We all know that Office products have names that help us understand how old the product is, but there are also different ways to run Microsoft Office (msi, click to run, office on demand, office 365, etc). Here we will try to demystify what they are, and what all this means for you.

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What Version Of Microsoft Office Is It?

First of all, most versions of Microsoft Office have the year included in the name. For example MS Office 2003, MS Office 2010, MS Office 2013, MS Office 2016, etc. This tells you how old that version of office is. Now, lets look at different ways to install these versions of Microsoft Office.

MSI Installer

This is the most common installer you will see. It is the regular installer that runs from office installation disks. It is fast and reliable.

CTR or Click-to-Run Installer

CTR or Click-to-Run is a way to install Microsoft Office. It downloads installation files from the internet and uses them in the setup process. It was used in Office 2010, and Office 2013. Expect to see it in later versions as well. This allows you to install Microsoft Office without using an installation disk.

The advantage of using CTR is that the CTR installation is independent of Office installed from disk. So, you can use two versions of Microsoft Office at the same time.

Office 365

Office 365 is a subscription based service from Microsoft. You pay a monthly fee after choosing from a few different plans. Each plan offers different features and a different ability to edit Office documents.

Office On Demand

Office on demand uses your internet connection in a novel and convenient way. Office on demand is a feature of Office 365 ProPlus. It temporarily installs just enough files to run office and the features you want at that particular time. You can use it on a public computer, friend’s computer, etc. Basically, anywhere and anytime as long as you have an internet connection.

Microsoft Office Online

Office.com is free and accessible to everyone. On Office.com, you can start using PowerPoint and other MS Office software as apps. These apps run in the web browser, which means that PC, MAC, and Linux users can use it easily. Some mobile browsers and tablet browsers can also run these web apps.

Apps on office.com don’t have all the functionality of an installed copy of MS Office, or Office 365, but they are very useful for using Office pretty much anywhere.