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Microsoft issues first update to Office 2008 for Mac

post #1 of 69
Thread Starter 
Microsoft on Tuesday released the first update to Office 2008 for Mac in the form of a maintenance and security patch which the company is recommending for all users of the relatively new productivity suite.

"The Office 2008 for Mac 12.0.1 Update [114.1MB] contains several changes that improve security, stability, and performance," Microsoft wrote in a lengthy set of release notes. "These changes include fixes for users of Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, and include fixes for vulnerabilities that an attacker can use to overwrite the contents of a computer's memory by using malicious code."

The Redmond, Wash.-based software giant also outlined about a half dozen improvements to each of the suite's component applications. For instance, it said Word will no longer quit unexpectedly during launch or during spell check, and that blank pages are no longer printed when using a high resolution printer. Improvements to citation deletion and font substitution were also implemented.

Meanwhile, Excel will also see improvements that will also prevent unexpected quits. In addition, the new version will feature more reliable ledger sheets, present better support for secondary displays, fix formatting issues for rotated text, and respond more reliably when receiving copy and pastes of linked data and charts.

For Entourage users, the update should improve IMAP connections to servers running IBM's Lotus Domino and synchronization with Exchange Server. It should also correct problems with notification sounds under Leopard, import rules, and the stability of Database Utility when used to rebuild large identity databases.

Rounding out the fixes in the Office 2008 for Mac 12.0.1 Update are those targeting the suite's presentation software, PowerPoint. After applying the update, users should experience faster launches of PowerPoint, better character spacing and layout, and improvements to saving files to an SMB network volume, as well as saving files in PowerPoint 97-2004 formats.

Tuesday update is the first for Office 2008 for Mac since the software launched in January at Macworld Expo.
post #2 of 69
It looks like Spaces compatibility was fixed but it's not mentioned anywhere in the release notes. I'd still say that's some shoddy QA; Leopard was out for 3 months when Office 2008 was released!
post #3 of 69
Great, Microsoft Office 2008 is as buggy as all hell, not to mention slow. I hope that Excel plotting now can be at least as fast as it was on Excel 2004 running under Rosetta.
post #4 of 69
I don't know what MS was thinking when they released Office 2008 for Mac. It is the worst product I have ever seen! During my 20 years working with computers this is the first time that I have seen a product upgrade that actually a downgrade from the previous version. The only thing they did was make the interface look better. The only reason I need office was for cross platform compatibility related to macros and now thats out. The second issue I have with office 08 is limited charts options. I am still using Office 2004.

Hey MS, how hard is it to have video calls enabled on your Messenger for Mac?
post #5 of 69
WOW - hope the 23 people who bought the suite don't crash their servers while they all rush to download it all at once.
post #6 of 69
To the folks who have purchased and installed Office '08: do you like it?
post #7 of 69
Office 2008 is nearly worthless to me. Without the statistical analysis toolpack for excel, I'm forced to stick with 2004. I have used Office 2007 for windows, and actually liked it, so I don't have a huge issue with the interface.

I agree with NasserAE, why would Microsoft release a downgrade in functionality? I usually scoff at conspiracy theories, but I really do suspect that this is a move to discourage a move to macintosh computers.
post #8 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post

Great, Microsoft Office 2008 is as buggy as all hell, not to mention slow. I hope that Excel plotting now can be at least as fast as it was on Excel 2004 running under Rosetta.

For me Office 08 is at least twice as fast as Office 04 under Rosetta ever was. But yes, it is buggy as hell right now, and hopefully this update fixes some of the problems.
post #9 of 69
Does anybody know why is so slow to start up?

I am about to drop Office for good in favor of Apple apps.
It takes sometime 3 to 4 minutes to start up the Office apps. Entourage and Word specially. I already disable the fonts WYGIWYS in the preferences. etc.

I have a MacPro Octo 2.8 with 10 gig of RAM.

My old Office 2004 would take 5 seconds or less.

Man I hate Micro **** !

I just hate it. Any solution for this issue?
Thanks
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post #10 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Achiever View Post

To the folks who have purchased and installed Office '08: do you like it?

Didn't purchase it, my work has it for free as part of their agreement with MS. However the simple answer to "do you like it" is: NO.

The Office program I use the most is Excel, which in 2008 is slower and has less features than 2004. Until this update (which has actually speeded up graph generation considerably) I had been sticking with Excel 2004 because my work was actually impossible with 2008 due to the extreme slowness.

I would personally say that if anyone is a heavy Excel user, they should stick with 2004 for now. Obviously if they need VBA and other stuff Excel 2008 lacks, they basically should never upgrade.

Word and Powerpoint 2008 look OK, but to be honest I use Keynote normally and LaTeX for documents so I haven't had much chance to try them.

