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Microsoft Office 2016 (365) Frequently Asked Questions FAQ

Article ID = 154
Article Title = Microsoft Office 2016 (365) Frequently Asked Questions FAQ
Article Author(s) = Graham Needham (BH)
Article Created On = 24th July 2015
Article Last Updated = 20th September 2017
Article URL = http://www.macstrategy.com/article.php?154

Article Brief Description:
Frequently Asked Questions about Microsoft Office 2016 (365)

Installation, Registration, Compatibility and Requirements

  • Office 2016 (365 subscription) requires internet activation and a Microsoft Account to install
  • Office 2016 requires a serial number and internet activation to install (registration of a Microsoft account is required)
  • NOTE: If you are having problems with activation call Microsoft on 02031 474930 in the UK or (866) 825-4797 in the USA
  • Office 2016 requires OS X 10.10 Yosemite or later

New Features

  • Office
    • OneNote application
    • OneDrive, OneDrive for Business and SharePoint integration for file saving/opening
    • Retina display support
    • Modern OS X like user interface
    • Redesigned ribbon visuals (now similar to Office for Windows)
    • New Themes, Styles and (online) Templates
    • Share documents from within all Office applications
  • Word
    • Threaded comments in collaboration tools
    • New Design tab
    • Improved coauthoring (enables several people to work simultaneously in the same Word document)
    • Improved Mail Merge
  • Outlook
    • Improved conversation view
    • Improved signature support (including account level, new messages, replies/forwards)
    • Support for server side Exchange rules
    • New message preview gives you the first sentence of an email just below the subject line
    • Side-by-side calendars
    • Push Mail support
    • Category Sync (Categories, including their names and colors, are now synced and the same in Outlook for Mac, Outlook for Windows, and the Outlook Web App)
    • Weather Forecast in Calendar
  • Excel
    • Analysis ToolPak add-on
    • PivotTable Slicers
    • Support for Excel 2013 (for Windows) functions
    • New Formula Builder pane
    • Windows CTRL keyboard shortcuts
    • Recommended charts
  • Powerpoint
    • New Presenter View (now similar to Office for Windows)
    • Threaded comments in collaboration tools
    • Improved coauthoring (enables several people to work simultaneously in the same Word document)

