I just about had it with Microsoft Word 2007. Even after using the regedit fix by deleting the data and options in the HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Microsoft/Office/12.0/Word of the registry files, Microsoft Word 2007 still crashes whenever I started it up. It took many frustrating tries to force that program to start up properly.
Crashes only happens with Word 2007. Never experienced any crashes in Excel 2007 and Outlook 2007 at all. Enough is enough, frequent crashes was very irritating. I decided perhaps I should either install the older Word XP (didn’t have Office 2003 license so can’t install that) or try something else. Open Office Writer came into mind. But like the older Word XP, neither of these two could read the new Office 2007 docx format. Serves me right to be an early adopter for buggy software.
It’s been awhile since I’ve updated my Open Office (my current version was 2.3), so off I go to the OpenOffice.org web site. Yep they just released version 3.0. This version was so brand new it was just released yesterday (14/Oct/2008). Apparently it was also highly popular that their web server crashed leaving only a basic text based web site with links pointing to mirror sites for download.
Nevertheless, I started the download for its 142MB installation file which might take me an hour or so to download.
Checking around the web sites for more info (since the Open Office web site was already down and no information was available), I found some technological news site and found what I was looking. Yes, the OpenOffice 3.0 could partially handle Office 2007 docx, xlsx, pptx etc. Meaning it could read but not write into those formats. Still better than nothing, at least I would be able to access some of my files written in the docx format. The content of my docx files were rather simple, just mainly text, so there should not be any problem to retrieve the content. Apparently the reading ability of OpenOffice 3.0 was still not perfect and had trouble reading some of the more complicated formatted content. Eventually in future the OpenOffice guys would solve the problem, but for now it was good enough for me.