Saying hello (again) to Visual Basic

How does that old Chinese proverb go? “May you live in interesting times!” I have no idea how accurate it is, or whether it is a positive blessing or a curse, but I really do live (and work) in interesting times.

Almost two years ago, back at WWDC in August 2006, the MacBU announced that Office 2008 would not have support for Visual Basic. I blogged about it at the time, and that one post has proven to be my 15 minutes of Internet fame. It continues to be the most popular post on my site — 21 months later, it still accounts for almost half of all the hits I get each week. While most of our customers don’t require the cross-platform scripting enabled by VBA, a section of the Mac community spoke out very vocally against our decision, and I still hear echos of it to this day. At the time, I wrote about the challenges we faced in bringing it forward with the rest of Mac Office 2008 and why we ended up deciding to remove the feature, but while some people understood or at least accepted the details, some in the community did not. I’ve been told that we must have cut VB to intentionally drive users to use virtualization and Windows Office 2007 on Macs, or that we were ordered by upper Microsoft management to slowly kill the Mac, or any one of a zillion other “Microsoft is evil” conspiracy theories. None of these theories are true, but it’s rather hard to prove that, except by deeds.

This isn’t a done deed yet, but I’ve got a new commitment for you. Quoting from a press release that went out from the MacBU at 12:01am PST today:

VBA Returns to Future Versions of Office for Mac

The Mac BU also announced it is bringing VBA-language support back to the next version of Office for Mac. Sharing information with customers as early as possible continues to be a priority for the Mac BU to allow customers to plan for their software needs. Although the Mac BU increased support in Office 2008 with alternate scripting tools such as Automator and AppleScript — and also worked with MacTech Magazine to create a reference guide, available at http://www.mactech.com/vba-transition-guide — the team recognizes that VBA-language support is important to a select group of customers who rely on sharing macros across platforms. The Mac BU is always working to meet customers’ needs and already is hard at work on the next version of Office for Mac.

Yep, you read that right. VB is (well, will be) back, baby! When we came to the realization in 2006 that there was no way for us to keep VB in the product and still ship Office 2008 on any semblance of the schedule we wanted, we announced its removal, but kept looking at how to bring it back into the suite even before we shipped. Many of the technical challenges I wrote about then still remain, but for a while now I and several others have been working with a group of people who know a heck of a lot about the internals of VB, and once we determined that we could achieve the revival VB in the new schedule for the next version of Mac Office, we locked it into place on the feature list.

Personally, I think it’s really cool that we’re announcing this now. For all the wringing-of-hands and gnashing-of-teeth in the Mac community over the lack of VB, Mac Office 2008 has been selling really well (Craig Eisler, our General Manager and all around cool-boss-guy, said “The response has been amazing — since we launched in January, the velocity of sales for Office 2008 is nearly three times what we saw after the launch of Office 2004″ in that same press release) which seems to indicate that most of our users don’t find the lack of VB to be a major issue. I think our management is confident enough in our ongoing sales of Office 2008 to tell you about something very significant in the next version, even if that defers some sales to that next version. Based my own experiences talking with people in various Internet forums, I don’t think too much of that will happen, though. And if you were wondering, the delta between Office 2004 and 2008 was longer than we normally expect between versions, so my understanding is that this next version will be available somewhat sooner than 2012 (I can’t give any specifics at this time, however.)

So, if you have a dire need for Visual Basic, you can continue to run Mac Office 2004 (it will even run side-by-side with Office 2008) and we’re publicly committing to VB as good (maybe even better, if things go well) in the next version. My team is responsible for that reintegration, and I’ve been meeting frequently with a number of people as we’ve planned exactly what we’re doing and how we’re bringing VB back. This seems to me to be a strong example for the MacBU naysayers that we’re really listening to what all of our users want, and that we’re most definitely not slow-marching to some bagpiper’s funereal drone!

I’m excited to be able to blog about this now, after almost two years of keeping my lips zipped, and I can’t wait until we reveal everything else about the next version of Mac Office. In the meantime, let me ask you something. What parts of the Visual Basic experience are most important to you? The IDE? Macro UI, such as dialogs? Object model parity between Mac Office and Windows Office? (and if so, which features in the Windows object model do you most want brought to the Mac?) Or something else altogether? I can’t promise to achieve anything in particular, but I’d love to hear how we might be able to improve upon the 2004 VB experience for you.

