Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, PowerPoint

What can be more frustrating than working hard on a document, spreadsheet or presentation and then discovering that the person you sent it to can’t open it in their version of Microsoft Office?  To head this problem off at the pass, here’s a look at a few possible solutions to this situation for users of Microsoft Office.

 Users of Office 2007/2010 

For Office 2007 and 2010 users, you have the road of least resistance.  These versions of Office can send and view documents made from all versions of Office.  Viewing them is easy, just open the file and Word, Excel or PowerPoint will automatically get the file open for you with little to no hassles. 

Sending files is another story.  For ultimate compatibility with older versions of Office, when saving your files, choose the Word 97-2003 option from the Save As dropdown menu (shown here):

Most users do not actively use a version of Word prior to the 97 version so you should be safe with this choice.  And remember, even Office 2007 and 2010 users will be able to open these files with ease.

Users of Office 2000-2003

Here’s the good news: You don’t have to worry about the files you send.  Virtually every Office version before yours and absolutely every Office version after yours will be able to read your file.

Now for the not so bad, but it’s a little hassle news:  With a little bit of coaxing, Office 2000-2003 users can view files created by the newer Office 2007 and 2010 versions.  To enable this, you will need to download the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint File Formats (Sorry Office ’97 users, this won’t work for you.) 

 By installing the Compatibility Pack in addition to Microsoft Office 2000, Office XP, or Office 2003, you will be able to open, edit, and save files using the file formats in newer versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint . The Compatibility Pack can also be used in conjunction with the Microsoft Office Word Viewer 2003, Excel Viewer 2003, and PowerPoint Viewer 2003 to view files saved in these new formats.

Posted on July 29, 2011 at 10:05 am

Categories: Follow-up Friday, Microsoft, Office 2010

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