Excel 2016 Performance

Thursday, 2nd August, 2018

What’s your view on Excel 2016 performance and stability?

In particular Excel 2016 32bit on Win10 63 bit?

I’m talking about 365, so bang up to date, and what I am seeing is:

  • Excel or other Office apps freeze for around 4 minutes, once or twice most days
  • Too many styles will cause a workbook that would have dropped all formatting in 2010 will be unopenable and unrecoverable in 2016
  • Too many conditional format will crash 2016 completely, where 2010 would be bearable, but stable.
  • General calc speed seems slower
  • UI is laggy, even with all Win10 bullshit turned off
  • Excel VBA can completely freeze every running office application
  • Opening everything in the same Excel instance is a monumental ball ache
    • Opening everything in its own one is not much better
    • Why can’t we have the 2003 behaviour of opening in last activate instance??
    • debuggering from VS is pants, I don’t want all my dodgy xlls loading into my working Excel.  So back to run excel /e
  • Did YOU ask for cell selection change to be animated????????????
  • Can’t paste charts as live links any more?

So the intermittent freezes and the instability are my main issues, I’m back to saving my work every 2 to 3 minutes like in Excel 2000. And spending a fair chunk of my life waiting for stuff to calculate.

Overall I’m thoroughly underwhelmed, 2003 is still the best ever, but 2010 is starting to feel like a not too shabby vintage too (I never tried 2013, was it any good?). I reckon 2003 would utterly fly on my 16gb i7, well apart from the single threadedness.

(the 63 bit was a typo, but somehow seems appropriate as the odd bit seems to get dropped here and there on this combo.) Sadly I see Office gradually choking Excel, or as its new name Word(tables edition).

What are your experiences?

Which is your favourite Excel?

Is 64 bit more stable?

cheers

simon

lets discuss it at DevelopExcel in October!

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Excel Developer Conference 18th October 2018 London

Monday, 23rd July, 2018

Woo Hoo

There is going to be a major, major Excel extensibility conference in that London on 18th October 2018. This is THE big one. All the big guns from the main Excel extensibility tools and frameworks are going to be there speaking.

There will no better time in your lifetime to hear from the horses mouth the how and why of ExcelDNA, PyXLL, XLL + and the new Excel javascript APIs. Also sessions covering Power Query and VSTO and Add-in Express.

This is a community driven event, driven by a desire to get the top minds in the Excel extensibility space together.

The Date? Thursday 18th October 2018

The Location? Microsoft Reactor, 70 Wilson St, London EC2A 2DB

More info here

Bookings here

See you there…

(please reblog… and if you do, and you are coming, let us know we will link to you on the sponsors page for helping to spread the word.)

cheers

simon

Eusprig Conference

Saturday, 30th June, 2018

Its nearly time for the Eusprig conference on spreadsheet risk etc. (Thursday 5th July, glad you asked)

Here is the link, if you can make it and are involved in spreadsheet development, modelling or management its well worth a few hours of your time. Its at Imperial this year.

I’m a bit out of that world these days, I am waiting for the Excel extensibility conf in October.

But I would recommend Eusprig to anyone, lots of valuable info and contacts.

cheers

simon

new lapper

Monday, 25th June, 2018

In an alarming and uncharacteristic case of actually doing what I said I would I just pulled the trigger on a new(ish) lapper.

I went for a Dell xps, I got a windas one rather than linux cos I can just partition it anyway. That way if I need to work slooowly or pick up viruses I can use windas.

Theoretically it should be smaller lighter and faster than this cackbook, we’ll see… It would be nice also if it didn’t run so hot, and maybe if the battery lasted more than 20 mins – one can but hope…

I was mainly persuaded to update my Microsoft world as I am back doing a decent amount of ExcelDNA development. And I am currently working on a big 2010-2016 migration and my spidey senses tell me that might not be a bad career move for the next 12m or so.

Don’t take it as a vote of approval for the latest Microsoft creations. I think Windows 10 and Office 2016 are utterly shit. But they are still popular. Whenever I am working in this new stuff I just feel like I am using something a 13 year old ‘designed’. All valueless whistles and bells no core features or performance. I am astounded every day by just how slow and unresponsive it is, for simple stuff like opening a file. Often I have forgotten what I was doing by the time the dialog has deigned to appear. (I am knocking on though I guess..)

One (begrudging ;-) ) positive for MS though is the quality and amount of stuff they are finally giving away these days. A usable Visual studio – free, SQL server Express – a proper database – free, SQL Server Management Studio – free. Just need to put me hand in me pocket for Office, not bad at all. If Visual studio was as good as intelliJ I could almost convert. not. (Well maybe if they brought back the MSDN roadshows with those lovely little danish pastries)

Still chipping away at the Android too, I wasted a whole day not being able to find a completely stupid mistake I made the other day. It would be funny if I didn’t have so many better things to do with that wasted time. And I know I’ll do the same again (soon), perhaps with a different tech though.

cheers

simon

Office Headshaker

Tuesday, 19th June, 2018

I’m working on Win10/Office 2016 these days, well I spend most of my time waiting for it. And shaking my head…

I was on the beta programs for Office 2007 and 2010 and those early betas were more reliable and performant than this ‘production’ 2016.

I have a feeling its a lot to do with Windows rather than Office, but my god its slow.

Alt tf to get options – 3 second wait before the dialog come up. Alt f11 for VBA, 5 seconds before the editor lethargically appears.

I know I am not on a super computer, but its not a total lemon either, a perfectly serviceable corporate machine. Or it would be without this combo.

