Office 2010 – Product Key Card, Click-to-Run and Office Web Apps

Year 2010, is going to be an interesting year for Microsoft and Microsoft Enthusiasts . A bunch of new products lined up which includes many new features. Trying to explore these new features, I decided to write about them. I have started with Office 2010 features.

1. Product Key Card (PKC)

With Office 2010, Microsoft has implemented a new method of product activation. This year, Microsoft will be launching Office 2010 Starter Edition with a simpler method of activation – Product Key Card (PKC). Microsoft is working with major PC manufacturers to make is simpler to implement. The Product Key Card is a single license card (with no DVD media) and will be available at authorized retail outlets. It would be available for 3 office editions:

  • Office Home & Student 2010
  • Office Home & Business 2010
  • Office Professional 2010

Advantages of PKC:

  • The packaging is smaller than the full package (DVD) product
  • It is eco/retail-friendly
  • The key number contained on the card will unlock the pre-loaded Office 2010 software and will enables a simpler and faster path for consumers

What to expect from Office Starter 2010

  • Office Starter 2010 is a reduced-functionality, advertising-supported version of Office 2010.
  • It will be pre-loaded by OEMs on new PCs with Office 2010 Single Image
  • Office Starter 2010 will provide new PC owners with immediate exposure to the Office 2010 experience on new PCs right out of the box.
  • Office Starter 2010 will replace Microsoft Works
  • It will be offering the Office user experience, such as the Ribbon, with a simple path to upgrade to a fully-featured version of Office 2010 directly from within the product.
  • It will be having a limited version of Word and Excel, which is fully compatible with the other Office Suites and is designed for home users who are not ready to buy a full suite
  • Check the chart below for the comparison between Office Starter and Home & Student

2. Click-To-Run (CTR)

Another interesting feature that is being introduced with Office 2010 is Click-to-Run.

  • Click-to-Run is helpful for users who would like to try or buy Office 2010 on existing PCs.
  • Click-to-Run makes buying or trying the Office products easier by reducing the time and effort needed to download Office 2010.
  • Click-to-Run automatically downloads and installs any software patches when connected to the Internet, helping people maintain and keep their Office software up-to-date.
  • Click-to-Run uses virtualization technology so it allows customers to maintain multiple versions of Office. This enables them to try Office 2010 side-by-side with the existing version of Office. This was possible in earlier editions too, but would end up causing conflicts between the installed Office editions.

3. Office Web Apps

Microsoft Office Web Apps are the online companions to Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote. It enables ones to access and do light editing or sharing of Office documents from virtually anywhere

  • It is extends Office experience to the web. PC, Browser and Phone
  • Its not a replacement for Office and and not available as a single package.
  • Works exactly like Outlook, Outlook Mobile and Outlook Web Access
  • One can work on the document across different sites.
  • It includes the following:
    • Microsoft Word Web App
    • Microsoft Excel Web App
    • Microsoft PowerPoint Web App
    • Microsoft OneNote Web App

Sources : Office 2010 Blog and Office Web Apps


Office 2010 : Compatibility Inspector Tool & Environment Assessment Tool

Microsoft has recently released 2 tools that are helpful for upgrading to Office 2010.

1. Office 2010 Tool: Office Environment Assessment Tool

The Office Environment Assessment Tool (OEAT) is a tool to help your enterprise determine the types of add-ins and the extent of usage for the add-ins on your user’s desktops. It also determines the applications that interact with Office (via COM) and provides a summary report of the general state of the systems scanned.

Office Environment Assessment Tool identifies:

  • Currently installed applications and installation environment
  • Add-ins currently in use by Office clients
  • Programs that are not registered as add-ins but still interact with Office programs
  • Report: Environmental assessment (potential upgrade issues)
  • Report: Add-ins assessment–list of third party programs and information about the compatibility of those programs with Microsoft Office 2010

Post scanning, when you click on Compile results. The data is exported to a Excel File (.xlsx), with the following sheets

  • Summary Report
  • All Installed Addins
  • Addins Not Shipped With Office
  • Average Disk Space
  • 32bit vs. 64bit

Download : Office 2010 Tool: Office Environment Assessment Tool
Guide : Application compatibility assessment and remediation guide for Office 2010

2. Office 2010 Tool: Compatibility Inspector

The Compatibility Inspector compares existing (legacy) code against the Microsoft Office 2010 object model to identify possible code issues. It is used to check if the addins that we use now, would be compatible with Office 2010 edition.

