Office 2007 Beta Death Rattle

Can you hear it?  It’s getting close.  As stated in a previous post the life cycle of the Microsoft Office 2007 Beta is coming to an end.  Soon.  About 2 weeks away for those not on B2TR.

If you personally registered for the beta you should have gotten an email from Microsoft yesterday explaining the expiration dates.  But for the benefit of those who installed the beta beta bits from the DVD of a friend or co-worker, here are the details:

“Depending on whether or not you implemented the beta 2 technical refresh, you will not be able to use the 2007 Office beta 2 release after one of the following dates:

  • For the 2007 Office beta 2 release with no update: 02/01/2007
  • For the 2007 Office beta 2 release updated with the beta 2 technical refresh: 03/31/2007
  • For the 2007 Office beta 2 release server products updated with the beta 2 technical refresh: 05/15/2007

If you would like to continue using the 2007 Office release to create, open, or modify files, you may:

1. Receive a FREE copy of Microsoft Office Professional 2007 when you attend a launch event for the new versions of Microsoft’s most popular software. Register for an event near you.

2. Sign up for a FREE 60-day trial of the new 2007 Office release by visiting Microsoft Office Online.

3. Sign up to be notified when the new 2007 Office suites will be available by clicking here.

If you would like to use Microsoft Office 2000, Office XP, or Office 2003 to open and modify Microsoft Office Word, Excel®, and PowerPoint® files that have been saved using the 2007 Office release file formats, please download the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack.”

I have to wonder if the inclusion of Office 2007 in the Microsoft Action Pack this quarter will bring the same shocked response as the inclusion of Vista?

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Office 2007 Expiration Date Clarification

There has been a fair amount of confusion about the expiration of the Office 2007 Beta2 Technical Refresh (B2TR).  Even the Q&A session in the SBSC webcast yesterday didn’t yield an immediate answer.

Understandably Partners are concerned that the Microsoft Action Pack Subscription (MAPS) version of the final Office 2007 bits may not arrive before the Beta bits time-bomb and drop into hockeypuck mode. 

Like many folks, the copy of Office 2007 B2TR on my demo machine states an expiration date of Feb 1, 2007.  This date is incorrect!   

The correct expiration date for Office 2007 B2TR is March 31, 2007.

Proof (and I quote):

“The correct expiration date for Beta2 Technical Refresh is displayed during setup. If the user checks the License Agreement from the client once Beta2 Technical Refresh is installed, it will display the incorrect date. The correct expiration date for Beta2 Technical Refresh is: March 31, 2007.”


So now you can breathe a little easier and not have to worry about downgrading to 2003 if your Action Pack gets held up by DHL.

Props:  Hats-off to Paige Boesen, Chris Van Wesep & Stacy Miros for tracking down the official date and for the excellent followup.  You guys rock!

BTW: To save a follow-up blog post, Vista Beta RC1 expires on June 1, 2007.

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Register for the Louisville Vista / Office 2007 Launch

Register today for the: 

Microsoft Across America Vista / Office 2007 Launch Event
Louisville, Kentucky
Tuesday January 30, 2007 

IMPORTANT:  These events will fill up completely so be sure and choose one or two events below and SIGNUP TODAY! 


Event Location:
Hyatt Regency Louisville
320 West Jefferson Street
Louisville, KY 40202 

Morning Events 

Small Business Track – Vista / Office 2007 / WSS 3.0 / Accounting 2007
8:00 AM – 12:00 PM 

IT Pro Track – Vista & Office 2007 Deployment / Exchange 2007
8:00 AM – 12:00 PM 

Afternoon Events  Partner Track – Presenter:  Ron Grattopp
1:00 PM – 5:00 PM 

IT Executive Track – Deployment / BitLocker / GPO / SharePoint 2007 / Dynamics
1:00 PM – 5:00 PM 

Developer Track – Connected Applications / Office 2007 Server Platform
1:00 PM – 5:00 PM 

FYI – The Kentucky Small Business Server User Group (KYSBSUG) is scheduled to have a booth at the morning IT Pro Track, so be sure to stop by and say hi! 🙂 


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Vista & Office Launch Jan 30, 2007

It’s official – Microsoft Windows Vista and Office 2007 have been released to manufacturing (RTM) and the scheduled world wide launch date is Tuesday January 30, 2007. 

You can read the Nov 8 press release or check out the short video below with Jim Allchin:

Video: Windows Vista JimAllchin RTM Announcement

Insider Tip:  There will be a Vista / Office 2007 event in Louisville, KY on that date (30 Jan 2007). Stay tuned for details. 🙂

Source:  James Senior & Susan Bradley

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Vista and Office 2007 Packaging Pictures

The Windows Vista Team Blog has pictures of the new packaging for Vista and Office 2007.  Gone are the days of cardboard packaging.  These are hard plastic, and this is the new format of software packaging from Microsoft. 

