MacInTouch Reader Reports

Office 2004: Updates

Jun. 12, 2009
Nov. 13, 2009
Nov. 24, 2009
Feb. 16, 2010
Mar. 2, 2010
Mar. 3, 2010
Jun. 2, 2010
Jun. 9, 2010
Aug. 11, 2010
Aug. 12, 2010
Aug. 19, 2010
Sep. 8, 2010
Sep. 15, 2010
Sep. 16, 2010
Oct. 14, 2010
Oct. 15, 2010
Oct. 16, 2010
Oct. 18, 2010
Oct. 19, 2010
Oct. 20, 2010
Aug. 27, 2011
Aug. 29, 2011
Aug. 30, 2011
Jun. 12, 2009


MacInTouch Reader

Regarding the new Microsoft Office-related updates:
1. I dumped Office 2008 because it was problematic on my MacBook.
2. I now have Office 2004 installed on the MacBook with 10.5.5. Has anyone tried the updates yet?

I've had too many bad experiences with Microsoft Office updates over the years and I would like to hear from someone that has installed the updates with no problems.

When any Office file acts strangely after opening, I find that closing it and opening in NeoOffice 3 usually resolves the issue.

Nov. 13, 2009


Bob Beatty

Anyone have any luck installing the 11.5.6 update for Office 04? I have a Mac Pro w/SL 10.6.2 and Office 11.5.5 installed. The installer validates then quits responding while searching for programs to update.

Have tried while in safe boot and normal boot with the same results...

Nov. 24, 2009


David E. Gurley

I, too, installed the 11.5.6 updates to Office 2004 two days ago. Entourage has stopped working, and instead indicates that the server connection has been lost. When confirming that the latest update installed, Entourage shows as only version 11.4.0. The other Office Apps show as 11.5.6. I've tried installing the updates from 11.4.0 again, but they find no applications to update.

Feb. 16, 2010


Bill Gallagher

I have tried to use Microsoft's Auto Updater, as well as doing a direct download to obtain the most recent 11.5.7 security update for Office for Mac 2004. Every time I try to run this, the update just hangs interminably and is searching for programs to update. My version of Office had already been updated to 11.5.6, and everything in Word, PowerPoint and Excel continue to work fine. I've never had a problem with updates to Office previously, but this seems to be a non starter. I'm still using an old 1.0 Ghz iMac with 10.5.8. Anyone else having problems with this update?

Mar. 2, 2010


Jean Smith

I have not been able to install the Office 2004 11.5.7 update - the Updater has to be forced quit each time I try which has been at least 4 times in February.

I have a MacBook running OS 10.5.8.

Mar. 3, 2010


Sterett Prevost

Re: Jean Smith and 11.5.7 install issues

11.5.6 must have been installed first, and on one of my Macs I had to reinstall 11.5.6 before 11.5.7 would "take". Another obstacle to update installs would be if any of the Office apps have been moved from their MS-installed locations. This might require reinstalling Office from scratch and applying the updaters "one at a time". This is one reason I have a folder called, "Updaters & Installers" into which I place all application updaters for later (ugh!) use. Another tip might be to not use the update function found in the Office apps themselves, but, rather, to separately download the updates and apply them from the Mac desktop. I use this technique and copy the updates onto a flash drive so I can visit each of our Macs and do the update without having to waste any time.

Jun. 2, 2010


Chris Trusch

Microsoft AutoUpdate

Since I keep getting more and more .docx files, and am unwilling to "upgrade" to Office 2008, I installed Microsoft's Open XML Converter on my PowerBook running 10.4.11. No problems here, it works as advertised and also integrates nicly into Office 2004.

It installed, however, a second AutoUpdate application. The old one is in Applications, and the second one now is in Root Library/Application Support/Microsoft/MAU2.0. They are to different applications, with different version numbers. What gives?

Jun. 9, 2010


Robert MacLeay

Following the link on MacInTouch's June 8 page, I went to the Microsoft page for downloading the Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac 11.5.9 Update.