Supported OS : Windows 7; Windows Server 2003; Windows Vista; Windows XP Service Pack 2
Supported Office : Office 97, Office 2000, Office XP , Office 2003, Office 2007
Size : 1.9 MB

Download : Office 2010 Tool: Compatibility Inspector
Guide : Microsoft Office Code Compatibility Inspector user’s guide

Office 2010 Box Art Revealed

Office 2010 Box Art has been revealed. From the Bos Art it seems that there would be only 4 editions of Office 2010

  1. Office Home and Business 2010 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote and Outlook)
  2. Office Home and Student 2010 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote) – Installable on 3 computers
  3. Office Professional Academic 2010 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher and Access) – Only for Academic Institutes
  4. Office Professional 2010 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher and Access) + 1 year Technical Support

Couple of points to remember here:

  • All of these editions would be available in 32-bit and 64-bit Editions.
  • The 64-bit edition is not meant for Windows XP, only Vista x64 or later.
  • There is no Office 2010 Ultimate editions and Office Groove.
  • Office 2010 BETA had InfoPath and SharePoint Workspace, whereas the Box Art doesn’t include them.

Source : Neowin

Microsoft Office Packaging Design

I recently posted about the Windows Package Designs till date and Mac OS X Packaging Design History, now its time for Microsoft Office packaging through these years.


September: The first version of Microsoft Word 1.0 for MS-DOS is released. It becomes the first word processor to make extensive use of the computer mouse.


January: Microsoft Word 1.0 for Macintosh and Word 2.0 for DOS are released.
September: Microsoft Excel 1.0 for Macintosh is released. It is designed to take advantage of the enhanced power of the Macintosh. Excel offers features such as interactive spreadsheet linking and two-way file compatibility with Lotus 1-2-3.


September: Microsoft announces Microsoft Works for Macintosh, which integrates word processing, spreadsheet, database, communications, and drawing functions into a single program.

October: Microsoft Word 3.0 for Macintosh (there was no version 2.0) and Word 3.0 for DOS are released.


July: Microsoft Corp. acquires Forethought, the original application software company behind PowerPoint 1.0, for $1.4 million.
September: Microsoft PowerPoint 1.0 for Macintosh is announced. In its first year of sales, PowerPoint 1.0 for Macintosh hits $1 million.


May: Microsoft ships PowerPoint 2.0 for Macintosh.


June: Office 1.0 for the Macintosh debuts on both standard disks and CD-ROM. It includes newly available Word 4.0, Excel 2.2 and PowerPoint 2.01. This release is a significant step toward the seamless application integration that becomes the hallmark of later versions of Office.


May: PowerPoint 2.0 for Windows is announced. This first version for Windows offers color options.

October: Office 1.0 for Windows is available and includes Excel 2.0, Word 2.1 and PowerPoint 2.0. Microsoft becomes the first personal computer software company to exceed $1 billion in sales in a single year, with revenues of $1.18 billion.


January: Microsoft announces the availability of Microsoft Excel for Windows 3.0 — the first major release to include toolbars.

October: Word 2.0 for Windows is the first version to offer drag-and-drop capabilities.


August: Office 3.0 for Windows is available and includes recently released Microsoft PowerPoint 3.0 in combination with Microsoft Word for Windows 2.0 and Microsoft Excel 4.0.

November: Microsoft Access 1.0 for Windows is announced at Fall COMDEX. The new full-featured and fully relational database management system (DBMS) provides transparent access to data, usability-tested tools and a robust development cycle.


May: Access 2.0 for Windows is the first desktop database to bridge the gap between user and developer needs.

Office 4.3 Professional for Windows is available, featuring the new Access 2.0.


August: Office 95 is the first complete suite of 32-bit applications available for Windows 95. This is the first time all the products are on the same development schedule with the same milestones. This is the first time all the core Microsoft Office products share the same development and release cycle. By the end of the year, more than 30 million people worldwide now use Microsoft Excel, making it the most popular spreadsheet of all time. This figure averages more than five new users of Microsoft Excel per minute since the product’s introduction in 1985.


January: Microsoft Outlook 97, code-named “Ren and Stimpy,” is available.


January: Office 98 Macintosh Edition is the first suite to fully integrate the ease of intelligent application with Web functionality for Macintosh customers. Office 98 includes Word 98, Excel 98, PowerPoint 98 and Outlook Express.

March: Outlook 98 is introduced.


March: Access 2000 is released. Highlights include data access pages, a fundamental technology breakthrough allowing HTML pages to be bound to data, and Access client/server capability (enabling integration with Microsoft SQL Server).

June: Microsoft Office 2000 is launched. It takes users beyond the desktop and brings an unprecedented level of Web integration to the desktop suite.


March: Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2001 is released to the market as a way for information workers to create corporate Web portals with document management, enterprise content indexes and team collaboration features.

May: Microsoft Office XP launches, promising to unlock hidden knowledge and unleash the next wave of productivity gains.


