Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.

Microsoft is configured to run only one version on a computer at a time. It would likely become confused if you tried to configure two versions.

Can I get email attachments to open in Word 2007, which I have installed on my computer, instead of going to Word 2010 which is also installed on my computer when I purchased it, without taking Word 2010 off of my computer?

In this excerpt from Answercast #14, I look at the possibility of running two Microsoft Office versions on one machine at the same time.

Two versions of Microsoft Office?

Very short answer, no.

Microsoft Office is not very good about keeping multiple versions of Microsoft Office on a single computer at the same time. Specifically, you need to choose which one you want: 2007 or 2010, and uninstall the other... if it's there. If you were able to install both, my guess is there's more to this that's not working than you realize.

  • I would actually uninstall both and reinstall the one that you choose.

Microsoft Office in general (and that's specifically for Microsoft Word, as well) does not really play well with previous versions of itself. It really does expect that one, and only one, version will be installed on your machine at a time.

Article C5293 - May 3, 2012 « »

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Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

Not what you needed?

Derek McLean
May 4, 2012 8:31 AM

I've had lots of multiple Office systems in place.
Outlook will always oust an older one. Excel and PowerPoint always seem to want to open with the latest one, unless you choose an older one manually. And you have to do this every time.
But Word can be configured to use any version as the default. If you choose to open Word 2003 manually from the Start menu and then open a relevant file, that will become the default program for a .doc file.
The problem is that as soon as you try to open a .docx file, it reverts to its native program. That's one reason that I usually save my files in the 2003 format. I still find the 2003 menus easier to navigate round, although I also have 2007 and 2010, which I use for different purposes.

Billy Bob
May 4, 2012 4:58 PM

If they won't play nicely, maybe one version can be run in an XP virtual machine.

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