• Understanding Office 2021 and Office LTSC

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    MICROSOFT 365 By Peter Deegan What are Office 2021 and Office LTSC, and should you care? Office 2021 and Office LTSC are the latest nonsubscription ve
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    • #2402889

      I had a bizarre experience with Microsoft on this very issue two weeks ago.  I’m retiring as treasurer of our small citizens association.  I’ve been keeping the books with Quicken on my workstation but the incoming treasurer cannot install programs on his work laptop because of corporate rules.  Our old laptop went out of service two years ago as it was a Win7 machine with a very slow hard drive.  I bought a new Acer with an SSD.  The salesman at Microcenter wanted to sell me one with an more powerful CPU but I laughed and told him this PC only had to do a couple of basic things.

      The problem with Office 365 is that over time, the cost becomes much more than Office 2021.  We need Outlook so I had to get the Business version.   All we need is Excel, Word and Outlook but Office 365 comes in bundles with stuff we don’t need.   I was on chat with a Microsoft agent and he didn’t understand this and tried telling me the Office 2021 would not do what we needed which was not true.  I ended up getting Office 2021 (I was tempted by the ultra low prices for Office 2019 that seem to be proliferating these days).  Got it set up and configured for the new treasurer in about a half hour.

      When I linked this to the association’s Microsoft account, I saw the old license for Office 2013!!!  Of course that one is no longer being supported by Microsoft but probably would work OK for out purposes.

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    • #2402913

      It’s not that bizarre.  Microsoft itself wants everyone on the ‘subscription’ path and as you’ve experienced, they’ll push that to the exclusion of other options.

      The experience can be quite different ‘in-store’ where sales people can push the unwary to the Office option that’s the most expensive ‘up front’.  That helps the floor staff with their sales targets and bonuses.  I’ve seen and heard of people sold Office 2021 (or 2019 before it) when they really wanted Office 365.

      Peter Deegan


    • #2402956

      Office 2013 extended support or patches lasts until April 11, 2023.  Fully updated Outlook 2013 is capable of modern authentication, meaning it will not be disabled from connecting to microsoft email servers.  https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/enterprise/modern-auth-for-office-2013-and-2016?view=o365-worldwide

      Office 2021 will be supported 5 years, until 2026.  https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/lifecycle/products/office-2021

    • #2403060

      If Microsoft could, there’d be no “perpetual license” versions at all. Microsoft would prefer that everyone purchase the Microsoft 365 annual payment plans because they assure recurring revenue and are interconnected with Microsoft’s cloud services. Sadly for Microsoft, at any rate, there are customers who won’t go along and who insist on sticking with the decades-old process of paying once for Office and using it indefinitely.

      Count me among those who won’t go along with annual payment plans.  I absolutely refuse to rent my software.  Anytime you rent anything, you’re at the mercy of the “landlord”, who is free to increase the rent at any time for any reason with little to no advance notice.  I may not like the high upfront cost; but at least I know it’s one and done.  I never need to worry that Microsoft is going to up the subscription cost at some point (which you know they will).

      A significant point of resistance is the almost constant feature updates pushed by the subscription plans. Many users prefer the fixed feature set in Office 2019 and now 2021, the way things were before 365 appeared.

      And, sticking with the same analogy of the renter, the landlord is free to make changes to the property (or product) at anytime as well — regardless of whether or not you want any of those changes.  Once I know a product does what I need it to do, I don’t want it changing.  I want a stable product that just keeps working for me the way it did from the start.  I don’t want to have new features popping up or my user interface changing without warning.

      If, at some point, I believe that I absolutely have to have some new feature, then I’ll make a decision as to whether or not it’s financially worth it to upgrade the product in order to get that desired feature.  As long as I have a traditional perpetual license, I’m in control of the decision making process — not Microsoft.  I’ll only upgrade if and when I determine for myself that the new features justify the cost of purchasing a new license.  If they don’t, then I can just continue using the version of the product that I already have — for as long as I want … at no additional cost.

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