I understand that AppleWorks won’t run under Lion. I depend on it for much of my correspondence and spreadsheet work. What can I do to transition my old AppleWorks files to more up-to-date software? Is there any easy solution?
Via the internet

Yes, there is. If you have a copy of iWork, you can easily open your word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation files in Pages, Numbers and Keynote. Select an AppleWorks word processing file in the Finder, press C-I to bring up the Info window, click on the Open With pop-up menu, and choose Pages from the list that appears. Click the Change All button, and now all your AppleWorks word processing documents will open in Pages. Do the same thing with any AppleWorks spreadsheet files, except choose Numbers instead.

Similarly, for those of you who actually have such files, you can use this trick to open any AppleWorks presentation documents in Keynote.

Regrettably, there’s no easy path for bringing over your AppleWorks database files. FileMaker has a tutorial that tells you how to move these files to Bento (£34.99, www.filemaker.co.uk), but the process is inelegant. Essentially, you save your file as ASCII text and add a .tsv extension to it. Then within Bento you choose File > Import > File, click Choose in the resulting Import window, and then select your .tsv file. You’ll lose any AppleWorks templates you’ve created, but your data will move over to whatever preconfigured template you’ve chosen in Bento.

AppleWorks painting files can be converted to a variety of graphics formats, including .jpeg, .png, and TIFF. Regrettably, this is something you have to do via a Save As command within AppleWorks. It’s not possible to simply change the file’s extension.

And AppleWorks drawing files can be opened and edited with EazyDraw (£60, www.eazydraw.net). It’s not an inexpensive option, but it’s one that doesn’t require you to mess around with converting files.

Although this should go without saying, if you’re still using AppleWorks to create files and you want to stay current with Apple technology, it’s time to set AppleWorks aside and start using up-to-date tools. Invaluable though AppleWorks may seem, if you continue using it, you’re only going to create more unnecessary work for yourself in the future.