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Version of ms-office is used in the market place?

I am looking for some stats on the current user base for Ms-office.

Ie: what is a break down of users for ms-office:

Office 95, office97, office 2000, and office 2002 (xp).

Does anyone know a link to the above stats? North America would be fine, but I will take any beak down I can find.

I don’t really need some raw number count, but looking for a simple % break down of the above?

Google has not helped me much on the above.

Any links?

Albert D. Kallal
Edmonton, Alberta Canada

Albert D. Kallal
Monday, November 4, 2002

to be honest, I don't think you will find too many stats on this unless you pay the likes of Gartner et cie some good money. Even then I wouldn't really trust the figures.

Another reason, (I think) is that there are a hell of a lot of users out there still running '97. I don't think Microsoft really wants information like this getting out. One of their upgrade arguments is the "everyone else is using XP, so do not get left behind." The few reports I have read have said that Office XP sales have been sluggish...

Better than that, might be to get a feel for what people on this board are using, and what sort of employer they work for.

I work in 'consulting' firm in the city, in London. About four hundred staff. Only got upgraded to Office 2000 about two months ago.

Monday, November 4, 2002

Here's the closest thing I found.

Its a Giga Information Group report, reproduced on MS's site.  The overall market share for Office is around 90%.  This report in 2001 claimed that Office 2000 was 40%.  From that I'd deduce (and hearsay), that there was an inherent stickiness in versions of Office and that the upgrade rate might be as low as 60% from any one version to the next.

Simon P. Lucy
Monday, November 4, 2002

BTW, I've converted to Openoffice

Simon P. Lucy
Monday, November 4, 2002

I write predominantly Plant Process software and have found (almost) exclusively office97 with a smattering of 2000.

Brad Siemens
Monday, November 4, 2002

Previous and current places I've worked are at MS Office 2000. Frankly, with the PITA associated with the new licensing schemes MS is pushing, I doubt that there will be sufficient value added to justify our current shop migrating to XP, even if somebody dropped a load of dollars in our laps and a timewarp, allowing us to do the upgrade with zero delay to ongoing efforts and no impact on the bank account.

Not saying there might not be nice features in XP, just 'are they enough nicer' to be worth the bother when 2000 does so much, and we have zero licensing hassles now.

The above evaluation is my opinion, but I'm confident it reflects the shop's attitude, because this and related topics are thing we often talk about. The position I expressed seems to be pretty much unanimous.

If MS would drop the new licensing crap, then I'd guess we'd probably go ahead and upgrade when the time & money situation were right.

Monday, November 4, 2002

The last company that I worked for used Office 97, even though the corporation had purchased the licenses for Office 2000.

The only reason that they held back from upgrading was the proliferation of small Access 97 applications around the company, all of which would have required modifications if ported to Access 2000.  The version compatibility issues would have swamped the IS dept. for months.

In an interview I read with Gates and Ballmer, the interviewer asked what their biggest regret was.  Ballmer responded, "Ever heard of Access?"  I've always wondered what he meant by that, but maybe this is one of many reasons.

At home I use 2002 and 97 on my 2 PC's.  Although 2002 has some improvements, they're not compelling enough to get me to upgrade the older PC.

Nick Hebb
Monday, November 4, 2002

My company has mostly gone to Office 2000.

We have the Access 97 problem too, which we've solved (sort of) by installing both versions of Access on those workstations that need database access. (After lots of begging, pleading, and arguing on my part. Our IS guy hates Access in all its forms, and can't understand why I prefer one version over another.)

At home, I still have Office 97, mostly because I just haven't gotten around to installing 2000. I will probably keep Access 97 installed when I upgrade, though.

Monday, November 4, 2002

Where I work we use office 2k. ~1500 instalations. No upgrades planned.

Eric DeBois
Monday, November 4, 2002

Office 2000 here except for Access.  We too have Access 97 databases which nobody wants to upgrade.  I'm not sure how many installations we have, but it's at least a couple hundred just at this location.  No plans to upgrade to Office XP, or to Windows XP for that matter.

Monday, November 4, 2002

A few interesting points made here. (and the feed back I am getting mirrors my experience also).

The problem is that ms-access is a double edged sword. MS should actually embrace the product (and I see serious changes at MS in regards to this).

I get the sense that for most companies, ms-access is one product that prevents them from dropping office, and using something like open office. In other words, I know a ton of companies that would consider open office, except for they are also using ms-access. For basic spreadsheet, and word processing open office (star office) is quite fine. Heck, in fact for just the basic stuff like email, word processing etc, you can now use Linux as your desktop. If you only write letters, use spreadsheets, and email, then Linux is a fine substitute at this point.

It is only companies that have invested money and time in applications (either Excel macros which is VB, or ms-access). In fact, thus, it is companies that have a true software investment that goes beyond the basic office stuff are the ones that can’t change. It is not document formats that prevents the switch, it is automation, or code that exists. However, that is exaclty what gives software it's most value!!!

