Campuswide Conversion to Outlook 2007, General Availability of Office 2007 Announced

Published 04.03.2007


In an unavoidable overlap of technology initiatives, Microsoft released an update toits Microsoft Office suite of software (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook) just as Information Technology Services was completing the migration of the campus network and e-mail infrastructure to Microsoft servers and Microsoft Outlook 2003. Microsoft's Office 2007 is a major update and offers significant improvements in ease-of-use and functionality. Office 2007 also includes powerful new capabilities in an electronic form-development program, Infopath 2007, and a multi-purpose electronic notebook program, OneNote 2007.

Rather than have the campus community continue to spend time learning the advanced features of Outlook 2003, ITS staff with President's Council approval is asking everyone to bear with them one more time, during conversion to Outlook 2007. The Outlook 2007 interface is similar enough to Outlook 2003 that ITS believes it will be relatively easy for everyone to adapt to the new version. That assumption has been tested in the Human Resources Office, which graciously agreed to be the first office on campus to upgrade to Outlook 2007. Based on feedback, ITS is confident that upgrading immediately is the best course. A side benefit to updating everyone to Outlook 2007 is that this update also will install the other Office 2007 components side-by-side with Office 2003. This will prepare the way for a future transition of the campus from the other Office 2003 components (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access) to Office 2007.

Starting the week of April 9, ITS will initiate a rolling installation of Office 2007. After the update is completed, you will use Outlook 2007 to read and send e-mail, maintain your calendar, etc. For Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access, you will see entries in your Start, All Programs menu for both 2003 and 2007. Having both versions installed means you can continue using the 2003 versions and learn the 2007 versions at a pace that's comfortable for you. There are no compatibility issues, as ITS already has updated all Office 2003 computers so that Office 2003 can understand Office 2007 file formats. However, be careful when using Office 2007 if you are working with files that will be sent outside of the college, including to students. There may be compatibility problems unless you are careful to save the file in an Office 2003 format.

ITS will announce online and classroom training for Office 2007 in the near future.

ITS thanks the campus community for its continued patience during ongoing updates to the college's technology infrastructure.

As always, feel free to contact the Help Desk or by calling ext. 7329 if you have any questions.