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Evading document protection in MS Word
Thread poster: Pee Eff
Pee Eff
Germany
Local time: 13:31
English to German
+ ...
Feb 3, 2005

Hi all!

I've been sent a document for translation by a client. The document contains around 5,000 words and has to be finished by Monday morning. The problem with it is that it's password protected against editing, i.e. I can open, view and print it but can't edit anything and can't use my TM tool on it.

I've contacted my customer and asked them to contact their customer and ask for the password as somebody must've entered it in the first place. However, they came back to me telling me that the client doesn't have the password, that they don't know why there is a password at all and that I just should translate it as is - maintaining all the formatting as closely as possible, of course...

So, does anybody know of a way to work around document protection? I've googled up a couple of tools for that purpose, but they all work in demo mode only and cost $30 and more (and I'm not willing to spend anything for it).

Any help is greatly appreciated!
Thanks,
Pat


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xxx
Spanish to English
+ ...
copy and paste Feb 3, 2005

I think you can just select all, copy the text, and then paste it into a new document. I just tried that on a protected document of mine and it seems to work anyway.

HTH


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mrippa  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 13:31
English to Italian
My humblest opinion... Feb 3, 2005

First of all, after opening the document in Read only mode, try to select all the text, copy it and then paste in a new document. Save the document with the same file name in another directory and then, after delivering this work, try to not work anymore with such unprofessional and unfriendly customers.

Best Regards
Massimo


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Pee Eff
Germany
Local time: 13:31
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Paste & Copy doesn't work Feb 3, 2005

Thanks for your help!
Yes, I've tried to copy and paste it into a new document, but the document is also protected against copying. In fact, I can't even highlight any portion of the text. Strg+A isn't available and right-clicking in the document does bring up a greyed-out context menu...

Pat


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Anne Lee  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:31
Member (2003)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Cheap official programme: Feb 3, 2005

I found a full programme to crack protected files for 5.65 Euro at the following website:
http://www.intertek.org.uk/downloads/word.html
I would add this to your invoice, either explicitly or as part of a separate item called: Extra time required to overcome file protection.


[Edited at 2005-02-03 16:02]


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mrippa  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 13:31
English to Italian
... Feb 3, 2005

Patrick Füldner wrote:

the document is also protected against copying. In fact, I can't even highlight any portion of the text. Strg+A isn't available and right-clicking in the document does bring up a greyed-out context menu...

Pat


The version of Office I use (2000) doesn't have such an adavanced protection option. Anyway, depending on the type of document, you could try to open it in Microsoft Notepad, in Textpad www.textpad.com or in another text editor and then trying to paste all the text in a new Word document, but all the formatting could be lost. If you give us more details on the file format and on the type of document, for sure somebody can suggest you a text editor able to solve this issue out.
But still I suggest you to insist with the agency to have the password: after all they can lose a second trying to open the file you are supposed to translate. Just give them a call.


[Edited at 2005-02-03 16:10]


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Angela Arnone  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:31
Member (2004)
Italian to English
+ ...
Have you tried opening a blank document Feb 3, 2005

then going to the "insert" pulldown and clicking "file"?
That's worked for me in the past.
Good luck!!!
Angela


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George Fabian
Local time: 13:31
Polish to English
StarOffice 5.2 Feb 3, 2005

Give the old version of StarOffice 5.2 a try. Funny thing, SO 5.2 opens documents like this (had to do it a couple of times) whereas StarOffice 6.0 doesn't. Could it have anythong to do with Redmond?

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Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:31
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
Word password is usually not worth its name Feb 3, 2005

And mostly can be "fooled" out.
Try this site: http://www.lostpassword.com/word.htm
Or search the Internet for "lost password word" or the same in German, if for any reason you should find no help there.

Regards
Jerzy


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Sonja Tomaskovic  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:31
English to German
+ ...
PlusTools Feb 3, 2005

I suppose you've been able to open the document in the meantime. So I am writing this only for your (and everyone else's) information.

PlusTools (which is available at www.Wordfast.net) has an option to obtain forgotten passwords from doc files.

I haven't used it before but if you don't have any other solution and don't want to buy any of the commercial software, try it.

Kindly,

Sonja


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Jorge Payan  Identity Verified
Colombia
Local time: 07:31
Member (2002)
German to Spanish
+ ...
My 2 cents Feb 3, 2005

Print the document to PDF and OCR it back to Word using ABBYY Finereader (or similar. There is a demo version (full featured, time limited) you can downloaded from www.abbyy.com

Saludos


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Harry Bornemann  Identity Verified
Mexico
English to German
+ ...
Save as... ? Feb 3, 2005

You did not mention yet whether you could save it under an other name as an other document, like it is possible with the usual write-protected documents.

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Pee Eff
Germany
Local time: 13:31
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Problem solved! Feb 3, 2005

Jorge Payan wrote:

Print the document to PDF and OCR it back to Word using ABBYY Finereader (or similar. There is a demo version (full featured, time limited) you can downloaded from www.abbyy.com

Saludos


Wow, thank you all so much for your help!

Jorge's solution was the work-around I tried first and it worked perfectly. I used PDF Factory Pro. Then, I converted the PDF file back into a Word file using Scansoft PDF Converter. The new Word doc is not protected and looks exactly the same as the first one.

However, the more hassle-free solution is to save the file as an RTF file. All the formatting is preserved and the protection is gone. Opening the file in WordPad or a similar editor does also remove the protection but scrambles the formatting (the original has a 2 columns layout).

Wordfast's PlusTools do indeed include a function to hack lost passwords (I didn't know that, thanks Sonja) and I tried that too. It takes for ever and I gave up on it. I had the program running for about 45 minutes and it had tried about 2 million possible combinations but to no avail...

So, danke allerseits und schönen Abend!
Pat


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Empty Whiskey Glass
Local time: 14:31
Bulgarian
+ ...
When you finish it.. Feb 3, 2005

..return it in PDF, print- and save-protected.
As a bonus you may add a Word copy, well, with password protection against accidental opening.


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Pee Eff
Germany
Local time: 13:31
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
:-) Feb 3, 2005

Svetozar Georgiev wrote:

..return it in PDF, print- and save-protected.
As a bonus you may add a Word copy, well, with password protection against accidental opening.


Yes, I had thought about that too!!


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Evading document protection in MS Word

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