Clicking the download link on that page produces an error message:
"Sorry, but we couldn't find the page that you requested."

Way to go, Microsoft.

Clicking the "Support Home" link on the error page takes me to

Clicking the Microsoft Download Center on that page takes me to

Selecting the popup link for "Top Downloads for: Mac & Other Platforms" reloads this page with a link that works:
"Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac 11.5.9 Update" sends me to FamilyID=16c71ab8-9284-407a-856a-93c67995f125 &displayLang=en

which does download the update. But not automatically. I had to click the "If your download does not start after 30 seconds, click here: Start download" link to make it happen.

Again, way to go, Microsoft.

Aug. 11, 2010


Robert MacLeay

Microsoft released updates for Office 2004 and 2008.

I downloaded all 201.6 MB of
"Office2004-1160UpdateEN.dmg" to my desktop and mounted it.

I opened the file "Read Me.html"; there was virtually nothing in it except a link to Microsoft's website. "For detailed information about this update, please visit the following Web site: ..."

I clicked on the link in the Read Me

I was quickly redirected to a Microsoft error page that said "Sorry, but we couldn't find the page that you requested."

Microsoft's quality control always ceases to amaze me.


Geoff Strickler

This afternoon (Tues, Aug 10) I downloaded the Office 2004 update 11.6.0. Aside from being 3x the size of any prior Office 2004 update, it says it can't find a program to update. I'm currently running 2004 with update 11.5.9.

Anyone else having a problem? Just a wild guess, but given the size, maybe they mis-labeled and uploaded the Office 2008 update instead of the 2004 update.

Aug. 12, 2010


M Young

Geoff Strickler,
I ran the MS autoupdaters for 2004 and 2008 and they were able to find and update the appropriate versions of Office. Standard installs of both versions in the Applications folder.

Indeed, the 2008 update is a whopper at something like 450 MB.


David Krafchick

I installed it with no issues. It was a very large update, but it installed without a hitch. Still on a G4 10.4.11. Mac Mini coming soon.... I hope.


MacInTouch Reader

Geoff Strickler remarks upon the very large size of the MS Office 2004 Updater 11.6.0.

Assuming Microsoft _does_ issue a proper download link, one reason why the 11.6.0 Update would be so huge is the sheer amount of alterations it is required to make.

The detailed description says it is a cumulative updater that incorporates *every* previous MSO 2004 bug-fix and security-flaw-correction updater. That would be... Service Packs 1 & 2; 11.1.1 update; six in the 11.2.x series; eight in the 11.3.x series; three in the 11.4.x series; and ten in the 11.5.x series.

One would expect that thirty updates issued in the course of more than five years _ought_ to include a lot of changes. The MSO 11.6.0 Updater is supposed to modify Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Entourage, Microsoft Component Plug-in, and _nearly 80_ other files.

Of course YMMV. Someone who has updated their MSO 2004 installation pretty regularly may discover that such a "huge" updater runs surprisingly quickly since it would be acting incrementally rather than comprehensively.


Bill Johnson

I had no problem with adding this new 2004 update. The size of the file is due to the fact it contains all previous 11.5 updates as well as the new corrections. I run OS X 10.6.4 on a MacBook (late 2007).


Ben freedman

Hi ...

The update worked fine for my Office 2004 installation. OS 10.6.4.

I rely on this site! Thanks Ric .....


Bruce Borich

I downloaded the updater, it locked up "Looking for files to update" Yup, some high quality code here...


John Baltutis

Robert MacLeay complained that:

I downloaded all 201.6 MB of
"Office2004-1160UpdateEN.dmg" to my desktop and mounted it.
I opened the file "Read Me.html" - I clicked on the link in the Read Me
I was quickly redirected to a Microsoft error page that said "Sorry, but we couldn't find the page that you requested." Microsoft's quality control always ceases to amaze me.

Interestingly, my Read Me showed the link as <a href="">, which worked as expected.


