Microsoft has released three security bulletins, covering 11 vulnerabilities, with one rated as Critical and the other two, as Important.

The first one is the MS10-087, which resolves five issues – one public and four private, affecting all currently supported Microsoft Office products.

This security update is rated Critical for Microsoft Office 2007 and Microsoft Office 2010, due to a preview pane vector in Outlook that could trigger the vulnerability when a customer views a specially crafted malicious RTF (Rich Text Format) file.

It is also rated Important for all supported editions of Microsoft Office XP, Microsoft Office 2003, Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac, Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac, and Microsoft Office for Mac 2011, as well as Open XML File Format Converter for Mac. More »

A new resource available for download from Microsoft is designed to let customers upgrading from Office 2003 or earlier to Office 2010, get familiarized with the redesign of the look and feel of the Word components of the product. The Word 2010: Interactive menu to ribbon guide can be grabbed free of charge through the Microsoft Download Center, and as the label implies, users will get a “visual, interactive reference guide to help you find the new location of commands in Word 2010,” according to Microsoft. “Use this interactive tutorial to find the location of commands in Word 2010. The guide is a simulation of the old menu version of Word. Click a command in the guide to learn its new location in Word 2010.”

With the advent of Office 2007, Microsoft dramatically overhauled the graphical user interface for its productivity suite. The evolution of the new Ribbon/Fluent GUI continued with Office 2010, which brings to the table a perfected variant of the user interface, widening the gap between the new design and the old File menu that was the default in Office 2003 and earlier. More »

While laboring to produce the first Release Candidate of the next iteration of Windows, Microsoft is making available for download the Windows Demo Toolkit, an offering with Windows 7 as its nucleolus. Both the 32-bit and the 64-bit variants of the Foundation Suite (what the software giant referred to as the heart of the Windows Demo Toolkit) are up for grabs via Microsoft Connect, the Redmond company revealed. Via the two downloads packaged as ISO images, customers will be able to access preconfigured installations of Windows 7 Beta Build 7000. Microsoft informed that once Windows 7 Release Candidate would be made available, the Windows Demo Toolkit would be upgraded with the RC bits.

“Are you Gold Certified or Certified partner who wants a way to demo your software on Windows 7? If so, the brand new Windows Demo Toolkit (WDT) is a collection of resources that makes demoing the Windows operating system as easy as possible. You can use WDT to create engaging and reliable demos in a fraction of the time. WDT is available exclusively for Certified and Gold Certified Partners,” revealed Bruce Kyle, Microsoft ISV Architect Evangelist. “The heart of the Windows Demo Toolkit is the Foundation Suite, a deployment of Windows 7 Beta tailored specifically for use in demonstrations.” More »

Microsoft is introducing a similar strategy for Windows 7 as it did for Windows Vista when it comes down to offering customers resources designed to streamline the adoption process. With the next iteration of the Windows client having debuted into public Beta at the beginning of January 2009, the Redmond company has adapted a solution accelerator initially offered for Windows Vista to Windows 7. With the February 2009 release of Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit (MAP), the toolkit is designed to integrate seamlessly with both Windows 7 Beta client and Windows 7 Server Beta (Windows Server 2008 R2).

“Our team have just released an update to the Microsoft Assessment and Planning (MAP) Toolkit 3.2 for Windows migration that is now available to install on a machine with Windows 7 Beta. Check out the MAP Toolkit now and start planning your desktop deployment projects,” revealed Baldwin Ng, Senior Product Manager, Microsoft Solution Accelerators, earlier this week. However, Ng pointed out that while the latest release of MAP 3.2 does indeed play nice with both Windows 7 client Beta and Windows Server 2008 R2, the solution accelerator is not designed to assess infrastructures for compatibility, readiness and hardware resources necessary to run the next version of the Windows operating system. More »

While Outlook 2007 offers many new features that do indeed offer real benefits it can come at a price – performance.

On my Core 2 Duo with 2GB of RAM Outlook 2007 originally took a good 20 seconds to fire up from a fully booted PC and appeared to be constantly sluggish. So what can be done about it?

Tip 1: Delete attachments

A little-known feature in Outlook is the ability to keep an email but delete one or several attachment. Firstly, sort your inbox by file size (descending) and open a message (by double clicking so it opens in a new window) where you no longer wish to keep the attachment. Right click over the attachment and select Remove. Now save the email, repeat with all relevant emails in this mailbox and then repeat in any other mailboxes (including your sent items). More »