Print 31 comment(s) - last by Alphafox78.. on Nov 20 at 4:14 PM

Microsoft expects heavy demand for open beta

Microsoft's bread and butter products are Windows operating systems and the Office productivity suite. These two products account for the bulk of the software giant's profits and as such, its fate is closely tied to the offerings.

Microsoft has announced that an open beta for Microsoft Office 10 is now available. The new beta requires the typical Microsoft rigmarole to download that includes getting a license key, registering for or signing into your Live or Passport account and then waiting the eternity it will take to get the 684MB download started and finished. There will be hoards of users vying to the downloads so expect significant delays in the download process.

Requirements to run the beta software include a PC with a 500MHz or higher processor, 256MB of RAM or more, 3GB of drive space, a 1024 x 768 resolution monitor, and a DVD-R/W drive. Those last two mean the vast majority of users on netbooks are out of luck.

The beta software is compatible with XP SP3, Vista SP1, Server 2003 R2, Server 2008 SP2, and Windows 7. The download is available in both the 32-bit and 64-bit versions; Microsoft recommends the 32-bit version of the software. The beta version includes Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, Excel, OneNote, Access, Publisher, InfoPath, SharePoint Workspace, and Communicator.

The first announcement that a public beta for the new productivity application would be offered this was back in October. In October, word that Microsoft might have a partially ad-supported version of Office 10 for users to take advantage of also surfaced.

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I am loving it
By Sazar on 11/19/2009 1:17:24 PM , Rating: 2
I downloaded from MSDN last night and I am really liking the new features in Excel and Outlook. The whole conversation feature in Outlook has made sorting and organizing my mail intuitive to the point where I do not necessarily need to do searches. I can just click on the little arrow on the left side of a related email and voila, all items in the "thread" are displayed.

Well done Microsoft, I am sold :D

RE: I am loving it
By The0ne on 11/19/2009 1:29:43 PM , Rating: 2
downloaded both 32/64 bit last night as well but haven't yet installed them. 700MB+ for each isn't bad for the entire suite.

RE: I am loving it
By Spivonious on 11/19/2009 1:33:29 PM , Rating: 2
I'm actually confused why they're touting this as a new feature. It's been in Outlook since at least 2003, it's just not the default view.

RE: I am loving it
By ksherman on 11/19/2009 1:56:23 PM , Rating: 2
Apple Mail has it too and I find it to be such an annoyance... At least with GMail it presents better. Gonna try this on my desktop tonight.

RE: I am loving it
By Connoisseur on 11/19/2009 2:26:46 PM , Rating: 2
yup. They've been preserving the conversation index since 2000 or 2003.

RE: I am loving it
By Sazar on 11/19/2009 6:07:08 PM , Rating: 2
It's not quite the same.

I can view by going through the Arrange By setting and selecting date, conversation and so forth in 2007.

In 2010, you have the default and quite useful Date view and a small arrow on the left-side of the email which you can click to display the conversation. It just adds a lot to the functionality and gives you more options than the current, more limited view.

I understand what you are saying but once you see it in action, you will know why I am excited about the way it has been implemented :)

RE: I am loving it
By creichow on 11/19/2009 2:04:25 PM , Rating: 3
I downloaded the Public Beta last night, and it is running even better than the Tech Preview! All applications load faster, Word, Excel, and OneNote open almost instantly on my laptop. A VERY solid beta release from Microsoft, but too bad that the Live/SkyDrive functionality still isn't enabled. I see online storage and collaboration as the primary new feature in the suite, and it's still under heavy development.

2010 will be a completely different ballgame for Office suites, online/free offerings from MSFT and Google will change the way we think about how and where we store our documents... I wrote more on my blog here:

RE: I am loving it
By InternetGeek on 11/19/2009 7:07:41 PM , Rating: 2
Just installed it, and damn its fast! I was running the techpreview as well and it was ok.

RE: I am loving it
By eddieroolz on 11/20/2009 1:28:55 AM , Rating: 2
For me I'm really digging the speed of the entire suite. It starts up in a flash - not even half a second of the splash screen to start Word. It's from a cold start too, which makes it even more amazing

Why would the recommend the 32bit version?
By Shawn on 11/19/2009 1:40:30 PM , Rating: 2
What's the point of a 64bit os if everything is still 32bit? When will 64bit applications become mainstream?

RE: Why would the recommend the 32bit version?
By fliguy84 on 11/19/2009 1:51:54 PM , Rating: 1
What are you talking about? There are 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Office 2010 beta available for download.

RE: Why would the recommend the 32bit version?
By PitViper007 on 11/19/2009 2:14:15 PM , Rating: 2
The download is available in both the 32-bit and 64-bit versions; Microsoft recommends the 32-bit version of the software .

That's what he's talking about and I agree. Yes there's both versions, but why would Microsoft recommend the 32-bit version if you have a 64-bit OS?

RE: Why would the recommend the 32bit version?
By Treckin on 11/19/2009 7:37:34 PM , Rating: 1
so RETARDS dont download the wrong one. The vast majority of PC users (no on dtech, but overall) us 32 bit, and last I checked, all 64 bit windows support 32 bit applications, but none of the 32 bit windows support 64 bit apps.

