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Microsoft RTMs Office 2010

April turn on for business Web editions

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

Businesses will get their hands on web and desktop Office 2010 in just under two weeks.

The company's Office team has released code for Office 2010, SharePoint 2010, Visio 2010, and Project 2010 to manufacturing.

Customers on Microsoft's volume licenses - 250 or more PCs - with Software Assurance can download from the Volume Licensing Service Center on April 27. Volume-licensing customers without SA can get the software May 1. Microsoft began accepting pre orders on April 15.

The first ever web versions of Office - Office Web apps - will be available for customers on volume licensing at the same time, Microsoft told The Reg late Friday. Microsoft plans hosted and on-premise versions of Office Web apps.

Availability will come ahead of the business launch event on May 11 in New York City.

There's no word on when consumers will get the free version of Office Web apps, in beta testing since September 2009. "For consumers, Office Web Apps will remain in technical preview until availability. We don't have a date to share with you at this point in time," the spokesperson said.

Office Web apps promise to be the most interesting part of the whole Office 2010 affair, with Microsoft at last putting part of one its best revenue generator online.

Office Web apps offers what Reg reviewer Tim Anderson called "a good-looking but very much cut-down set of tools for creating and editing documents in the browser."

A key ingredient of Office Web apps for paying customers will be SharePoint 2010. The Office Web apps hosted and on-premise versions will use SharePoint to provide features such as document history, active directory integration, auditing, and backup/restore.

Office Web apps will also use SharePoint Foundation 2010 to sanitize the wild, wild world of blogs, wikis, and teamspaces for buttoned down business uses. ®

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