Microsoft Office 2007 Service Pack 2 Contains Major Improvements

The massive Microsoft Office 2007 Service Pack 2 updates improve features and performance of Office client applications, server applications and SharePoint. They also add new features like ODF and PDF support.

Microsoft April 28 released a series of service packs for Office 2007, the Office Server Products and Windows SharePoint Services 3.0. Office 2007 Service Pack 2 itself covers the client suite.

The service packs, of course, consolidate the many security and lesser updates since the last service pack, but many feature upgrades and performance improvements are specified in this service pack.

The most notable change is the ability of Office applications to save as PDF, which was previously available from Microsoft as a separate download.

A series of knowledge base articles detail what the changes are for each product in the various suites. A list of these articles and the products to which they apply can be found in this Office Sustained Engineering blog entry. The changes just in the Office 2007 client suite can be found in this knowledge base article.

A selection of the changes made includes:

  • SP2 adds the ability to open, edit and save documents in Version 1.1 of the OpenDocument Format for Word, Excel and PowerPoint. ODF is the document format standard used by OpenOffice.org, Sun's StarOffice and a number of other programs
  • Performance and print fidelity of graphics improved in some cases
  • Support built in for Internet Explorer 8, Windows Vista SP2 (just released), Windows Server 2008 SP2 (also just released), Windows 7 (in beta) and Windows Server R2 (also in beta)
  • Import/export improvements
  • Outlook performance and reliability improvements

The download size can be as much as 290.2MB, depending on which components you have installed. Office 2007 SP2 is the first service pack to support uninstall both from the command line and the Service Pack Uninstall Tool.

This tool allows you to remove all of the SP2 updates to apps or even individual ones. This tool is available as a separate download.