Rental Workbook on a Mac?

We have had a number of inquiries about Excel, the Rental Workbook, and whether it will work with  Macs.

We recently discovered that the VBA functionality has been included in Excel for Mac 2011.  This is an important feature as it supports all of the Excel application objects and methods of Excel 2010 for Windows.  This makes this version for Mac a more viable option and we are investigating the Rental Workbook to see how it works with the Mac.  This is very good news, as previous Office for Mac versions have not been able to run the Rental Workbook.

We did discover though, that external objects referenced within VBA projects are limited within Excel for Mac 2011 in cases where the Windows based objects are not available on Mac OS X.  This means that when Upgrading or Renewing, Mac users will need to refer to us for processing because the Renewal and Upgrade files are referencing  the ‘External Object’ which is the users own Rental Workbook file. We can run this process for users manually, returning the Renewed or Upgraded file back to the client without a problem (on recent tests at least).

At this time, we do not have a separate version of the Rental Workbook that will run on a Mac that does not have a PC emulator.

In addition, the ‘new’ Office 2008 for Macs will not support the programming for VBA that we use to create the Rental Workbook (the reason you choose to Enable Macros when opening the Rental Workbook).

We recently searched for help from Microsoft on this issue, and found the following quote:

“Why remove VBA for Office 2008? While Office 2008 was built to be a universal application because Apple moved to Intel processors, the Macintosh VBA compiler was originally designed for a much earlier PowerPC-based Macintosh and will not work, without significant modifications, on the Intel-based Macintosh. VBA macro code is compiled at runtime, and the compiler code, VB editor code, and VB forms code could not be converted for the Intel-based Macintosh without extensive programming work that would have significantly delayed the universal version of Office 2008.

The Microsoft Office for Windows version of VBA can’t be directly used for Office 2008 because it depends on execution of Windows machine assembly, which isn’t compatible with the Mac OS”

“Furthermore, macros found in the new “m” file formats of 2007 Office suite for Windows (.docm, .xlsm, .pptm) will not run on and can’t be converted for Office 2004 (or Office 2008, or any version of Office for Mac”

So we don’t envisage a Mac version of the Rental Workbook for some time unfortunately.

We’ll keep you posted on any updates.

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5 comments on “Rental Workbook on a Mac?
  1. Malcolm Winder says:

    Are you indicating that excel for Mac 11 can be used with
    your product but earlier versions cannot? If so, is the process of subscription renewal complicated ?

  2. Mel says:

    Yes that’s right – previous versions of Mac Office did not support VBA at all, which means that none of the programming we do works at all (you would have no buttons to click, and wouldn’t be able to get past the first page).
    The process in itself is quite simple – normally (on a PC), you open the Renewal or Upgrade file, tell Excel where to find your existing RW and then a new file is created with the new renewal date or upgraded content.
    The Renewal / Upgrade process on a Mac is a little more complex than on a PC, in that you would need to transfer your RW to a PC or email it to us to be processed on your behalf. The file size is approx 4MB so is easily transferred on a USB drive to do this, or can be zipped for an email down to about 1MB.

  3. sean connell says:

    Hi I purchased your software and have not used it yet.
    I have just recently upgraded my lap top to a Mac book pro as my PC lap top gave up on me.
    I have purchased and installed the office for Mac 2011 software and I am using it successfully.
    How can I use the Excelaustralia software I bought on my Macbook ?

    Regards Sean Connell

  4. Mark Eddey says:

    Just a brief follow-up on the usability of Rental workbook on a Mac.

    I have an intel Mac running Mac OSX 10.7.4 and have recently purchased a full version of Office for Mac 2011. All my other Excel stuff seems to run OK on this and I was wondering whether this version will be compatible with your software and if so what limitations will there be.



  5. Mel says:

    Hi Mark,

    All the information we find suggests that it all works fine now; however, so far we have found that any of the programming that refers to “External objects” – i.e. creating an invoice, running the Renewal or Upgrade procedures (which use other files) and so on, will not work.


    Mel, Support Excel Australia

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