Excel User Conference Download

Download Presenter Notes and Sample Files

If you didn’t attend, these files will be of limited value. But there they are if you want them.

As I mentioned at the conference, I will be reformatting my laptop hard drive this weekend. My folder problem that I’ve been blaming on Groove, isn’t Groove’s fault (I think), but I’m due for a data enema anyway. I’ve downloaded Belarc Advisor to get a list of installed programs. I will only be installing Excel 2000, 22032003, and 2007. I eschewed 97 a while ago and I’m going to get rid of XP too. Any other tips before I embark on this magical journey?

Software to install (* means I want to know what you use):
Office 2000
Office 2003
Office 2007
Foxit Reader

Not making the cut:
Adobe Reader
Avast antivirus (I’m going without)
Copernic Desktop (any good desktop searches out there?)
Virtual PC (maybe next beta)
Lifecam (never use it, shouldn’t have bought it)
Google Earth
Google Sketchup
Street and Trips*
VS.Net (I’ll have to put it on eventually)

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38 thoughts on “Excel User Conference Download

  1. No AntiVirus?? Isn’t that dangerous?
    Tried both Avast and AVG (both free).
    Like AVG better.
    Thinking of buying the full version (1st because I’ve gotten so much use out of it that I feel like I owe them and 2nd so that I can stop it from scanning my Excel files (which really doesn’t take an inordinate amount of time).
    Streets & Trips?? Why would anyone use a program like that anymore when you have maps.google.com, MapQuest and a host of others?? I use Google Maps exclusively.
    Google Earth?? That has got to be one of the coolest things on the web. What’s your problem with it?
    Copernic Desktop??? Google desktop works great. I tried it. I don’t really like anything running in the background so I don’t use it but I like the concept.
    Foxit/Adobe?? Have tried both. Foxit is faster but doesn’t always display a true representation of the document. Sacrifice the speed and be assured that what you are seeing is what it really looks like.

  2. I just started using tightvnc instead of RealVNC and it has a lot of cool features. It’s totally compatible with pcs using realvnc so check it out. Being able to transfer files from pc to pc through tightVNC comes in pretty handy.
    PDFcreater is good for vba but I still use cutepdf to print to pdf manually and I use PDFTools 1.2 to merge/split/encrypt pdfs.

  3. I second primoPDF. Although I can see the benefits of no anti-virus (quicker computer all-round for one), I don’t think I’ll ever be gutsy enough to go without one!

    I’d like your Office 2203, as well … wonder if the Ribbon has been replaced yet?

    As for a replacement for Streets & Tips: I use Google Maps, too.


  4. “Not making the cut:”
    Adobe Reader – Not sure how you’re going to get away with this one…
    Avast antivirus – I’ve installed Avast on at least 10 computers, and I’ve found it to be more than useful and adequate.

    I see you also have IrfanView – great choice for a free photo converter/editer. Along those lines is the famous VirtualDub, a free video editing program. While powerful, it is neither graphical nor non-linear, but it usually gets the job done.

    By the way, I’m anxiously awaiting announcements on a state-side conference, preferably in the Midwest…

  5. Re antivirus: I had AVG for a long time. I had to restart my computer every day for about two weeks because of program updates. I got sick of that and uninstalled it. I went about a month with no AV, but decided to try Avast. Once I turned off resident checker (or some such thing) it’s not bad. The only thing I use AV for is to scan strange files before I open them. I suppose I should get something for that purpose, but even the free packages seem like overkill for me.

    Re S&T: I have a GPS that plugs into my USB port and works with S&T. That’s one advantage over internet based mapping. I find the navigation somewhat lacking, however, and I really don’t travel enough to justify having it installed. I’ll just buy a Garmin if I need GPS.

    Google Earth and Sketchup: Very cool programs, but I never use them.

    Copernic used to be a nice, fast program, but it’s so bloated now. Google doesn’t work on networks unless you install it on every computer. Also, I don’t like how Google displays the results. I use X1 at work and it’s the best I’ve used, although still not perfect.

    Thanks for the PDF tips, I’ll check them out. And I’m sticking with Foxit over Adobe for a reader. Fidelity hasn’t been an issue for me and the speed difference is substantial.

