HolidayBuyer's Guide

Office & Productivity Software forum

General discussion

office 2003 or 2007

by swijo / January 24, 2008 1:40 PM PST

I bought a new computer (lap top) that has office 2007 trial version (60 days)(student) loaded but I have not opened the software yet. I have a office 2003 (student) that I currently use on another computer and still will be able to install on my new computer. My questions is there any real reason to change to the newer version of office, and if I buy the full version thats on the lap top will I be able to install on my other computer, and if so how would I do this as I only have the restore cd for the new computer but no office cd?
Thanks swijo

Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: office 2003 or 2007
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: office 2003 or 2007
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Collapse -
No real reason to change.
by Kees Bakker / January 24, 2008 4:21 PM PST
In reply to: office 2003 or 2007

The primary changes are:
1. Better connectivity with MS server products. You don't need that.
2. Uses xml internally. You don't need that.
3. New user interface.

After the 60-days trial you would have to decide anyway: buy or uninstall. If you are happy with 2003, I'd advice to install a second copy (if the license allows it, as you say) of it on your new laptop.

Switching to the full version on both computers isn't possible with the trial version, you'll need to buy the full version for that. But why should you do it now?


Collapse -
by swijo / January 24, 2008 11:14 PM PST

That's what I thought, but was not sure. Thanks for the quick response.

Collapse -
Lots of Reasons to Change to Office 2007
by dlauber / January 25, 2008 1:04 PM PST
In reply to: office 2003 or 2007

I'm no fan of some of the components in Microsoft Office, but I must admit that Office 2007 is light years better than Office 2003. First of all, Excel 2007 is finally a productive program -- much easier to use with many more features that you'll want to use. Second, Word 2007 is much more efficient and easier to use than previous versions. Finally Word 2007 makes the use of paragraph styles almost easy. While it still doesn't come close to Lotus WordPro 9.8 in terms of ease of use, speed, and stability, Word 2007 is a major improvement over earlier versions. While it doesn't make it nearly as easy to use and change paragraph, frame, and page styles as Lotus WordPro (or the great desktop publishing program Corel Ventura 10), it does make them easier to use. And if you haven't been using styles (aka paragraph tags) to control your formatting, you're missing out on one of the great productivity tools in document production. Folks who use PowerPoint tell me that the Office 2007 version is also a major improvement.

All that said, do NOT buy the trial version. In fact, get it completely uninstalled from your computer. The reason is simple: You will pay way too much for it and I bet it will be licensed for only one computer. Office 2007 Home & Student lists for $149.99 -- and its license is good for 3 computers. However, you can frequently find it on sale for as low as $119 at Fry's Electronics, Best Buy, and even OfficeMax. And even if you don't, you can use one of those $30 discount cards OfficeMax, Office Depot, and Staples are always sending out -- you get $30 off your online or phone order of $150 or more. So buy Office 2007 Home & Student, add one other low-priced item to your purchase, and you effectively get Office 2007 for $109. Such a deal.

Collapse -
reply to: office 2003 or 2007
by emmert7 / January 25, 2008 2:28 PM PST
In reply to: office 2003 or 2007

Office 2007 home & student doesn't include outlook.

I'm not a fan of outlook, but I've spent too much time getting my contacts and calendar just the way I want it. Personally, I'd have to spring for the much more expensive version that has outlook.

Collapse -
Very little difference functionally
by john3347 / January 25, 2008 3:22 PM PST
In reply to: office 2003 or 2007

I have Office 2007 and Office 2003 and I personally do NOT like the new interface in 2007. Just look at the 2003 to 2007 crossover chart that shows how to find functions in 2007 if one is familiar with 2003. Nearly everything that is accessible in 2003 with one or two mouse clicks, requires 3 to 5 in 2007. There is very little added functionality but a very steep learning curve. I am not sure if a plug-in is available to read 2007 files in 2003 or not, but a plug-in is available to read older versions with 2007. I am aware that many people do like the "fluff and puff" of the new interface, but I prefer the traditional drop-down menu system. Download the 2007 trial version and decide for yourself which version you prefer. You have 60 days to use it with full functionality and if you don't want to buy it, you just uninstall it at the end of the 60 days. There is in my mind, NO productivity increase and not enough functionality increase to justify even a small percentage of the cost. How much do you want to pay just to say "I have the latest model", or how much do you want to pay for the "eye candy" of the 2007 version?