For now, MS is relying on 64 bit users to SELF ADVOCATE.

By Alphafox78 on 11/20/2009 4:14:23 PM , Rating: 2
or maybe its not as stable..

By JuPO5b4REqAYbSPUlMcP on 11/19/2009 2:30:41 PM , Rating: 2
Our company will be 100% 64-bit by end of 2011. Not sure why people would still be considering 32-bit anymore in this day and age.

By Lord 666 on 11/19/2009 4:17:30 PM , Rating: 5
Thats fine and all, but when will you be 100% IPv6?

By kkwst2 on 11/19/2009 2:34:53 PM , Rating: 4
Probably because the 32 bit code is more compatible with older versions and add-ins.!70F64BC91...

A 64 bit OS provides advantages even if you have no 64 bit applications. For instance, you can have 5 different 32 bit programs open each using 2 GB of memory at the same time.

I create some pretty complex excel spreadsheets and have never run into any memory limitations so it's unlikely you need or want 64 bit Office. Maybe for huge Access databases, but from the link it can break compatibility with 32-bit Access. Now my computational modeling programs, those need to be and are 64 bit. Most applications that significantly benefit from going 64 bit have done so.

By bradmshannon on 11/19/2009 1:19:22 PM , Rating: 2
I've heard good things about the 2010 products. Mostly the integration with other products like SharePoint 2010. I'm a SharePoint admin/dev, so this is somewhat exciting for me. Looking forward to the SP beta :)

RE: Cool...
By Bateluer on 11/19/2009 1:33:10 PM , Rating: 3
God, I hate Sharepoint . . . or maybe its only been the craptastic implementations I saw in the USAF.

RE: Cool...
By bradmshannon on 11/19/2009 1:51:19 PM , Rating: 2
Ya, lots of craptastic implementations of it. Especially if someone tries to do heavy modifications to it without understanding what they are doing.

RE: Cool...
By StraightCashHomey on 11/19/2009 4:26:40 PM , Rating: 2
SharePoint is the wave of the future, IMO. When it's implemented properly, it's a great asset to any organization that utilizes Microsoft Office.

Software developers are realizing the potential for this product, and they're starting to write their own applications that you install on top of SharePoint (such as help-desk ticketing systems, asset tracking apps, etc.)

Integrate OCS into all of this, and you have one hell of a unified communication system.

RE: Cool...
By AstroCreep on 11/19/2009 4:47:18 PM , Rating: 2
My thought is on the latter.
There is just SO MUCH that can be done with SharePoint that it's not even funny (work-flows, checklists, surveys, document version control, etc).
It's a shame that so many places use it merely as an intranet page.

RE: Cool...
By Bateluer on 11/20/2009 8:17:15 AM , Rating: 2
Thats all I've seen Sharepoint used for, a half assed Intranet page with a horrible, hard to read color scheme and default layout. Show me what a good Sharepoint implementation looks like?

This ought to piss off Netbook Owners!
By XZerg on 11/19/2009 1:48:47 PM , Rating: 2
Requirements to run the beta software include a PC with a 500MHz or higher processor, 256MB of RAM or more, 3GB of drive space, a 1024 x 768 resolution monitor, and a DVD-R/W drive. Those last two mean the vast majority of users on netbooks are out of luck.


By smilingcrow on 11/19/2009 2:19:48 PM , Rating: 5
I think your sense of humour is at the alpha stage of development so better kept in house for further fine tuning.

By amanojaku on 11/19/2009 2:25:20 PM , Rating: 2
Office, or any modern app, is painful to use on a display less than 15", so who cares about the resolution? 1024x768 on a 10" screen is just awful.

As for the DVD, that's not even an issue. There's this little thing called USB, and it's not like you'll need the drive after installation, unless you forgot to install your add-on features...

I dont get it
By BruceLeet on 11/19/2009 4:20:21 PM , Rating: 2
I can't DL & Install because I have Vista SP2?

Oh well, got a students discount will have W7 installed in a couple days.

Going to save it to flash drive so if they decide to turn it off on Downloads I'll still be able to install it in W7

RE: I dont get it
By StraightCashHomey on 11/19/2009 4:29:31 PM , Rating: 3
I'm going to take a WILD guess here and say that anything after Vista SP1 is going to work.

How many office re-dos do we need
By puckalicious on 11/19/2009 2:43:38 PM , Rating: 2
My company and my home just recently upgraded to Office 2007. It took a few months to get used to the new interface but I like it now, I seriously doubt I'll be looking to spend even more money on this.

So is this yet another office that basically does the same thing as all the previous versions? Is it wrapped in yet another UI change to justify the insane pricing?

By amanojaku on 11/19/2009 3:21:13 PM , Rating: 2
Are you serious? If you want to know what's new, and whether or not you need it, you can take a look at the feature list and/or download the beta. Don't just buy stuff because someone says you should, unless I tell you to buy something from me, like this bridge I've been trying to offload...

Hard to download?
By jeffbui on 11/19/2009 2:02:15 PM , Rating: 3
The download was fast and easy. I just had to sign into my hotmail account.

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