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From David Fisher <dfis...@jmlafferty.com>
Subject Fwd: Issues with Open XML in Office 2008 for Mac SP2
Date Wed, 29 Jul 2009 23:27:16 GMT
Hi All -

 From Microsoft - very responsive.


From: Blair Neumann <Blair.Neumann@microsoft.com>
Date: July 29, 2009 3:38:56 PM PDT
To: Dave Fisher <dave@jmlafferty.com>
Subject: FW: Issues with Open XML in Office 2008 for Mac SP2

Hi Dave. Please forward to dev@poi.apache.org.

------ Forwarded Message
From: Blair Neumann <blair.neumann@microsoft.com>
Date: Wed, 29 Jul 2009 11:37:25 -0700
To: "dev@poi.apache.org" <dev@poi.apache.org>
Subject: Issues with Open XML in Office 2008 for Mac SP2

Hello Dave Fisher and other POI contributors.

Pat McMillan forwarded email from Dave Fisher describing the Apache  
POI project’s concerns about an issue in Office 2008 for Mac SP2,  
concerns that we share. This email is a response to Dave Fisher's  
earlier correspondence.

We are aware of a serious bug in Office 2008 for Mac SP2 version  
12.2.0 causing some Open XML files to fail to open in Office 2008 SP2.  
This bug is affecting Open XML files from a variety of sources  
including Office for Windows, Office for Mac, and the Apache POI  
project. We understand the problem and are working to release a  
version 12.2.1 of Office 2008 that addresses this issue in August.

A few points from Dave Fisher's mail should be addressed.

 >> the Apache POI project has adjusted code to produce "MS-compatible  
OOXML by adding docProps/app.xml with "Microsoft Excel". We've done  
similar for DOCX files. This will allow users of future versions of  
Apache POI to produce OOXML documents that will work with Office 2008  
for Mac SP2.

This is not the best long-term solution, though we understand that it  
may be an effective short-term response to a bug in Office 2008 for  
Mac version 12.2.0. This isn't about producing "MS-compatible" Open  
XML but is rather a workaround for a short-term bug. Rather than  
asserting that Apache POI files are written by Microsoft, we hope that  
your long-term guidance will be to recommend that affected Office 2008  
for Mac users use version 12.2.1 or later (or version 12.1.9 or  
earlier) with files written by Apache POI.

 >> In our understanding of the standard docProps/app.xml is optional.

Our understanding also. An extended properties part (such as app.xml,  
which happens to be what we call it) is indeed optional as stated in  
ECMA-376, Part 4, Section 7.2, "If all extended property elements are  
omitted then the extended properties part may be excluded from a  

 >> If this [the Application tag] were required by the standard then  
we think this would mean that the proper value for Apache POI created  
documents would to be "Apache POI" and not "Microsoft Excel"

Our understanding also. Related to my discussion above, we believe  
that an Application value "Apache POI" is appropriate.

 >> we expect that Microsoft will return to compliance with ISO  
standard 29500 as promised.

To be clear, Office 2008 for Mac conforms to ECMA-376 and does not yet  
conform to ISO/IEC 29500. The current situation is a bug in our  
ECMA-376 implementation and will be remedied as soon as possible.

Warm regards.

Blair Neumann
Program Manager, Macintosh Business Unit

------ End of Forwarded Message

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