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Following the release of Office for Mac 2011 Service Pack 2 earlier this month, a number of users began reporting issues with corruption of Microsoft Outlook databases. In response, Microsoft early last week acknowledged the issue, providing a workaround for those who had yet to update their Office installations and a fix for those who had already updated and were experiencing problems with Outlook.

office_2011_icons.jpg



On Friday, Microsoft announced that it was taking an additional step and removing Office for 2011 SP2 from Microsoft AutoUpdate until the Outlook corruption is resolved. The update can, however, still be downloaded manually and installed once users follow the directions to rebuild their Outlook databases.
Our goal is provide the simplest update experience for everyone - so we have temporarily stopped pushing out the SP2 update through Microsoft AutoUpdate while we investigate the issue. Customers are still able to obtain the SP2 update via the Microsoft Downloads site by clicking here. We encourage you to either wait for the AutoUpdate, or follow the directions in the above blog post before manually updating to ensure you don't experience issues. We will provide an update once we have more information to share.
Office for Mac SP2 is Microsoft's second major update to the company's flagship productivity suite for Mac. The release offers a number of security and usability improvements, with a heavy focus on Outlook, which was new in Office 2011 and replaced Entourage.

Article Link: Microsoft Pulls Office for Mac 2011 SP2 Auto Update After Outlook Database Corruption
 

ataranlen

macrumors newbie
Sep 14, 2010
9
0
According to their Fix guide, I don't have SP2, because my Word isn't version 14.2+, its version 14.0

Yet I'm still having the issue daily.:mad:
 

benspratling

macrumors 6502
Jan 16, 2006
417
136
That'll teach us

So when I did my MobileMe to iCloud transition, it lost my contacts from my iPhone that I'd collected over the past year. Microsoft corrupts outlook databases? but then who cares? who uses outlook on Mac anyway? I bet the five people who use it are as angry as I was when iCloud deleted my contacts (and then removed them from the iTunes backup before I had a chance to restore from it).

Can nobody properly handle contact data? Seriously, if this is the point we're at in the computer science industry, I think we might need to just all stop what we're doing and go back to basics. OR we need to inform these major software vendors that we don't rely on a paper rolodex for our contact information anymore. We rely on these software products for this information. If they fail to maintain high-reliability systems, the customers are the ones who get hurt.

But then, CS lacks all the rigor of proper engineering anyway...
 

wilsonlaidlaw

macrumors 6502
Oct 29, 2008
443
74
Seattle strikes again

This is about the last straw for me. I think I am about to give up on Outlook 2011. It gets worse with each update not better. Is this a secret ploy by MS to drive us back to Windoze?
 

416049

macrumors 68000
Mar 14, 2010
1,844
2
The only reason i am still using office is because of excel and i haven't found a good enough alternative yet... i hope iwork's next update will reform numbers and given it around the same amount of features as excel has or more
 

Mac21ND

macrumors 6502a
Jun 6, 2007
724
167
Prior issues with corruption in Outlook is why I switched back to Mail. Outlook is a bag of hurt all around.
 

chrono1081

macrumors G3
Jan 26, 2008
8,479
4,363
Isla Nublar
So when I did my MobileMe to iCloud transition, it lost my contacts from my iPhone that I'd collected over the past year. Microsoft corrupts outlook databases? but then who cares? who uses outlook on Mac anyway? I bet the five people who use it are as angry as I was when iCloud deleted my contacts (and then removed them from the iTunes backup before I had a chance to restore from it).

Can nobody properly handle contact data? Seriously, if this is the point we're at in the computer science industry, I think we might need to just all stop what we're doing and go back to basics. OR we need to inform these major software vendors that we don't rely on a paper rolodex for our contact information anymore. We rely on these software products for this information. If they fail to maintain high-reliability systems, the customers are the ones who get hurt.

But then, CS lacks all the rigor of proper engineering anyway...

I'm not sure why you have the slam on CS, seeing how as without it the world as we know it wouldn't exist today. No internet, no cell phones, no CAD software...etc. I'd say its pretty important in its own respect.

----------

Prior issues with corruption in Outlook is why I switched back to Mail. Outlook is a bag of hurt all around.

I agree.

I've supported Outlook in the workplace since 2003. The biggest issue I see (and its daily) is PST files going corrupt. Its far more common with people who have multiple large PST files mounted.

Also Outlook likes to randomly disable Adobe Acrobat and the place to enable it is NOT intuitive. I don't have it up in front of me but its something like "Help -> About -> Disabled Items -> Click what you want to reenable".

