This comes up so often on this list that maybe a FAQ should be posted to
the Web site?
Mark S. Meritt said:
>Does anybody have any thoughts on:
>--How happy I might be using that free version with my files created on WP
WP/Mac and WP/Win are not identical programs. WP/Mac is a very nice,
Mac-like program, and everyone on this list loves it. It was close to
the ideal word processor for most of us. Coming from WP/Win, there is the
possibility that you won't like WP/Mac, as it is not keyboard-centric
like the Windows version is.
WP/Mac's one big Achilles heal is compatibility with the Word file
format. There are translators, but they aren't as good as one might need
them to be. There are bugs with WP/Mac running in Classic under OS X,
but all can be overcome except for one. Some folks have run into a
(fairly rare) file corruption bug for which there is no understanding of
why it happens or what to do to keep it from happening. When it hits,
your file is toast; no one has found a way to resurrect files corrupted
by this bug.
>--What the implications of using that free version are as Mac switches to
It isn't entirely clear, because we are talking about an unreleased
product, and that product can take any shape by the time that we see it.
Based on the beta versions of the WinTel Macs, and statements made by
Apple employees, the Classic environment may be history. Which would
mean that WP/Mac could not be used on a WinTel Mac. However, there is
open source software that may be modifiable to allow you to run Classic
applications on WinTel Macs, and there are rumors that there may be a
commercial solution as well.
>--Whether there may be an increased chance of Corel resurrecting WP for
>Mac now that
>Mac will be running in Intel processors, since it should be much easier
>for them to adapt
That seems to be a common misconception. It really doesn't matter too
much what processor is running underneath it, applications written for OS
X running on WinTel Macs will be more or less the same, with the
exception that there will have to be patches written to deal with
different acceleration routines based in hardware.
There is a possibility that WP/Win could be run on a WinTel Mac if the
rumors of a commercial utility that will allow Windows software to run on
a WinTel Mac are true. There is some question, though, what form such
software might take. It may take the form of a dual-boot setup, so you
won't be able to run WP/Win side by side with your Mac applications.
In any case, from all indicatons, Corel has less than zero interest in
developing a new version of WP for the Macintosh. Or of selling the
rights to WP/Mac to a new company at this time. Corel was really
star-crossed in their relationship with Apple and the marketing of
WP/Mac, and they may simply not have the stomach for another try.
But anything is possible.
>--Anything else useful or illuminating for my situation?
are both very nice free and open source word processing applications for
the Mac that can open your old WP files, allow you to work with them, and
save them to other formats, including Microsoft Word file format (which
is ubiquitous on both the Mac and Windows platforms.)
CrossWords is a commercial WordPerfect to Word conversion utility for
Windows computers. You can use it to convert your WP files to Word
format on your PC, quickly in one big batch, before transferring your
files over. It may be the best of the WP to Word converters.
MacLinkPlus from DataViz is a Macintosh utility for converting files from
one format to another. It works for WP to Word, but can be disappointing
if your files have complex formatting in them.
Randy B. Singer
Co-Author of: The Macintosh Bible (4th, 5th and 6th editions)
Routine OS X Maintenance and Generic Troubleshooting