Förderverein Informationstechnik und Gesellschaft


[Von plattformunabhaengigen Textformaten scheint man bei der WTO auch noch nichts gehoert zu haben. -AHH]



31 March 1998


NEW SOFTWARE AT THE WTO Communication from the Secretariat

The Secretariat will shortly be migrating to a new computer operating system, Windows NT 4.0, and will adopt Microsoft Office 97 Professional Edition as its standard office applications software. (see note 1) This means that all official documents, which are currently produced using WordPerfect 5.2 for Windows, will be produced in the future with Microsoft Word 97.

This change will have some implications for the Document Dissemination Facility (DDF). Delegations should note that as of 2 June 1998, the Secretariat will be posting all documents on the Internet in the Microsoft Word 97 format. There will be a short transition period during which delegations may experience some delay in the posting of these documents since the Secretariat will require some time to complete the changeover to the new word-processing software. All existing functionalities of the DDF will work with the new format.

The DDF will therefore contain documents in two word-processing formats: WordPerfect 5.2 and Word 97. Delegations will need to make certain adjustments to cope with this situation. They may wish to upgrade to Word 97 which will enable them to browse and print old documents produced in WordPerfect as well as new documents produced in Word 97. Delegations using other programs will have to download "converters" from the Internet (see note 2) or, alternatively, to rely on "viewing programs"(see note 3). These programs, while not perfect, provide a means of browsing and printing documents in many different formats.

Additional technical details can be obtained from Mr. Ian Huxtable and Ms. Esperanza Sesar.


1. The Office 97 Professional Edition includes Word, Excel, Access, Powerpoint and Outlook.

2. Users of WordPerfect 8.0 will find the converter file at Users of Word 6.0 for Windows 3.x or Word 95 for Windows 95/NT will find the equivalent files at

3. The Secretariat is familiar with two programs available from the following Web sites: Quick View Plus and Key View Pro