  6. Dick – interesting that you used 3rd party software to list installed software…

    I needed to do something like this for a lot of users recently and came across some code that I could use to pull the list into Excel.

    If anyone is interested, I will post the code / link.

    I am using it as the basis for a user / software audit and will also get other info to be used as part of our disaster recovery planning…

  7. Dick, can you convert your tips and tricks back to 2003? I’m lucky enough to have not switched to 2007 yet and can’t open the files.

  8. I’ve not much to add that hasn’t already been said. CutePDF can’t be beat as far as simple PDF creators go. TurboTax for filing just because I’m comfortable with it, though it’s really an install it, use it, nuke it kind of app so it really doesn’t matter. FoxIt is more than good enough for everyday use, it makes those accidental clicks on .pdf links on the web so much more bearable, too. Where’s 7zip on that list? You can’t be getting by with just built-in support, can you?

    And congrats on the decision to go AV free. The only machine in my house that has it (AVG) is my wife’s laptop. This has been going on for a year now and I’ve had zero problems. Just be aware of what you’re doing and you’ll be fine. When Avast hosed my machine, I spent more time trying to recover from that than I ever have been saved. Not to mention the 5 minutes of maintenance here and there along with the occasional reboots and slowdown of general file tasks costs far more time in the long run than it could ever save. Even when my kids use the PC, I just have them go through a virtual machine (Virtual Box). They’ve not managed to get infected yet, but even if they did it’s so easy to go back to a prior snapshot that it wouldn’t even matter.

  9. I don’t know were all of coverage areas are, but I have Verizon Wireless and they have an app called VZ Navigator. It costs $2.99 for each 24 hour session or a $9.99 monthly fee for unlimited use. I think you can also get it for free if you have a certain type of plan.

    I used this for a few months since I had a new job and was driving to some new and unfamiliar places and I had no problems except when I decided to trust my eyes instead of the voice coming out of my phone. I don’t subscribe anymore just due to a lack of use, but it worked very well for me, even going to some more rural areas where you would think the results wouldn’t be that great.

    As far as some of the other things, I use PrimoPDF at home, Picassa for pics, and Turbotax just because I’ve always used it and hate change. That’s why I also am still using McAfee for my AV – I know it’s bloated, but it’s already there. I’m lazy.

  10. I haven’t had to use VBScroll for quite a while now. The newer mouse/touchpad drivers let you scroll in the VB and VBA IDE’s.
    I like CutePDF, the free version, a little better than PDFCreator, but it doesn’t let you stitch together multiple files. Does PrimoPDF?

  11. I have a PC tools fire wall and AGV and VPC. I have all my office and VS stuff in VM.
    I could do with out AV, but I need the fire wall just to know whats going on.
    MZ tools of course.

  12. Ditto on the request to post tips as Excel 2003.

    By the way for North American folks, if you are a State Farm Insurance customer [any type of policy] you can use turbo tax for free [Deluxe, Premier, Home & Business]. Saves up to $80/year.

  13. Good choice on TaxACT over the mainstream choices. I use that for home use as well. It’s not as good as industrial strength products like CCH or Lacerte, but it’s good enough to get by without being as bloated and dumbed down as TaxCut or Turbotax. But, if you’re not a CPA, you might like the bloating and dumbing down, so YMMV.

  14. Along with CDex I also install Magnus Brading’s MP3 Tag Studio, I hate messy or incomplete MP3 Tags

  15. >>Open Office 2007 documents in earlier versions of Office: Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint 2007 File Formats

    I did until I realized it replaced the Microsoft Excel 11.0 Object Library with the Microsoft Excel 12.0 Object Library. Uninstalling the Compatibility Pack was easier than using late binding on my Excel applications. I didn’t feel like changing references every time I worked on projects for others. Maybe I can get the IT department to install the Compatibility Pack on all the machines.

  16. RvG: Remember that QueryManager that JKP and I wrote a while back? I want to programmatically stick a parameter in an SQL statement. I have a hack, but I’m fearful it will break on anything but the easiest SQL statement. So I want to reliably convert

    SELECT * FROM MyTable ORDER BY MyTable.Name


    SELECT * FROM MyTable WHERE MyTable.ID=? ORDER BY MyTable.Name

    I’m searching for keywords now, but I’d like to componentize the statement.