Joop Arends

Geoff Strickler might want to check if all Office components are still in their original post-install locations, and no rearrangement to other folders or renaming (like adding version numbers) has taken place (see Install log). If that's OK and the problem persists, running Disk Utility to repair permissions may help. While this particular update ran fine for me, taking care of the two items mentioned fixed Office updater recalcitrance in previous occasions.


Bill Fisher

I have an Imac Intel Core Duo at 2GHz with 2GB memory and had no problem updating Office 2004. It had no problem finding a program to update.


Rick Dowling

I installed the Office 11.6.0 update onto my G4 Mac mini (Tiger 10.4.11 and Office 11.5.9) yesterday without any problem. The only things I noticed were yes, it was a big update, and Word seemed to be quicker on launching after the update.

Aug. 19, 2010


Geoff Strickler

Follow-up to my Office 2004 update 11.6.0 problem:

Despite rebooting, launching and quitting various Office 2004 apps, the update repeatedly refused to install saying it couldn't find any apps to update. My Office 2004 apps are in the default location, the the Office 2004 folder in the Applications folder.

Yesterday, I tried one more time so that I could get the exact error message to update my post on the MS Office support forum. This time it worked. Nothing has changed on my system, no new updates had been installed, etc. Other users here and on the Office support forums have had similar issues, such as the installer appearing to lock-up until the user launches one of the Office apps.

Clearly, there is something off/odd with this update.

To the commenters who said the size is because it's a cumulative update including all previous updates to Office 2004, that's not relevant. Update 11.5.5 was also a cumulative update, it's 62MB, and each prior cumulative update (11.5.0, 11.4.0, etc.) was in the 45MB-62MB range. The updates from 11.5.6-11.5.9 total less than 50MB, so even if there were no duplication of code in those updates (and there is a lot of duplicated code in those updates), that would only account for 110MB of the 200MB 11.6.0 update.

Again, there is something odd about the 11.6.0 update.

Sep. 8, 2010


Joseph Foberts


I did the most recent auto-update on Microsoft Office 2004 on my Mac. As soon as the update was done, question marks appeared in front of my Excel, Entourage and Powerpoint icons (not wWord). Now they are just question marks and the actual icons have disappeared from my applications folder...

Has anyone else had a similar problem?

Thank you

Sep. 15, 2010


Deanna Zibello

Yes! My husband has had a very similar problem -- Entourage seems to have disappeared from his Applications folder, and the icon on the dock has a "?" over it. Does anyone know how we can fix this?

Sep. 16, 2010


David Charlap

Deanna Zibello wrote:

"Entourage seems to have disappeared from his Applications folder, and the icon on the dock has a "?" over it. Does anyone know how we can fix this?"

I would drag/drop it from the install media to the Applications folder. Then re-apply the latest updates to make it current.

Oct. 14, 2010


Andrew Fowler

I've just finished installing the new Microsoft Office updates on two different Macs, both running Snow Leopard. While everything went generally smoothly, there were a few quirks.


As for the Office 2004 11.6.1 update, on both computers the Office 2004 AutoUpdate reports that there are no updates available at this time. Downloading and using the disk image via the link on MacInTouch works just fine, though.


Jean-Luc Warin

On Tiger 10.4.11, after applying Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac 11.6.1 Update, some Excel workbook containing more than 8 worksheets cannot be opened any longer.
Nothing happens when I double click or select Open.
Clearing pref and other maintenance does not fix the issue.

They can be opened using Office 2008.
They can be opened using the previous version 2004 (11.6.0)/

It seems there is a nasty bug and reporting it to Microsoft an impossible task...!

Oct. 15, 2010


Randy Spydell

RE: Jean-Luc Warin's trouble

After updating my Excel 2004 with 11.6.1, I have a 16 sheet workbook that opened just fine. At least I think it did. I didn't meticulously check every formula and cell reference, but it looks and behaves as I expect it to.

