Microsoft Ends Support of Office 2003

Microsoft ended support of Office 2003 in 2014 on April 8th.

by Cliff Ping

You will still be able to use your Office 2003 programs. They will operate fine. This just means that support and updates for Office 2003 will no longer be available. office 2003 logo

What does not having support mean?

Your PC could be vulnerable to attack. If you share documents with others, this risk is real. If you only use your documents, the risk is much less. Unfortunately, new vulnerabilities in Office 2003 are always being found.

The old Office file formats (.DOC, XLS, .PPT, etc.) were based on a technology that allowed hackers to infect with malicious code.

Office 2007, changed the file format code (.DOCx, XLSx, .PPTx, etc.) to a more secure code that is much more difficult to infect. Microsoft allowed upward compatibility for Office 2003 by creating the Office Compatibility Pack. This update gave Office 2003 users read/write compatibility with Office 2007 users.

What Can Office 2003 Users Do?

  1. If you wish to continue using Office 2003, use the newer Office 2007 file formats. If you have not installed the Office Compatibility Pack update then download and install it. This newer Office 2007 file format should be used instead of the old Office file format. This option still has risks but much less than using the old Office file formats. This option allows you to continue using your current Office with no added expense.

Office ribbon ui vs office file ui

 

  1. Solve the problem with an upgrade to Office 2007 or 2010.This will cost money. Some old hardware might not support this newer version of the Office software. You will also have to learn the new Office ribbon. This new user interface replaced the old familiar Office menu interface. This was the single most complained-about feature in the new Office 2007 software.

 

  1. Solve the problem with an upgrade to Office 365.
    To use this web based product you need to be using the most current or one version back of your browser (Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Safari). If this requirement is met then you can spend the money to upgrade to this version of Office. Office 365 also uses the ribbon user interface.

 

  1. Solve the problem with a switch to another product like Open Office or Google Docs.

 

 

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Cliff Ping can train you on how-to better use your Adobe and Microsoft software. Get started with Cliff or ask him a question by sending him an e-mail at CliffPing@gmail.com

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