Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack reaches EOL in April 2018

[German]Today a brief information: Microsoft retires its Office Compatibility Pack, due it reaches the End of Life in April 2018, and will then disappear from the Microsoft servers. Here is some information about the topic.


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What ist the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack?

Microsoft Office 2007 and later uses a new document format (.docx, .xlsx etc.). All Office modules from Microsoft Office 2007 onwards can read and save the old document formats (.doc,.xls etc.). Microsoft Office 2000, XP and 2003 do not support the new document formats (.doc,.xls etc.) created from Microsoft Office 2007 and beyond.

In order to be able to import newer documents from Office 2007 (. docx,. xlsx etc.) and later on with older Office appsuch as Word 2000 to 2003, Excel etc., there is the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack. This is installed under Windows and provides the relevant filters for reading/writing such files.

For technical production reasons, I still work with Word 2000 in my books and have also installed Excel 2000. Therefore, the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack is part of my basic equipment. I can open most documents in Word 2000 in the newer Word 2007 .docx format.

However, it is not possible to open all docx-documents using the Microsoft Office Compatibility. In this case I can boot a virtual machine and work with Word 2010. The reason for this problem is probably the fact that Microsoft’s Office is not as compatible with itself in the different versions as often claimed.

End of Life for Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack

The Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack is only supported up to Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 and requires certain Office versions. Here are the recommendations:

  • Microsoft Word 2000 with Service Pack 3, Microsoft Excel 2000 with Service Pack 3, and Microsoft PowerPoint 2000 with Service Pack 3
  • Microsoft Word 2002 with Service Pack 3, Microsoft Excel 2002 with Service Pack 3, and Microsoft PowerPoint 2002 with Service Pack 3
  • Microsoft Office Word 2003 with at least Service Pack 3, Microsoft Office Excel 2003 with at least Service Pack 3, and Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003 with at least Service Pack 3
  • Microsoft Office Word Viewer 2003
  • Microsoft Office Excel Viewer 2003
  • Microsoft Office PowerPoint Viewer 2003

At askwoody. om I found a note that the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack will disappear in April 2018. They have noticed that on the download page:


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NOTE: The Office Compatibility Pack is being retired in April, 2018. At that time, it will no longer be available for download and will no longer receive security updates.

If you still need the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack, you should download a copy and save it as a backup somewhere.


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