(Made a few edits this morning, and added a link to the press release.)

138 thoughts on “Saying hello (again) to Visual Basic”

  1. I am not a computer expert, but do use Excel extensively. My main program, for which VB macros were written by someone who is an expert, is used to produce a product which is posted on the web and which has become important for a large number of users. We switched from Excel functions to VB macros to carry out the calculations when the base program became too large for Excel to handle (Yes, there is a limit, despite what MS says!) This program works on both my PC and my Mac, and this is essential. The lack of support for VB in Office 2008 means that we have no choice but to stick with the older version of Office.

    1. In my view, Microsoft has revealed either its incompetence and/or its desire to punish apple. I suspect some combination of both. I am amazed that the business community continues to rely on such an unstable and unreliable product.

    2. This is a bummer no doubt. The main problem, there IS NO INDICATION ANYWHERE OF THIS HUGE ISSUE AT TIME OF PURCHASE!!! I was repeatedly told by ads and sales people for Mac that my files would be compatible. I don’t own an earlier version, so cannot solve my problem that way…if that’s what I need to make this run as promised I should NOT have to purchase it. I bought my Mac and the Office suite just a few months ago. Now I find I am stopped in my tracks. Of course, I have not been able to find an older version to download IF I was willing to pay the extortion fee. JW

    3. On the comment that sales were great despite lack of VB — a lot of people (my whole department included) NEVER IMAGINED this functionality would be missing in the upgrade. Had we known, we might have reconsidered. Or, at least, opted NOT TO DELETE the old office during 08 installation app.

      Issue should have been better handled.

    4. In the original “blathering”, Schweib said “I’ve been told that we must have cut VB to intentionally drive users to use virtualization and Windows Office 2007 on Macs”.

      It may not have been intentional, but that’s the only way I have been able to run Excel on my Mac and maintain compatibility with Office 2007.

      It’s not just the lack of VBA, it’s the crippled filtering, the lack of graduated color conditional formatting, the lack of filter by color, the lack of sort by color, all features that I became dependent on in 2007.

      Microsoft is in denial about the lack of compatibility, look at this page:-

      http://www.microsoft.com/mac/products/office2008/why-office.mspx

      “Compatibility is Essential
      No one likes being caught off guard, especially when the pressure’s on. That’s why it’s vital that shared documents, presentations, and spreadsheets open as they were designed—regardless of the computer or operating system.”

      and

      “Microsoft ensures that Office 2008 for Mac is forward, backward, and cross-platform compatible.”

      and

      “Office 2008 for Mac is the best option for Mac users who share documents at home, work, or at school.”

      The above statements are just not true.

      It is my belief that the high sales rate is a result of misleading advertising.

  2. VBA at the level it will be in the Windows version of Office at that time.

    If we truly have to wait until 2010, 2011, or beyond, what have you been doing in Redmond? Remember when Apple revealed that Mac OS X would run on Intel chip sets? Three operating systems later, when they made the strategic announcement to switch from Motorola/IBM sets, they had ALREADY wrote Mac OS X to work on the Intel set. Now how come the MacBU of Microsoft couldn’t have thought the same way. Oh, yeah, you’re Microsoft not Apple. But really, you mean to tell everyone that VBA will still be years away? Honestly? You don’t have a group of programmers locked-up in a hole and are ready to release it with Office 2008 SP2??? It must be incredibly awkward to show up to work every day and feel like you’re making a contribution to the world of computing!

    Sorry for the harshness but after being treated like black americans (in the computer OS sense) for so long, you must understand. We Mac users wouldn’t feel this way if you didn’t jerk us around. We’d be happy to use Office if it behaved just like it does on Windows so we can use the product at work AS WELL AS AT HOME AND SCHOOL. Face it, Apple’s Mac OS is not going away so you had better figure this out.

