Our Next meeting: Wednesday 1st October
"A Hands on Linux and the Eee PC evening." All to participate if possible.

A very good response to my emails regarding this meeting has resulted I think in what could be a very interesting evening. I'll list here a resumé.

My own suggestions were to find out about programming the EeePC (Linux version) and have a discussion on variations between distributions.

Although I used Unix a few years ago now, I haven't had much to do with it or Linux since; but having bought an EeePC want to do some more programming with it.

dgs comments:-

"One of the things that has been suggested for a forthcoming ROUGOL meeting, is a demonstration of RISC OS running under emulation on the EeePC, or perhaps a demonstration of installing or setting it up."

Paul writes:-

"I can bring along the Eee PC along with an old IBM Thinkpad running Ubuntu Hardy. I think that the Eee PC running Risc OS must have been downgraded to run Windows, something that I do not want to do to mine. I could hopefully give a demo of the Eee PC running Wikimedia under LAMP, plus the standard software that comes with it."

Gareth writes:-

"I was planning to bring the Eee PC along, although I don't know yet what to demo with it.

I was also planning on bringing the latest Ubuntu along on a spare PC from work. We use Debian a lot at work, so I could perhaps comment a bit on that too.

I rent a couple of virtual Linux servers these days to host my websites as it's much cheaper than renting a full server in a datacenter, this could be worth a mention too. There are many examples of this from smaller firms that I use up to Amazon and their EC2 etc.

I'll have a think about some more specifics this evening, Peter, but it would

be good if this event included as many people as possible."

So there you have it - a whole evening on Linux with everyone involved! Be there!


Our Last meeting: Wednesday 3rd September "MS Office 2007" by Michael

This was billed as MS Office applications on Windows and Mac, but since Gareth was unable to be there, Michael kept to the Windows Office 2007 topic for the whole evening.

This was covered many of the features of Office 2007 and also made comparison to earlier MS Office software. Michael gave much of his presentation based on Microsoft's websites which give considerable detail of the products. see the Links section below.

General features

Michael began by asking who was using previous versions of Office. Most had used some earlier versions or were still doing so. He said that Office had not changed very much right up to Office 2003 all had the task bar with File/Edit/ etc. and had interchangeable toolbars. Standard and editing for changing text size, Italics etc.

Microsoft decided in this version to take a completely different approach to make it easier to use. Instead of the menus they have replaced it with The Ribbon. In Word 2007 the icons and headings (tabs) at the top. Choosing a heading changes all of the icons displayed. There is no Classic Option to return to the old design either. Everyone needs to be retrained which is a problem for Corporates. It does however make it much easier to use. If you want to change a page layout you get options of changing the layout, size, etc. You also have a quick access toolbar at the top. If you have a requirement to use something frequently e.g. to add a picture you have the option to add it to your quick action toolbar (like a favourite). It is not always easy to find things e.g. Changing format from Portrait to Landscape is found under "Page Layout" and is called "Orientation". "Insert picture" when you highlight the picture new toolbars will appear. It is object orientated to the object you are dealing with. It does a lot more on the fly; for example just hovering the mouse pointer over a feature will give a preview of the effect. , say you want a different font the highlighted text will immediately change into the new font as a preview only whilst the mouse pointer hovers over the font description. (Personally I thought this was a great feature Ed.)

There is no option to print on screen so you use the Office button. (Open, Save,Print, permissions and compatibility. MS have not only changed the program but also the file format. Now files are no longer <file.doc> but <file.docx> , a four character extension, but there are options to save in the older format for compatibility. The Office 2007 files are saved with different icons too, Excel files have <.xlsx> file extensions.

You can also save in PDF format directly without the need to purchase a third party add-on. You do have to download this from MS website however.

There are a lot of help options throughout.

Office versions available

Office 2007 Enterprise Edition contains MS Access, MS Excel, Office Group, Infopath, Outlook, Powerpoint MSPublisher and MSWord. Quite a high level package.

Office 2007 Basic has Outlook lowest version designed for small businesses.

Office 2007 Standard has added Powerpoint.

Then Home and Student 2007 MSWord, MSExcel and Powerpoint but not Outlook. (originally 2003 version was for students only and was OEM i.e. tied to a new computer.)

Retail products can be purchased later and can be moved to another machine.

Home and Student 2007 can now be used on up to 3 computers as long as not for business. £64.00 including delivery from ebuyer. £58.99 from Dabs. Very reasonable.

Small Business 2007 contains MSWord, MS Excel, Publisher and Accounting Express 2008

Professional adds MS Access. £350-400

Professional plus has Infopath.

There is also an Ultimate version with a few changes details in the Links below.

As you can see they get considerably more expensive the higher level you go.

As an aside Peter asked about encryption within Office. Michael said that encryption was only available on hard drives with Vista Enterprise ( volume licence only e.g. Corporate) and Ultimate. Can add hardware encryption.

MS has released a converter tool to convert formats, which will convert as you open.

Open Office will also open the new format. There is a comparison document for MS Office and Open Office listed in the Links below.

Excel 2007 still keeps the ribbon.

xlsx new format for Excel. Service Pack 1 already released. Office 2007 is more memory hungry than previous versions still have undo and redo. They have also significantly increased the number of rows and cols allowed.(3 figures. also noted in Open Office v. 3 too)

You can download a 60 day free trial of Office 2007.

