When To Use .RTF

BY STANLEY ZAROWIN

Key to Instructions
To help readers follow the instructions in this article, we used two different typefaces:
Boldface type is used to identify the names of icons, agendas and URLs.
Sans serif type shows commands and instructions users should type into the computer and the names of files.
 
Q. Whenever I click on Save As to save a Word document, I’m presented with many choices. I usually click on .doc, the default Word format. But every now and then I receive a file from a colleague that’s been saved as .rtf , which is one of the Save As options. What’s the difference?

A. The extension .rtf , which stands for Rich Text Format , maintains a document’s formatting. Use .rtf (see screenshot below) if you don’t know what version of Word your recipients have or whether they have Word or even Windows.

In my view the biggest advantage of .rtf is that it doesn’t retain any imbedded macros, which makes it immune from catching and spreading viruses.

The other useful format is .txt , shorthand for Plain Text , which saves just the text in the document with no formatting. If you need to make a document as small as possible to transmit it faster over the Internet and formatting is not important, save it as .txt .

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