Some say the world will end with fire, some say with ice. Others say it will end with Office 2007!
Yes, there’s a lot of anxiety out there with people who have been using Office for all these years. Some view the coming migration to Office 365 as the apocalypse. But, such is the way with any change, especially change to a new technology. So, what’s coming that’s making everyone so nervous? Well, it’s not what’s coming but what’s ending. Microsoft ended its extended support for two very well-known products in 2017: Windows Vista issued its final security updates on April 11, 2017, and Office 2007 support ended on October 10, 2017.
So, if you are still using Office 2007, Microsoft Virtual PC 2007, or Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Team Edition for Database Professionals, you better say goodbye, adieu, auf wiedersehen or however you phrase your farewells.
Microsoft won’t be throwing anyone to the wolves, though. PCs with Windows Vista will not stop working when the clock runs out. But, you won’t hear the sound of patches on Tuesdays. When the extended support ends, so do the Patch Tuesday security updates.
Large enterprise customers will be allowed to receive custom updates after the official end of support if they have custom support agreements with Microsoft and pay for a Premium Support agreement. The last support agreement for Windows 2000 ended this year, and some Windows XP customers are still under custom support plans. But, Microsoft has said that enterprise customers will not be able to extend support for Office 2007.
In the past, when Microsoft released a new version of each of its flagship products every two or three years, the company was obligated to offer ongoing support for as many as five versions of Windows at one time, for desktop and notebook PCs.
So, if we’re losing our dear friend, Office 2007, what are we getting that makes us so very skeptical? Office 365! And, what does it give us? As may be obvious, Microsoft is moving to its software as a service (SaaS) and Office 365 subscription models.
According to those who want to pacify us, Office 365 offers several benefits. For instance, you don’t get thrown under the bus with stuff you don’t know and use already. You’ll find many benefits, including the following:
Tools That You Know
Office 365 works with Outlook, Word, Excel, OneNote, Publisher and PowerPoint. With multiple subscription levels in Microsoft Office 365, you can see if others are editing your document, you can synchronize documents with your desktop and you can broadcast PowerPoint presentations.
Access, Baby, Access
With Office 365 you get web-enabled access to email, important documents, contacts and calendars on almost any device—including PCs, Macs, iPhones, Android phones and BlackBerry smartphones. You can work where and when you choose, and respond to requests quickly, from most locations.
Communication & Collaboration
You can create a password-protected portal to share large files both inside and outside of your organization. You can send instant messages to colleagues and customers to participate in online meetings, review documents or control a desktop.
A System As Easy As 1-2-3
The nervous among us will be happy to hear that Office 365 is easy to learn and use. You don’t learn new software or install complicated systems. Business will be easy to conduct in the Cloud, even for small to mid-sized organizations.
You get features such as a 50-gigabyte (GB) mailbox that allows attachments up to 25 megabytes (MB), calendaring, contacts, online meetings, instant messaging and document collaboration.
Safety & Security
Office 365 offers you the same systems used by Microsoft and other enterprises worldwide to help protect emails, documents and networks. These systems scan your messages and documents for malicious software 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Easy Setup & Use
You don’t have to be an IT genius. Microsoft designed Office 365 for organizations without IT staff. It’s intuitive, web-based portal is accessible only to those whom you designate. The online portal provides step-by-step instructions on how to add users and set up your account.
Office 365 offers pay-as-you-go pricing options that give you flexibility. Office 365 also offers great flexibility by allowing you to provide users with only the services they need, cost-effectively adding value to your business.
Office 365 will replace an old friend; we know. So, mourn for a while, pass the handkerchiefs and tissues, say the final eulogy, and thrown some dirt on the deceased, the king (Office 2007) is dead, LONG LIVE THE KING (Office 365)!