file size

in Mac Software edited January 2014
Why are Apple applications are so much larger than similar Microsoft applications. Some examples: Word -12.7 MB and Pages - 273.4 MB: Excel - 11.7 MB and Numbers - 138.6 MB. Both Word and Excel are sophisticated programs and I would have assumed they would be large, and that since Pages and Numbers are relatively new so they would be lean, but the opposite seems to be the case. They all work well except Numbers is slow. Is that a function of size? Is obesity epidemic in programming as well as programmers?


  • Reply 1 of 7
    yamayama Posts: 427member
    Simple, all the Microsoft products have shared libraries spread across multiple different folders in both the 'Office' and 'Library' folders. The iWork apps on the other hand are entirely self-contained. If you right-click on iWork and choose "show package contents" you'll see all everything that is included.
  • Reply 2 of 7
    That doesn't explain why MS Office (without Powerpoint) is 199MB total and Numbers and Pages is 411 MB combined and when you add in Mail (286MB), iCal (92MB) and Address Book (47), all functions contained in Entourage, you get a total of 836MB for Apple apps, 4 times larger than MS. Redundancy can't be the only issue and if it is, why doesn't Apple build an integrated system which would be both more user friendly, smaller and faster.
  • Reply 3 of 7
    yamayama Posts: 427member
    Okay, well let's take a look inside those apps shall we?

    Inside the two biggest folders are:

    Frameworks - 100MB

    Resources - 143MB

    'Frameworks' is most likely huge because iWork is compatible with both Tiger and Leopard, so Apple probably backported a bunch of frameworks to Tiger and bundled them into the app to ensure compatibility.

    Next, 'Resources' which is mostly take up by the keynote themes. There's well over a hundred variations, most of them using high resolution images as backgrounds and so on. Compare this to the themes you get with PowerPoint which contain mostly bland vector clip art. and are pretty much the same - massive amounts of high quality themes and several frameworks.

    Now, my Address is only 4.7MB. is 27MB and is 13MB.

    Why? I removed all the localised files. If you do a standard install of Mac OS X you'll get 18 or so languages installed. Each application has these languages available. Check for yourself by choosing File > Get Info on an app and expand the 'Languages' section. You can switch languages on and off, even delete them completely.

    Office on the other hand comes only with English language files, hence it is smaller.

    Also, don't confuse size with speed. Just because these apps contain a huge number of files does not necessarily make them slow. They're slow because they have flashy interfaces which I would argue makes them friendlier and more fun to use. is probably slow because it's a version 1.0 app. Typically, the first version of any application Apple makes is horribly slow, then with each new version they get progressively faster. See or for example.
  • Reply 4 of 7
    Thanks. Good information
  • Reply 5 of 7
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,229moderator
    iwork 06 also bundles two versions of the templates for some reason in either Pages or Keynote, one is ISO and the other is called something else. You only need one AFAIK. iwork 08 is a good deal smaller in size than 06.
  • Reply 6 of 7
    smaxsmax Posts: 360member
    Are you talking about Office 2004 or 2007?

    2004 wasn't Universal, it only contains PowerPC code. The Apple apps are all fat binaries, which would make them quite a bit larger.
  • Reply 7 of 7
    I am referring to Office 2004.
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