Actually, there is a compatibility pack for older installs of Office.
MS has introduced a new file format based in xml.  The reason you can't
open Office 2007 docs in 2003 or 2000 is because the older versions have
no idea what the heck .docx, .xlsx, .pptx, etc are.  Install the
converter and you will be able to read the new files and it doesn't even
break them if you make changes and save the new document on the old
version of office.  Oh, the new format takes up roughly 1/4 the space of
the old... that adds up to a lot when you look at 1000's of files.

Here's a link to the MS compatibility pack:

OpenOffice only works if you are using a newer version since it too
created a new file format based on xml.

Complain all you want, but MS has put some spit and polish on Office
2007. I don't think you can compare OpenOffice and MS Office to each
other anymore.  It's probably time to just say that OpenOffice works and
works well... but, it's free and you get what you pay for.

Michael Vining, SB Network Services
South Burlington School District
550 Dorset Street
South Burlington, Vermont 05403
                          Direct: (802) 652-7298
                          DNS Help Desk: (802) 652-7050
-----Original Message-----
From: School Information Technology Discussion
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Fred Wadlington
Sent: Monday, January 07, 2008 8:48 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Need another reason to consider open source

FYI - It is my understanding that Word-Ofc2003 will not open a
Word-Ofc2007 document unless it was saved in a Word-2003 format.  It is
bit of a pain because most users of Word2007 aren't going to change from
the default "save" format.  Then they distribute it to others and only
those who have Word2007 can open it.
Microsoft didn't do the world any favors with that one!

Fred Wadlington, Systems Administrator
Milton Town School District
(802) 893-3210 x1114

School Information Technology Discussion <[log in to unmask]> on
Monday, January 07, 2008 at 8:35 AM -0500 wrote:
>I had a Word 2007 document the other day that wouldn't open in MS
>2003, but opened fine in OpenOffice. Go figure.

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