets/VBA Code thinking you are
"protrecting" any of your work?

How have things changed since OpenOffice allows you to open any Excel
file regardless of the protection level?

I mean, should anyone really bother with protection anymore except to
prevent purely "innocent" users from unwittingly mucking up a spread
sheet?

I admit I thought it was well known that XL protection was weak at best. Not
only does opening it in OO apparently work, but there are password removers
out there that work fine without OO. I accidentally found hidden data by
copying a selection and pasting it elsewhere a version or 3 ago. That
probably still happens I'm guessing :)

Best answer ... don't consider an XL spreadsheet "secure" in any way and you
won't be disapointed :) :)
 

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