Windows Vista Home Basic package
Windows Vista Home Basic


Windows Vista Home Premium


Windows Vista Business


Windows Vista Ultimate


Microsoft Office
Home and Student 2007


Microsoft Office Professional 2007 package
Microsoft Office
Professional 2007


Source:  Windows Vista Team Blog

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Get Microsoft Office Accounting Express 2007 Free

Many customers will need the full-blown Microsoft Office Accounting Professional 2007 version, but for the small, home-based or eBay-based businesses, Microsoft has released Microsoft Office Accounting Express 2007 as a free download:

Download URL:
Download size: 338 MB
OS:  XP, 2003 & Vista
Cost:  FREE (this is not a trial or demo)

Product Information:

Save time on everyday tasks

  • Create quotes and invoices; track expenses and employee time
  • Enter data once and share it seamlessly with other Microsoft Office system programs
  • Manage payroll and taxes with ADP’s integrated payroll service

Get a complete view of your business

  • Store and organize all your customer, vendor, employee, and financial information in one place
  • Get business insights with over 20 customizable reports
  • Easily share your books with your accountant through Office Live

Grow your business online

  • List items on eBay, track sales activity, and download and process orders
  • Email invoices and get paid faster with PayPal
  • Monitor your customers’ business credit in real-time through Equifax


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SMS Link for Microsoft Outlook 2007

SMS Link is definitely one of the coolest feature I’ve seen in Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 so far.

With SMS Link, now you can set rules in Outlook 2007 that will forward important e-mails, tasks, ect. right to your cell phone via SMS text messages. You can also send SMS messages to other people from Outlook, even if you don’t know who their mobile carrier is.

Check out the Shockwave video demo of SMS Link for details.  The video is a quick download, and it gives an excellent overview of the capabilities of SMS Link. 

Once you’re done with the video, click the Getting Started link. They have a nice FAQ too.

Note:  SMS Link is a free download and a free service, but remember that not everyone has free incoming SMS text messsaging.  So be sure and touch base with your addressee before you run up their mobile phone bill.


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Outlook 2007 RAM Issues

I was experiencing the joys of IE7 tonight (multiple 404 errors trying to enter Passport sites after XP SP2 resumes from Standby Mode) and decided to give up and reboot.  After the reboot I hit to Ctrl-Alt-Delete and launched the Task Manager to watch the show.

So as I sit patiently watching, my 1.5 GB of RAM gets slowly eaten by the loading applications: Anti-Virus, MSN Messenger, ZoneAlarm & FolderShare, etc. And when the hard drive activity stops, I launch Outlook 2007 B2TR. 

Little-by-little, the RAM usage climbs slowly as Outlook 2007 connects to RPC over HTTPS, syncs with SBS, and then continues to climb as Outlook updates the RSS feeds.  Eventually, RAM usage for Outlook peaks at 110 MB (pictured below).   

But 110,428 K of RAM usage isn’t the odd part.  A few minutes later, Outlook 2007 drops down to 15 MB of RAM.  It stays there for 2 minutes, and then climbs back up to 49 MB and sits happily ever after (even as I type this). 

So my question is, ‘How in the world did Outlook go down to 15 MB of RAM, and why?’  As you can see from the screen shot above, even MSN Messenger uses 15 MB.  This isn’t one of the great mysteries of life – just a curious observation to which I haven’t been able to Google an answer.

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Will That Work With SBS?

Has a customer ever asked you if CRM 1.2 will run on SBS 2003 R2? 

What about Small Business Accounting 2006 on a pre-SP1 SBS box? 

Is Vista RC 1 supported in an SBS environment, or is Office 97 supported by WSUS?

The answers to these and many other SBS-related questions can be found on several handy charts you should bookmark today (and Microsoft says that these charts will be kept updated):

The charts have easy-to-understand red, yellow & green symbols to indicate compatibility: 

Green check = The product is an integrated component of Windows SBS, or it is known to be compatible with Windows SBS. The product was tested and you can obtain support for this configuration.

Shield Mark = The product has not been fully tested on Windows SBS and support for this configuration is not available from the Windows SBS product support team. Other groups may offer support for this configuration; contact the appropriate group for information. Some product features may not be fully functional in a Windows SBS environment.

X Mark = Not compatible. The product is known not to work and you should not install the product in a Windows SBS environment.

Each entry also has a notes section with hyperlinks to more information where applicable.

Source:  The Official SBS Blog

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No entiendo senor Office 2007

Today I got my first email with an Office 2007 Word .docx attachment, and since I’m still running Office 2003 on my desktop PC at the office, I couldn’t open it.  So now I have to e-mail Andrew back and ask him to re-save the file in Office 2003 format, right?  Wrong.

Office logoTitle:  Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint 2007 File Formats (Beta 2 Technical Refresh)
File Name: O2007Cnv.exe
Date Published: 09/14/2006
Language: English, Japanese, French, German, Spanish
Download Size: 26.6 MB
Download URL:

Description:  Open, edit, save, and create files in the robust file formats new to the 2007 Microsoft Office system in Microsoft Office 2000, Office XP, and Office 2003. 

By installing the Compatibility Pack (Beta 2 Technical Refresh) along side of Microsoft Office 2000, Office XP, or Office 2003, you will be able open, edit, save, and create files using the robust file formats new to the 2007 Microsoft Office system, including:


  • .docx—Microsoft Office Word 2007 document
  • .docm—Microsoft Office Word 2007 macro-enabled document


  • .pptx—Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 presentation
  • .pptm—Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 macro-enabled presentation
  • .potx—Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 template
  • .potm—Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 macro-enabled template
  • .ppsx—Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 show
  • .ppsm—Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 macro-enabled show


  • .xlsb—Microsoft Office Excel 2007 binary workbook
  • .xlsx—Microsoft Office Excel 2007 workbook
  • .xlsm—Microsoft Office Excel 2007 macro-enabled workbook
  • .xltx—Microsoft Office Excel 2007 template
  • .xltm—Microsoft Office Excel 2007 macro-enabled template
  • .xlam—Microsoft Office Excel 2007 add-in
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