A text in a computer file can be written as no more than text with, for example, a text editor: Plain text. A word processing program or a layout program offers the user the option of providing documents with formatting: styles, colors, fonts, special characters, bold characters, italics, and so on. It is also possible to add additional content to documents, such as images.

Preservation of formatted text documents focuses on preserving all important aspects, including all visual characteristics and all structural information.

Preferred formats

Non-preferred formats