Opening an .spv without SPSS


Shot in the dark but does anyone know a way to open an .spv file without SPSS? I'm cheap and don't want to buy SPSS but my colleagues sometimes send me .spv files. The only way I know to read them is to trudge to campus and open them on a machine with SPSS.


Ambassador to the humans
I don't use SPSS so I don't know exactly what a .spv contains but I know the "foreign" package in R contains a read.spss function. It's worth a try if you didn't already know about it.


Yeah the .spv is an output file not a data file so no go with the foreign (I do use foreign to read in the data files they send me). I've heard about the PSPP (open source) but had forgotten about it. It's not really that well developed but I just need to open a file so it's worth a try. I'll let you know how I make out tomorrow.

Thanks Dason
Hey guys,

thanks for the note on PSPP I did not know the software. Just tried to opened up an .spv file with PSPP. Unfortunately, though, the program does not open it. An PSPP window opens showing me an ERROR.

:_ ((

Take care
See and use SPSS Viewer and SPSS SmartViewer in this page (Link).

Also see SPSS SmartViewer in the link below:

"...For output produced by versions of SPSS/Statistics 16.0 and later (i.e., *.spv files), the free IBM SPSS Smartreader is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux from the SPSS Community ( See the Downloads for IBM SPSS Statistics section of the wiki.

IBM® SPSS® Smartreader provides much of the dynamic functionality found in the IBM® SPSS® Statistics Viewer without requiring SPSS Statistics to be installed, including the ability to:

  • Transpose rows and columns and drill-down through the layers of multidimensional pivot tables.
  • Explore models interactively with the Model Viewer.

In unlocked documents, you can also:
  • Explore tree diagrams with the Tree Viewer.
  • Edit the content of pivot tables.
  • Modify charts to change colors, fonts, swap axes, add interpolation lines, and even change the chart type (for example, change a bar chart to a pie chart).
  • Change the appearance of tables and charts with TableLooks and chart templates.

Note: In locked documents, interactive actions are limited to pivoting tables and using the Model
Viewer. You cannot edit the content of tables or save any changes to the document.

For output produced by versions of SPSS 15.0 and earlier (i.e., *,spo files), a user would need the SPSS Legacy Viewer -- essentially the SPSS 15.0 Smart Viewer. Unfortunately, due to certain policy constraints we are not able to make the SPSS Legacy Viewer directly available for distribution at this time.

If you still have access to the old SPSS v15 installation media, you should be able to install the entire application on a supported operating system -- leaving it unlicensed -- and can use it to open .spo files. Working with the output in that version and earlier didn't engage the backend processor, so all copy/paste, print, and export functionality should still be accessible in the v15 output viewer, even if the application is unlicensed. Please keep in mind that regardless of this suggestion, version 15 is still no longer supported.

If one does not wish to use the SmartReader, the Statistics user will need to export the output to a file format the recipient can open. Pasting or exporting the output to Word or Excel, for example, are common workarounds. If the recipient has an earlier version of Statistics, the sender can send the data file and the syntax used to generate the output and let the recipient generate their own output, though there may be some problems running the later version's syntax in the earlier version; syntax is generally constant across versions, but sometimes, particularly when new features are introduced, the newer version may produce syntax that the older version won't recognize. ..."