Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Break from Tyranny

While the post title may sound like the opening of an important treatise on freedom, it was merely inspired by a colossal software problem that I experienced recently.

I’ve been writing my infrequent and sparse blog comments over the last couple of weeks using Windows Live Writer.  It is a terrific program for interfacing with one’s blog and makes it 100 times easier, faster and more enjoyable to post. 

Unfortunately, I must have downloaded some components of this program that planned to take over my entire life.  It managed to disable my MS Office Professional (2000) suite of products.  I managed to disable and uninstall a number of the components to bet my programs somewhat functional.  Word, though, and Powerpoint are toast.  I do have my Outlook back up and Excel.

Though I’ve tried to repair the file, and reinstall, Word still remains wordless.  But I have many years worth of documents that I need.  And the most important thing that I need is my billing template.  What did I do?

I remembered that there is a suite of products called  They are compatible with Microsoft.  I downloaded the suite and was able to open my billing template.  I wasn’t in the mood to update my Office Suite product, and I’m still made, that the file doesn’t work.  Something about Windows LIVE! kills.  At least the carcass is not stinking anymore.

I do remember taking a test drive of the spreadsheet.  There were enough differences that I found it frustrating.  But word processing is easy.  But offers a nice alternative for folks that find the licensing for the MS suite expensive and cumbersome.  It is maddening, though, to have a fully licensed product and NOT being able to use it.

If you are looking for a robust office suite platform that is compatible with the other suite spawned from the loins of the devil AND that if free, you should take a look.

Having said all that, I would like to have my Word and Powerpoint functioning fully.  At least I can write to my blog easily, even though the foundation of how I make my living has been crumpled by this software error.

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