    Oh, and your triple shipping numbers relative to Office 2004…guess which operation system continues to grow at about the same rate over the 2004 – 2008 time frame. So, stoke-up the monkeys in the basement and finish the VBA programming for Office 2008 SP2 to have even a chance of being in the game come 2010, 2011, or beyond.

  3. I am only thirteen, yet even I use VBA scripting! I use it to create a new journal entry by virtually hitting return, inserting a date that won’t change, and hitting return again. I execute this script by hitting the keystroke Option-F7. It comes in handy. I don’t want to have to have to use Automator’s Watch Me Do function to replicate VBA the VBA script macro recording function in Office 2008 for Mac. So, if you could publish an update to Office ’08 as soon as you finish porting VBA scripting to Xcode, that would be great. It would also be nice if you could make it so that the the little bar under the toolbar woul slide under the toolbar when not in use. Then, when you mouse over to the toolbar, it would slide out. It would act kind of like the Dock and the menu bar do when you are in Quick Look’sfull screen mode. Plus, you could make it a normal toolbar. Everything counts for user-friendliness. Thanks.

  4. More than VBA I miss a couple of programs to made Mac Platform a real deal for the enterprise:

    1. Visio: There is a very good alternatives in Mac, but they are not binary compatibles with Visio. If port visio is too complicated or expensive, at least consider to create a convertion tool form the binary form to the xml form that run on Mac OS (Universal please)
    2. Project: There are good alternatives to Project, but nothing that integrates with Project Server. Even you have a very good compatibility with the binary files, but if you work with Project Server… sorry, no macs allowed. (The web interface requires Internet Explorer, probably because of some activeX controls). At least consider create a web interface wich runs with safari and Firefox….

    thanks.

    clemare

    1. Schwieb,
      Sadly I have only just discovered this Forum, I wish I’d seen it in 2009 before I wasted my money on Office 2008, and I share and sympathise with the frustrations of many commentators above who are bemoaning the stupidity of crippling VBA etc. in 2008 and then not telling anyone about it.

      Quote:-
      “The response has been amazing — since we launched in January, the velocity of sales for Office 2008 is nearly three times what we saw after the launch of Office 2004? in that same press release) which seems to indicate that most of our users don’t find the lack of VB to be a major issue.”

      Not so in my case, Office 2008 lasted less that 3 hours on my machine, I NEARLY uninstalled it when I found that I couldn’t use my own macros, I DID uninstall it when I discovered I could not create Custom Headers and Footers, but had to choose from a stock list of ‘Fashionable’ ones, which frankly sucked.

      Had I known these facts BEFORE I bought, you would not have sold 2008 to me.

      I’ll check VERY carefully in my local Apple Shop, to see what has been returned, and maybe what else has been left out before I risk another purchase/upgrade.

      Now on Lion, I had to re-install it, but I’ll keep Snow Leopard on my MacBook Pro as long as possible and do the headers and footers there, and learn Applescript to get round the VBA issue. You could have had a Loyal Customer here, instead you have one that feels betrayed.

  5. We call DLL’s on the PC and shared libraries on the Mac. Please include declares of frameworks on in VBA for Mac. Object parity with PC word objects is also very important.

    Anyway to be in on an early release? We’ll sign an NDA… Thanks! -doug

  6. You have commented that despite the short falls of Office 2008, it is selling well. In my case, I purchased it prior to realizing it had been neutered. I welcome VB’s return, I used to use it constantly. By the way, I am now a two computer user, my old lap top sits at the side of my new one just so I can run what I need to. Please double your efforts to restore to faithful long term users the tools we trusted would always be available. Dumbing down a product is never a way to win up grading customers, failing to publicize adequately the neutering of excel prior to its release left me an extremely disillusioned user. My mouth dropped when I realized I had just spent money on a giant step backwards. So thank you for for working on bringing it back. Will it be a software update, or a repurchase?

  7. I have VMWare Fusion, and can run Windows XP with applications on it for work (particularly Framemaker, Netmeeting, Windows specific tools like VoIP phones, and Office). My company is big on using Word/Excel/Powerpoint.

    However, I have found that NeoOffice is quite capable of opening Word/Excel/Powerpoint files and resaving them as Office documents. I have a 2GHz 2GB ram Macbook Duo_core.