General FAQ

Q. When is Office 2016 shipping?
A. Microsoft made it available to Office 365 subscribers in the summer of 2015. MSDN subscribers got it in September 2015. Perpetual (retail) product was made available on 22nd September 2015. Volume licensing was made available in early August 2015.
Q. How does the Office 365 subscription work and how much is it?
A. See our separate article.
Q. What if I don't want to subscribe to Office 365?
A. Perpetual (retail) product was made available from 22nd September 2015. Volume licensing was made available in early August 2015.
Q. What software is included?
A. The following applications are included in Office 2016:
  • Excel
  • OneNote
  • Outlook
  • Powerpoint
  • Word
You also get a selection of fonts that are only available to use with the Microsoft Office 2016 applications. Publisher, Access, Visio and Project are not included and probably never will be.
Q. Should I upgrade to Office 2016?
A. If you are not running OS X 10.10 Yosemite or later you can't upgrade. Office 2011 will continue to work fine and continue to receive security updates for now - however, it is due to be end of life on 10/10/2017 at which point it will no longer receive security updates. If you sign up for an Office 365 subscription from 22nd September 2016 you can only download and install Office 2016.
Q. How can I tell which version of macOS / OS X / Mac OS X I am running?
A. Go to Apple menu (top left) > About This Mac > check the version reported for macOS / OS X / Mac OS X.
Q. Does Office 2016 for Mac support Right-to-Left (RTL) languages?
A. Yes. As of 16th March 2016 with update 15.20.0 or later Word, Excel and PowerPoint supported Arabic and Hebrew. As of 12th May 2016 with update 15.22.0 or later Outlook supported Arabic and Hebrew.
Q. Does Office 2016 support Visual Basic for Applications (VBA)?
A. According to Microsoft "Existing macros continue to work in Office 2016 for Mac. When accessing local files, you may encounter permission prompts due to Mac OS X sandboxing. We've added methods to the object model to allow you to update macros to minimize the number of prompts. Office 2016 for Mac provides a simplified Visual Basic Editor (VBE) for viewing/debugging existing macros. We recommend that customers develop macros or VB add-ins in Office for Windows and use Office for Mac to debug if needed."
Q. When will there be Mac versions of Lync/Skype for Business and OneDrive for Business?
A. Microsoft launched the Skype for Business Mac Public Preview on 26th April 2016. OneDrive for Business is available.
Q. I can't customise the Quick Access Toolbar any more. What's wrong?
A. This feature has been removed but apparently it is something Microsoft are "planning to add in an upcoming update (for all apps)". New, Print, and Save were added to the Quick Access toolbar as of 16th February 2016 with update 15.19.1 or later.
Q. I can't insert Clip Art any more. What's wrong?
A. This feature/service has been removed - you can add clip art manually via insert Photo > Picture from File…
Q. Office used to store my email/data in ~your home directory~ > Documents > Microsoft User Data. Is this still the same?
A. No. Office now stores data in several different folders but your main data is now in ~your home directory~ > Library > Group Containers > UBF8T346G9.Office:
  • Outlook accounts are then in Outlook > Outlook 15 Profiles > Main Profile (or a different profile name if you have changed it)
  • Startup items in User Content > Startup
  • Templates e.g. "Normal.dotm" in User Content > Templates
  • Themes in User Content > Themes
Q. Why are the applications so big/take up so much storage space?
A. Each application includes its own set of fonts and application resources including retina display assets (the latter of which take up a lot of space) - there are various reasons why they chose to do it this way but the primary one is that, simply, it is how Apple recommends to do it (to have one, self contained application) but speculation also suggests that this is also so that Microsoft could, if they wanted to, sell the applications individually via the Mac App Store…
Q. I keep getting asked to activate my copy of Microsoft Office 2016 / 2011 / 365 even though I have a valid Office 365 subscription. What's going on?
A. There is a common problem that if your "region settings" on your computer don't match the one in your Microsoft account you will keep getting asked to activate your software. To fix this go to Apple menu > System Preferences > Language & Region > make sure the "Region" pop-up menu is set correctly and that the item at the top of the list in "Preferred languages:" on the left matches it (you can drag preferred languages up and down the list). Then go to your Microsoft Account online > login > click on "Your Info" > click on "Edit your personal info" > make sure the "Country/Region" pop-up menu matches the one set on your computer > Save and Sign out.
Q. If I subscribe to Office 365 can I use the Microsoft Office applications offline/without an internet connection?
A. Office 365 needs to "phone home" at least once every 39 days otherwise it will go into 'reduced-functionality mode' (you can open/read and print documents but not edit them or create new documents) so it will work offline for a period of time. Obviously if you use OneDrive for storing documents you will not be able to access OneDrive when you are offline. Outlook has a dedicated offline mode - go to Outlook menu > Work Offline.
Q. I heard that OneDrive/online storage is now supported directly in the Office applications e.g. in the Open/Save dialogue boxes. Can you set the default Open/Save location?
A. There is no option to set this as a traditional "preference" but there is a button in the bottom left corner to switch between online and local storage ("Online Locations" / "On My Mac"). The Office applications appear to remember the last chosen location.
Q. As Office 2016 directly supports OneDrive does it directly support DropBox, Apple's iCloud and/or other online storage services?
A. At this time it only supports OneDrive (personal/business) and SharePoint but the functionality looks like it can be added to/updated by Microsoft at a later date so it's possible, but not guaranteed, that it may support other services in the future - we'll update this article as and when we get more information.
Q. Now that the Office 2016 perpetual licenses are shippping is there upgrade pricing if I own an earlier version?
A. No. Microsoft stopped doing "upgrades" for Office a few years ago and instead, simply lowered the price across all Office product ranges.
Q. What happens if I subscribe to Office 365 and then stop paying/cancel my subscription? Do I lose all my documents?
A. Obviously if you use OneDrive for storing documents you will not be able to access OneDrive once you cancel your subscription so copy all your OneDrive documents back to a local storage area before cancelling. If you use Outlook you should export your data before cancelling (see the next Q&A). Once your subscription is cancelled Office applications will go into 'reduced-functionality mode' (you can open/read and print documents but not edit them or create new documents) but you can always use an Office alternative to open and edit your documents.
Q. I've upgraded from an earlier version of Microsoft Office but don't like Office 2016. Can I go back to Office 2011?
Q. I've trialled/used Office 2016 / 365 but don't like it. Can I go back to Office 2011 or use alternative suites/applications?
A. After 22nd September 2016 if you have an Office 365 subscription then no, you can't - Office 2011 for download and installation via an Office 365 subscription has been discontinued.
A. If you have a perpetual or volume licence of Office 2011 then yes, you can. Word, Excel, Powerpoint documents are in a standard format but if you have used Outlook for your Email, Calendar, Contacts, Notes and/or Tasks you may not be able to simply go back to the old version of Outlook 2011 (or alternative apps) and access your data. Any data on IMAP or Exchange accounts should still be accessible as the data is stored on the server(s) but any POP email stored locally on your computer/downloaded via a POP account and/or calendars, contacts, notes or tasks will need to be exported before you delete the newer version of Outlook!
  • Email > create a folder called "Email Export" on your Desktop and in this folder you will first need to recreate the folders and subfolders structure you have in Outlook. Then go to each folder in Outlook, (Edit menu) Select All and drag all the emails to the relevant Folder in the Finder. You can then recreate your folder/subfolder structure in Outlook 2011 (or email application of your choice) and drag the .eml files into it.
  • Calendar > there is no easy way to export this data, sorry.
  • Contacts > create a folder called "Contacts Export" on your Desktop, go to your Contacts in Outlook and (Edit menu) Select All and drag all the contacts to your "Contacts Export" folder you created. You can then drag the .vcf files back into Outlook 2011 (or the contacts application of your choice).
  • Notes > create a folder called "Notes Export" on your Desktop, go to your Notes in Outlook and (Edit menu) Select All and drag all the Notes to your "Notes Export" folder you created - this will create .html files for each note which are, unfortunately, not easy to reimport back into another application but at least you can open the HTML files in a text editor application e.g. TextEdit and rip/copy the text out that you may want to keep.
  • Tasks > there is no easy way to export this data, sorry (dragging Tasks from Outlook 2016 creates .ics files - these may be compatible to drag back into Outlook 2011 but probably not any other application).
NOTE: If you have used OneDrive to store documents and you are no longer going to subscribe to Office 365 / OneDrive remember to copy all you documents from the cloud back to a local storage area.
Q. Are there any alternatives to Microsoft Office?
A. Yes - see our list of alternatives to Microsoft Office.
Q. How do I remove Microsoft Office 2016?
A. See our article here.
Q. How do I update Microsoft Office 2016?
A. See our updating Microsoft products article here.

