MS Excel PC to MS Excel MAC...

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by adamjay, Mar 14, 2004.

  1. adamjay macrumors 6502a


    Feb 3, 2004
    My mother has had enough of her Compaq Athlon 1ghz and its frequent freezes, crashes, and overall crappy computing. To my surprise she inquired with me about how logical it would be for her to switch to macintosh. My mother, a PC users since the days of PC DOS 2.0 wants to switch to Macintosh!!!! Satan must be ice skating right now.
    It must have been the jpg i showed her of my powerbook with 56 applications open and no freezes/crashes.

    So my question is, do any of you switchers or cross-platform users ever have issues with Excel or any other MS Office documents converting badly to mac and or back to pc from mac? My mother spends 8 hours a day at work in front of Excel, so for her to do any work at home, its imperative that Office X meshes well with Office XP. The typical workload would be taking 100MB+ Excel spreadsheets from a PC, editing them at home on a Mac, and then taking them back to work on the PC for further editing.

    I'm going to do some realworld tests with some of her files in a couple weeks, but wanted to get some opinions first.

    i know theoretically it should all work fine cross-platform, but you never know with Excel.

    Another question, would her files translate to and from Appleworks okay?

    I'm so excited, it looks like if the software meshes well she'll be purchasing a 1GHz eMac, or if the budget allows, a 17" iMac. you cannot imagine how proud i am of my never-gonna-change, set-in-her-way, meat-and-potatoes, 55 year old mother, for taking such a leap.
  2. Maritan macrumors regular

    Nov 6, 2003
    I work on Excel on a PC and Mac. Not like your mom that works on it 8 hours a day, but I work on it a couple of hours every week. (I'm a TA and I enter grades into the sheet).

    I constantly send it to my PC and and back from there to my Mac. I haven't had any problems with that.

    With Word, however, I write technical papers with lots of equations in them. Except for the equations, there's no issues with compatibility that I have seen so far.

    Hope that helps!
  3. KingSleaze macrumors 6502

    Feb 24, 2004
    So. Cal
    It's been a long time since I was switching files between my Mac (Powerbook 180c) and a PC, but I have always found that the Mac was more tolerant of the file formats(the PC wouldn't let me save in Mac format). Yes, there ARE sometimes formatting problems with Word documents but IN GENERAL the changes are small and easy to correct. Best advice is to look first........ Good luck and enjoy the experience.
  4. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

    Jun 25, 2002
    Gone but not forgotten.
    She could use AppleWorks with MacLink Plus but if she's using macros, they may not convert properly. It's possible to use the XWindows version of Open Office with MS Office files but again, they might not work properly in all instances. The MS Office file formats are not readily available, although many have been decoded.
  5. macktheknife macrumors 6502a


    Jan 24, 2002
    I use Excel on the PC and on the Mac on a regular basis, and, with a few exceptions relating to VBA, it works almost seemlessly. I can't really comment on compatibility with AppleWorks, but if your mother depends on the real thing for work, don't try to cut corners needlessly by getting a substitute. Excel is one of the best pieces of software ever written (I'm being totally serious)--powerful and very useful.
  6. BornAgainMac macrumors 603


    Feb 4, 2004
    Florida Resident

    I have no problems with the Excel but you also need to consider the media used to transfer files between a PC and Mac. 100 MB files are too big for email or .Mac. There are those USB Flash drives but they hold only about 512MB for around $150 to $200 bucks. Winzip does compress Excel files really well on the PC and Panther has a built-in compression that is available thru the action menu. 750 MB zip drives or CD-RWs would be the next way to transfer files. To erase a CD-RW on the Mac, you need to go to disk utility.

    Then you have to deal with FAT filesystems. I found that when you write to a FAT filesystem on Panther, it will write the file and another file with a dot and underscore in front of the name and it takes twice as long as writing to a Mac extended filesystem. I thought that would be fixed with Panther but it wasn't except for PDF files so far. Reading a FAT formatted disk is fine and I usually delete the additional files that are created when writing to the disk.

    To solve the filesystem problem, the best solution is to install Mac Opener or MacDrive on the PC so that it can read and write Mac files.
  7. adamjay thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Feb 3, 2004
    BornAgainMac.... she is going to transfer the files with CDR and/or CDRW. if she has any problems i have a 2GB server with 100GB's bandwidth/month she can use.

    MackTheKnife... you are right, her job depends on Excel so it isnt worth cutting corners with Appleworks, however powerful Appleworks may be.
    But thanks for putting that into perspective, i hadn't thought of it.

    thanks for the replies guys. it looks like it will be a pretty smooth transition for her.
  8. David Lundgren macrumors member

    Nov 26, 2003
    Albany, NY
    I go back and forth with Excel spreadsheets all the time, since my budget analyst wife uses an HP laptop and my business uses Powerbooks... never a problem.

    And as far as transferring these files, why not just use a Flash memory stick like the SanDisk sticks... 256MB cost $40 after a $20 rebate. My partner and I use these things all the time to quickly move files around, wear em around our necks while working at client sites like real propeller heads! They're great for it.
  9. MACReturn macrumors newbie

    Nov 5, 2007
    Returning to Mac and its changes

    This might not be the best platform but I am thinking of returning back to the Mac platform after more than 10 years. Would appreciate any advice. I too rely heavily on the Excel. Went to the Apple Store a couple of times and played with the Excel. I am having a hard time with how the spreadsheets are being displayed. The rows and cells seem so much more squished than on the PC. I know you can magnify the spreasheet but that just makes the font not as sharp. Is your mother experincing this and what other things is she getting used to on the Mac platform.

    By the way, I was looking at the MacBook and MacBook Pro laptops


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