I need to open files with images that come as Word (docx) files. I couldn't see the images if I open in Pages or Mac Office. Had to get VMWare Fusion, Win7 and Windows office, and still having problems opening these files in Fusion Virtual Machine ... Files open fine at work in a Windows PC. Any ideas? Would Boot Camp work better than Fusion Virtual Machine? Thanks...

  • Have you tried saving the files in "compatibility mode" - i.e. Word 2003 format?
    – dan8394
    Aug 12, 2011 at 2:17
  • Actually, if you could host one of these files publicly (e.g. in DropBox) and post it here for us to take a look, we can probably advise better.
    – dan8394
    Aug 12, 2011 at 2:18
  • Boot Camp will be faster, but it won't work any better than Fusion. And Boot Camp has other downsides making Fusion a better option. Specifically what problems are you having with Fusion? Have you looked into competing products, like VirtualBox (free) and Parallels (free trial available). Aug 12, 2011 at 4:33
  • 1
    My guess (See below) is that his images are links rather than stand-alone images, and the reason it isn't working in Fusion is that he does not have the app installed which created the links...
    – dan8394
    Aug 12, 2011 at 5:16

3 Answers 3


Starting with Lion, Preview can open docx files and does a good job. Much better than TextEdit or Pages.

In Snow Leopard, I found quick look to be very good as well — but you can't do much with the file inside quick look.

Obviously I can't test the documents you're having trouble with though.


In Word there are all sorts of ways to insert images into a file. In Windows you can create a "link" to the original creating software.


This means that if you double click on the image then it opens the app which created the image.

The important thing is that this means that you have actually added something more than just the image to the word file and if you transfer the file to Mac, the image will not be displayed as the "linked" app doesn't exist.

Try double clicking the images in Windows and seeing if they are linked. If so, that is your problem. You must then find a way of inserting the images without linking. This page seems to explain how you can achieve this: http://www.labnol.org/software/insert-images-in-word-documents/8144/


Try opening your .docx files on the Mac in the latest versions of LibreOffice and NeoOffice, which are both free. They are forks of the old program OpenOffice.org which you may be familiar with. They are huge programs that run rather slowly, but they may get the job done. They can also handle .xlsx and .pptx and many other office document formats.

Ultimately, though, you need to investigate what it is about these particular documents that someone is sending you, and the graphics embedded in them, that is causing this peculiar behavior.

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