Collapse -
Little difference functionally - but a steep learning curve
by nuyorker / January 25, 2008 8:46 PM PST

My wife's machine still has Office 2003 and when I need to do something beyond simple text composition, I use her machine since I upgraded to Office 2007. After using Word for almost 20 years (it was a separate product then just migrated from the Apple version), I find this new interface too confusing.

There is a plug in for Office 2000 and Office 2003 to read the .docx files from Office 2007 and I've used it successfully. Where is this cross-over chart mentioned in this post? It must be a separate book rather than a simple chart.

Bottom line: IMHO, stick with Office 2003

Collapse -
Ashampoo Office 2008
by melvynlaycock / January 25, 2008 7:03 PM PST
In reply to: office 2003 or 2007

I use Ashampoo Office 2008. It does everything I want from office software. It has a spreadsheet and presentation program too. It will load all microsoft formats. It cost me

Collapse -
office 2003 or 2007
by Leslie Lightowler / January 25, 2008 9:00 PM PST
In reply to: office 2003 or 2007

Microsoft told manufacturers to put the 2007, 60 day version on all the pc's we make. you can use it for 60 days, import all your files into it then "Wammo" you have been hooked. To continue use you have to buy it and Microsoft make it really easy to pay them directly on line. {We do the work and they get the payment.} Or, convert your files back to the older versions.

Be aware that file extensions are changed into a 4 digit extension which makes it impossible to read your files in an older version with the .doc extension. Yes you can override the default and specifically save it as a .doc if you remember to do so every time.

It basically does the same as 2003 but looks more pretty than the earlyer versions , which I rather like and are used to. It has many features that Microsoft seems to tell us we should like but a menu is a menu a font is a font. It just looks a bit like the (Dare I say) "VISTA" style which i can live without. That is a different disaster,perhaps for another time.

To sum up then. Keep your 2003 ,it is better than anything else on the market. Don't be caught up with Microsoft's latest grab for money.
after all almost everybody just uses it to write letters. Check out Star Office you will be in for a pleasent surprise and its free.

Collapse -
i use 07 simple becuase of one note which i think is brill.
by trolyy / January 26, 2008 4:19 AM PST
In reply to: office 2003 or 2007

it is brilliant for all of my college work, and general diaries, or remebering and sorting things. the other parts of office look nicer and have slightly better stuff in them but i stick with my publisher and access 2003.


Collapse -
Install 07 and keep some of the old
by marks689 / January 26, 2008 7:51 AM PST

Trolyy raises a different question: Can I keep part of an older suite, like Access and Publisher; load Office 2007 Student version; and remove the programs it replaces, without messing anything up?

Collapse -
Worth a try.
by Kees Bakker / January 26, 2008 7:30 PM PST

First use the setup of the old version to remove the components you want to replace; easy to reinstall if you need.
Then install the same components from the 2007 edition. It might very well work.


Collapse -
Stick to '03!!
by wyliefool / January 27, 2008 9:52 PM PST
In reply to: office 2003 or 2007

I had to install Office 07 for work (temporarily, thank god) and HATE HATE it. It hides everything. You have to relearn how to use the bloody program. I don't want a 'beautiful' interface, i want to be able to do stuff w/o having to click 17 times.

It's also a resource hog. Stick to 2003, or get star office. If you're going to have to relearn software, you might as well relearn free software.

Collapse -
Don't switch if you don't have to.
by furiey / January 27, 2008 10:33 PM PST
In reply to: office 2003 or 2007

When Microsoft released Office 2007, they took a product that worked, then wasted time and money making it look "pretty" and hiding all of the features that its users had grown to rely on.

That's my personal experience, anyway, your mileage may vary.

PowerPoint and Excel seem to work just fine, but Word and Outlook do not work as intended. I have had countless troubles trying to get both programs to cooperate, and am seriously considering downgrading to 2003 again.

If you don't have to switch to '07, don't, is the TL;DR version.

Popular Forums
Computer Newbies 10,686 discussions
Computer Help 54,365 discussions
Laptops 21,181 discussions
Networking & Wireless 16,313 discussions
Phones 17,137 discussions
Security 31,287 discussions
TVs & Home Theaters 22,101 discussions
Windows 7 8,164 discussions
Windows 10 2,657 discussions


Cameras that make great holiday gifts

Let them start the new year with a step up in photo and video quality from a phone.