One of the great things built into office is the macro recorder (the star office is missing perhaps one of the greatest tools here…a tool that lets a user automate repetitive tasks!!!). After all, is not computers about repetitive tasks?

Any task in Excel, or word that you have to do more than once can EASILY be automated via the macro recorder. The whole concept of a macro in office is very nice, since it produces VB code. This is a extremely important concept, since then code does not rely on things like “mouse” position etc. (you can move a window a bit, and the macro still works. With “old style” screen/mouse/keystroke recorders, they don’t work well. You can use a Maco recorded on one pc, and it will work on a pc with a different screen res). This is powerful tool.

Why do you think that a Unix/Linx admin can be so productive? It is not the fact of a command line prompt, it is the fact that the whole command line prompt for Unix/Linix is built around a scripting language (the Linix shell). Any repetitive task can (and usually is) automated by the admin. The same things goes for ms-office.

I also found it interesting that some cited problems in a97 migration to a2000. I am not aware of any compatibility problems. However, I have refused to update some of my access97 products to a2000. The reason being not compatability but simply my access application is very complex. It is not huge, but is complex (the whole application less than 6 megs). It is concern of stability.

The ms-access app does have 22,000 lines of VB code in it. It also has several class objects, and some objects are over 700 lines of code. I am sure a week of testing would iron out any problems encountered. The problem is that I don’t want to spend that week of time. Besides, I have successfully run my a97 application on PC’s with office 2000, and office xp. My code does a lot of stuff like automate word (templates) and outlook, and yet it did NOT need to be changed despite it having to work with word 2000, and word 2002 (xp). I of course used late binding for all the automation code like any decent developer would. As a result I suffered no compatibility problems to date.
I have NEVER had a reference breakage problem due to this approach.

Most tech support people hate ms-access because you can’t simply just stick in a disk and go install. (gee, those tech guy get me mad!!!. If all you do is stick in a disk, then I don’t need you..we will use the staff to do this!!). Well, you can’t do this with most database products. Installing ms-access correctly requites some proper setup. The IT people MUST be given some install instructions on how to setup ms-access for a given platform. I find most tech’s don’t know how to install it correctly. I actually have instructions for them, and don’t leave it to chance. It simply has to be done right, and when done so..then few, if any problems will arise. But it certainly takes more then just popping in a cd, and going install (if the tech people do just that..then you will experience nothing but problems).

Ms-access does seem to be the bad boy in the office suite. I think much of this is due to the fact that database stuff is the next step beyond the basic office stuff, and that is a much larger step then most companies realize. Companies take this “next” step without the proper planning, and many times this results in trouble.

However, there are tons of companies with some database files and they do just fine. Products like dbaseII, FileMaker etc took the pc industry by storm more than 10 years ago. They remain a very popular tool on the pc to solve problems.

Perhaps the most interesting comments here was that Steve Balmer seems to hint at some major mistake here concerning ms-access. I not sure what he means!!. (and boy, I would love to know what he was talking about??). Does he mean that MS missed a huge opportunity, or the is just the general hassle that ms-access can have with a company is something he wished they had avoided?

Albert D. Kallal
Edmonton, Alberta Canada

Albert D. Kallal
Monday, November 4, 2002

It doesn't really surprise me that the users are spread over the last several versions.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but the file formats (Word in particular) haven't really changed drastically for the past few versions.  People see no particular need to upgrade

It might be interesting when the next version comes out.  I've heard Word is going to have a completely new file format using XML.  I will be curious to see if that spurns more upgrades as companies worry about falling behind in compatibility

Mike McNertney
Monday, November 4, 2002

When Office 97 came out, with new file formats, Microsoft talked a lot about making the new file formats "forward compatible". What's surprising (and has gone largely unnoticed by the Microsoft-is-the-root-of-all-evil crowd) is that they actually did it, at least with Word and Excel (and PowerPoint, I think, but I'm not sure on that one); Word 97 can open Word XP documents without issues, and vis versa.

Access, OTOH, has changed file formats with every version, and I wouldn't be at all surprised if Office 11 drops Jet for an MSDE variant.

Dave Rothgery
Monday, November 4, 2002

I don't use Access so it wasn't a hurdle to swapping to openoffice.  But then I wouldn't use Access to hold a door open, I'd use Visual Fox for anything that Access would do.

Simon P. Lucy
Tuesday, November 5, 2002

My guess is that home users "upgrade" their version of Office when they buy a new PC which comes bundled with Office. Same goes for Windows itself - who on earth would pay money to upgrade an existing machine to XP? But if you're buying a new machine, you may as well get the latest (often, you have no choice).

Tuesday, November 5, 2002

One reason my company upgraded, back in the early Jurassic period, was because of file formats not being compatible.

But nowdays we rarely have to interact with someone else's Word document. If the document is on the web, it's PDF or HTML. If it's sent in e-mail -- well, from where I stand Word documents are rarely sent in inter-company mail, except as viruses. If it's intrA-company mail, then the sender and receiver have the same version of Word anyway.

Wednesday, November 6, 2002

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