I’m on record as both a user and fan of Microsoft’s Office for Mac, specifically the 2004 version.
My business depends on Entourage; email, projects, tasks, contacts. Compatibility with Windows users is a requirement.
So, why did Microsoft stiff Mac Office users? Again. Human error? Or, a growing trend?
The situation is rather straightforward. Microsoft issued another Mac OS X update to Office 2004, version 11.3.1 to be specfic.
I was out of town when the release hit the streets, came in late at night, checked email, found the update, updated, went to bed.
When I awoke the next day one of the top news items was Microsoft Pulls Mac Security Update. What’s up with that?
Human error, Microsoft says. How, exactly, did Microsoft warn Mac Office users of the faulty update? Via Microsoft employee “Mike” and a Microsoft web log.
OK, things happen. Microsoft explained that the Update hadn’t received final testing, and it was simple human error which made the Update available when it wasn’t ready. Fair enough.
That’s an explanation I can buy. Even Apple has a few Updates that went sour for whatever reason.
I’m willing to cut Microsoft’s Mac Business Unit a little slack. Except for this phrase:
OK, how? Nothing. Not one line on how the pre-release updates should be uninstalled. Listen, I use Office every day. I’m heading to work where I use Office. Is my Entourage corrupted and ready to chew my hard drive intro tiny pieces of Redmondian Powder?
I scoured the Mac web. Same thing. Uninstall seemed to mean the worst—remove Microsoft Office and start over with the updates.
Now I’m visually unhappy. You don’t want to see me when I’m visually unhappy. I registered an account with Microsoft’s TechNet and tried to post a comment. “Sorry”, says Microsoft’s blogger. “New comments to this post are disabled.”
I found a link to post a message to the webmaster and posted the following note in the area where Microsofties should report bugs:
I’ve always preferred the direct approach. Besides, my email to Bill Gates bounced back. Remarkably, the same afternoon I received a response from Microsoft’s Customer Service Representative.
Added to that insult is a list of others from Microsoft. Visual Basic won’t be included in the next Mac version of Microsoft Office, breaking compatibility with the Windows version of Office. Windows Vista honcho Jim Allchin once wrote he’d buy a Mac if he didn’t work at Microsoft—then denied the context of his obvious rant.
Microsoft was caught stealing icons from Apple for one of their products. Adding fuel to the flames now burning my formerly good relationship with Microsoft’s Mac products is a video spoofing Apple’s “I’m a Mac, I’m a PC” TV commercials—with the Zune.
Microsoft is run by idiots. As soon as I can ditch Microsoft Office, I’m done with them.
update – December 18, 2006 – The Mac Business Unit at Microsoft issues this Note regarding the problem. A new patch is forthcoming.