Outlook is just REALLY convoluted with menus all over the place.

----------

The only reason i am still using office is because of excel and i haven't found a good enough alternative yet... i hope iwork's next update will reform numbers and given it around the same amount of features as excel has or more

I like my Numbers nice and simple :eek: But I agree, the majority of users need more and I can adapt easily ;)
 

Mac21ND

macrumors 6502a
Jun 6, 2007
724
167
I'm not sure why you have the slam on CS, seeing how as without it the world as we know it wouldn't exist today. No internet, no cell phones, no CAD software...etc. I'd say its pretty important in its own respect.

----------



I agree.

I've supported Outlook in the workplace since 2003. The biggest issue I see (and its daily) is PST files going corrupt. Its far more common with people who have multiple large PST files mounted.

Also Outlook likes to randomly disable Adobe Acrobat and the place to enable it is NOT intuitive. I don't have it up in front of me but its something like "Help -> About -> Disabled Items -> Click what you want to reenable".

Outlook is just REALLY convoluted with menus all over the place.

----------



I like my Numbers nice and simple :eek: But I agree, the majority of users need more and I can adapt easily ;)

Yeah, I was using it at my university. Thought it would be much better than Entourage, but it really wasn't. My IT staff just finally told us to switch back to Mail.
 

Tsuius

macrumors regular
Jul 4, 2007
125
85
GTA
Office 2011 = POS

Outlook is the only application on my mac that's full of deficiencies.
What broke the camels back for me was the complete deletion of ALL my contacts during the service pack 1 "upgrade". This news isn't helping.

M$ folks have shown us very clearly that they are NOT interested in putting out a quality product or at the very least something comparable to the windows version.
I'm already using iCal and I am in the process of switching to the mail app.
 

Rocketman

macrumors 603
I agree CS firms don't apply proper engineering principals to software products. The only solution I have found for this truly sad dilema is to be a trailing edge adopter for mission critical software requirements. It may be that there is also a real need for a program that intentionally reduces all contacts and critical database records to a physical Rolodex. It's a valuable idea that should not be poo pooed merely because it is "old school". Cars are old school and you still use them. Houses are old school and you still use them. And they don't break or become unusable due to software updates (yet).

One of the more notable things Steve Jobs said in a NeXT discussion is he had a software program, probably from Sun or Oracle or IBM, that made him stop losing data forever. He pointed out how wonderful and magical that was.

Perhaps now it's time for his customers to have those same advantages.

Rocketman
 

benspratling

macrumors 6502
Jan 16, 2006
417
136
I'm not sure why you have the slam on CS, seeing how as without it the world as we know it wouldn't exist today. No internet, no cell phones, no CAD software...etc. I'd say its pretty important in its own respect.


It's not much of a slam when it's completely true. I've practiced Geophysics, aerospace engineering and computer science, and I can tell you that, in general, CS lacks all the appropriate education of reliability, durability, precision, customer responsibility, deference to reality, notational consistency*, thoroughness of documentation, and subjugation of personal pride to achieving mission objectives that are absolutely essential in a real science or engineering. The folks to whom I've spoken who say that CS is not less rigorous simply don't have the experience necessary to comment, or else they work on financial software. I've been fortunate to work with some of the best in the CS industry, but... aerospace is still an order of magnitude more difficult and demanding.

But it's clear you don't understand my point. So, to clarify:
I'm not saying software can't or hasn't make major contributions. I'm just saying compared to real engineerings and sciences, CS (and education in it) is unreliable, flimsy, poorly documented, and lacks proper customer-demand and mission-objective focus.

Apple and Microsoft's growing recent failures in each passing update only serve to prove my point. I only partially blame the tool sets. As iOS developers, we still don't even have tool sets which can search our code for syntax-context aware expressions, like "find all calls to a method named 'foo()' on instances of the 'bar' class". We're left with text searches and reg-ex searches which ask me to construct a syntax so dense and fathomless that the task is usually impractical. Performance profiling tools won't even tell me what the arguments were to function calls which take the most time. If I had run my 10,000 tests for my aerospace dissertation research and failed to match each test result with the data which went in to it, I would have been laughed out of the department, but that's the state of the art in CS. If there is any tendency to improve these failures in the CS industry, excellent. I kind of think maybe Chris Lattner and his team will deliver something incredibly useful like this at some point, but that might just be my little man-crush on him for bring us Obj-C-ARC.