    The Neooffice site states at http://www.neooffice.org/neojava/en/features.php

    Handles Most Excel VBA Macros NeoOffice includes the Excel macro support developed by Novell’s ooo-build project. The ooo-build project is an open source project that continually develops feature enhancements to OpenOffice.org.

    And its free too. I urge you to download it with the latest patches and try it. Set its preferences to save as Office format instead of its own format.

  8. I write a lot of Macros via Word 2003 and Visual Basic on an XP machine, which are then used by numerous staff members multiple times a day. Worries about macros being potentially broken by changes in any given OS/Office upgrades (be it in Vista or Mac OSX) certainly slow down company’s ability to bring in new machines and roll out new upgrades — too much testing is needed first, too many little compatibility worries . . . Dropping Visual Basic from Mac Office 2008 just makes things worse. So I’m glad to hear that VB will be coming back in the future — I’ll likely buy Mac Office at least for myself at that time. Until then, I’ll stick with older versions of Office or will make sure to the Windows versions via Parallels on my Mac. . . Many thanks for working on this!

  9. I’ve created my personal Time Journaling System based on Outlook and VBA functionality.
    Task records in special folders acts like projects and sub-tasks, special contact folder is used as a list of partners and special journal folder with my own template works for journaling of time used for particular project, task and partner.
    Even in the journal template, there is VBA script for internal functionality. Most of the evaluation is than based on VBA macros with dialogs etc. and even reports are created from Outlooks VBA by connection to Word.

    I plan to switch to Mac, but missing VBA is a kind of trouble. As a freelancer, but with several partners using my Time Journaling System as well I need it for daily use.

    I do use VBA in Excel for simple data transformations or for simple program solvers.

    Having VBA in Office:mac would be great.

  10. i just bought Office 08 without any knowledge of the lack of VBA support for the software and i am very much not happy about it. But if you are bringing VBA back in the next version of Office it would make me much happier.

    As far as what i would like to see for VBA in the next Office… i don’t think you should change the look and feel of the developement environment too much, i feel you may alienate a large base of VBA users by changing where things are and how you go about finding them. i feel much the same way for the object model, it would be kinda turn off to find objects don’t work the same between MAC and Windows Office. one thing i have always wanted in VBA i would be to have the ability to add fully functioning objects of own in VB world. this may be a bit much to add, but for an old object oriented programmer like myself i would really like more OO characteristics in the VBA model.

    until i get VBA support for mac i am forced to play my version of PONG in excel on windows. why shouldn’t i be able to play on mac?

  11. As a developer for Word since version 2.0 on Windows, it’s a little odd to phrase the question “what parts of VBA are important…”

    The entire design of this word processor and what made it so interesting to program for — is that anything you can do in the application UI was accessible through wordBasic (and then VBA). That one to one correspondence has diminished over time — but should still be a goal.

    The IDE in MacVBA has never been on a par with the Windows IDE. AutoComplete and keystroke access to parameters (for instance). The link between IDE and Help items more tightly integrated. It would be nice to have them a bit more on par.

    A cross platform nightmare has always been how dialogs (due to differences in font rendering) do not translate. What looks great on the Mac is too big on the PC, what’s right for the PC is illegible on the mac. The only workaround is to customize every dialog with a custom (and more mappable font) — like Courier. It would be great if there was some sort of translation table/conversion.

    Importing forms/modules did not work on the mac as it does on the PC — which makes module management and cleaning of templates harder.

    Other than that — anything the PC can do the Mac VBA should be able to do the same. The exceptions really are limited to OLE integration and Shell(api) commands which need to be reprogrammed using AppleScript on the mac. (examples of how to do that would be nice).

  12. Is there any deadline for when the new office with Excel VBA will be available? Just figures today that my office 2008 doesn’t support this… Is there no download available so VBA can be used in the meantime?

