I have some very old Mathematica notebooks file (.m) files from Version 2. When I try to open them using Mathematica 8.0 (on a Linux system) Mathematica instantly shuts down (no error message - just closes). However they open and format correctly using WolframCDFPlayer. I can copy from the player but not as cell expressions so a lot of hand editing is required to split and format the cells in the new notebook.
Is there any, perhaps undocumented, way to read or import these files into the current version of Mathematica that would retain some degree of the original formatting?