There is also a "How to buy Office 2007" on the MS website which has a price bracket which you can move around and as you do reduce the cost it drops applications out of the package.

After the break Michael said that Office was launched alongside Vista in 2006 (Office 12 ) so when are they going to release the next version Office 14 hopefully to be called Office 2009 alongside next version of Vista, so we will not have to wait 5 years again.

Michael then described each application and how they had changed.


The email server is now a web based Outlook WebAccess and is enhanced a lot compared to the original Outlook and Outlook 2003, Outlook 2007 allows cached mode on server and downloaded mail too and is designed to work with Exchange for Corporate use.

At the top level there is no Ribbon which only appears when you are actioning something. Composing an Email or using Calendar, etc. this can be done with Outlook WebAccess when away from your the office.


Michael said he did not use it often. There is no Ribbon here, it looks like the earlier version.


The database tool. Again he had not used this much. There did not seem to have been much work done on it.

Groove 2007

A workspace for preparing files and projects. Designed for the Business sector used with a Groove server 2007. It enables teams to access documents and work together from anywhere across an enterprise without compromising IT standards or security.

However even without the Groove you can set up something similar in Excel where you can set up shared workbooks. So that multiple users can share spreadsheets. If two people then try and edit the same cell it will warn of the changes and then it will allow you to decide which change to accept.


For templates and form creation. You can use this to design and fill out forms, e.g. an expense report. No Office button or ribbon here like 2003 version.

One Note

This is designed for students taking notes probably originally for touch screen notes.

As an aside Peter mentioned an interest in mind map drawing (Tony Buzan) which would need rubber banding links to objects. Frank said that Graphite would do this under RISC OS.


This has the Ribbon and Office button and has been changed quite a lot and made it easier to use.

Also in the higher spec. versions you get Picture Manager which gives you picture editing features, crop, resize, colour change brightness, red eye reduction etc. Clip art organiser, scanning and imaging tools. This could in future incorporate the Ribbon.

Many thanks to Michael for all his hard work on this talk especially since Gareth was unable to be there to split the time for the evening. It was a very good introduction to the new Office 2007 package which has a completely different look and feel to previous versions.


Michael has given several URLs for the websites he used.

( Although there seems to have been some change to the first of these and it fails. Ed.)

Office 2007 Features Comparison

http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/products/FX101635841033.aspx link fails

Old Office Comparison, 97, 2000, XP & 2003


Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint 2007

File Formats (Compatible with Microsoft Office 2000, Office XP, or

Office 2003)


Outlook 2003, 2007, Outlook Web Access 2007 Feature Comparison


2007 Microsoft Office system suites overview


How to Buy


Office 2007 General - Wikipedia


Office 13 Skipped, Office 2009 = Office 14


Word 2007 Top 10 Reasons


Please Note that this can be found for each of the Office Products on

the Microsoft Office Website.


Office 2007 vs Open Office 2.x


Open Office Flyer


Up To Speed - Word 2007 Demo


Microsoft also offer a 60 day trial of Office 2007 which can be

downloaded from their website:



I wanted to put a suggestion to you regarding our meeting days. Since the Mid-Suffolk Computer Club meet on the preceding date to us i.e. the first Tuesday of the month we are considering whether to move our meeting date to the third Wednesday of the month. This would allow members to perhaps attend both meetings in a month. It would also mean that the EAUG meeting on the second Tuesday of the month was also still be in a different week.

Please let me know whether this would affect your attendance in any way. There would be no problem in moving the date with Bourne Vale Social Club.

ICENI Future programme

We have had a committee meeting this month to revise our programme. Some of the topics below may change .

October 1st Linux Evening All
November 5th Storage & Backup Peter et al
December 3rd Gadgets and Party evening All

Talks with Visiting speakers are shown in Red. We will give more details as soon as they are confirmed.

Our meetings are held at the Bourne Vale Social Club, Halifax Road, Ipswich IP2 8RE , for a map and other details please see the website. http://icenicomputerclub.users.btopenworld.com

The first visit is free and subsequent visits for non - members is £2·50. The membership fee is £20 due from the AGM date in April, but may be reduced for those joining late in the year.


Continuing our publicity for EAUG events - please see their Website for details of their next meeting.

Meetings are at the Great Baddow Village Hall, on the second Tuesday of the month

opening at 7:30 p.m. for a start at 7:45 - 8:00 p.m.

For directions see below (note the new web addresses)

http://www.eaug.org.uk or 'phone one of the contacts on http://www.eaug.org.uk/ppl.htm

Mid- Suffolk Computer Users Group

For information on this group we have added a link here


Special Notice - Insurance

"ICENI does not have any Insurance cover for computers or other equipment so please be advised that you bring machines to the club at your own risk."

P.S. My insurance company have added my computer cover away from home with no extra premium required, yours might do the same.(Ed.)

Our Website and Email

If anyone would like a copy of the CD of our old newsletters this could be arranged.

I am open to suggestions on what people would like to have included in the website.

Our website URL is

http://icenicomputerclub.users.btopenworld.com as a virtual domain,

it can also be reached using http://www.btinternet.com/~icenicomputerclub

Email to: iceni@woolridge.org.uk