Microsoft Office 2011 vs. Microsoft Office 2010

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by heesey1010, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. heesey1010 macrumors member

    Jan 6, 2006
    I know, it's a weird question, so lemme explain first before you all go "One's for Mac, one's for Windows" because I already know that.

    Our university recently just completed an interesting licensing offer for all students, faculty and staff: for only the "cost of the distribution media", a person can get Windows 7 + either Office 2011 for Mac (assuming at least Home and Student) or Office 2010 Professional Plus. I already have Office 2008 and, while there are some little quirks, I'm really fine with it except the fact that it manages to make HUGE file sizes (a simple 200 word document may create, for instance, a 160kb file in .docx). I also have a netbook which is using strictly OpenOffice. I don't mind it 99% of the time, but there are times when I'll have to work on a paper and the formatting mishaps are a tad annoying. My problem with getting Office 2010 on the netbook is that I feel that running programs on it might get a bit slow (only 1GB RAM)...and also, I'm not really going to write papers for the next semester. Also, I can still buy Office 2010 for relatively cheap from the Ultimate Steal promotion (79.95 vs. 99.99 for Office Mac through Ultimate Steal)

    I think you can tell which direction I'm heading with this...but is there a flaw in my logic? Something else should I consider? Thanks and happy new year everyone :)
  2. deeddawg macrumors 604

    Jun 14, 2010
    Reading between the lines it seems the key question is on which system will you be doing the most with Office; your netbook or your mac mini?

    The question of performance on the netbook can be solved using the trial version of Office 2010.

    Chances are the Mac Office 2011 version you'd have available is the Academic, which is a third less advertised version; essentially its the Pro version with Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and Outlook. Thats what my school offers for purchase through e-Academy for $56.

    A secondary question is whether you need to act now or can wait; you mention you don't anticipate any papers this next term. Do you forsee moving to a Macbook of some flavor later this year? If you don't need to buy now, it might be worthwhile to hold off making a purchase until you have a clear picture of your future computing platform(s) if there's any question.
  3. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    We've got Office 2010 at work, just upgrading from 2003. I'm using a high-end but four year old desktop computer. 2010 is sluggish compared to 2003, and cumbersome to use. I don't think I'd want to use it on a netbook.

    On the other hand, I've also gone from 2008 to 2011 on the Mac. For me it was a much needed change (2008 didn't have all the features of 2007, which was causing me problems). Having what looks like the same user interface is a plus, but the keyboard shortcuts for Windows are useful but ugly for the Mac. Also the user interface isn't Mac-like at all, while 2008 was to a greater extent.

    If I were in your shoes, and were looking forward to some heavy Word use in the future (mine is actually light) I'd get the Windows 7 + Office 2010 package, and run in a virtual machine (the free Virtual Box would suffice) on the Mini.
  4. heesey1010 thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 6, 2006
    deeddawg: I wouldn't mind waiting, but interestingly enough it's only a "limited time offer", aka until the end of the semester. As for performance....when I had the Office trial I found it to be usable but somewhat sluggish. Granted, OpenOffice isn't that much better...but it does do the trick. And formatting errors I can usually remedy on my Mini with Office 2008; I always submit papers when I'm at home anyway.

    talmy: I didn't think about virtualization...I actually just found my Win7 CD so I think I'll see how that works out, but that's an interesting thought. Problem is I don't want to really devote 1GB+ of RAM just for an Office product. I also don't feel like I need a great need for OneNote/Publisher/Access. If I had a tablet, however, this decision would be so much easier because I would want OneNote.
  5. Mikey7c8 macrumors regular

    Sep 15, 2009
    Montreal, Canada
    Seriously if you can't work out how to rig the system to get both there's something wrong with you.

    If all else fails just find someone that isn't going to use theirs and buy them some beers.
  6. Mal67 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 2, 2006
    West Oz
    If you don't have w7 and office 10 then this sounds like a good opportunity to pick up that software cheaply and run it off your min. Personally I quite like office 11 and now use it as my main wp etc in preference to 10 and iwork. Which helps to keep me macified :)
  7. TheZA macrumors regular

    Sep 14, 2007
    About a year ago my work went to Vista from XP, and from Office 2003 to Office 2007. Yeah, I know. Personally, I hate the new office with the ribbon and crap. I really don't see it as any improvement and it threw years of experience in Office products out the window(s).

    At home, I have Office Mac 2008, and I virtualize XP via VirtualBox, but run Windows 7 on Bootcamp. On Windows 7 I have Office 2010. I was able to get Office 2010 via the Home Use Program, but then that disqualified me from being able to buy Office Mac 2011 via the Home Use Program.

    What to take from all this, although it won't help you much:

    -I hate the new ribbon style and like Office Mac 2008 because it is more like the old Office
    -I know Office Mac 2008 has it's limitations, but for when I need it, I can boot into Windows 7 and Office 2010. I find I hardly ever do this, and prefer to stay booted into just Mac. If I were forced to make a choice, I would just go for the Office Mac, either 2008 or 2011.
    -If you are going to virtualize with VirtualBox, you might consider your RAM and hard drive space. I vitualize XP for just a couple of programs and haven't loaded Office onto the virtual machine because XP requires less RAM and I don't want to have to use more disk space to install Office. Considering the specifications of your system, you might consider virtualization with VMFusion or Parrallels as I believe they can virtualize from your Bootcamp partition, assuming you will load Win7 there - you'll still have the RAM limitation.
  8. TStokes macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2011
    Use Office 2010 in Windows

    Word in Office 2011 for Mac has some serious bugs. Spellcheck and find (spotlight) won't work. Without these features, I consider it useless.

    I have retreated to Office 2010 under Win7/Parallels for all Office applications - hoping that a "service pack" is soon released.
  9. c1phr macrumors 6502

    Jan 8, 2011
    I can't comment on the performance of 2011 on Mac.

    But I am running 2010 on my netbook (Acer Aspire One, stock 1gb ram and 1.6ghz N450) and it's pretty horrible. Aside from the keyboard being far too small, the screen is very difficult to read anything on, even with the ribbon minimized, and performance is far from where I could have wanted it to be. I have reverted to OpenOffice when I need to work on something heavy, and everything else I do through Google Docs on that machine.

    Hope this helps!

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