How to: Convert Quattro Pro files (and more) to Excel Format

Dennis Faas's picture

Infopackets Reader Howard R. writes:

" Dear Dennis,

I have some really old family Quattro Pro spreadsheets from 1994-98. I would like to be able to view these spreadsheets on my Windows 10 system, and if possible, convert the Quattro Pro files to Excel files. The Quattro Pro files are using the .WB1 file extension. While the current version of Open Office can read .WB2 files, it won't read these .WB1 files. Do you know of a program that can read and convert the .WB1 files to Excel? I look forward to hearing from you. "

My response:

After researching Howard's question, I suggested he try LibreOffice (free), as it has the ability to convert Quattro Pro spread sheets (.WB1, .WB2, and .WB3) to Excel format, whether it's Excel 2010, 2007, 2003, 2000, or 97. In fact, the Excel file formats supported are .XLSX (Excel 2010 / 2007), .XML (Excel 2003 / XP), and .XLS (Excel 97 / 2000 / XP / 2003). Technically speaking, LibreOffice is not 100% compatible with these formats (only Microsoft Office suites are), so you may encounter some issues.

Howard wrote in again with these comments:

" Dennis,

Many thanks for the quick reply. I just checked and Libre Office converts Quattro Pro files just fine, thanks! I've managed to open both .WB1 & .WQS Quattro Pro files, and then save them as Excel 2007 files. So far, I haven't observed any errors when converting from Quattro Pro to Excel - though technically, I haven't checked any files with macros in them.

The fact that Libre Office can go back to these old files is one advantage it has over Open Office. It's a pity that Open Office and Libre Office split, but if either of them were still in the hands of Sun Micro (or Oracle) they probably wouldn't have got this far, anyway. You might like to record (somewhere) the ease with which you can convert from .WB1 to Excel using Libre Office - in case someone else asks you! "

Thanks Howard for your remarks. As for instructions on how to convert Quattro Pro files to Microsoft Excel, refer to the steps below.

How to Convert Quattro Pro files (and more) to Excel Format

Note that these instructions will work for just about any spreadsheet program file format supported by LibreOffice (and not just Quattro Pro files):

  1. Download and install the latest version of LibreOffice for Windows if you haven't done so already.
  2. Launch the LibreOffice Calc program - this is LibreOffice's spreadsheet program, similar to Microsoft Excel.
  3. Open the spreadsheet file that you want to convert to Excel format. In Howard's case, he used a .WB1 spreadsheet file, but if you have another spreadsheet file written by another office suite, you can most likely use that too, since LibreOffice supports many, many formats.
  4. Once the spreadsheet file is opened, click File (from the menu), then Save As, then click on the File Type button, and then choose your desired format.

That's it!

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About the author: Dennis Faas is the owner and operator of With over 30 years of computing experience, Dennis' areas of expertise are a broad range and include PC hardware, Microsoft Windows, Linux, network administration, and virtualization. Dennis holds a Bachelors degree in Computer Science (1999) and has authored 6 books on the topics of MS Windows and PC Security. If you like the advice you received on this page, please up-vote / Like this page and share it with friends. For technical support inquiries, Dennis can be reached via Live chat online this site using the Zopim Chat service (currently located at the bottom left of the screen); optionally, you can contact Dennis through the website contact form.

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alpe97_6324's picture

WordPerfect is still current and available as are older version for bargain prices. I moved from 12 to 14 just 2 years ago, v17 is current. All these versions, unlike MS products, retain compatability with ALL their old versions and many very old versions of ancient products - over 60. Last time I checked, it even opens old Wordstar from the 1st DOS systems. WP is low cost, flexible, has unique functions and I found it outperforms MS. Let's not forget it exists and is a quality product.