Thursday, November 11, 2010

My Office 2010 my experience so far

I loaded up Office 2010 about 4 weeks ago, just around the time of its official launch (mid June).  Overall it been a good experience after I moved to the 32-bit version. 

As you might imagine I spend a lot of time with my computer and I want it running fast enough to keep up with me (I have no patience).  As I continue to grow CMIT Solutions of Stamford together with the demands of a family and wanting some time for me, time is way too valuable to be spent looking at the hour glass.  My main computer has a Quad processor, enhanced video card, 4 GB of memory and is running 64 bit Vista (yes 64 bit Vista).  Thanks again Chris for configuring me an awesome machine. I’ve been delighted with the speed of this computer since I brought it on line November of 2008.

So why am I telling you this?  Well I’ve often thought about where the delightful speed of my machine has come from.  Is it the processor (pretty beefy by normal standards)?  Is it the video card that has extra on board memory?  Is it 64 bit Vista?  I personally think that the quad processor together with running a 64 bit Operating System was the source

Again why am I telling you this, if the title of this blog is Office 2010?

Wanting to take advantage of all the speed of computing I can, I loaded the 64 bit version of Office 2010.  If my machine was running fast with a 32-bit version of Office, imagine what it would be like if it was running a 64-bit!  Well it was awesome,I fired up my Outlook and….. ran into an error regarding the add-ins.  Not all together surprising, so I called Gedas to ask how I launch Outlook without adds on.  He of course sent me a quick IM reply with the command.  I now launched it again and it came up clean.  WOW, the upgraded Outlook finally with the new “ribbon” interface.  I became a fast advocate of the new “ribbon” interface in Office 2007 but missed it in Outlook 2007 since Microsoft hadn’t gotten its act together fast enough to get it included in Office 2007.  The ribbon interface in Outlook 2010 as well as several new features (conversation threads, quick file, speed) were clearly going to save me tons of time. 

So I happily cranked away on my day of which I spend about 25-40% of my time working with email.  But I missed my add-ins.  So after a few days of feeling the lack of productivity without them, I started working on figuring out how to get them back.  Well that became the beginning of the end.  I checked Adobe’s site and discovered that Adobe didn’t yet support Office 2010.  I checked our internal ticket system, AutoTask and they also didn’t have it working yet (although several people on the community board had figured out ways of hacking into the windows registry and got it to work with the 32-bit version; nothing for the 64 bit version).

Okay, this wasn’t good.  Office 2010 wasn’t a secret.  People had plenty of time….  darn this was looking just like what happened with Vista…  the rest of the vendors didn’t get their act together by launch date.  The killer became that my Blackberry desktop manager errored out when syncing to my Blackberry.  I popped up to Blackberry’s site and sure enough they too didn’t support Office 2010 64 bit either.

What could I do?  I really felt that lost productivity to I uninstalled Office 2010 64 bit and decided to give the 32-bit version a try. And…..  Wa-Lah!  it all worked without a hitch.  My add-ins worked beutifully, My Blackberry began syncing.  Well what about the speed?  It was the same I felt!  Great I now had a home run. 

But a lingering question remained, what was the advantage of the 64 bit version of the 32 bit version was performed just the same?  So I did some research and found the answer.  The 64-bit version really only shows its speed in processor intensive functions.  Which are those you ask?  Big spreadsheets.  This made sense.

So what is the bottom line after 2 months of using Office 2010?  I love it!  Even though the first SP (service pack) hasn’t been released, this version has come out onto the market stable and error –free.  This is a HUGE improvement for Microsoft.  (Incidentally we have had the same positive experience with Windows 7).  If you are a big spreadsheet user, you may want to consider installing the 64-bit version if you don’t use any add-in, otherwise install the 32-bit version.

Want to know what an add-on is?  what does 32-bit versus 64-bit mean?  I’ll be clueing you in on those and more in the upcoming posts.

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