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Microsoft pulls Office service pack over version clashes

Installation procedure confused by old Microsoft software, but aren't we all?

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Microsoft has pulled its latest service release for Office 97, SR-2, from its Web site after admitting it's got its versions in a twist. This of course will come as no surprise to users familiar with Microsoft instructions warning you which order you need to install service packs and apps in, if you're not going to have to go back to go. Exactly what the problem is this time isn't totally clear. Bug-finding outfit BugNet had warned a couple of days back that SR-2 had problems, saying that it would fail if it found any original Office 97 apps on the system. By this we presume original release apps that haven't had SR-1 applied. Microsoft doesn't say this precisely, but gives the example of a user installing some of the 97 apps, then SR-1, and then installing other 97 apps, thus having two versions on the same installation, and thus confusing SR-2. SR-2 should not of course be confused under these circumstances. A properly-written service pack should check versions of all the files it's dealing with, and update accordingly. Note that Microsoft service packs do this sometimes, which is not real help at all. Whatever, SR-2 is temporarily removed for download, pending the release of an update. We note also that SR-2 apparently includes Year 2000 fixes. Office 97, Year 2000 - spot the foresight… ® Click for more stories

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