Excel (or how Ace nearly went postal)

Can someone please PLEASE explain to me what the hell microsoft office 365 accomplishes?

Can i still buy excel like i used to or do i have to buy a bloody subscription now to office 365?

I use Google sheets. Always have done since starting my companies but since I’ve gone VAT registered (another headache, thank you UK :triumph:) i need to use excel and some software that works alongside it to send my returns to government. But this has to be excel and not compatible with google sheets.

All i want to do, is either migrate to excel from GS entirely (but without the other bollocks that comes with 365)

Or just copy paste my balance sheet to excel once a month from GS to send to the poxy government.

I confess. I have no idea what I’m doing with spreadsheets but GS works for me fine. Its on my phone, pc and laptops and it works everytime.

But i need excel for this one bloody job, do i need to buy 365 and pay a worthless subscription or is there another more obvious way to just buy the bloody thing and own it.

I’m a little stressed today, apologies if that is rubbing off on this post.

Appreciate the help

I dont know about Excel, but LibreOffice (free, open source) will save in various Excel formats. Would that maybe do the trick?


According to the lady i spoke to this morning she was extremely insistant that it had to be excel due to the way the plugin works when the sheet is open. She said it must be excel 2010 or newer running on win 7 or newer

Its a separate standalone program, but i have no idea about this stuff.

LibreOffice can save as different Excel file extensions, .xls .xlsx
No idea what the newest format is though, or if the Lady would notice the difference.

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The other bollocks is the only reason why o365 is cool. It‘s gone way beyond the usual office apps. But none of it is important to you right now.

If you just need Excel I think the Browser version of it on office.com works without a subscription maybe? Try it, works like Google Spreadsheets and saves files to Onedrive, so that sweet .xslx file ends up directly on your harddrive

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Oh you wonderful hero!

Let me try that and get back to you. Thank you so much!

Hope I did not promise too much. I‘m a Libreoffice user. But only if it can‘t be avoided.

For paper letters I found a nice mobile app, so I type all contract terminations and so on while sitting on the can. Life is too short for that crap. :smiley:


I would imagine that the web app version of Excel won’t work with the plug-in you need.


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Seems that MS does still sell a stand alone version. I thought 2019 was the last one…


US version is listed at $249.99

Office Home & Business 2021

Microsoft Corporation

  • One-time purchase for 1 PC or Mac
  • Classic 2021 versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook
  • Microsoft support included for first 60 days at no extra cost
  • Compatible with Windows 11, Windows 10, or macOS*
  • Works with Microsoft Teams

Found the link in an old post by @Wes

Crap, Disregard the link in the spoiler tags that is not MS office…



This is likely a better option for you. $99.99 USD

OfficeSuite Home & Business 2023 - Lifetime License - Documents, Sheets, Slides, PDF, Mail & Calendar for Windows

About this item

  • Create, Edit and Style DOCUMENTS, SPREADSHEETS & PRESENTATIONS – all the features that you need to get work done.
  • Compatibility with all popular file formats - OPEN, EDIT & CREATE new and existing documents, spreadsheets and presentations
  • Included PDF functions - Fill & Sign Forms, Annotate, Password Protect and use Digital signatures.
  • Mail & Calendar Included - Manage multiple Email accounts and Calendars.
  • LIFETIME License for 1 Windows PC or Laptop.


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Crap, Disregard this link that is not MS office…

Think I may have found a cheaper and newer option for you by searching Amazon @Victork2.

OfficeSuite Home & Business 2023 - Lifetime License - Documents, Sheets, Slides, PDF, Mail & Calendar for Windows

I also edited my prior post to include the Amazon link.



The fact alone that there are officials (probably handsomly paid with public money) dimwitted (or worse, paid off by MS) enough to force people into a proprietary data format whose only constant is that it just won’t stop changing, for the sole purpose of data exchange is enraging to say the least.

I’d tell this off as a hoax if we didn’t have the same kind of absolute cognitive lawn darts sprinkled all over places where they can achieve maximum damage.


The absence of proper data exchange standards is exactly what holds digitalization of our administrations back.

For german speaking countries (DACH region) here‘s an informative podcast episode: LdN301 „Keine weiteren Fragen“ – Digitalisierung der deutschen Verwaltung, Teil 1 – Lage der Nation

Bit I digress/derail… :slight_smile:


Yes, there is an absolute lack of understanding about the difference between an interface and its implementation. They need to define the interface, what people use to talk to that interface isn’t their business.


As far as I am concerned there are perfect exchange formats available.

csv, txt, pdf, svg, json, and a few others. Hell, even XML or PER. Everyone can read and write them, lots of parsers available in all programming languages, you can search or diff them on any system.

As for Office: work forces MS Office on me for some things, but for most I use LibreOffice. Works just fine.


That‘s for home use, and not exactly what I meant.

Our Administration does not know how to transport data for a simple process within the same townhall building. They still print to paper and scan it again just for relaying information to another office. Disgusting.

Anyway, I hope ViktorK was able to settle his small business with the tax office?


A little late to the party and I hope you get this sorted mate.

Sounds like they need you to download and use the plugin as well, I would be interested to know exactly what it does? I would try it with LibreOffice before forking out for Excel/Office. But if it is anything like our .gov departments they spent a fortune paying someone like SAP for bespoke software that will only play nice with other specific software.

Because if all they need is a .xls or .xlsx file sent to them I would just use freeware such as LibreOffice and let then sort it out.

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It sounds like she’s talking about a macro within the sheet, or some Visual Basic that’s embedded. Do you have a copy of the excel template she wants you to use? If so I’m happy to have a look and see if it works on other flavours of Excel.

I use GS, LibreOffice and O365 Excel seamlessly on three different PC’s without issue.




This ^ is the software that they want me to buy and use.

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My understanding is that you cannot use Excel Macros (in essence VBA scripts) in Excel Online, GS or LibreOffice directly. For GS you need to convert them to Google Apps Script and for LibreOffice there is a different API.

There does not seem to be an alternative to buying O365. the one time purchase (cost is about equal to the 1-year subscription) is only available for personal use, not business use (at least in my country).

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