Microsoft pulls Office 2011 SP2 AutoUpdate for Mac

Posted:
in Mac Software edited January 2014
A little over a week after releasing an update to its Office 2011 for Mac, Microsoft has stopped pushing out auto-updates for Service Pack 2 over a flaw that corrupts identity databases in the company's Outlook mail client.

The announcement was made on Friday through the Microsoft Office blog, and notifies users that automatic updates for SP2 will be temporarily suspended while the company investigates the cause of the problem.

From the post:
On April 12th, we released SP2 for Office for Mac 2011. The majority of our customers have been delighted with the improvements ? new features and performance. Unfortunately, a small percentage are experiencing some issues with the update, specifically related to the Outlook for Mac database.
Five days after initially releasing SP2, Microsoft posted a workaround and apology to users affected by the update.

The first workaround deals with those users who have yet to install the update, and calls for the rebuilding of Outlook's database. The second, more comprehensive fix deals with those who already installed the patch and involves a complicated procedure to restore the database to working condition from an existing backup.

Office 2011 for Mac
Microsoft Outlook on Office 2011 for Mac. | Source: Microsoft


Office 2011 for Mac users can still download SP2 through Microsoft's website, though it is recommended that the workaround be implemented prior to installation.

The SP2 update brought many enhancements for OS X Lion users like full-screen display modes and performance improvements.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 30


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

    The SP2 update brought many enhancements for OS X Lion users like full-screen display modes and perfromance improvements.


     


     


    Quick heads up- the last sentence in the article has a spelling mistake.


     


     

  • Reply 2 of 30


    ...

  • Reply 3 of 30


    Whoa! First the Nokia software beta got shipped and not a beta service pack. MS is on a roll. W00T! 

  • Reply 4 of 30
    joshajosha Posts: 901member


    Oh my, there are still Mac users wasting their time with troublesome Outlook ?


     


    Outlook is the last Email program knowledgeable Mac users would use !

  • Reply 5 of 30
    crunchcrunch Posts: 180member


    @JoshA: Unfortunately, some people have no choice, because their company uses Outlook and they get suckered into the cloud-based Office suite. I have never liked Outlook, including when I was still a die-hard IBM/Lenovo ThinkPad fan pre-2010. :D


     


    As for Microsoft's plentiful troubles with its 2nd major attempt at making Windows Phone's mobile OS anything closely resembling success, I think we can argue that it looks like a major FAIL for both MS and Nokia....image

  • Reply 6 of 30


    Sure thing, JoshA -- there are still corporate IT departments at large entertainment companies that insist "Outlook über alles", and mandate that Outlook be pushed to all users, despite:


     


    - constant instabilities.


    - catastrophic data-losing crashes


    - deliberate restrictions on the size of databases and thus mail archives


    - a retarded "archiving" system.


    - constant updates that don't actually fix or address bugs dating back nearly a decade.


     


    Yet, despite all of this, and Apple Mail / Calendar / Contacts being demonstrably better, the Enterprise mandate remains "Outlook über Alles", in a clear demonstration that these same IT groups do not care one iota about Mac users.


     


     

  • Reply 7 of 30


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by JoshA View Post


    Oh my, there are still Mac users wasting their time with troublesome Outlook ?


     


    Outlook is the last Email program knowledgeable Mac users would use !



     


    I consider myself to be quite knowledgeable, yet I use Outlook. I tried to stick to Mail.app and iCal and Address Book for my company's Exchange integration, and yeah it does work and I probably would stick with it if I had to pay full price for Outlook. Truth is though that for Exchange access, Outlook's integration is simply better. I've had iCal do weird things with meeting invites, and Mail.app just doesn't 'feel' right with Exchange.


     


    That said, on my home machines I still use Mail.app and have no use for Outlook, and do despise Outlook's proprietary database (over Mail.app's mostly mbox-compatible mail folders).

  • Reply 8 of 30
    jpdlvmhjpdlvmh Posts: 72member


    I was in the middle of doing a letter in Word when the update came on screen, so I went for a coffee while the app updated.  Having finished the update, I was asked for the registration code.  (without which I could obviously not use any of the Office components)     After frantically looking in several places for the Office box, I resorted to Time Machine and restored from that.   Curses to MS and blessings to TM !

