Microsoft Office 14 beta hints at 64-bit version

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Microsoft Office 14 beta hints at 64-bit version

A closed beta of Microsoft Office 14 seems to indicate that a 64-bit version of the software may become available when the suite launches..

Ed Bott, a beta tester at ZDNet, reportedly found references to both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows Office applications inside the 'migwiz.xml' file of the beta, where every application was listed for both versions, and the second included a '_x64' tag.

This means that programs like Microsoft Access, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Project, Publisher, Visio and Word will probably have been built in 64-bit as well as 32-bit, and are ready to ship with Office 14 when it eventually emerges.

Microsoft has not said anything officially about when Office 14 might ship, but the transition to 64-bit signifies that the software is finally ready to catch up with 64-bit hardware, which has been available for a while.

This is good news for people wanting to take advantage of 64-bit versions of operating systems like XP and Vista, while also persuading original equipment manufacturers that shipping 64-bit systems with extra memory space is worthwhile after all.

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