Service Pack 2 (SP2) 14.2.0 is now available to download

DO NOT DOWNLOAD Service Pack 2 (SP2) 14.2.0. This update contains problems that were fixed in 14.2.1. You can go directly from 14.1.0 or higher to 14.2.1. SKIP the 14.2.0 updater.

Microsoft released Service Pack 2 (SP2) 14.2.0 on April 12, 2012. You can download via the Autoupdater or directly from Microsoft downloads.

All browsers need to be quit along with SyncServices, Microsoft Database daemon and all Microsoft applications. The easy way to do this is to Log out under the Apple in the Menu bar. When you log in, hold down the Shift key. This disables all login items allowing you to install.

Outlook users: Before installing Office 2011 SP2, use the following article to rebuild your database in 14.1.4 to ensure that your database is in a good state for the upgrade to safely apply: Rebuild the Outlook for Mac 2011 database to resolve problems. If you have Exchange and/or IMAP accounts, you might want to delete the accounts prior to upgrading to SP2 and let the new database download your data from the server after the upgrade.

Service Pack 2 (SP2) 14.2.0 requires that 14.1.0 be installed.

Update Microsoft Office 2011 using AutoUpdate

Select Microsoft AutoUpdate under Help in the Menu bar for any Microsoft Office application.

For more details about this update click on the links provided in the update window:

If you get “A version of the software required to install this update was not found on this volume”, be sure you have 14.1.0 installed. If you do have the 14.1.0 or later installed and get this error you’ll need to re-install Office 2011. If you didn’t restart after installing an updater,  the file that is checked to verify you qualify to udate shows the wrong info. Restarting after each updater will force this file to update.

The updater has improved and will ask you to close any Microsoft files. I’m not clear if it get Syncservices  which is commonly reported as a cause for failure to update.

This first screenshot was taken from my Lion upgrade. I had no browsers open.

This was taken on Snow Leopard upgrade where I left my browsers open to see if the updater would also have me quit these too. Finally a smarter updater.

RESTART after the upgrade is complete. This will force the file that is checked by the Finder for future upgrades. This is a lot quicker than having to re-install for the next update.

New location of folders in Microsoft User Data folder

Service Pack 2 (SP2) 14.2.0 makes some major changes to file locations. Unfortunately, some of the files are not copied as expected. If you are a Lion user you will need to enable the User’s Library folder. Hold down the Option key and select Go in the Menu bar to view your User’s Library folder.

The following folders are now located in Application Support

Old location     ~/Library/Preferences/Microsoft/Office 2011
New location   ~/Library/Application Support/Microsoft/Office/Preferences/Office 2011

Verify all files are moved.

1)  Move any missing files in the Office 2011 folder in Preferences to Application Support.

Launch Word after upgrading as this will cause the files to be copied to their Apple recommended locations. I recommend Word, because it will not be affected by open and quit in regard to the preference files.

Quit Word without doing anything in Word, and then copy over any missing files from the old location to the new location in Application Support.

Old location:    ~/Library/Preferences/Microsoft/Office 2011/

New location:  ~/Library/Application Support/Microsoft/Office/Preferences/Office 2011

Your custom dictionary and toolbars are stored in this folder along with Office registration and other preferences.

2)  Move your scripts from the Microsoft User Data folder to Application Support. (if you don’t use custom scripts you can skip this part and just delete the folders listed in step 3 in the Microsoft User Data folder.)

You will need to move your custom scripts to their new location in the Application Support.

Old location of scripts:  ~/Documents/Microsoft User Data/

New location of scripts: Library/Application Support/Microsoft/Office folder

3)  When you complete moving your scripts, you can delete these folders in the Microsoft User Data folder.

  • Excel Script Menu Items
  • Outlook Script Menu Items
  • PowerPoint Script Menu Items

Your new Microsoft User Data folder should only have these folders for Office 2011.

Upgrade Outlook Identity

When you open Outlook for the first time, you will get this window. Be sure to read this post before upgrading. Service Pack 2 (SP2) 14.2.0 Warnings for Outlook users 

It will take several minutes to upgrade your Identity. My Identity was less than 1GB and took approx 10 minutes to upgrade.

Improvements Added in SP2

You can download a list of fixes in SP2 in Excel format. download  Here are just a few of the many features added in Service Pack 2.

  • Thunderbolt and eSATA drive support has been added.
  • Users are reporting several odd issues with syncing and moving messages were fixed in Service Pack 2 .
  • Help for corrupt calendar events. This update gives the user additional information if they receive certain kinds of corrupted calendar events.
  • Help for sending attachments.
  • Improved Exchange support.This update fixes an issue where Exchange messages appeared more slowly in Outlook for Mac.
  • Full Screen support is added to Word, Excel and PowerPoint but not to Outlook.

Features not added:

I’m sure there are many more but here are two popular requests that were not added.

  • Support for CalDAV and CardDAV. This means no support for iCloud Calendars, Contacts and Google Calendars.
  • Full Lion support (like Versions, Auto Save, Full Screen-mode)


Did you delete duplicate fonts installed by Office 2011? This is often a source for crashes. See Font Management for help: Office 2011 Duplicate Fonts to Delete

[This article has been edited to include the latest information]

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1 comment to Service Pack 2 (SP2) 14.2.0 is now available to download

  • Matt

    Also be aware if you’re running the installer via Apple Remote Desktop or the command line (i.e. using installer -pkg -target) it will just kill your open browsers. Tested and confirmed FireFox, Safari and Chrome we’re all just force quit near the end of the install.