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Office 2007 adds Open Document support

Microsoft is releasing the second service pack for Office 2007, adding various stability and performance updates along with support for Open Document Format and PDF files.

Microsoft said on Tuesday that it is releasing the second service pack update for Office 2007. The collection of minor updates is available for download.

The service pack includes a collection of stability and performance updates as well as support for more file formats including Open Document Format (ODF) and Portable Document Format (PDF) files. Microsoft had said last May that it would add support for the additional file formats.

The company had said to expect the service pack to arrive sometime between February and April.

In addition to the performance and stability tweaks, Microsoft added a few minor feature changes.

"Users should notice the improved performance and stability of Outlook, better charting functionality in Excel, and more control over the appearance of SmartArt graphics," Microsoft group product manager Jane Liles said in an article posted on Microsoft's Web site.

The ODF Alliance, a collection of supporters of that file format, praised its inclusion in the Office update.

This action reflects the global market demand, particularly by governments, for open standards-based interoperability through ODF," ODF Alliance managing director Marino Marcich said in a statement. "This is a victory for ODF, as it signifies a reversal of course by Microsoft from their decision to shun the format during the initial launch of Office 2007."