RTF problems in SheepShaver

About SheepShaver, a PPC Mac emulator for Windows, MacOS X, and Linux that can run System 7.5.3 to MacOS 9.0.4.

Moderators: Cat_7, Ronald P. Regensburg, ClockWise

Post Reply
minty_miller
Space Cadet
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2021 10:44 am

RTF problems in SheepShaver

Post by minty_miller »

Hello Everyone. I'm new to SheepShaver, which I've installed to access some old files that typically just show up as Unix files in OSX. The emulator runs Mac OS 9.0.4 nicely but I've encountered two problems with it so far. The more irritating of the two is the emulator freezing or crashing when I try to open RTF files (in Clarisworks 5.0 for example). I have yet to be able to open a single RTF file created from Word 2011 (running in High Sierra) without it crashing. More peculiarly, RTF files transferred over to the emulator desktop are often invisible to applications running on the emulator. It doesn't matter if I put them in the Desktop folder or copy them to folders on the main volume. Neither Clarisworks nor Wordperfect sees them. Going the other way is no problem. I can save Wordperfect (or Clarisworks WP documents) to RTFs to the shared folder and they open up just fine in Word 2011. SheepShaver's running in macOS High Sierra on a 2010 iMac with 14GB RAM and I've allocated 1Gb to the emulator. What could be going on? Thanks
emendelson
Forum All-Star
Posts: 1268
Joined: Tue Oct 14, 2008 12:12 am

Re: RTF problems in SheepShaver

Post by emendelson »

You're creating the files in OS X, but want to open the files in apps running in SheepShaver? That's what you seem to be saying. I can't guess why anyone would want to do that, but if that's what you're trying to do, it won't work because apps running in the old Mac OS inside SheepShaver need to find a resource fork in files that they try to open, and the files you're bringing in to SheepShaver won't have a resource fork.

If this really is what you're trying to do, then find something like the old Mac OS utility File Typer, install it in SheepShaver, and use it to change your files to the type RTF and creator MSWD, and the files will open normally as RTF files in whichever app you choose in SheepShaver.
User avatar
Ronald P. Regensburg
Expert User
Posts: 6711
Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2006 10:24 pm
Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Re: RTF problems in SheepShaver

Post by Ronald P. Regensburg »

If you want to open "old files", as you write, not files created recently in OSX/macOS but files that were created by old ClarisWorks/AppleWorks or old Word versions that cannot be opened in modern text/word editors in OSX, try the free LibreOffice. It will open most of such old files right in OSX/macOS. LibreOffice is free to use (donations are welcome). On my iMac with macOS 15 (Catalina), LibreOffice will open many such files dating back to 1995.
emendelson
Forum All-Star
Posts: 1268
Joined: Tue Oct 14, 2008 12:12 am

Re: RTF problems in SheepShaver

Post by emendelson »

minty_miller wrote: Wed Mar 17, 2021 11:24 am The more irritating of the two is the emulator freezing or crashing when I try to open RTF files (in Clarisworks 5.0 for example). I have yet to be able to open a single RTF file created from Word 2011 (running in High Sierra) without it crashing. More peculiarly, RTF files transferred over to the emulator desktop are often invisible to applications running on the emulator.
Ronald, yes, the post seems to ask about both old files and new files. The sentences above are the ones I was responding to, which seem to say that the files were created in Word 2011 and then taken into SheepShaver so that they could be opened in ClarisWorks. At least that's what this seems to say.

If the old files were in fact RTF files created in an old Mac, then they should open in TextEdit without any trouble. At worst, you would need to add the .RTF extension to them. But if they were not RTF files, then, as you say, LibreOffice might be able to open them.

Also, there is a little-known but very powerful utility called anyOSX that can open many old Mac filetypes that other applications can't handle:

https://sourceforge.net/projects/libmwaw/files/
User avatar
adespoton
Forum All-Star
Posts: 3341
Joined: Fri Nov 27, 2009 5:11 am
Location: Emaculation.com
Contact:

Re: RTF problems in SheepShaver

Post by adespoton »

Going back the other direction, a folder action script in OS 9 could be used to watch for files of type .rtf in the shared drive and automatically copy them to the local drive and add the correct file type and creator.

I suspect, however, that the issue here is that ClarisWorks is expecting a file that meets the MS RTF spec from 1991 and not the RTF spec from 2021, which is likely causing the crashes. With RTF, you can just open them in a text editor and check the tags to see if there's anything you need to strip out -- IIRC, ClarisWorks won't handle RTFs with any embedded images, for example. Also, if you have a file of type .rtfd, that's not actually an RTF file; it's Apple's own take on how RTF/HTML should have gone and opens in TextEdit and Pages only.

I'll leave you all with one last piece of reading: https://groups.csail.mit.edu/mac/users/ ... sworks.php
minty_miller
Space Cadet
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2021 10:44 am

Re: RTF problems in SheepShaver

Post by minty_miller »

Thanks to all who responded and I'm also grateful for the patient wonderment at why I would want to be doing what I'm doing in the first place! To be honest, it's because I'm busy reminding myself about the Classic OS and ClarisWorks' (and WordPerfect's) place in it. I'm really just experimenting with importing some content that I thought I could open and play around with. ClarisWorks was my main work programme for many years in the 90s and I have many files created in CW 4 that after transferring over, just wouldn't open. A combination of Maclink Plus translation and File Typer (thanks for the tips by the way) worked for most of these and I'll keep working on the RTF problem. But the main reason to start using ClarisWorks again to see how well a designed-for-the-Mac mid 90s office suite stacks up against something more contemporary like Microsoft Office 2011 (I loathe Office 2016) for straightforward content creation. It's just something I want to do, irrational though that may seem! It's also nice to be working back in Mac Classic rather than OSX and in the absence of an old Mac, I have the creator of SheepShaver to thank for making that possible.

Oh, and thanks for the link to the excellent history of ClarisWorks. Both it and Eudora are still very much missed by me!
Post Reply