October: Microsoft launches Office 2003, with Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003. Microsoft Office OneNote and Microsoft Office InfoPath are introduced as part of the Office 2003 system. In addition, Windows SharePoint Services is offered as a free addition to Windows Server 2003. Microsoft also updated the Office Logo from the puzzle to its current form.


January: Microsoft Office 2007 is available to consumers. It includes a new redesigned “ribbon” interface and Office SharePoint Server 2007.


The newest Office edition from the Microsoft Stable is giong to hit the market by June 2010. The 1st edition of Office which would be available in 32-bit and 64-bit editions.

Microsoft Office Timeline

Office 2010 Beta Product Keys

Office 2010 Beta, Visio 2010 Beta, Project 2010 Beta, SharePoint 2010 Beta, together with their various child products have been available for free download and free usage till October 2010 after activated. The Produce Keys for these can be requested from Office Beta.

Most application products of Office 2010 Beta and SharePoint 2010 Beta can be activated using MAK (Multiple Activation Key) product key, which intends for volume licensing customers. Best of all, the “generic” MAK product key (which is the same for every downloaders) can be used to activate unlimited copy of Office Professional Plus 2010 Beta, Visio Premium 2010 Beta, Project Professional 2010 Beta, and SharePoint Server 2010 Beta.

Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010 Beta Product Key

Microsoft Visio Premium 2010 Beta Product Key

Microsoft Project Professional 2010 Beta Product Key

Microsoft Project Server 2010 Beta Product Key

Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 Beta Product Key

Microsoft SharePoint Server for Internet Sites Enterprise 2010 Beta Product Key

To activate Office 2010 Beta after installation, follow these steps:

  1. Open Microsoft Word 2010 Beta and click on the “File” tab. This will take you to the Backstage view. Next click “Help” in the set of tabs on the left.

  2. Click “Change Product Key” on the right side of the screen.

  3. Enter the Multiple Activation Key (MAK) displayed above. make sure that the box to “activate automatically or restart the app to activate using the activation dialog box.” is checked (which is by default)

  4. That’s all you need to do. Entering the MAK key in Microsoft Word 2010 Beta automatically activates all the Office Professional Plus 2010 Beta applications. Click on the “File” tab to return to the Document view. Restart the open Office applications to complete the activation.

Source : MyDigitalLife

Office 2010 Public BETA is out

The public BETA for Office 2010 is out today with the build number of 4536.1000. It was launched today i.e. on the 2nd day of the PDC (as expected). 😉
Its available in 2 editions, 32-bit and 64-bit. The OS needed for installing Office 2010 are:


  • Windows XP with Service Pack 3
  • Windows Vista with SP1
  • Windows Server 2003 R2
  • Windows Server 2008 with SP2
  • Windows 7


  • Windows Vista with SP1
  • Windows Server 2003 R2
  • Windows Server 2008 with SP2
  • Windows 7

    Office 2010 comprises of the following applications:

    Word         Excel         PowerPoint      Outlook               OneNote

  • Publisher   Access       InfoPath          Comunicator       SharePoint Workspace

    You can download it from here

    Remember that all pre-release builds of Office 2010 will time-bomb next year on October 31, 2010. This includes the Technical Preview, Beta, interim, and all future builds we make available to you prior to our final release.

    Some important URL to refer while working on Office 2010:
    Office 2010 Team Blog
    Microsoft Office 2010 Forum (on TechNet)
    Release Notes
    Office 2010 PressPass
    Office 2010 FAQ

    Along with Office 2010, Microsoft Project Professional and Microsoft Project Server BETA was also released. We can download Microsoft Project from here

    For those who like using their hotmail account from Outlook, use the new Outlook Connector for Office 2010. Its again available in 32-bit and 64-bit

    Office 2010 Beta Available for MSDN and TechNet Plus Users

    The Beta of Office 2010 Beta along with Office Web Applications are now up on MSDN and TechNet Plus. TechNet Plus and MSDN subscribers can now download and evaluate Office 2010 Beta before the official public availability which is on November 18th. The most significant change in this Beta Build from the Technical Preview is the new installation procedure for test versions of Office 2010 SKUs, Upload Center, modified version of Backstage view and new refreshed icons for all Office products. Office 2010 Beta is available in both 32 and 64-bit flavors.

    Hashes for the original Beta ISO of Office 2010 Professional Plus from MSDN & TechNet are as follows:

    File Name: en_office_professional_plus_2010_beta_x64_x16-19234.exe
    Date Posted (UTC): 11/16/2009 7:21:24 AM
    ISO/CRC: D5C14D40
    SHA1: D07BC0DEE307E05F955CE44825F85084B94595B8

    Office 2010 Beta will be available for public download after PDC09 announcement.

    TechNet Plus