And as for documentation, if a man-page or non-free Apple developer's guide even approached the kind of detail I get from a free data sheet from Digi-Key when browsing for electronic components, I would be shocked. The "header" style documentation I've seen is worse than RadioShack's 74xx series data sheets which sometimes wouldn't tell you which pin was which pin number. In fact, that might be a fair comparison, Radio Shack documentation is to computer science as digi-key's free data sheets are to rigorous engineerings. Apple's documentation on in-app purchase is about as good as it gets, and that amounts to handing me a sample implementation circuit.

And if you manage to prove me wrong, well then I'll just be happy, because things will be better than I think they are. :)

* Notational consistency as applied to science. Engineers are terrible at notational consistency, even in a single industry.
 
Last edited:

charlieegan3

macrumors 68020
Feb 16, 2012
2,394
17
U.K
WXOP

I'm just saying compared to real engineerings and sciences, CS (and education in it) is unreliable, flimsy, poorly documented, and lacks proper customer-demand and mission-objective focus.

the 1st two I might go with (i'm currently looking to go in to a CS undergraduate), however Customer Demand? Documentation? "Mission-Objective"? I think for those last three it is as good as any discipline or discipline it supports.

Don't think that proves you wrong but it's not as bad as you think it is.
 

Le Big Mac

macrumors 68030
Jan 7, 2003
2,809
378
Washington, DC
It'd be nice of MS to post an updater to roll us back to pre-SP2 and unbeep us.

+1. I did the update, but haven't opened outlook (don't usually use it). But I don't really feel like spending the time to fix it and my database for the times I do use it.

I used to like outlook a lot, and still would but:

a) bad gmail support
b) bad iphone support

makes it a non-starter at this point.
 

benspratling

macrumors 6502
Jan 16, 2006
417
136
the 1st two I might go with (i'm currently looking to go in to a CS undergraduate), however Customer Demand? Documentation? "Mission-Objective"? I think for those last three it is as good as any discipline or discipline it supports.

Don't think that proves you wrong but it's not as bad as you think it is.

Documentation in CS is horrendous.
Head over to digikey.com and take a look at what they post for free. Or Xilinx.com or McMasterCarr.com and look at the data sheets. Now ask yourself, where do you get documentation at that level of thoroughness in CS? You don't.

Examples of good & thorough documentation:

Xilinx Spartan Datasheet:
http://www.xilinx.com/support/documentation/data_sheets/ds312.pdf

typical transistor datasheet:
http://www.nxp.com/documents/data_sheet/PRF949.pdf
(not Dr. Francis Everett's definition of "typical")

McMaster-Carr provides a CAD rendering for parts:
http://www.mcmaster.com/#cadinlnord/9416k321/=h8dg9a


As for "customer-driven," I may have to back off slightly, not on the condition of the industry, but on the importance. CS is so new that there are lots of things that we just don't know how to do yet. And figuring how to do the how to do part isn't exactly trivial. CS still spends a high percentage of its time re-writing the same software over and over with new techniques. The ones who don't and do focus on feature innovation quickly have out-dated software that can't be sold on the Mac App Store: Adobe, Microsoft, and Wolfram. Still, I can tell you that switching code to new techniques does make working with old code much easier. MUCH easier. So, I'm not against it. BUT I am against coding with typed text. It's just wrong. The idea that I can make a syntax error which prevents compilation, or that the compiler wouldn't know which partial specialization of a template it should pick is a MAJOR problem that not even C++11 is addressing. Yes, thank you, Bjorn Stroustrup, for backing off your insane rant that unions shouldn't allow members with non-trivial constructors, but frankly, I want more. Consider SolidWorks (http://www.solidworks.com/sw/products/10141_ENU_HTML.htm). It doesn't let me MAKE syntax errors because there is no syntax.
Now contrast it with AutoCAD: (http://usa.autodesk.com/autocad/) which up until last year basically required the use of arcane type-written syntax and invisible tab/return guidelines to use it. Back at Texas A&M, we had both available for free for students. They used SolidWorks.
 
Last edited:

chrono1081

macrumors G3
Jan 26, 2008
8,479
4,363
Isla Nublar
It's not much of a slam when it's completely true. I've practiced Geophysics, aerospace engineering and computer science, and I can tell you that, in general, CS lacks all the appropriate education of reliability, durability, precision, customer responsibility, deference to reality, notational consistency*, thoroughness of documentation, and subjugation of personal pride to achieving mission objectives that are absolutely essential in a real science or engineering. The folks to whom I've spoken who say that CS is not less rigorous simply don't have the experience necessary to comment, or else they work on financial software. I've been fortunate to work with some of the best in the CS industry, but... aerospace is still an order of magnitude more difficult and demanding.