10 seconds to open Excel, but its all forgiven because they have animated the activecell movement when you change selections.

10 seconds to open Word but its all ok, they animate the carriage return…

for real…

In ye olden days I had a dumb terminal onto a mainframe across a phone line that was more responsive.

All the animations made me sick, and not just because of the wasted cycles, so I turned it off in Windoze settings. Does some Microsoft UX expertidiot really fucking think people want to watch the computer slooowly respond to basic commands, slooowly???

Its like back in the day when we didn’t turn screenupdating off so it looked like we were doing the work manually instead of tossing it off in a little netscape window to geocities and alta vista.

Today alone I had five 10 minute plus application freezes, Excel, SQL Server Management studio, notepad++, and some other stuff. And Windoze Explorer crashed. This is what makes me think its at least as much a Windows problem as Office.

I was thinking I might consider a wondows lapper next now macbooks are shit, but it looks like it would be unusably slow or uncarriably heavy and bulky (and probably too powerful for a battery so coming with a 50m power cable on a reel). Never mind their ridiculous intrusive prove you’re not a pirate, frequently, features.

So maybe it will be a linux Dell finally, as system 76 only offer US keyboards (and sticker sets for johnny foreigners (like me)).

Unless you have a better suggestion for a (non wonkdoze) laptop?

How is your win10 Office 2016 experience?

cheers

simon

Ageism

Tuesday, 5th June, 2018

is real

well I bet that’s what those lawyers hope anyway.

I bet you thought it was just me being a grumpy bad loser, but no, its true, no one wants to employ unmanageable grumpy old farts who won’t do what they are told by inexperienced buzzword bingoistas. Or maybe that’s just me??

Talking of which is anyone having issues with pivot table refreshes being slooooow in Excel 2016?

Excel 2016 is breathtakingly slow, I keep having to remind myself it is actually meant to be production code, not alpha. Or maybe my new lapper is not up to the job.

I heard Cray were the only ones certified ‘Ready for Office 2016’, and maybe Big Blue?(The IBM tompooter not the epic Blackpool big dipper ride). Its a big investment just to manage shopping lists…

btw – today I have mainly been doing doing XLM in Excel 2016. Get in!

(Thank you Excel team for your consistently epic backwards compatibility story)

You know you are on the long tail when Google insists on ‘correcting’ your technology.

XML my arse

Cheers

simon

 

 

stackoverflow dev survey 2018

Thursday, 31st May, 2018

Is out now, here.

Its really interesting (if you are a developer, or interested in that sort of thing), loads of interesting details to avoid work

a few highlights

  • Most Dreaded Platform – Sharepoint. ha ha ha ha hahahah
  • 2nd most loved language – Kotlin. Agreed, this is the best language I have ever used.
  • About 7% of devs are over 45 – maybe that’s because no one loves us…
  • The UK has the highest proportion of independent devs. Germany the most part time.
  • Functional languages pay the biggest bucks, especially in the US
  • Javascript, the most common language, is also the worst paid.
  • Most devs want to stay in dev or do a start up, few want to go into management.
  • 50% of devs use a standing desk. ‘Have used once’ I could believe, but 50%? regularly? I’m slightly dubious on this one.
  • Everyone is doing (fr)Agile or Scum.
  • Most devs are using git and generally check-in a few times a day
  • Mobile devs are almost the worst paid (another great career choice from me)

and finally, as per last year I think….

  • Most dreaded Language – VB – any flavour!

Again

I must admit, although I use SO a lot, I don’t really participate. Most of the questions have better answers than I could provide and there are a few too many milk monitors.

I did have a poke around their job site for a while looking for remote jobs. There weren’t many and the search seemed a bit random. I got my latest job from Jobserve as usual, not remote, also as usual.

Have you got any SO insights?

cheers

simon

 

AI – artificial intelligence or absolute idiocy?

Tuesday, 29th May, 2018

I’m not on faceache as I have a life, but I was busy on losergram for a while.

I went on recently to see they have ‘improved’ the relevancy of the feed. ie its completely repetitive samey stuff now.

If I like 1 picture of trees, all I see is trees. but I already liked my tree picture for the day, now I want to see other things.

Apparently pootube is the same, they re moving from a simple time based list to ‘targeted’ and/or customised lists from channels.

We are all being trapped by prior choices with no clear way to see something new. It reminds me of two things

1. All this GDPR stuff – lots of people have highlighted how ‘targeted’ adverts only ever show them things they already bought, and are therefore absolutely not in the market for.

and 2. When Microsoft introduced the ribbon with ‘context awareness’ – it showed you commands relevant to what you had just done, not what you were about to.

So, for me as these systems become more aware, developers misuse that the make them more stupid, and more irrelevant.

Its just arrogance, these people think that because they have a bit of info on what we have done in the past they can predict with worthwhile accuracy what we currently want. Whilst that may be the case (very) occasionally, it really isn’t often enough for their systems’ positives to outweigh the trapped echo chamber negatives.

So for me, Absolute Idiocy.

 

FoxPro

Thursday, 24th May, 2018

I thought VBA was old and outdated. Then I just saw a job for a foxPro developer.

Now *that* is a blast from the past.

(2007 apparently)

 

GDPR phishing

Wednesday, 16th May, 2018

We are still a few days away from the data slurppocalypse and my inbox is bulging with ‘privacy improvements’ messages. All include links to log-in or sign up or learn more. Many from complete randoms.

In general I’m ignoring them, but it does seem a great opportunity for the ne’er-do-wells to do a bit of data slurping of their own.

stay safe…