June launch for MS Office System service pack


June launch for MS Office System service pack

Users of Microsoft Office System products released in October can expect the first service pack for the software in late June.

Service Pack 1 (SP1) will apply to InfoPath 2003, OneNote 2003, Project 2003, Publisher 2003, Visio 2003 and SharePoint Portal Server and Windows SharePoint Services, as well as the Microsoft Office 2003 suite, which includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.

Microsoft typically delivers a first service pack six to nine months after it brings a product to market. Service packs typically roll together all product updates and bug fixes issued so far. Occasionally, Microsoft will use a service pack to add functionality. Microsoft would not discuss technical details of the service pack, saying it is too early.

Since its release in October, Office 2003's retail sales and the number of volume buyers who bought the rights to install the software is approximately double the number reached by Office XP in the first months after its release, Microsoft claimed.

Office 2003 went through what Microsoft called its largest beta test so far, including a "refresh" of the second beta to squash more bugs. The refresh pushed back the Office 2003 release, but Microsoft said it would add to the product's stability, making the first release comparable to a product with the first service pack installed.

Joris Evers writes for IDG News Service

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