If I had paid $450 for Office 2008 (or whatever it costs) I'd be pretty pissed I think.
post #11 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by axc51 View Post

For me Office 08 is at least twice as fast as Office 04 under Rosetta ever was.

After the update maybe, but for excel graphs, not before. I have some graphs with 1000s of points on them, and with the initial Excel 2008, it would take literally 30-60 seconds on a Quad CPU Mac Pro to change the axis. On Excel 2004 a similar operation took a few seconds.
post #12 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Achiever View Post

To the folks who have purchased and installed Office '08: do you like it?

Excel is nice only because every time I hit the save button it saves and I don't get errors every 6 or 7 saves. Also, I needed the extra columns. The column feature was needed one month after Office was released. How nice that was. I was starting to get nervous.

I don't use any of the rest of it. Word is loaded just to read Word doc's from PC people.

I can say that Excel is slower than 2004 and to the person above who said 08 is twice as fast. Really? I have a Black iMac 24" maxed out 4 GB ram 2.8 GHz C2D (latest model) with best video card and it is slower than 2004 on the same machine. Slower by far!
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post #13 of 69
Has anyone gotten the update to work? The updater says it can't find my install, grrr.

Guess it's back to Office 2003 in Parallels for me....

Agree with the comments above. How can the Mac BU ever catch up when their newest release is underwhelming compared to the *previous* version of its Windows counterpart?

MacOffice 2008 < WinOffice 2003
post #14 of 69
The updater seems to install Silverlight, odd.. I didn't ask for that..

[edit] It's only a weblink in a folder, not the plugin itself.
post #15 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henk Poley View Post

The updater seems to install Silverlight, odd.. I didn't ask for that..

It's Microsoft. You should have expected things that you didn't ask for.
post #16 of 69
Slightly OT, how likely is it that iWork will have it's next release in '09? I'm hoping numbers gets some major improvements.
post #17 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by dglow View Post

Has anyone gotten the update to work? The updater says it can't find my install, grrr.

Worked for me on my Mac Pro and MacBook Pro.
post #18 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Achiever View Post

To the folks who have purchased and installed Office '08: do you like it?

Like others, I have mixed emotions. My MacBook Pro overall is considerably faster now that I have dumped the last program needing to run Rosetta. However, I am a heavy Excel user and the lack of VBA and other little trinkets that are missing in 2008 has led me to keep 2004 on my Mac in case I need it (you can keep the old program with no compatibility issues).

No review yet of the MS update, but I hope it really does solve the Excel crashing and PowerPoint anemic performance issues. As far as updates under 2004, they seemed to get it right after about 2 years.

While I, like many others, loath most things MS because of their bloated user-unfriendliness, it is a strict requirement for my work as iWork is only about 80% compatible. (I'm sure Gustav will correct me on what my profession ACTUALLY requires since he knows it all) No other suite offers all the integrated abilities that Office currently does. Perhaps some have better word processors, but they lack the other pieces in sufficient form.

Just my 4¢ (inflation ya know)
post #19 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Achiever View Post

To the folks who have purchased and installed Office '08: do you like it?

I've been using 2008 for about a month now. I use Entourage constantly and Word regularly, and I haven't noticed them being faster or slower. Ditto for Excel and PowerPoint, although I only use those for simple files. They don't seem more or less stable, either. In fact, I haven't really noticed the transition, except for some of the keyboard shortcuts changing in Entourage. I do think the new interfaces look nice, so I guess the overall experience is like getting a haircut ... just a newer version of the same thing.

The sad thing is that, like many software upgrades, I can't think of a single new feature that I'm using. The old feature set was fine and I only upgraded for compatibility with the new file formats.

What's even more sad is that a 10-person, Mac-based consulting company I work with is going to have to upgrade 10 copies at $200+ each, just for compatibility, not because they need any new features. What a scam!
post #20 of 69
I just tried to update and it said no updates are available. Then I remember downloading this update 2 weeks ago. Was I a beta tester? I've heard developers roll out updates to a small group prior to releasing the update to the masses to ensure everything is working ok.

Regardless, first-time launch time seems to be slightly faster.
post #21 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Achiever View Post

To the folks who have purchased and installed Office '08: do you like it?

Installed it just a couple of days ago (17" MBP, 2.16 GHz Core Duo, 2GB). Takes f-o-r-e-v-e-r for files to open, and is r-e-a-l-l-y s-l-o-w............
post #22 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Achiever View Post

To the folks who have purchased and installed Office '08: do you like it?

So far, I'm not impressed. Load times are much slower, SYLK imports to Excel seem to be broken (it hangs when I try to import a report from QuickBooks), but, I will say that the apps are faster once they've launched.

