Published on December 24th, 2019 | by Maryn Mcdonnell


7 Types of Document Files | Updates and Differences

Sharing of written information has become easier, especially when done online. Today, you can share your thoughts, books, notes, contracts and other written information easily by sending them through the internet. The ability to share written information online is attributable to the availability of different types of document files that you can convert the written information into. Converting a file into a different format allows those that you send the file to have an easier time opening, viewing and reading it.

If you have written information on a document and you want to share it online, you can convert the document before sharing or sending it to your friends or workmates. However, you have to be keen when choosing the format for your action since document files vary in formats. In this post, we discuss file formats that you may consider choosing for your purpose.


Documents created in Microsoft Word are saved as either DOC or DOCX depending on the Microsoft Office version you are using. DOC and DOCX document files can contain texts, wide-ranging formatting, tables, images and other objects. These document files provide the best way to share information through reports, invoices and essays that contain tables, graphs and other elements. Moreover, you can edit the files and open them with ease through different programs depending on their version.


These document files are same as DOC and DOCX files that can be shared under open standard license. As such, they are native to most open-source word processing programs like LibreOffice and OpenOffice. Files with the ODT extension come with a lot of formatting, tables, images, OLE objects and graphs. These files are commonly used in writing letters, essays, contracts, and reports among other formal communications. Although these files are editable, opening them with software that didn’t create them may alter the formatting and general display of the file.


TXT is famously known to be a compatible document file that contains raw text and can be formed with all word processing programs. This file is created to store formatted text only, making them great for fast information exchange. The files are also the best for data storage. They can be opened by most word programs.


The RTF file extension is designed for Rich Text Format document files. It is a creation of Microsoft but can also be formed using other word processing programs. It only contains text formatting, which makes it great if you want to create a formatted text only. Moreover, it is compatible with different word processing software and can be shared or distributed easily.


PDF files are created by Adobe and vary significantly from other files in different aspects. Like other files, they can contain graphs, 3D drawings, images, tables and other objects. PDF files are great for printing since they contain a fixed layout and preserve the format they were fashioned out of. You can use to create PDF file from other files, especially when you want to protect the information from further editing.


Document files saved in this format contain audio, images, formatted text and other objects. They are opened by web browsers and are regarded as true websites that are complete and embedded with outbound links and media.


PPT and PPTX are also referred to as presentation files. They are created from Microsoft PowerPoint program and can contain animations, images, texts, embedded videos, audio files, tables and slide transitions. PPT and PPTX file formats are used in presentations. They can be opened using different open-source programs even though the general display will be different from the original.

Now that you know the different types of documents, make sure you choose the type of document file that will best suit your purpose before sharing your written information online. This way, you will make the entire process of sending the document stress-free and the recipient will have an easy time opening it.

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About the Author

is a creative content writer. She spends her days working closely with many entrepreneurs and creative thinkers internationally. Her interests include travel, self-improvement, and technology. Find Maryn on Twitter @MarynMcdonnell.

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