Office 365 Application versions

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Why have Microsoft dropped the version differentiator in the name of the office products. For example, previously you had Office 2007, Office 2010, Office 2013 etc. Now we have to refer to the build number which is meaningless to know what we are installing. This is a critical issue as we run Sage 200C. Sage tell us that we need Office 2016 for them to be able to support us which is apparently a build less than 1809. Build 1809 is deemed as Office 2019 and not a supported install with Sage 200C. How are we able to download and install an earlier version of Office (2016) from the one currently available from Office 365 downloads. 

6 Replies
Hi Mr Righty,

The two versions of Office in Office 365 are Business and Pro Plus which is dependent on the Office 365 plan you purchase. They dropped the year with Office 365 because there is a much faster cadence of new features (multiple times per year) - it is classed as evergreen and not a 'point in time' version of the product. Therefore they use the build number to signify the version as opposed to the year. They still do point in time versions of office with the release of Office 2019 although the Business and ProPlus versions are already way ahead of this at the current time.

AFAIK, there is no way to download previous builds through the Office 365 control panel (they did used to have this functionality in the past) apart from using the Office Deployment Tool to download a different version:

Probably easier to get an off the shelf version or OEM version of 2016 as I am sure they are still out there; and convert the Office 365 licence to one without Office. Office 2016 will work with Office 365 for the next few years at least. The other alternative, and probably the best one for the future would be to move to a modern finance app such as Microsoft Business Central which natively integrates to Office 365.

Hope this helps

Best, Chris

We recently upgraded to a version of Office 365 which gave us access to the desktop apps, on the basis we had 25 users to upgrade which was more cost effective than buying OEM or off the shelf copies and keeps us bang up to date. It was only when we found that Sage do not support the downloaded version (Office 2019 if you wish) that we then ran into trouble as I mention in my OP, it is not a supported combination. Moving to another accountancy package is not an option. Sage is the defacto Standard in accountancy and used throughout the industry. The office deployment tool is the only option for us at this time. We will have to disable updates as well as we could end up, inadvertently, with an unsupported installation in the future. 

Absolutely understand - and I have come across this scenario several times previously. Good that you will use the Office Deployment Tool going forward. To note, you can also control office versions with Microsoft Intune if you have it.

I hope I managed to answer your questions. If I have, please set like on the response and set it as the solution. Look forward to helping you again in the future.

Best, Chris
Well, If you ask my opinion, you should request SAGE to support Office 365...they should be able to be compatible with Cloud version of Office 365 and not impose a version that cannot be upgrade to ensure the software is working properly

Believe me, been there done that. Their Sage 50 product is by all accounts compatible across the board, but their Sage 200C product is not. Their excuse is we haven't fully tested on O2019 therefore we are not prepared to support you if you have a problem.


It is unbelievable to be honest considering the cost of Sage both for licenses and support but we are where we are. Version 1807 10325.20082 is the latest tested build. As IT support I do not like Sage, but my customers use it and it is fairly standard across the accountancy world. I think they believe because of this they can expect their customers yield to their requirements. Mind you it doesn't help with Microsoft's current release speeds with version releases 2 or 3 times a month, May this year had 4 monthly channels.

I see your point here, but if SAGE does not want to provide this support them your customer should think on not using Office 365 and use just Office 2016...something It might no happen taking into account Office 365 can be installed in up to 5 PCs per user and also that you don't need to worry about upgrading the software, it's done by I think the ball is more on SAGE's roof. Of course, it's just an opinion