Overall, I don't see it as being functionally much better than 2004.

btw- The update isn't showing up in MAU for me...

[Edit] Just installed the update. Load times seem a little faster, but SYLK import is still broken. Meh.
post #23 of 69
Same here for me.

I installed it expecting it to be ugly but I was genuinely surprised at how buggy and slow it is on *top* of the ugly.

Load times are *glacial* on a standard 20" iMac desktop even with an extra Gig of RAM. Lots and lots of redraw problems, and frequent (like every third or fourth mouse movement), pauses in the interface. I can't even drag a window out of the way of another without the interface freezing entirely for a second or so. Hopelessly "beta-esque" behaviour IMO. Both the machine and the OS I am using (Leopard) were out for months before they shipped this puppy also.

I will try the update, but so far it hasn't shown up. I guess that rather than telling us the server is busy, MS is merely pretending they don't have an update for me right now.

I was also very disappointed at all the stuff Office installs even when you specifically request only Word and Excel. No one does this nowadays except for Microsoft and Adobe. Why, why why? Users don't have the right to install what they want on their hard drives? Sheesh!

Don't even get me started on why (in 2008!) the Office settings folder is *stil*l stuck in my Documents folder (in violation of the application guidelines), and can't be moved.
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In Windows, a window can be a document, it can be an application, or it can be a window that contains other documents or applications. Theres just no consistency. Its just a big grab bag of monkey...
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post #24 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henk Poley View Post

The updater seems to install Silverlight, odd.. I didn't ask for that..

On second look, only a "webloc" (link) to the Microsoft site about Silverlight.
post #25 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by the cool gut View Post

WOW - hope the 23 people who bought the suite don't crash their servers while they all rush to download it all at once.



We have a winner!

PS. Shouldn't MS get the tech version of a razzie for releasing an upgrade that's slower than the previous version that ran under EMULATION? That's really quite an accomplishment if you stop to think about it.
post #26 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by gugy View Post

Does anybody know why is so slow to start up?

I am about to drop Office for good in favor of Apple apps.
It takes sometime 3 to 4 minutes to start up the Office apps. Entourage and Word specially. I already disable the fonts WYGIWYS in the preferences. etc.

I have a MacPro Octo 2.8 with 10 gig of RAM.

My old Office 2004 would take 5 seconds or less.

Man I hate Micro **** !

I just hate it. Any solution for this issue?
Thanks

I don't know what you're doing wrong, but it takes me seconds to load up files in Office 08 (iWork takes longer.) I have a MacBook Pro 2.16.
post #27 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by southerndoc View Post

I just tried to update and it said no updates are available. Then I remember downloading this update 2 weeks ago. Was I a beta tester? [...]

Regardless, first-time launch time seems to be slightly faster.

The updater wasn't working for me either. You need to go to the web page linked to in the AppleInsider article and download the disk image (dmg).

If you installed something a couple of weeks ago, it was probably the "Office Update Updater" or whatever they called it (an update to the auto updater ... which either isn't working, or they haven't set up whatever is needed to inform the updater).
post #28 of 69
What update? I can't seem to get it on the microsoft update app thingy.
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post #29 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

Don't even get me started on why (in 2008!) the Office settings folder is *stil*l stuck in my Documents folder (in violation of the application guidelines), and can't be moved.

I assume you mean the "Microsoft User Data" folder (I don't have Office 2008, just 2004). If it works the same as 2004, try this:

Manually move the Microsoft User Data folder out of the Documents folder and into User/Library/Application Support. And that's it - apparently Office is okay with looking there for the Microsoft User Data folder, and should find it okay and not create a new one.
post #30 of 69
I hate Office 2008 for Mac. Why couldn't they have used the same interface as Office 2007 for windows. I have uninstalled Office 2008 and will be using Office 2007 in Fusion. It is just unacceptable that Office 2007 runs faster in Fusion than Office 2008 for Mac runs native in OS X.
post #31 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Achiever View Post

To the folks who have purchased and installed Office '08: do you like it?

If you work in a primarily Windows office space like me it is a necessary evil. iWork is cool but isn't a viable alternative for XML formats. OpenOffice, don't get me started, open source is a great contributor but not a great replacement for all professionally developed apps.

It definitely runs much faster than 04 on my Intel MacBook Pro but I also have to support it on several other Macs in the office & it has caused constant headaches for machines that would otherwise never need tech services.

Personally, if exchange calendar support comes to the desktop as it is coming to the iPhone I would abandon office 08 & deal with the differences in iWork rather than trying to use office 08.
post #32 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by elroth View Post

I assume you mean the "Microsoft User Data" folder (I don't have Office 2008, just 2004). If it works the same as 2004, try this:

Manually move the Microsoft User Data folder out of the Documents folder and into User/Library/Application Support. And that's it - apparently Office is okay with looking there for the Microsoft User Data folder, and should find it okay and not create a new one.