Perhaps the Microsoft patch has a Tiger issue that isn't present in Snow Leopard. I am running 10.6.4


Steve Maser

Microsoft pulled the 11.6.1 update from the AutoUpdate servers because some files with Macros won't open.

They mentioned this on their forums:

Hopefully, they resolve this soon. None of our macs that installed this update can open *some* of our files containing Macros...


Alfred Cellier

Update 11.6.1 now prevents Excel from opening my workbooks that contain macros!


Logan Steve

Regarding a problem opening some Excel files after updating Office 2004 to 11.6.1, there is an ongoing support discussion on the Mactopia product forum:

XinXin liu, Test Lead for Mac Excel, is looking into the problem.


Geoff Strickler

Jean-Luc Warin wrote:

"On Tiger 10.4.11, after applying Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac 11.6.1 Update, some Excel workbook containing more than 8 worksheets cannot be opened any longer."

I can confirm the same problem on 10.6.4. I'll be reverting to 11.6.0 immediately.

Oct. 16, 2010


Robert van Lier

I, too, was unable to open several Excel workbooks after installing Security update 11.6.1. Some older workbooks with macros would open, but not one of my most important ones. I was able to open the workbook in Excel 2007 running under Parallels 5 or CrossoverMac, but of course the macro creating my special menubar wouldn't work. I reinstalled Excel from a Time Machine backup but that did not help. I then went looking for MS files that were changed at the time of the update installation and found that the database in my Office 2004 Main Identities>Main Identity folder had been altered. Replacing this file from backup restored my ability to open my macro containing workbook. So it appears that the installation of this security update corrupted the database file, or maybe this is a way to deinstall the update. Guess I'll wait for update 11.6.2.


Simon Pocock

For what it's worth (and the problem seems to be a bit variable), I've installed 11.6.1 under OS X 10.5.8 and (a) my biggest workbook with 117 worksheets opens, (b) the Visual Basic macro that runs my time-sheet system works, and (c) so do my macros in Version 4 Macro Language. Hope that saying this does not tempt fate!

Oct. 18, 2010


Robert MacLeay

Microsoft has issued updater 11.6.2, which patches the 11.6.1 update that broke Excel.

At the moment, it is available only via direct download at

According to the install log, the following three items are installed:
Microsoft Excel
Microsoft Component Plugin
Microsoft Graph

Obsolete hint for early adopters: It is not necessary to delete/reinstall the entire MS Office suite; dragging a backup copy of Excel 11.6.0 from a backup into the Office 11.6.1 folder also fixed my inability to open random Excel documents.

You do maintain backups, don't you?


Geoff Strickler

Based upon the reports on the MS Office Mac forum, it sounds like merged cells may be the problem rather than number of worksheets or VBA macros.


Ken Heins

Didn't even know there was a security update, haven't opened Office for nearly a year!


Graham Needham

To Robert van Lier

What are you waiting for? The Office 2004 11.6.2 update came out on Friday the 15th October :-)


Joop Arends

A recently released Office 2004 11.6.2 updater ( fixed the problem I had with opening one of my Excel files following the 11.6.1 update. No mention of any file opening issues in the accompanying updater blurb, and 'Additional info' links to the 11.6.1 page, but it looks like the problem has been addressed. We'll soon see if it's sufficient.


MacInTouch Reader

After blithely installing this latest Office 2004 update, I had a problem opening one of two .xls files I needed. I couldn't open a small file I'd created using that very same version of Office 2004 just the other day. Sheesh. I opened without problem a much larger file I'd had around forever which had been repeatedly opened and saved.

The file which Office 2004 11.6.1 wouldn't open I could open in Numbers. That really saved my bacon!

Oct. 19, 2010


John Griffin

For some reason the 11.6.2 update can not find any files to update. This is very strange because the 11.6.0 update went very smoothly. So, it appears that Office 2004 is effectively dead as far as I am concerned.


John Griffin

OK, I discovered that there was a 11.6.1 update that got by me and it has to be installed first.