  • Reply 9 of 30


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by davidod315 View Post


    You mean, Microsoft are utter f***-wits? Quelle surprise of the century!



     


    I guess you forgot the updates Apple has pulled. Don't be what you deemed Microsoft to be...

  • Reply 10 of 30


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by djames4242 View Post


     


     


    I consider myself to be quite knowledgeable, yet I use Outlook. I tried to stick to Mail.app and iCal and Address Book for my company's Exchange integration, and yeah it does work and I probably would stick with it if I had to pay full price for Outlook. Truth is though that for Exchange access, Outlook's integration is simply better. I've had iCal do weird things with meeting invites, and Mail.app just doesn't 'feel' right with Exchange.


     


    That said, on my home machines I still use Mail.app and have no use for Outlook, and do despise Outlook's proprietary database (over Mail.app's mostly mbox-compatible mail folders).



     


    Agreed. I think Outlook is a better client. It is just bloatware... If MS could streamline it a bit, well a lot, it would not be that terrible.

  • Reply 11 of 30


    I can absolutely second what James has said.  Mail.app and iCal are fine for casual integration with Exchange, however there are some serious issues with iCal+Exchange ... namely calendar sharing, invites, delegation and iCal stability when mixing Exchange accounts with local calendars.


     


    Outlook has been a pain for us.  We have at least one box corruption every two to three weeks (45 total users).  We are holding off on deploying Outlook SP2, however I have successfully upgraded myself, and there are a number of VERY thoughtful additions/corrections in the new version.  I tip my hat to them for trying.


     


     


    I have no doubt Microsoft will get their arms around this on a point update.  


     


    However there are still a few significant limitations with Outlook for Mac compared to its Windows counterpart.  Namely, in Outlook for Mac, you can currently only share the first calendar on your Exchange account.  If you like to keep multiple calendars, I have found no way to share them.  The work-around has been to create MULTIPLE exchange accounts for each calendar you want to share.  Insane.  This is a non-issue on Windows Outlook (where you can do just about anything).


     


    It's really sad.  Our University went to gmail for student access, and retained the internal Microsoft Exchange server for Faculty and Staff (our CIO is a former Dell exec, I believe).  The reason is that our F/S mail data is considered State property and falls under the state-wide data requirements.  Any third party that stores state data must go through an extensive contract process.  So here we are, Macs having to use Microsoft Exchange, and having to deal with silly issues from a fairly neutered product that is more an after thought than a flagship email product.


     

  • Reply 12 of 30
    drfreemandrfreeman Posts: 111member


    There are two issues that really annoy me on office for Mac.


     


    1. Office for mac does not read the captions inside text boxes for tables/images etc. This means that if you want to make a List of Tables or List of Figures at the beginning of your document, you should open it on a Windows PC and make the list on a Windows Word. Then save the document and copy it to Mac again! This is just outrageous! 


     


    2. It takes a bit too long for Outlook to load on both Mac and PC! Mail runs instantly!


     


    Whilst at it, why do we have Facebook login only on Appleinsider? Perhaps a Twitter login would be a good idea as well.


     


     


     

  • Reply 13 of 30
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sapporobabyrtrns View Post


     


     


    Agreed. I think Outlook is a better client. It is just bloatware... If MS could streamline it a bit, well a lot, it would not be that terrible.



     


    The fundamental problem is the massive database used by Outlook. A large, integral database like that is fragile - and my experience with Outlook is that it regularly corrupted my database. I was constantly having to rebuild and every couple of years, I got the 'unable to rebuild database' error, causing massive loss of data.



    It's analogous to the Registry used by Windows. While the Registry is far better than it was a decade ago, it remains a single point of failure and a fragile system. Microsoft likes large databases to store massive amounts of unrelated information. Apple has chosen to go with thousands of small preference files so that if one gets corrupted, it doesn't bring down the entire system.  

