How to run multiple versions of Visio

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INTRODUCTION

Although we do not recommend it, you can install and use more than one version of Microsoft Visio on a single computer. For example, you can install and use both Microsoft Office Visio 2003 and Microsoft Office Visio 2007 on the same computer.

This article describes the problems that you may experience when you do this. Additionally, this article offers advice on how to prevent different versions of Visio from conflicting with one another.

MORE INFORMATION

Order of installation

If you want to install and use more than one version of Visio on the same computer, install the earliest version first.

For example, if you want to use both Visio 2003 and Visio 2007 on the same computer, install Visio 2003 first. This order is required because of the way that Visio manages registry keys, file name extensions, and other settings for each version.

The rest of this article assumes that you have installed the versions of Visio in the correct order.

Visio folder locations

When you install Visio 2007, the default folder for setup is the following folder:
C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Visio12
When you install Visio 2003, the default folder for setup is the following folder:
C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Visio11
When you install Visio 2002, the default folder for setup is the following folder:
C:\ Program Files\Microsoft Office\Visio10
When you install Visio 2000, the default folder for setup is the following folder:
C:\Program Files\Visio
When you install Visio 5.0, the default folder for setup is the following folder:
C:\Program Files\Visio
Note If you install Visio 5.0 and Visio 2000 on the same computer, choose a different setup folder location for Visio 2000. For example, when you install Visio 2000, install Visio 2000 to the following folder:
C:\Program Files\Visio2000

Shortcuts on the Start menu

Visio 2007 and Visio 2003 use different shortcut names on the Microsoft Office menu. However, Visio 2002 and Visio 2000 use the same shortcut names on the Start menu to start programs. Because of this behavior, the Setup program overwrites the shortcuts for the earlier versions of Visio when you install Visio 2002.

Notes about the shortcuts for Visio 2002 and Visio 2000
  • The Microsoft Visio shortcut on the Start menu always points to the Visio 2000 or Visio 2002 product that you most recently installed or repaired.
  • If you rename the shortcuts for the earlier versions of Visio before you install Visio 2002, you can use the shortcuts for all sets of programs on the Start menu.

    To avoid confusion, we suggest that you add the version number to each renamed shortcut. For example, rename the shortcut that points to Visio 2000 as "Microsoft Visio 2000" before you install Visio 2002. Additionally, you can move the Visio 2000 shortcuts to a subfolder on the Start menu.
  • If you manually move the shortcuts for either Visio 2002 or Visio 2000 and then reinstall the product or repair the shortcuts, the shortcuts will be re-created on the Programs submenu on the Start menu.

Error message when you start Visio

If you run an earlier version of Visio and then start a later version of Visio on the same computer, you may receive a message that resembles the following message in a Windows Installer dialog box:
Preparing to install...
Then, you receive one of the following messages in another dialog box:
Please wait while Windows configures Microsoft Visio Edition
Please wait while Windows configures Microsoft Office Visio Edition
NoteEdition is a placeholder for "Standard" or "Professional," depending on the edition of Visio that is installed on your computer.

This behavior occurs because Visio must reregister itself in the Microsoft Windows registry. When you start Visio, its resiliency features check the appropriate registry entries. If the appropriate version is not the associated program for the .vsd file type, Visio starts the Windows Installer to correct the registry keys.

If you do not want to receive these error messages every time that you start Visio 2002, create a new shortcut for Visio 2002 that manually registers the product. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Exit Visio.
  2. Right-click an empty area of the Windows desktop, click New, and then click Shortcut.
  3. Click Browse.
  4. Locate the folder where you installed Visio. Click the Visio.exe file, and then click OK.
  5. In the Type the location of the item box, you see the complete path of the Visio.exe file in quotation marks. The path resembles one of the following paths:
    • "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Visio12\Visio.exe"
    • "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Visio11\Visio.exe"
    • "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Visio10\Visio.exe"
    Put the insertion point in the Type the location of the item box, press the RIGHT ARROW key to move to the end of the file path after the closing quotation mark, type a space, and then type /r.

    Your entry now resembles one of the following paths:
    • "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Visio12\Visio.exe" /r
    • "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Visio11\Visio.exe" /r
    • "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Visio10\Visio.exe" /r
  6. Click Next.
  7. In the Type a name for this shortcut box, type a name, and then click Finish.
  8. Run Visio by using the new shortcut on the Windows desktop to manually reregister Visio every time that it is run.
Note When you use this method to start Visio, Visio opens with a blank screen. You must use the File menu to create a new project or to open an existing project.

What occurs when you double-click a drawing file in Windows Explorer

When you double-click a Visio drawing in Windows Explorer, or when you click a drawing from the recent documents folder in Windows, the following rules apply:
  • If a version of the program is running, the drawing opens in that version.
  • If no version of the program is running, the drawing opens in the version of the program that you most recently installed.

    Alternatively, the drawing opens in the last version of the program that was running. Every time that you start the Visio program, it registers itself as the version to use to load a drawing.
To reassociate drawings with a particular version of Visio, start that version of Visio. Alternatively, run the Visio Setup program, and then click Repair. This registers the file associations for that version of Visio.

For more information about how to make file associations, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
141275 How to open a file with other than associated program

Properties

Article ID: 298947 - Last Review: April 20, 2007 - Revision: 4.1
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Office Visio Professional 2007
  • Microsoft Office Visio Standard 2007
  • Microsoft Office Visio Professional 2003
  • Microsoft Office Visio Standard 2003
  • Microsoft Visio 2002 Professional Edition
  • Microsoft Visio 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Visio 2000 Enterprise Edition
  • Microsoft Visio 2000 Professional Edition
  • Microsoft Visio 2000 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Visio 2000 Technical Edition
Keywords: 
kbexpertisebeginner kbhowto KB298947

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