So, why can't MS design a idiot-proof installer that will alert the user that a previous update needs to be installed first before the one that he is trying to install? To be more helpful, why not provide a link in the alert that will download the missing update? I guess that is just too logical for MS.


Jean-Luc Warin

Special Thanks to Robert MacLeay for info re: updater 11.6.2 - it works.

Yes we maintain backups, and we had used a copy of Excel 11.6.0 to workaround the bug in the meantime.

Oct. 20, 2010


Chuck Counselman

Microsoft AutoUpdate downloaded Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac 11.6.1 Update and tried to install it in my PowerBook G4 1.67 GHz under Mac OS X v10.5.8. As usual, AutoUpdate said it was looking for software to update. Fifteen minutes later, it still said this. Command-Option-Escape found AutoUpdate unresponsive.


Chuck Counselman

P.S.: I Quit all other applications, launched Microsoft AutoUpdate, and tried again. Again, Microsoft AutoUpdate downloaded Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac 11.6.1 Update and tried to install. Again, AutoUpdate said it was searching for software to update. Again, fifteen minutes later, it still said this. Again, Command-Option-Escape found AutoUpdate unresponsive. I had to Force-Quit it.


John Lockwood

OpenXML Converter 1.1.7 as used with Office 2004 breaks the Microsoft Auto Updater utility used to check for further Open XML Converter updates - at least it does on various PowerPC based computers running Mac OS X 10.4.11. I have not yet tried updating newer MacBooks running Mac OS X 10.5.8 or 10.6.4.

The newer version installed by 1.1.7 will fail to launch but the OpenXML Converter itself works fine.

Note: This is a different Auto Update Utility to that used by Office 2004 itself.

Office 2004 uses an older one in /Applications, OpenXML Converter uses one in /Library/Application Support/Microsoft/MAU2.0


Nathan Champagne

John Griffin wrote:

For some reason the 11.6.2 update can not find any files to update. This is very strange because the 11.6.0 update went very smoothly. So, it appears that Office 2004 is effectively dead as far as I am concerned.

I had the same problem. So, I installed the 11.6.1 update, since I hadn't yet. Then, I installed the 11.6.2 update.

Aug. 27, 2011


Eric Landquist

Also I have problems updating Office 2004 from ver 11.6.0.
The updater gets "unresponsive" in 10sec! I have forced Quit this all the time. How to get the 11.6.1 update and then follow sequently to 11.6.5.
1) Is there a library or pref to put on the desktop?
2) Are there restrictions on OS 10.5.8, which I am using?
3) The MS home page give "nada" information this time. Last update mentioned something about putting a 'pref' or similar out of a folder, and then reinstall from scratch, with manually update each version. Very effective and fast! (Irony!)

Aug. 29, 2011


Colleen Thompson

Eric Landquist:

Are you trying to let Microsoft AutoUpdate download the file, or is the hang happening in trying to actually install the file? If it's the first, have you tried manually downloading the updater and running it yourself, bypassing Microsoft AutoUpdate?

I carry all the Office updaters around on my diagnostic drive, and have had success installing in 10.5.8. They are available at

You do need to watch out for 11.6.2, if you get that far; doing a Get Info on a Word v 11.6.2 will incorrectly report a different version, making you think the 11.6.2 update didn't install correctly; you have to do your Get Info on the Microsoft Component Plugin instead, which is in a subfolder of the Microsoft Office folder.

Aug. 30, 2011


David Faust

May not be directly related, but when recently installing and updating Office 2008, I could get the Microsoft Auto Update (MAU) Update to install. I finally copied and pasted the provided URL in the description into Safari and manually downloaded and installed the update. After doing this, everything worked as expected. May be worth a try.......


David Hollander

The update installer might stumble if your installation of Office 2004 is in a non-standard location. Did you rename the folder into which it was installed? It should be in a folder named "Microsoft Office 2004" inside your "Applications" folder.

Also, I find it helpful to unmount any external volumes, if you have any, before running a Microsoft Office for Mac updater.

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