  13. Up until excel 2008 I was happy to fork out my hard earns for mac office. I felt I was getting value for my business. I use VBA extensively and this new version does not do half of what excel 2004 did for me. 2004 was good but awfully slow compared to excel 2007 for windows so I decided to bite the bullet and buy Office 2007 which I have to boot up in bootcamp. Excel 2007 is great, but that is the best I can say for windows other programs (that I have tried) and OS. I want mac excel to be at the very least, comparable to excel 2007 for windows and I want it now so I will not have to use windows at all.

  14. I code the Wordfast translation tool used by dozens of thousands of translators, Mac users included.

    The removal of VBA in Office 2008/Mac is primarily a problem for… Ms-Office. What I mean is that translators who buy a Mac and/or Office do it thinking “will that run Wordfast?”. So they stick to Word:2004. That’s what they all tell me. They’ll skip Office 2008, it’s that simple. Just fine. 2004 is stable, 2008 doesn’t offer any cutting edge anyway. As far as Mac-based translators are concerned, MS will not recoup its investment in Office 2008, but we’re unhurt – there seems to be a justice out there.

    MS seems to be now run on short-term ROI principles. In the Bill Gates era, parting with VB was an unthinkable thing. A Word processor (Word) is a processor, a number cruncher (Excel) is a cruncher, at least he got that right. An application that can neither process nor crunch on automatic is a crippled one. Let’s hope the recession restores vision and reason at the helm.

  15. I need VB now, not later. I need it for the scorekeeping program and the state qualifying program that was written for our gymnastics program. I didn’t know our program used VB until I tried to open our scorekeeping program to check some scores and I got the “Visual Basics does not work in Office 2008 for Mac” message…I want to throw up. It eliminated errors in choosing qualified participants to advance to state competition. I don’t know much about this programming stuff, but I want to be able to open a program and have it work. Period, end of sentence.

    I am a simple end user. I don’t know what else to do besides uninstall Office 2008 and put it in the shredder. Thanks for making me miserable.

  16. When exactly is the VB version going to be available, and can we patch it in to the Office 2008 for Mac?

    (I, too, am very disappointed about the totally unexpected lack of Macro editing capacity in the new version. I have created 33 macros for use in my professional translating work, and must use an older version of Word to operate them.)

  17. I have just switched to Mac from Windows as much for the quality of the hardware (Macbook Pro 15″ with SSHD) as the elegant OS, with both of which I am entirely delighted. Like other commentators before me, I was not forewarned of the unexpected lack of VB in the current version of Office for Mac (2008). It is a complete and utter disappointment and deal breaker!

    Over the years I have built up a library of custom Excel functions and write and use a number of VB programs having Excel as the user interface in research and teaching in veterinary science. Without these, Excel seems rather toothless and holds little thrall for me. Indeed I might as well use a free spreadsheet such as the online Google Documents for simpler spreadsheet tasks. To have to run Windows on my Mac and / or load an earlier version of Office for Mac seems such a retrograde step! A free upgrade to the next version of Office for Mac with VB support for those of us who have unwisely invested in v2008 would be the very least we should expect! I’m not saying anything new here, mainly just adding another name to the petition to MacBU to keep its promise!

  18. Well, a little over a year since my last post, and Microsoft is still “confident” they’re making the right decision and timing to bring VBA back to Office. Great, I get to pay $100s to upgrade to Office for the Mac 2011/2012 and get the functionality of 2004, maybe something more. Are you kidding?

    By 2011/2012, Apple’s Numbers will mature, OO/NeoOffice will have grown on more desktops, and Microsoft will (re-)introduce VB in Office. Don’t you guys see a problem here? You’ll on the downward slide as a result of 2008. Yes, as Apple’s market share rises and moms and dads equip those school machines with Office (“because we need it”), you’ll continue to have the “cool-boss-guy” tell the world 2008 sales are phenomena. But, your customer base will actually shrink as those new Mac users file other means of producting “office” documents on the Mac.

    Here’s the only way to redeem yourself in 2011/2012. Have all those Product IDs of paid 2008 customers entire them to a completely free version of 2011/2012. Then we’ll see how sincere the Mac BU/Microsoft is about it’s Mac base. You’ll definitely re-ignite some level of true loyalty from the Mac community. Charge $129 or $349 for an upgrade and it will be Adios for good!

