Microsoft releases Office 2000 Beta 2...kind of

Eager beta testers got a huge package earlier this week: Beta 2 of Office 2000. But officials at Microsoft warn that the package isn't really what it seems to be but is rather a "beta of Beta 2." Included in the release, which includes the seven CDs encompassing the new Premium Edition of Office 2000, are Word 2000, Access 2000, Excel 2000, FrontPage 2000, PowerPoint 2000, Outlook 2000, Publisher 2000, PhotoDraw 2000, Internet Explorer 5.0 Beta 2, and more.

"What went out this week was an initial 'smoke test' we sent out to a smaller group of hundreds of people," said John Duncan, an Office product manager. "We haven't officially launched Beta 2, but it's just around the corner. And that will be a very broad program."

One possibility for Beta 2 is November 14, which is when the "Office eXtreme" event takes place in Las Vegas. The event will be broadcasted to theatres all over the country.

Office 2000 will be released in the first quarter of 1999 with five separate editions, Standard, Professional, Small Business, Premium and Developer

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