But it's clear you don't understand my point. So, to clarify:
I'm not saying software can't or hasn't make major contributions. I'm just saying compared to real engineerings and sciences, CS (and education in it) is unreliable, flimsy, poorly documented, and lacks proper customer-demand and mission-objective focus.

Apple and Microsoft's growing recent failures in each passing update only serve to prove my point. I only partially blame the tool sets. As iOS developers, we still don't even have tool sets which can search our code for syntax-context aware expressions, like "find all calls to a method named 'foo()' on instances of the 'bar' class". We're left with text searches and reg-ex searches which ask me to construct a syntax so dense and fathomless that the task is usually impractical. Performance profiling tools won't even tell me what the arguments were to function calls which take the most time. If I had run my 10,000 tests for my aerospace dissertation research and failed to match each test result with the data which went in to it, I would have been laughed out of the department, but that's the state of the art in CS. If there is any tendency to improve these failures in the CS industry, excellent. I kind of think maybe Chris Lattner and his team will deliver something incredibly useful like this at some point, but that might just be my little man-crush on him for bring us Obj-C-ARC.

And as for documentation, if a man-page or non-free Apple developer's guide even approached the kind of detail I get from a free data sheet from Digi-Key when browsing for electronic components, I would be shocked. The "header" style documentation I've seen is worse than RadioShack's 74xx series data sheets which sometimes wouldn't tell you which pin was which pin number. In fact, that might be a fair comparison, Radio Shack documentation is to computer science as digi-key's free data sheets are to rigorous engineerings. Apple's documentation on in-app purchase is about as good as it gets, and that amounts to handing me a sample implementation circuit.

And if you manage to prove me wrong, well then I'll just be happy, because things will be better than I think they are. :)

* Notational consistency as applied to science. Engineers are terrible at notational consistency, even in a single industry.

Thats a good way of saying a lot without saying anything :rolleyes:

I'm not even going to bother to respond. You, like other posters who write the same thing just seem to want to slam on CS majors for some reason.

I'm not saying that building planes or space shuttles or something is easier than designing software, but if you don't think CS is real engineering you just simply don't have enough experience in it. Go tell a chip designer at Intel his work isn't engineering.
 

50548

Guest
Apr 17, 2005
5,039
2
Currently in Switzerland
Corrupted MS databases? That's par for the course, y'all know... :rolleyes:

Even with a brand new Win 7 office computer I regularly face Outlook issues such as not being able to read from an archived messages folder. Solution? Restart Outlook or, in some cases, reboot.
 

Mattie Num Nums

macrumors 68030
Mar 5, 2009
2,834
0
USA
Microsoft developers continue to ignore all of us who tell them moving the "Microsoft Users Data" to the Library where it belongs would solve some issues... but of course they don't need our he;p :rolleyes:
 

benspratling

macrumors 6502
Jan 16, 2006
417
136
Thats a good way of saying a lot without saying anything :rolleyes:

I'm not even going to bother to respond. You, like other posters who write the same thing just seem to want to slam on CS majors for some reason.

I'm not saying that building planes or space shuttles or something is easier than designing software, but if you don't think CS is real engineering you just simply don't have enough experience in it. Go tell a chip designer at Intel his work isn't engineering.

1) If you think I said nothing, then you proved my point very well; you don't even recognize the concepts when they're presented to you.

2) By refusing to acknowledge the real motivation behind my post (which is to use incidents like this as a galvanizing point in the software community to remind us to be more rigorous) and ascribing to me an anti-personal motivation, you demonstrate what I said earlier about personal-pride; i.e. admitting you have a problem is the first step. Besides, when once did I disparage students? Obviously, students haven't finished learning the disciplines they need; it makes no sense to disparage them. I only disparage the educators who ought to know better but don't, and the practitioners who have the fiduciary responsibility to produce a quality product but don't.

3) There are multiple definitions of Computer Science, so perhaps I should disambiguate: I'm referring to software development. The chip-design folks study rigorous engineering, and produce data sheets at least as good as the Xilinx ones I linked to earlier. (Do I really need to go find the links to Intel's data sheets to prove I'm not condemning chip designers?) Though, you did say Intel, and given their history, they're perhaps an example of where the rigorous engineering wasn't quite rigorous enough. (am I the only one who remembers the cartoon of Einstein sitting at a computer that said E=mc^3 and he said "Lousy Pentium chip!"?)