  19. “This seems to me to be a strong example for the MacBU naysayers that we’re really listening to what all of our users want, and that we’re most definitely not slow-marching to some bagpiper’s funereal drone!”

    Put it back into Office 2008 or give me a free upgrade to the next release of Office and I’ll actually believe that line.

  20. To all those who are disillusioned with MacBu at Microshaft I urge you to try Neo Office I did in January and I havn’t looked back. Now I have no Microsoft products in my office and my computers all seem to work better.

  21. The fact that VBA was lost in the upgrade to 2008 was a sad event, but the big problem for me was that no SDK or interface was detailed that would enable me to provide the functionality in Excel that 2004 did.

    It was not a question of there not being a particular interface (VBA) available to me, but the fact that there was NO interface available at all. Without an SDK or a detailed interface, we had no method by which to provide the functionality required by our users.

    Be it XCode, VBA or a some other method – please give us an interface that we can use to extend the functionality of Excel to meet the needs we have. My requirements are not met by off-the-shelf products, and more than likely never will be. I doubt that I am alone.

  22. PIVOT TABLES in Excel should be identical to those of Windows. Having to drag fields onto the sheet to see the affect does not work near as well as dragging them to the ‘input’ boxes that Windows uses.

    Also, this situation begs the question “Why don’t you put the Office 2004 VBA into a service pack for those of us who bought 2008 and had to ‘downgrade’???

  23. I’ve just placed an order for Mac Word 2004, having already bought Word 2008 two months ago, in order to get macros back. I had a whole suite of macros for my MS Word X, but for some reason that application will not run on the new (post October 2009) iMacs. This is not the fault of Snow Leopard by the way, as Word X (plus macros!) works perfectly on my Intel MacBook with OS 10.6.2.
    I am a journalist, editor and book author, and my needs may be slightly different from some of your other respondents, which is why I am writing this. I found macros invaluable for editing, or for tidying up imperfect text either due to my own bad typing or someone else’s. I had one f-key to trigger a macro which would swap a character with the one to its right (a macro I called “transpose”) as this is one of the most common mistpyings (see what I mean!); I had one f-key to delete the whole word under the cursor wherever it may be, one f-key to translate Roman text instantly into italics, one to insert page numbers into a document, one that would make the first letter of a word Upper Case (and another key for vice versa), an f-key for spell check (less necessary but I used it all the time); one to change fonts from Courier to Times Roman or back — and so on. The joy of macros was that you worked out the sequence of things you wanted to do to the text, eg select a letter, “cut” it, move one space forward, paste letter into text – and then just repeated it with the record macro command on, having designated a function key, then saved it. Apple script just will not allow that. I am so frustrated by the lack of macros with 2008 that I am prepared to fork out for the older version, 2004, where macros still work, thank God. If I had the money to sue Microsoft I would, I’m so cross!

  24. Will macros VB really be back, and if so, when?
    I created hundreds of commands using 2004 for Mac, which I use in translating repetitive texts. I upgraded to 2008 when suddenly a bug in the Macros caused them to stop working completely. I have no idea why this happened – launching macros now causes word to shut down.

    I have currently my first mac (powerbook G4) running Word 2004 for Mac, and it’s functioning well. But the computer is about to croak, sadly. I will need to either purchase a new Word 2004, or wait for the new version.

    Which is why I ask – when is it planned?

    Much thanks!

  25. I have entirely different issues w/ Office 2008, which I got most importantly due to wanting access to .docx and .xlsx formatted documents that I sometimes receive. My issues aren’t total deal-breakers, but irritations.

    I have tons of really old documents in Word 4 and Word 5 format, even a few in Word 3. Word 2008 doesn’t open them in any easy way. I can use the Open dialog, but then I have to figure out the path to to the file I was trying to open. Grungy. Or I can open ‘em in AppleWorks via MacLinkPlus to see if the file is the right one & if so, close it, & go thru the above. Also grungy. There may be a better answer, but I’ve looked & don’t know where it is. Word 4 & 5 didn’t have macros, so I don’t see why Word 2008 requires this workaround just to open a file. (Maybe it was too embarrassing to explain to people that Word 6 w/ evil macros was the problem – I never got Word 6! – & it would look bad if Word 2008 would easily open Word 5 files but not Word 6 files.)