  17. @Hui:
    I too use CDex, and also hate messy tags. I have a lot of poorly tagged music on my PC (mostly not from CDex..) that I wish to improve. Over the past few weeks (in my spare time) I’ve been using MusicBrainz’s Picard tagger to help me correctly tag files. I can handle a lot of music automatically, and it helps speed up the remainder, leaving only, say, 10-30% of files for me to fix manually.

    I will check out Magnus Brading’s.

  18. And congrats on the decision to go AV free

    Absolutely. I’ve NEVER used an anti-virus program, and I’ve never had a virus problem. I’m almost convinced that these AV programs are a huge scam — unless you’re a complete novice who hasn’t a clue. Most people don’t need them, so why pay money to make your computer slower?

  19. I suggest Notepad2 and Launchy. Kudos on FoxIt – I use it all of the time, and it’s great!

  20. J-Walk: ‘…never used and Anti-Virus program..’ ??? Forgive me but that is just a bit over-the-top…
    So, its kiss Norton goodbye, uninstall it from the harddrive? Thats like 180 out from everything I have come to understand since the inception of the http://www.
    I know how to be carefull but how about folks who I would normally open files from who may not be as carefull? It’s kind of like saying “I can keep a secret but the people I tell can’t”

  21. AVG is losing their touch (annoying messages), grab yourself a free copy of the open source Clamwin instead (clamwin.com)

    I love Notepad++ (notepad-plus.sourceforge.net) as an editor and to burn I frequently use Imgburn (http://www.imgburn.com). To watch movies MPlayer rules (MPlayerHQ.hu) but I like the user friendly VLC as well (videolan.org). Hey, why not use the both? :-O
    For editing WAV files I use Audacity (audacity.sourceforge.net)

    In the SQL department my absolute favorite client is SquirrelSQL (squirrel-sql.sourceforge.net). You’ll need the Java RE (javadl.sun.com/webapps/download/AutoDL?BundleId=18713) to run it though.

    RealVNC is good but sometimes (too) slow. TightVNC (www.tightvnc.com) does it a bit quicker in my experience. I’ve heard good things about UltraVNC (www.uvnc.com) as well but haven’t tested it yet myself.

    I use PrimoPDF @home because PDF Creator doesn’t work under Windows Vista (yet).

  22. Thanks Dick! One of these years I’m going to have to switch to 2007 but I’ll procrastinate as long as possible (hopefully until they fix that awful interface).

  23. Dick,

    Given that You will need to install VS.NET 2008 then You must also make sure that there exist only one version of Excel. If not, then You’ll get some abitray outcomes.

    I can only echo Your comment about SquirrelSQL. It’s indeed a nice utility and once again I thank You for pointing it out for me.

    Kind regards,

  24. UltraEdit is a handy text editor that edits columns, converts Unix/Dos/Mac, manipulates tabs & carriage returns. Many small features that reduce pain make ULtraEdit a handy tool.


  25. Also, for the record, I think I’m going to stick with Outlook 2003. Outlook 2007 sure takes up a lot of ram, runs very slowly, and freezes on occasion. I don’t think it’s ready for prime time. Anyone using it without any troubles?

  26. For VNC viewing I swear by UltraVNC because there is a tabbed viewer app. which comes in very handy. I also second the comment about Launchy – a lovely little app.

  27. Outlook 2007: I use it all the time and (touch wood) have not had any problems to date, as for speed I find it quicker than Outlook 2003.

  28. Simon,
    Please post a link to your code…which pull the list of installed software into excel

  29. Sam, I wish I could take credit for the code, but here is where I found it:

    Everything in the registry (HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE – “SoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionUninstall”) is listed so this API call could be modified to search the registry for all sorts of data.

    All I needed to do for my project was to change the sub “main” to list each app into a worksheet rather than printing it to the immediate window.

    Unfortunately, all installed Windows Hotfixes and updates are also listed, but as they are all suffixed with a KB number, it is quite easy to remove them from the list if you want to…

  30. I use AVG anti-virus free at home, never had to reboot to install updates. But it’s mostly for the wife’s computer, since it’s a laptop and she tends to roam. :-)


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