Microsoft Entourage X

By: Mikio Moriyasu - Revised: 2006-06-21 devin

Section Links

  1. Cost
  2. What's New
  3. Issues


Entourage cannot be purchased as a separate application. It is only available with the complete Office X Suite so the prices for the complete suite apply.

Microsoft has set pricing for Office X at:
  • $499 for the full version.
  • $299 for the upgrade.
  • $229 for academic purchases.
The company, however, is offering a special upgrade price of $149 for users who are already running Office 2001 applications for Mac.

The Apple online store is selling both the full version and the upgrade for a little less.
  • $459.95 for the full version.
  • $279.95 for the upgrade.
  • $199.95 for academic purchases is also selling the full and upgrade version for Office X for even less
  • $449.99 for the full version.
  • $269.99 for the upgrade.
A cnet price comparison indicates that most online retailers are selling Office X around this price. The lowest listed price found was $437.

What's New

Of the four component applications, Entourage has received the most significant number of upgrades. The Outlook Express look and feel of the 2001 edition has been replaced with a new "Aqua" based user interface that keeps the primary Entourage X features visible and accessible at all times.

In addition, the Entourage database has been rewritten for increased reliability, faster overall performance, and integration into the multitasking OS X environment. The database is always running in the background, allowing the user to readily enter events and updates from other Office programs, even if Entourage is not open. This constant operation also allows Entourage X through the new Office Notifications program to send to users scheduled reminders on the desktop. Here is a list of the key additions and improvements made to Entourage.

User Interface: The user interface has been completely redesigned making all of Entourage's key functions are now clearly visible and accessible at all times. It incorporates navigation buttons, a new Go To menu that available from the View menu, and several new OS X keyboard shortcuts allowing users to perform specific tasks more quickly.

Improved Communications Tools: Entourage Messages can be sent through connections to Microsoft Exchange servers, Hotmail, and As a result, users can more efficiently manage e-mail online and off.

Rich Content: Entourage now supports rich content in messages. This allows for the use of actual signatures, notations, as well as more personal touches such as direct insertion of images, background pictures, sounds, and movies.

Improved Cut/Copy/Paste: With the greater integration between all Office suite applications, users can copy or cut formatted text from a Microsoft Word or Excel document and paste it in an Entourage item. The pasted text retains all formatting from the original document including fonts, font colors and sizes, bulleted lists, numbering, and alignment. This also applies to charts, tables, or other graphical elements.

Recently Used Address List: This feature allows user to quickly choose from a list of the people with whom they have recently contacted, as well as from contacts and groups in the main Address Book once they begin to address any new message. Should the list gets too long it, all stored addresses except those in the Address Book, can be readily deleted. This feature can also be disabled.

Redesigned Calendar: As part of the new user interface, the three-pane Calendar gives users the freedom to switch between Day, Week, Work Week, and Month views. Weekends and Weekdays are color coded for visual clarity. Other elements such as long Events that span multiple days are now displayed as banners rather than as multiple events, and when a user pauses the cursor over an event listing, a label with the event's full name appears. The second pane provides an overview of each day's events and allows users to track current tasks as they check for additional events in any Calendar view. The third or Custom Views pane allows users to customize the Calendar by combining address book, calendar, and mail information onto a single screen.

International Address Formats: The revised Address Book will store addresses in the correct format for many different countries & regions. This function is flexible and will allow users to use a single address format for most contacts and then apply a specific format to individual contacts as they are created. Should the Address Book not have the desired address format, the user can custom make one for use instead.

Mac OS Keychain Support: Entourage will adds and store all users passwords in a convenient locations using Mac OS keychain.

Calendar Time-Zone Support: Entourage X will now track scheduled calendar
events accurately regardless of whether the events have been directly entered by the user or have been sent and entered from the user or others in different time zones. Should the user change time zones, Entourage automatically adjusts the events in the Calendar accordingly.

Office Notifications: Office Notifications displays notices, reminders and updates regarding personal schedules, tasks, or flagged documents all in a single, window regardless if Entourage or the other Office programs are running.

Performance Enhancements: For those managing large volumes of messages, contacts, or other items, Entourage X performance has been significantly enhanced. In addition, data storage has been streamlined so that the overall operation of and navigation within the application is quicker and more efficient.


Compatibility problems with Hotmail: Several people have reported that Entourage X consistently crashes when they use Hotmail. When they attempt to retrieve mail from a Hotmail account, Entourage quits with an "Application has unexpectedly quit" message. Microsoft has recently issued a patch which fixes this problem. More information can be found at the following link: (link dead)
No Palm Support: Entourage X does not allow users to synchronize directly to handheld Palm devices. This is because Palm Computing has not yet released the required Mac OS X-native programs called conduits. Once Palm has made these programs available, Microsoft has promised to make Palm synchronization available for Entourage X, with a free downloadable update.

Limited Export Options: Currently, Entourage will not allow users to print paper calendar pages that will fit into most appointment booklets or binders. In addition, there is no way to export Calendar information out of Entourage without the help of an AppleScript.

MiniCalendars Not Very Useful: The new user interface features a third pane that contain minicalendars. While the pane can be adjusted to show one or more months, Entourage will not display the previous month and the next month without the current month. The current month, however, is prominently displayed in the Calendar pane. One reviewer also would have liked the minicalendars to display days with events differently from those without.

Security Sockets Layer (SSL) and IE: SSL is the security protocol that provides communications privacy over the Internet through the use of certificates that allow users to verify their identities. Internet Explorer on the Mac does not support personal certificates. Consequently, if a users e-mail system is using certificates with SSL, they could experience problems while using Entourage X.

IMAP Rules & Application Speed: One reviewer who must deal with hundreds of emails on a daily basis observed if the user's e-mail server supports server-side rules, depending on the number of rules that are being used, and the total volume of messages being processed, Entourage X relatively quick performance begins to suffer.

No Backwards Compatibility: People who are seeking full cross platform and cross OS access to their email have reported that once they import their Entourage 2001 database into the version X one, the new database format does not allow them to switch back to OS 9.

Database Importing Problems: Several other individuals, however, have not been able to import their Entourage 2001 database at all. When they begin to import their data, the Entourage X consistently crashes.