    Word ought to open files from *all* previous versions. Ditto for Excel & PowerPoint. This should be nearly seamless. A few oddities are ok – for instance, if an ancient file uses ancient bitmapped fonts, it’s ok to warn about that when opening the file. Similarly, a Word 6 file w/ macros should be easily accessible but the macros don’t have to work – in fact, they should be OFF by default, even if you include the capability.

    About VBA & scripting: I never used VBA. Glad to hear it’s coming back, not so much for my own use, as because VBA is essential to Excel/Mac’s commercial future. I have simple scripts in AppleWorks, and I do some fairly light scripting in FileMaker. Haven’t done much w/ Excel 08, but one project worked *really well*, much better than in Excel 98 which had been my previous version. Remember, I don’t use VBA. PowerPoint is similarly much better in 2008 than in 98.

    I intentionally use a rather old Mac & OS 10.4 so that if I have to, I can boot into OS 9. (Yes, I’m a fossil.) On that rather old Mac (933 MHz), Word 2008 is slow to open. Grrr. Microsoft went thru that before w/ Word 6; Word 98 was much improved. But something I like about my setup: I can save in my choice of .doc or .docx & test .doc files w/ Word 98 to make sure others w/ old sw can open the files.

    I tried OpenOffice. I’m glad I have it handy, just in case, but I use it only when someone sends me a file that opens in it.

  26. Agree that sales have been good, since most people don’t know a macro from a mud hen and like me, run into the problem by accident. Other big thing driving sales, I would guess is that many, like me, chose to switch to Mac when the other choice was Vista. Not impressed to learn that I will have to buy the next iteration of Office to get functionality that every other version of the software previously in existence has. Not comforted to learn that Microsoft, given a choice between shipping “crap” now and shipping “quality” later, chose the former.

  27. I have mac 2008, and I run into the problem of not having VB a lot as I am in business school. What is the best way for me to switch to Excel 2004?

  28. Word for Mac 2004 will not run on Snow Leopard or Lion, so I will not be able to upgrade until I can use this Macro in Word (It revises PDF copy, eliminating all the paragraph returns):
    Will it easily PASTE and COPY into the new Word for Mac?

    Sub Netcopy()

    ‘ Netcopy Macro
    ‘ Macro recorded 2/18/83

    Selection.Find.ClearFormatting
    Selection.Find.Replacement.ClearFormatting
    With Selection.Find
    .Text = “>”
    .Replacement.Text = “”
    .Forward = True
    .Wrap = wdFindContinue
    .Format = False
    .MatchCase = False
    .MatchWholeWord = False
    .MatchWildcards = False
    .MatchSoundsLike = False
    .MatchAllWordForms = False
    End With
    Selection.Find.Execute Replace:=wdReplaceAll
    With Selection.Find
    .Text = “^p^p”
    .Replacement.Text = “|”
    .Forward = True
    .Wrap = wdFindContinue
    .Format = False
    .MatchCase = False
    .MatchWholeWord = False
    .MatchWildcards = False
    .MatchSoundsLike = False
    .MatchAllWordForms = False
    End With
    Selection.Find.Execute Replace:=wdReplaceAll
    With Selection.Find
    .Text = “^p”
    .Replacement.Text = ” ”
    .Forward = True
    .Wrap = wdFindContinue
    .Format = False
    .MatchCase = False
    .MatchWholeWord = False
    .MatchWildcards = False
    .MatchSoundsLike = False
    .MatchAllWordForms = False
    End With
    Selection.Find.Execute Replace:=wdReplaceAll
    With Selection.Find
    .Text = “|”
    .Replacement.Text = “^p^p”
    .Forward = True
    .Wrap = wdFindContinue
    .Format = False
    .MatchCase = False
    .MatchWholeWord = False
    .MatchWildcards = False
    .MatchSoundsLike = False
    .MatchAllWordForms = False
    End With
    Selection.Find.Execute Replace:=wdReplaceAll
    ActiveWindow.ActivePane.LargeScroll Down:=-2
    End Sub

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