Very nice, thanks! This one has bugged me for years!
post #33 of 69
90% of the replies to this thread are just plain immature.

MS Office love it or loath it is the de facto standard productivity suite for 90% of the world's leading companies, so to dismiss it as worthless is also idiotic.

I think this latest version is excellent, but then I'm running it on an Intel Mac with Leopard that's less than two years old. Nearly all of the complaints seem to come from people running Office on state-of-the-ark machines with processors that really should be in a museum.

If your Mac is 2004 vintage and you have no plans on upgrading any time soon, then maybe you should just stick with MS Office 2004 too.

The ability of 2008 Office for the Mac to provide seamless compatibility with all past and present Windows based Office docs is alone worth the price of admission.
post #34 of 69
The update fixed the bug I had that kept Word from properly writing a Normal.dat file when exiting Word. Word also loads faster on my 2 GHz iMac (10 seconds versus 50), but still runs sluggishly, with spinning rainbows when I try to open the File menu.

--Mike Perry, Seattle
post #35 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

The ability of 2008 Office for the Mac to provide seamless compatibility with all past and present Windows based Office docs is alone worth the price of admission.

Hmmm. The veracity of your statement hinges largely upon the definition of "seamless compatibility".

VBA macros?
PST files?
EML attachments?

The only version that Mac Office is compatible with is... <drum roll> ...itself.
post #36 of 69
I have noticed this too. When I was using 2008, it would take a good couple of minutes for the program to start up. Never figured out why. Because of that, I have gone back to 2004 now. Seriously, only MS can release an upgrade that actually 'downgrades' the software

Quote:
Originally Posted by gugy View Post

Does anybody know why is so slow to start up?

I am about to drop Office for good in favor of Apple apps.
It takes sometime 3 to 4 minutes to start up the Office apps. Entourage and Word specially. I already disable the fonts WYGIWYS in the preferences. etc.

I have a MacPro Octo 2.8 with 10 gig of RAM.

My old Office 2004 would take 5 seconds or less.

Man I hate Micro **** !

I just hate it. Any solution for this issue?
Thanks
post #37 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

90% of the replies to this thread are just plain immature.

MS Office love it or loath it is the de facto standard productivity suite for 90% of the world's leading companies, so to dismiss it as worthless is also idiotic.

If your Mac is 2004 vintage and you have no plans on upgrading any time soon, then maybe you should just stick with MS Office 2004 too.

Actually, since you brought up the term, let me humbly suggest that you are being the "idiot" here: Let me just say, heard of the suffix "x"?

And, "90%" of the posts did not "dismiss" Office '08 "worthless." When you make sweeping statements implying things like that, you destroy your own credibility.
post #38 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by elroth View Post

I assume you mean the "Microsoft User Data" folder (I don't have Office 2008, just 2004). If it works the same as 2004, try this:

Manually move the Microsoft User Data folder out of the Documents folder and into User/Library/Application Support. And that's it - apparently Office is okay with looking there for the Microsoft User Data folder, and should find it okay and not create a new one.

no, office 2008 wants the documents folder for that info! if you move it office 2008 creates a new folder automatically!
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post #39 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Achiever View Post

To the folks who have purchased and installed Office '08: do you like it?

I am running it under Tiger and it crashes regularly, usually when I am saving or closing it. Cost me a whole days work in one case. Hate it and sorry I upgraded.
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post #40 of 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

90% of the replies to this thread are just plain immature.

MS Office love it or loath it is the de facto standard productivity suite for 90% of the world's leading companies, so to dismiss it as worthless is also idiotic.

I think this latest version is excellent, but then I'm running it on an Intel Mac with Leopard that's less than two years old. Nearly all of the complaints seem to come from people running Office on state-of-the-ark machines with processors that really should be in a museum.

If your Mac is 2004 vintage and you have no plans on upgrading any time soon, then maybe you should just stick with MS Office 2004 too.

The ability of 2008 Office for the Mac to provide seamless compatibility with all past and present Windows based Office docs is alone worth the price of admission.

If you open text only documents you will get compatibility with all other versions. However, if you try to open excel sheet or word document created on windows you will get many problems. Also, Mac version lack many features that used to be available on Office 2004 and still available on Office for windows. If you have windows, MS Office is the best application without doubt. On Mac, on the other hand, nothing is close to windows Office. We are irritated that MS is not giving enough attention to Mac version of Office. Maybe if they try harder then they won't worry about people switching from Windows to Mac.
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