Password protect an OpenOffice document

One of the very first articles on Online IT Pro was how to password protect an Office 2003 document.  Did you know that you can password protect an OpenOffice document as well?  The process is very easy and is similar to the process in Microsoft Office 2003.

First, open the document in OpenOffice Writer that you want to password protect.  Click on the “File” option and click “Save As”

Give your document a name and check the box to “Save with Password” and click the “Save” button.

You will now be prompted for your password.  Enter your password of choice twice and click the “OK” button.

Your OpenOffice document is now password protected.  To prove that your document is password protected, re-open your document, enter in your password and click the “OK” button.

It’s as simple as that!

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14 Responses to Password protect an OpenOffice document

  1. Juvenal Sahiri says:

    The password protection of documents in open office works only with .odt extension. If you select .doc, the password field is greyed.

  2. John Goslino says:

    That is correct, but you can’t do the above if you wish to save the document as a Word (.doc) file, a common desire for many users. Good if the OpenOffice developers could address this.

  3. The Pro says:

    @Junvenal and @John – you are both exactly correct. OO writer currently will not let you save it as a .doc with a password. This is a bug within OO and a bug report has been submitted to them. (See the link)

    Hopefully, they will come out with a fix for this in the very near future.

  4. Shweta says:

    I’m sorry but regardless of whether I save the file wit a .odt extension or a .doc extension, I don’t even get a save with password checkbox. How can I password protect in this case? I work on a Vista OS, with Open Office 3.0.

  5. Shweta says:

    Also, before I updated it to version 3.0, the password option worked perfectly well. Even then I didn’t have a Save with password checkbox. I password protected the files form Tools->Options->Security->Protect. That too, seems to have stopped working now. My old files remain protected though. The new files refuse to accept password protection!

  6. Justin says:

    yes i have the same problem i am running vista and OOo 3.0 and it does not show a password protect check box.

    i have also tried to disable the Aero theme to see if that was interfering and that didn’t work

    i have a feeling that vista handles its save dialogues differently than Xp so it doesn’t show up

  7. The Pro says:

    @Shweta @Justin – It looks like this is a problem with OpenOffice 3.0.0.

    It sounds like this issue will be resolved in the release of OpenOffice 3.0.1.

    See this (and read the comments) for more info

  8. mbahnya says:

    terima kasih, artikel yang sangat berguna, khususnya bagi saya,


    sorry I can’t English language

  9. Logician says:

    I’m using 3.0.0 on vista home and I have the exact problem. The save dialog does not have password option at all and moreover “Tools->Options->Security->Protect” does not work either. It looks like it protected the file but when you close and reopen it, password (and protection) is gone.

  10. The Pro says:

    @Logician – You will need to upgrade your version of OpenOffice. The newer version resolves this error.

  11. Johnson says:

    Thanks, I been looking for a way to add a password to my open office files.

  12. Priyanka says:

    but my excel document does not allow me to tick for sve password option

  13. Venuz says:

    Hi Budy!

    I tried with V 3.1.1 on Vista. Pwd protectin is working well now.

    But, when press ENTER KEY after enter the pwd for opening the doc, it is not working. We have to press tab to focus on OK Buttong.

  14. Andrew says:

    I may be wrong, but I don’t seem to be able to use the password to make a file private (i.e. password required to open file).

    I don’t care about edit protection, just access protection as it has all my pin numbers and passwords.

    I can do this in MS word. Any ideas?

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