I have some archive documents in .doc format, and I want to convert them to a searchable data base. I know that .pdf is searchable, but PC users seem to find .html documents more easily searchable ( I don't understand this).

How can I do this conversion, preferably as a batch conversion?

  • So which is it, PAGES or DOC? PDF files are just as searchable in Windows as they are in OS X. For that matter, so are DOC files (they're just XML). Maybe you need to think through your problem before looking for a solution. Having said that, if your files are in DOC, you can save as HTML or PDF. Automater or Applescript can help with batch conversion. – james.garriss Feb 10 '12 at 14:22
  • Automater is Tow Mater's cousin. You should actually look at Automator instead. Sorry about that. – james.garriss Feb 10 '12 at 14:23

Open terminal and navigate (cd) to the directory containing the .doc files and run the following:

for i in *.doc; do
textutil -convert html $i;

I am using zsh so not sure if that would execute right in default bash shell. However, you can always invoke zsh for this purpose by just typing zsh at the prompt and hitting enter. The textutil command line has many options and capabilities. Just type textutil to see the options or look up the manual pages.


textutil -convert html *.doc

That also does the trick in default shell settings from within the directory containing the .doc files.

  • +1 for exposing me to textutil, I had no idea there was such a wonderful utility lying around OS X! – Stephen Rudolph Apr 18 '12 at 16:16

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