• Microsoft Insider: Pros, and the many cons

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    ISSUE 19.49 • 2022-12-05 MICROSOFT 365 By Peter Deegan Microsoft pushes its Insider versions of Office software very hard, promising the latest featur
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    • #2503528

      Very interesting (and comprehensive) article, but how does a user of the computer (SSD or hard drive) based Office Home & Business 2021 “Click-to-run” product join the Office Insider program? Nearly all of my immediate friends (and customers) prefer the non-subscription-based version of Office 2021 (that never expires) to Office 365. Is this another Microsoft “Insider Secret” or some-such?

      • #2503532

        Office Insider is officially available only for Office 365

        but you can set and choose the Beta channel wth any non-Volume Office Click-to-run product (2016 and later)
        however, you won’t get most features without subscription license

      • #2503537

        There’s no such thing as Insiders for Office 2021 or any future perpetual licence Office.  That’s because those ‘single payment’ versions of Office have fixed features, not the ongoing feature changes of Microsoft 365.

        In the past there has NOT been a public beta/Insiders release of an upcoming perpetual Office.

        Peter Deegan

    • #2503545

      I stopped participating in the Insider program when Microsoft started including new versions of NVidia drivers which were not compatible with certain games and were numbered several versions ahead of the most recent WHQL release version. Not nice, Microsoft.

    • #2503559

      “Instability, Less privacy, Poor documentation, Support, Compatibility, Productivity”: These problems occur with Microsoft products regardless of software package or release program. Consider installing Microsoft’s packages on a timetable that is comfortable for you.

      Carpe Diem {with backup and coffee}
      offline▸ Win10Pro 2004.19041.572 x64 i3-3220 RAM8GB HDD Firefox83.0b3 WindowsDefender
      offline▸ Acer TravelMate P215-52 RAM8GB Win11Pro 22H2.22621.1265 x64 i5-10210U SSD Firefox106.0 MicrosoftDefender
      online▸ Win11Pro 22H2.22621.1413 x64 i5-9400 RAM16GB HDD Firefox112.0b3 MicrosoftDefender
      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2503652

      I wrote an article abut three methods of killing Clippy back in 1999; it was described as “There’s no better homicidal how-to on the Web.”

      That reminds of one of my favorite “Wait, wait, don’t tell me” radio episodes, the famous “Clippy must die” exchange, where Clippy is taken for a ride in a car:
      (the part you want starts about 2 minutes into the youtube audio)

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2505959

      I didn’t see info about opting out of the Win11 Insiders program.  (I Want OUT!)

      When I go to the opt-out place, the message implies that I’ll be thrown back to Win10, which I don’t want.  Then re-upgrading to Win11.  Also, I’m concerned that my data (Desktop, Documents, etc.) will be lost.  And one additional fear: I just bought/installed a single-user lifetime license to MS Office Pro 2021.  I don’t want to lose that (or any other software that I have a single machine or single install license for).’

      Can anyone reassure me about how to get out of Win11 Insider with the least trauma/drama, and whether any of my fears (losing data or access to software licenses) will happen?

    • #2506351

      The scope of the article was for Microsoft 365 Insiders but I mentioned Windows Insiders a few times anyway.  I can’t help myself, Will and Sue tolerantly let me stray a little😀.

      Changing Windows Insiders, as you’ve discovered, is a lot more complicated than for Office. You’re changing the whole operating system or basis of the computer.

      To get back to standard, non-Insiders Windows you will have to reinstall Windows. There’s no getting around that.

      I can’t see any reason why you’d revert to Win10, even if that was the original Windows on that computer when purchased.  You’ll be able to choose which Windows you’re reinstalling.

      Reinstalling Windows can be done while preserving Documents and Data but sensible people do NOT rely on that.  Definitely get a full backup of ALL your important data before reinstalling Windows.

      See https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/windows/reinstall-windows-d8369486-3e33-7d9c-dccc-859e2b022fc7#Clean%20install%20of%20Windows%2010%20using%20installation%20media and the various reinstall options with installation media.

      Reformatting the hard drive should not be necessary.

      After reinstalling Windows, you will have to reinstall all apps, including Office.  Any single licence keys should still work on the computer.  Make sure you have a copy of all those keys before reinstalling Windows.

      In the case of Office 2021, it’s unlikely to be a problem.  At worse, you might have to call Microsoft on the number provided to explain that your reinstalled Windows situation (that’s a common and accepted reason).

      Hope that helps a little, good luck,

      Peter Deegan

      • #2509167

        TYVVM!  I’ll hold my breath, do all the backing up, and probably try this after the New Year.

        I’ve seen others say that re-installing Windows will likely help speed up one’s computer even if you’re running the setup directly from the manufacturer.  I guess we’ll see.

        I really appreciate your supportive and informative response.

        BEST  —  dg


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