Microsoft Office Communicator for Mac 2011 Crashes in OSX Lion – PATCHED!

In the compatibility war, I’ve come across my first real casualty after my OSX Lion upgrade.  What’s strange is this didn’t appear until today, and I’ve been running Lion and Communicator for more than a few weeks now.

The symptom appears to be that when Microsoft Communicator, which is part of the Microsoft Office for Mac 2011 package, attempts to reach out to one of your contacts, by any means from my basic testing (chat, audio, video), Communicator crashes even though it starts up and lets you get that far.

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Edited on 2011-07-28: Microsoft released version 13.1.2 on July 26th.  This update addresses the crashing issue on OSX Lion.  Thanks to William over at for this note.  You can download the update from the Microsoft KB article linked above or by using Office Update.  In both cases, be sure to install either update 13.1.0 or 13.1.1 if you’re not currently running that version.  Using Office Update (from any Microsoft Office for Mac application, click on Help -> Check for Updates) will make sure that you install the proper version (13.1.1) and will then show the new version 13.1.2 after Check for Updates re-runs.

Thanks MS for pushing out this update most ricky-tick.

Apparently this is a version issue. Microsoft Communicator Version 3.0.0 appears to work perfectly, but if you’ve updated to version 3.1.1, you may run into this crashing problem.  Revert back to Version 3.0.0.  The file is located in your Applications folder.

Comparing Microsoft Communicator Versions
Comparing Microsoft Communicator Versions

A quick solution, if you are using Time Machine, is to simply restore the previous version, which you can check by Right-Clicking and selecting ‘Get Info’ and make sure that in the future when Microsoft Office updates are available, that you do not update to version 3.1.1.  You’ll typically only be bothered once a week about the update if you have auto-update enabled so it’s really not bothersome.

A second solution is to throw Communicator into the trash, and reinstall it from your media or ISO, but this is much more of a pain.  You’ll still have to deal with auto-update asking you if you want to update. 😉

You will lose access to what update 3.1.1 applied, which I believe is Desktop Sharing but I’m not sure.  Hopefully MS will put out another update some time soon for the Office package… from what I hear, it’s one of the highest sold packages for the Mac.

I love Time Machine!  Good luck!


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