Word FAQ

Q. Can you save Word documents to PDFs with correctly functioning hyperlinks?
A. As of 13th December 2016 (update 15.29.0 or later) this appears to have finally been fixed (including hyperlinks that wrap over multiple lines). If hyperlinks are normal text you must use the Microsoft PDF Export option (File menu > Save As… > select "Export formats > PDF" on the 'File format:' pop-up menu > choose the type of PDF you want [note that the "Best for electronic distribution and accessibility" option uses a Microsoft online service thereby, potentially, transmitting sensitive data!] > click "Export"). If hyperlinks have been set as proper embedded hyperlinks in the document (Insert menu > Hyperlink…) then the normal macOS Print > PDF pop-up menu > "Save as PDF…" (or "Save as Postscript…" if you want to use Acrobat Distiller), should work.
Q. Where's the Publishing Layout View?
A. This feature has been removed.
Q. Is Word 2016 compatible with EndNote X or Bookends?
A. EndNote X7 is compatible with Word 2016 as of 12th April 2016 (update 15.21.1 or later). Bookends version 12.7.1 or later is compatible with Word 2016.
Q. Can Word open OpenDocument Text (.odt) files?
A. Yes, as of 10th December 2015 (update 15.7.0 or later).
Q. Non-contiguous selection no longer works in Word. What's going on?
A. You are probably running version 15.38.0 and this feature was accidentally removed in the 15.38.0 update. If you update to 15.39.0 or later (10th October 2017) this fixes the issue.
Q. Is there a way to let Microsoft know about a feature (request) I would like in Word?
A. Yes, you can request / vote for features here.

