Friday, September 09, 2005

Sharing Excel Worksheets in Groove Virtual Office

I have been using Groove Virtual Office for several years. I couldn’t imagine my professional life without it. Recently, while working on a project, we had the need to share within our group a very large Microsoft Excel spreadsheet/workbook. This thing was big - 3+ MB in size!

We began to see issues in terms of the spreadsheet becoming corrupted periodically, as well as LOTS of instances where there were duplicate copies of the spreadsheet from when more than one person had changed it within a certain timeframe. When I started crawling the Groove Support Forums, it quickly became apparent that I was not alone. There were tons of people having similar issues with Excel.

Excel is a special animal in the Office family. Within Office, it has the ability to handle multiple people accessing a particular spreadsheet all by itself. Part of it’s feature set (right out of the box) includes functionality that handles this sort of quasi-multiuser capability. Unfortunately, Groove expects the stuff he manages within a Groove Workspace to be quite dumb. It confuses him and causes the kinds of things we are seeing in the current version of Groove when Excel tries to handle the multi-user stuff.

In the support forums, they acknowledge this in multiple places. (I have to believe the recent acquisition of Groove Networks by Microsoft will rectify this situation – hopefully sooner rather than later. [grin] ) For now, there’s a LOT of consensus in the forums about a third party product you can purchase now that will do the trick.

An Indian firm has built an addon to Groove that resolves these issues now – and it’s reasonably priced ($120). GXcel - version 2.0 is a newly released version of a great tool that solves this sticky problem.

Good luck!

1 comment:

electronic signatures said...

I stumbled upon this topic via Google. Very interesting view on subject. Thanks for sharing.