So here's some proof software isn't taken as seriously as hardware:
Remember that story a few days ago about the guy who took Apple to trial for not replacing his defective Nvidia graphics chip? Would you bother doing that for the Java security holes that Flashback exploited? Would you consider doing it each time your computer crashes? Would you consider it each time Outlook or iCloud or MobileMe or whatever screwed up your data? I wonder if we'll ever get to the point where we take software developers as seriously as hardware, or if this haphazard mentality of software will continue indefinitely. NASA does, the military does, hospitals do, financial institutions do, and they all have excruciatingly painful processes for checking software for errors. But it wasn't always like that, and the processes for doing these kinds of things shouldn't be so painful. Part of my personal goal right now is creating methods to produce more reliable software for engineers. Apple's working on it a bit. Test-driven development is like teaching folks to pass a multiple-choice test when the test could never test everything, but only a few things. (Also a head nod to Obj-C-ARC and Chris Lattner again (Hey Chris, will you autograph my picture of you? Wait, it's on the disk and autographing it would destroy it. never mind...) ) But we're still working on text-driven algorithm development, and I see that as a major hurdle for developers trying to make rigorous software.

When I see a failure modes analysis half as good as the ones the JPL'ers applied to our piggyback Martian magnetic probe in software development, I'll start believing software has become rigorous. (They have a 5x5 grid of probability and severity with cells colored green, yellow and red. The worst severity column stuff gets a 'red' no matter how improbable it is.)
 

chrono1081

macrumors G3
Jan 26, 2008
8,479
4,363
Isla Nublar
1) If you think I said nothing, then you proved my point very well; you don't even recognize the concepts when they're presented to you.

2) By refusing to acknowledge the real motivation behind my post (which is to use incidents like this as a galvanizing point in the software community to remind us to be more rigorous) and ascribing to me an anti-personal motivation, you demonstrate what I said earlier about personal-pride; i.e. admitting you have a problem is the first step. Besides, when once did I disparage students? Obviously, students haven't finished learning the disciplines they need; it makes no sense to disparage them. I only disparage the educators who ought to know better but don't, and the practitioners who have the fiduciary responsibility to produce a quality product but don't.

3) There are multiple definitions of Computer Science, so perhaps I should disambiguate: I'm referring to software development. The chip-design folks study rigorous engineering, and produce data sheets at least as good as the Xilinx ones I linked to earlier. (Do I really need to go find the links to Intel's data sheets to prove I'm not condemning chip designers?) Though, you did say Intel, and given their history, they're perhaps an example of where the rigorous engineering wasn't quite rigorous enough. (am I the only one who remembers the cartoon of Einstein sitting at a computer that said E=mc^3 and he said "Lousy Pentium chip!"?)

So here's some proof software isn't taken as seriously as hardware:
Remember that story a few days ago about the guy who took Apple to trial for not replacing his defective Nvidia graphics chip? Would you bother doing that for the Java security holes that Flashback exploited? Would you consider doing it each time your computer crashes? Would you consider it each time Outlook or iCloud or MobileMe or whatever screwed up your data? I wonder if we'll ever get to the point where we take software developers as seriously as hardware, or if this haphazard mentality of software will continue indefinitely. NASA does, the military does, hospitals do, financial institutions do, and they all have excruciatingly painful processes for checking software for errors. But it wasn't always like that, and the processes for doing these kinds of things shouldn't be so painful. Part of my personal goal right now is creating methods to produce more reliable software for engineers. Apple's working on it a bit. Test-driven development is like teaching folks to pass a multiple-choice test when the test could never test everything, but only a few things. (Also a head nod to Obj-C-ARC and Chris Lattner again (Hey Chris, will you autograph my picture of you? Wait, it's on the disk and autographing it would destroy it. never mind...) ) But we're still working on text-driven algorithm development, and I see that as a major hurdle for developers trying to make rigorous software.

When I see a failure modes analysis half as good as the ones the JPL'ers applied to our piggyback Martian magnetic probe in software development, I'll start believing software has become rigorous. (They have a 5x5 grid of probability and severity with cells colored green, yellow and red. The worst severity column stuff gets a 'red' no matter how improbable it is.)

Oh ok you win my bad. Software isn't important, only hardware :rolleyes:
 

scottsjack

macrumors 68000
Aug 25, 2010
1,906
311
Arizona
Where is the Lion Full Screen Support? Like they promised back in October?!

Boo! I don't want Office to work like a stupid iOS app, I want it to work like MS Office. If you want versions and all of that crap use iWork.

I guess I lucked out, all three of my installations updated to SP2 without blowing up. Software from both Apple and Microsoft is getting a little weak on the pre-tested side.
 
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