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Don’t be left behind: 5 Mac apps that won’t make the Lion cut

Apple (s aapl) intends to ship OS X Lion in July, and many programs people rely upon now have an unofficial expiration date, since Apple appears to be removing the ability to use PowerPC-only software in OS X via Rosetta. Many users will need to come up with alternatives if they plan to move to Lion. If you or someone you know uses the programs below, it’s time to start shopping around.

1. Microsoft Office 2004

Let’s face it, Microsoft Office (s msft) isn’t cheap, and Office 2008 wasn’t that great. Some features in 2004 weren’t in 2008 (though many were reintroduced in 2011), and when 2008 included the new .docx format, 2004 users didn’t want to move to a new format that could cause problems. Because of these issues, it’s not unusual to find users two versions behind. Alternatives: Office 2011, iWork, Google Docs (s goog).

2. Appleworks

Appleworks, why can’t we quit you? I’ve been a fan of Appleworks since the Apple II days. You worked equally well on Mac and PC, and included a database that’s easier to use and understand that those used by either Filemaker or Access. In fact, Apple was still selling Appleworks until 2007. Fortunately, iWork will open most files in Appleworks format and Apple has a full transition guide about moving Appleworks files over to iWork. Database users will either need to export the file to spreadsheet format or move up to Filemaker. Alternatives: iWork, Filemaker, Bento.

3. Freehand

Die-hard Freehand users refuse to use Illustrator (s aapl). Freehand MX was the last version released before the purchase and discontinuation of the product by Adobe. Freehand holdouts might balk at the cost of Illustrator, or at having to relearn using new software, but it’s time to move on, or Lion won’t be able to open your files. Alternatives: Illustrator (this guide will help).

4. Eudora

Eudora was an outstanding cross-platform email program and a longtime Mac standard. It easily imported into Apple Mail, Thunderbird, or Microsoft’s Entourage, but some of us, myself included, were lazy and didn’t import old emails. Instead, if I needed an ancient email, I just opened Eudora. Now’s the time to import those emails before you run into problems with Lion. And if Eudora is still your primary email program, it’s definitely time to move onto something else. Alternatives: Penelope/Eudora Open Source, Apple Mail, Thunderbird, Outlook.

5. Quicken 2007

Although Intel (s intc) Macs have been out since 2006, Quicken still hasn’t updated the program. And Quicken 2007 is still being sold, because Intuit’s new product, Quicken Essentials, is a scaled-down version of its 2007 predecessor. Essentials lacks features such as bill pay and sophisticated stock tracking. Intuit generally keeps their Mac products somewhat behind the PC versions. Intuit’s suggestions for what to do with the end of Rosetta are laughable. Fortunately, a wide variety of alternatives exist for these users, but be sure to research these carefully, and import your data into a new program before you make the move to Lion. Alternatives: iBank, Moneydance.

What still-in-use programs will you have to say goodbye to when you make the leap to Lion?

15 Responses to “Don’t be left behind: 5 Mac apps that won’t make the Lion cut”

  1. Running 10.5.8 on an iMac using Microsoft Office 2004 and Quicken 2007. Hmm I need to find out about QuickBooks. No upgrade is worth the loss of ALL my financial data, not even on a Mac.

  2. Another app that won’t be available on Lion is FileMaker 6 (and below). The current version of FileMaker is fine…but there are still many people out there that never made the upgrade and it will be the end of the line for running that version which is no longer supported.

    • Lion is not only about the cloud, it’s also about more control by Apple of how you use your Mac, what apps you install and where you buy them.

      I’m not about to trust Apple, or anyone else with my data. Apple burned me twice by losing my Keychain and no one will do that again.

      The way Apple is behaving lately, they don’t give a damn about their Mac users, only about IOS and the App store. Everything else is peripheral. Originally, IOS was a subset of OS10, now the tail is wagging the dog.

  3. I still have one of the XM-PCR radios that I use every day to listen to XM satellite radio on my Mac, which requires the program JXM, which runs under Rosetta. JXM has never been updated to be a native OS X app that I know of. There are still Windows programs such as SatAmp that will do the same thing, so I guess I might have to run my Win7 VMWare Fusion installation every day to continue listening to my XM, since I don’t care to use the streaming option.

  4. im gonna pass on lion. both my MBPs are gonna stay on snow lepoard. it seems lion is geared toward people who bought an iOS device and want an iOS computer, im just not sold. while iOS 5 excites me for my iphone and ipods, lion seems like a let down to professional users like myself. maybe when i get a hands on this july, ill rethink it, but until then ill pass.

  5. You missed some alternatives:

    For both Office 2004 and AppleWorks, a great alternative is LibreOffice.

    For Freehand, a great alternative is Inkscape.

  6. Quicken’s web site is down for maintenance. Nice timing.

    Has anyone asked them if they *want* Mac customers? I’ve used Quicken since 1990 (running on MS-DOS), and I don’t see the appeal of paying to downgrade to the current Lite product.

  7. Intuit is a pain… they want people to get essentials in place of 2007, but I don’t see any way to Demo it. You get to buy it, then choose if it’s good enough for now to keep going… Aside from investment tracking, I also use the Class feature in Quicken to sub group Categories. I’m more inclined to buy a windows version and run it in VMware because I KNOW it will do what I want…
    Now I need to try and figure out if sub groups of categories is possible in any of the alternatives… They do have demos.

  8. Already started clearing out the old PowerPC apps with the help of System Profiler on this MBP 10′ and if means loosing Office 2004 on the old MBP 07′ so be it. I would rather have Office 2011 running on one machine than not have anything at all, but I sure wish and hope that Apple drastically improves on Mail, it sucked on Gmail.

    • Richard

      Office 2011 Family pack has three licences for not much more than the single user version… Good value, and visual basic is back so it will support all the 2004 functions – and with a much improved interface and performance.