Do applications on Mac OS X (specifically the MS Office applications, but interested in others as well) generally preserve xattrs (Extended Attributes) on documents when saving them?

For example, if I add an xattr to a file:

xattr -w test "test attribute" mydocument.docx

Then open this in MS Word, make a change, and save, is the attribute maintained? What does

xattr -l mydocument.docx

print after saving?

  • Why can't you test this yourself? Apr 30, 2016 at 4:46
  • No mac handy atm.
    – Devin Lane
    May 1, 2016 at 1:26

1 Answer 1


Found a Mac running OS X 10.9.5. When saving through a terminal editor (vim) and GUI programs (TextEdit, MS Word), xattrs are preserved.

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