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Support for Office 2003 ends April 8 along with Windows XP

Microsoft has stepped up its efforts in recent months to kill off Windows XP for good, and those efforts are now extending to Office 2003. Office 2003 has been around for over a decade and Microsoft wants users to switch to Office 365.
Microsoft wrote in a blog post, "Office 2003 no longer meets the needs of the way we work, play and live today. For this reason, it is time to say farewell to Office 2003 and embrace the productivity solution of today – Office 365."

Microsoft wants users to ditch Office 2003

Many people have been using Office 2003 for years simply because it does all they need and it's paid for. Office 365 requires a subscription and you will need to continue paying to keep it active.
Microsoft says that support for Office 2003 will end on April 8.
We already knew that support for Windows XP would also end on April 8, and Microsoft has resorted to pop ups to tell XP users the end is here. Microsoft also offers a $100 discount to get XP users to upgrade to Windows 8. 

Source: Office

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By sparkuss on 3/25/2014 9:55:43 AM , Rating: 3
how much more support does it really need?

I still have 2003 on my Win7 primary PC, primarily for Excel. It does everything I need and I can't stand the ribbon or the pastel colors of 2007 onward.

As long as the rest of my system is maintained for security I don't see any need to not keep 2003.

By lagomorpha on 3/25/2014 10:14:08 AM , Rating: 5
Excel 2003 is very slow, only supports 65536 rows, and won't do everything I need with conditional formatting and macros.

Your needs must be very modest if you're satisfied with 2003.

By Accidic on 3/25/2014 10:33:41 AM , Rating: 2
Not sure what you're considering slow. I have 2003 and 2010. I use 2010 when I have no choice (IE, need a boatload of rows or columns) and 2003 any other time. The ribbon is garbage. Outside of a couple nice quirks in 2010 (which I do begrudgingly like), the rest is typically a headache. Generally speaking I can get more done for what I need to be doing at work in less time with 2003 with less headache and without the urge to repeatedly slam my head and fingers in a door for fun.

Sorry but no, IMO there has not been a good release of Office since 2003 and frankly if I'm going to get drug into janky headaches, I'd much rather just use OpenOffice. It's what I switched my wife's laptop to rather than buy a new license of Office and as they progress I find very little incentive to even consider purchasing another Office product. Granted YMMV.

By chripuck on 3/25/2014 10:56:22 AM , Rating: 4
I would never, I repeat, NEVER, go back to 2003 from 2010. I develop Office applications literally on a daily basis. I build 30+ Excel models a year for clients around the globe. The charting, the conditional formatting, the expanded functions, the increased rows, powerpivot are far improved in 2007+. Open a 30 mb Excel 2003 file and a 30 mb Excel 2010 formatted file and 2010 WILL open it faster. Calculations are faster due to multi-core support.

I could go on and on, but the short version is this; you're clearly not using Excel to it's full potential. Not even close.

I'll add this to: I actually agree with you on every other facet of the Office suite, but Excel is the one clear cut improvement over 2003 and it's not even remotely up for debate.

By Accidic on 3/25/2014 11:05:38 AM , Rating: 2
I would argue that you're merely using it differently. I've been accused of a lot of things, but not using excel to it's full potential has never even remotely been one of them. We have a few people who look at things much like you and sing the praises of the all holy 2010. Yet ironically I tend to weave circles around them and accomplish far more in less time than they do.

That said, I will certainly and wholeheartedly give you that large files open quicker in 2010. Unfortunately for the ways in which we use it, they also crash far more frequently as well.

By w8gaming on 3/25/2014 10:18:01 PM , Rating: 3
That kind of usage makes you different from the norm actually. Most people would not have needed such features and should be happy with Office 2003.

By byundt on 3/25/2014 11:38:34 AM , Rating: 2
I'll grant you the fact that Excel 2007 and later support over a million rows, and conditional formatting has been improved.

I beg to differ, however, regarding the speed of Excel 2003 and its macro support. I just benchmarked my most calculation intensive workbook (lots of VBA code and iterative calculations) on a computer that has Excel 2003 through 2013 installed. Results are as follows:
Excel 2003 1.71 seconds
Excel 2007 3.09
Excel 2010 2.78
Excel 2013 1.65

The VBA macro language has been kept up to date with the big grid, new objects and properties, but there haven't been any improvements under the hood since Excel 2003. Documentation of VBA was far better for Excel 2003 than for subsequent versions, as content has been removed from the later versions.

If VBA won't do what you need with macros, your needs must be somewhat arcane.

By Dr of crap on 3/25/2014 12:46:02 PM , Rating: 2
Your last line says it all.
There are a vast amount of users that ONLY need what Office 2003 provides. WHY upgrade? What possible support is needed to keep it running on a PC that has Win 7 and is working fine? It might go another 10 years.

Might seem wrong to you.

Just like you might not drive a pickup, but its the vehicle of choice for a vast majority of America.

“So far we have not seen a single Android device that does not infringe on our patents." -- Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith

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