  • Reply 14 of 30
    stelligentstelligent Posts: 2,680member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by djames4242 View Post


     


     


    I consider myself to be quite knowledgeable, yet I use Outlook. I tried to stick to Mail.app and iCal and Address Book for my company's Exchange integration, and yeah it does work and I probably would stick with it if I had to pay full price for Outlook. Truth is though that for Exchange access, Outlook's integration is simply better. I've had iCal do weird things with meeting invites, and Mail.app just doesn't 'feel' right with Exchange.


     


    That said, on my home machines I still use Mail.app and have no use for Outlook, and do despise Outlook's proprietary database (over Mail.app's mostly mbox-compatible mail folders).



     




    Nice to see a thoughtful response not grounded in anti-MS instincts (however misinformed) or anti-anything-not-Apple (ir)rationale. What did you use when Outlook was not available for the Mac?

  • Reply 15 of 30
    stelligentstelligent Posts: 2,680member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


     


     


    The fundamental problem is the massive database used by Outlook. A large, integral database like that is fragile - and my experience with Outlook is that it regularly corrupted my database. I was constantly having to rebuild and every couple of years, I got the 'unable to rebuild database' error, causing massive loss of data.



    It's analogous to the Registry used by Windows. While the Registry is far better than it was a decade ago, it remains a single point of failure and a fragile system. Microsoft likes large databases to store massive amounts of unrelated information. Apple has chosen to go with thousands of small preference files so that if one gets corrupted, it doesn't bring down the entire system.  



     




    I agree to an extent. I have never seen the database corruption issue on my own Windows or Mac machines, but have seen it occasionally on machines under my purview.

  • Reply 16 of 30
    stelligentstelligent Posts: 2,680member


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by davidod315 View Post


    You mean, Microsoft are utter f***-wits? Quelle surprise of the century!



     


    Thanks for the demonstration on how to discredit oneself intellectually.

  • Reply 17 of 30
    royboyroyboy Posts: 445member


    I have a Mac Pro with 4 hard drives and one drive I keep cloned and use it for upgrades/update testing.  Well this time, I didn't switch over to my update testing drive and I paid for it in a lot of lost time trying to figure out what to do about a corrupted Outlook database.  Luckily, I finally thought of Apple's Time Machine (Drive 3) and I was able to retrieve my non-corrupted Outlook database.  Thanks, Apple.


     


    Why do I continue to use Outlook, when there are a number of things that frustrate me about Outlook?  Well, because my database has emails back to the early 2000s (think Entourage) and I refer back to them for various info.  I have several other email accounts I use for myself, but if I change from Outlook, which we use as the family email system, then I'm making a change for other people in the family also.

     

  • Reply 18 of 30
    quantzquantz Posts: 94member


    After loosing soooo much time with Micro$oft lousy Entourage (crashes, loss of date, inaccessible identity, slowness, etc.),


    I've definitively dumped it for Mail and never looked back.


    Micro$oft repeated bugs in Office are such an insult to the consumer I'm not forking a pound in any M$oft Office since


    years. 

  • Reply 19 of 30
    aquaticaquatic Posts: 5,602member


    I used to like Apple Mail but it's been getting bloated with a bunch of crap for years and hasn't gotten much in the way of updates. Its interfaces gets uglier every release. 


     


    I am starting to migrate to Outlook. I really like Outlook on the PC and I like Outlook so far on Mac. I like the idea of combining calendars, email and contacts, though. I'm sure some folks like to keep them separate. But for me I find Outlook does these things excellently. And it's the standard in business. I hope MS fixes this quick. Office 2011 is pretty decent. A version of Office for a touchscreen Mac or just even the iPad would be sweet. And with Win 8 MS will be doing this for PC. Would be nice to see that GUI migrate to Mac, but it would then again be cool to have a touchscreen Air as an option, where the screen swivels around and folds back to make it a tablet.

  • Reply 20 of 30
    ghostface147ghostface147 Posts: 1,629member


    No issues here with SP2.  Outlook runs a lot faster for me.  Granted I keep my inbox pretty clean, never more than 20 megs.  If they'd only add the ability to remove names from the autofill list, that'd be cool.  

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