Outlook FAQ

Q. Editing/writing emails and the default fonts all appear to have changed. What happened?
A. As of 12th May 2016 with update 15.22.0 or later Outlook supported right-to-left (RTL) languages such as Arabic and Hebrew. To achieve this the text editing system changed from the old Outlook for Mac to what is essential Word 2016's editing system. However, as of May 2016 there is little control over these editing features (there are currently no preference settings for them) so hopefully Microsoft will begin to add these in with future updates and make Outlook for Mac's editing system much more powerful/controlable.
Q. Does Outlook support CalDAV and CardDAV for full synchronisation of calendars and contacts with iCloud, Gmail and Outlook.com (previously Hotmail)?
A. No but Microsoft has stated "We'll be adding these and other feature requests through monthly updates".
Q. Does Outlook support Active Directory Authentication Library (ADAL)?
A. No but Word, Excel and Powerpoint do.
Q. What happened to the "Highlight messages from the same conversation" option/view?
A. It's been replaced by the new conversation view including message preview and actions on hover.
Q. Can I export information from Outlook?
A. Automated, bulk exporting has been removed from Outlook - however, it is still possible to export some information manually (see the "Can I go back to Office 2011" Q&A above).
Q. What version of Exchange Server is required for an Exchange Outlook account?
A. Exchange Server 2010 Service Pack 2 or later.
Q. I can't get the new "Propose New Time" feature to work. What's wrong?
A. The "Propose New Time" in Outlook feature requires Exchange Server 2013 or Exchange Online (Office 365) + the meeting organiser needs to allow proposals when sending out the meeting request (an option when composing the invitation).
Q. Where is the "My Day" application?
A. The "My Day" application is no longer included in Office 2016.
Q. Where is the "Office Reminders" application?
A. The "Office Reminders" application is no longer included as a separate application but its functionality is still included in the suite from within the Outlook application itself.
Q. Why doesn't the keyboard shortcut for Forward message (Command+J) work?
A. It was initially removed but it was restored as of 16th February 2016 with update 15.19.1 or later.
Q. My categories have all changed. What happened?
Q. Some/all of my original categories are missing/gone/have disappeared from the Navigation Pane on the left. How do I get them back?
A. Outlook 2016 categories now sync with Windows/Outlook Web Access (OWA) Exchange accounts so there is a new default set of categories and categories are now edited via Outlook Preferences. Some or all of your original categories' visibility in the Navigation Pane may get turned off in the upgrade process but they are easy to get back. Go to Outlook menu > Preferences… > Categories > select the account you want to edit Categories for on the left > on the right in the Categories list scroll right until you see the "Show in Navigation Pane" column > tick/untick the categories you want visible in the Navigation Pane on the left.
Q. Is there a way to let Microsoft know about a feature (request) I would like in Outlook?
A. Yes, you can request / vote for features here.

Excel FAQ

Q. Can I customise the keyboard in Excel 2016?
A. No. This feature has been removed but Windows CTRL keyboard shortcuts have been newly added.
Q. I used to option-click / alt-click to insert a row or column of data in Excel but this does not work anymore. What's wrong?
A. This Mac-only feature has been removed so as to not confuse Windows users! As stated by Microsoft: "Alt-Click to add a new row was removed in order to make Excel for Mac similar to Excel for Windows". There is a workaround which is not quite as elegant as to how it used to work but gets the job done:
  1. Go to Apple menu > System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts tab
  2. Select "App Shortcuts" in the list on the left
  3. Click the "+" button underneath the list on the right to add a new application and shortcut
  4. From the 'All Applications" pop-up menu select "Microsoft Excel" (2016)
  5. In "Menu Title:" type the name of the menu option you want to add for the shortcut. Make sure what you type exactly matches the menu item e.g. Insert menu > "Cells". For a copied row/column enter "Copied Cells" or for a cut row/column enter "Cut Cells"
  6. In "Keyboard Shortcut:" press the combination of keys you want to use (make sure you're using one that's not assigned to anything else in Excel or else Excel will use it's own function first) e.g. for inserting a copied row/column use Apple+Alt+V or for inserting a cut row/column use "Apple+Alt+Ctrl+V"
  7. Click the "Add" button
Thanks to Stavros Karatsoridis via MacInTouch for pointing us in the right direction for the solution.
Q. Can Excel open OpenDocument Spreadsheet (.ods) files?
A. Yes, as of 10th December 2015 (update 15.7.0 or later).
Q. Is there a way to let Microsoft know about a feature (request) I would like in Excel?
A. Yes, you can request / vote for features here.

Powerpoint FAQ

Q. Can Excel open OpenDocument Presentation (.odp) files?
A. Yes, as of 10th December 2015 (update 15.7.0 or later).
Q. Is there a way to let Microsoft know about a feature (request) I would like in Powerpoint?
A. Yes, you can request / vote for features here.

OneNote FAQ

Q. Is there a way to let Microsoft know about a feature (request) I would like in OneNote?
A. Yes, you can request / vote for features here.

Article Keywords: Microsoft Office 2016 365 Frequently Asked Questions FAQ

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