WriteNow: Latest Info

Latest User-Reported Fixes

Download WriteNow 4.0 to 4.0.2 Updater
Download WriteNow 4.0.1 to 4.0.2 Updater

It seems that I have become an unofficial support person for WriteNow. <G> I'm sure one reason for this is that -- as far as I know -- I'm the only person still developing tools for WriteNow (WriteNow Enhancer page).

I have enjoyed helping fellow WriteNow users (yes, WriteNow is still my favorite word processor <G>). Unfortunately, I find it increasingly difficult to find the time to respond to the ever-growing stream of questions that other WriteNow users have been sending my way.

Since many of the questions I receive are very similar, I hope this web page will prove to be an effective way of providing useful information about WriteNow to an even greater number of other WriteNow users while simultaneously reducing the number of emails I need to respond to.

To help you quickly locate the information you need, I have created this page in a FAQ format.

Who owns WriteNow?
Is WriteNow still being published?
Is WriteNow still being supported?
Can WriteNow or the WriteNow 4.0 upgrade still be purchased?
Can I buy or get a copy of WriteNow from MacEase?
Is WriteNow compatible with OS 8 or OS 9?
Will WriteNow Enhancer make WriteNow work better with OS 8.5 and later
Why do some users have problems using WriteNow with Systems 8.5 and later while other users don't?
Are there any workarounds for restoring my ability to use WriteNow?
What do I do about accessing my WriteNow files if I am no longer able/willing to use WriteNow?

New Info -- 10/02

Will WriteNow work under OS X?
Are there any good replacements for WriteNow?


Q: Who owns WriteNow?
A: The Learning Company acquired WriteNow several years ago.

Q: Is WriteNow still being published?
A: Unfortunately, the answer is no. WriteNow was discontinued several years ago.

Q: Is WriteNow still being supported?
A: Again, the answer is no. The Learning Company is not providing support for WriteNow.

Q: Can WriteNow 3.0 or 4.0 or the upgrade to WriteNow 4.0 still be purchased?
A: To the best of my knowledge, the answer is no. On rare occasions, I have seen a company that specializes in selling discontinued software with a copy or two for sale.

My advice is to look for a WriteNow "for sale" ad on a user-group site, a bulletin board, or a site that specializes in classified ads. Hopefully, you will be able to find an individual who is interested in selling his/her copy of WriteNow.

You might also consider placing an ad on a site that supports "want to buy" ads.

Q: Can I buy or get a copy of WriteNow from MacEase?
A: I requested permission from The Learning Company to provide the latest version of WriteNow to Mac users. Unfortunately, I was denied permission to provide even free copies to either new users or licensed WriteNow users. Sorry...I tried!

Q: Is WriteNow compatible with OS 8 or OS 9?
A: Ahhh....this isn't an easy question to answer, but I will do my best!

Versions of the OS after 8.1 (i.e., 8.5 and later) have proved problematic for many WriteNow users. The good news is that some users have been successful using WriteNow with even the latest versions of the OS. My advice is to at least give it a try!

Q: Will WriteNow Enhancer make WriteNow work better with OS 8.5 and later?
A: While
WriteNow Enhancer adds many great features to WriteNow and is compatible with the latest versions of the Mac OS, it will not resolve any WriteNow system compatibility issues.

Q: Why do some users have problems using WriteNow with Systems 8.5 and later while other users don't?
A: There can be several factors at work here. In no special order, I'll list some of them along with some possible solutions.

1. Extension conflicts -- Try restarting with your extensions off and see if WriteNow works properly. If it does, just use standard conflict testing techniques to isolate the problem extension(s). (By the way, my program of choice for extension-conflict testing is Casady & Greene's Conflict Catcher.)

If you find a conflicting extension that you can't do without, then use a program like Conflict Catcher to create a special startup set you can quickly switch to when you need to use WriteNow.

2. Memory problems -- Some versions of the OS cause some programs to become unstable unless more memory is allocated to them.

Try allocating more memory in the Preferred Memory field for WriteNow. (I suggest adding memory to WriteNow in 50K increments.) Most likely, if you've added up to 200K to WriteNow's memory and you are still having a problem, assigning more memory to WriteNow won't do any good.

3. Hardware configuration -- While I don't think this is likely to be the case with most users, it's possible your particular hardware-software configuration could be an issue. The chance of this being an issue is increased if you have a processor upgrade card, a hardware accelerator, etc.

4. Some routines/features in WriteNow may cause problems while others work fine; only users who use the problematic routines will experience a problem.

Try to keep track of what actions you are performing in WriteNow and look for a cause and effect relationship in any problems you encounter. Hopefully, you can do without a WriteNow feature that may cause a problem on your system, or you can find an alternative method in WriteNow to accomplish your task.

Q: Are there any workarounds for restoring my ability to use WriteNow?
A: Yes! It's really a matter of how much effort you want to go to to accomplish this. Here are a couple of options for you to consider.

1. Assuming you have enough room on your hard drive (you probably do), install OS 8.1 on your computer -- yes, it is possible to have more than one OS on your boot volume. Conflict Catcher (this is one very useful program) makes it easy to choose which version of the OS you want to boot from. When you need to use WriteNow, just reboot with OS 8.1 and WriteNow should work for you.

2. Partition your hard drive. Place OS 8.1 on one of your partitions and reboot from this partition when you need to use WriteNow.

3. Boot from a bootable, removable-cartridge external drive. Place OS 8.1 on one of your cartridges and boot from it when you need to use WriteNow.

By the way, I keep referring to OS 8.1 because WriteNow works well with OS 8.1 and many newer Macs require at least OS 8 as a startup system.

Also, partitioning a drive is fairly easy but shouldn't be attempted unless you really know what you are doing; doing this incorrectly can result in completely erasing your hard drive! Further, your system's configuration may require you to reinitialize your drive prior to partitioning it, and this will result in erasing the data that's on your drive.

Finally, this is not a complete list of workarounds but includes some of the easiest and most common techniques for dealing with this type of compatibility issue.

Q: What do I do about accessing my WriteNow files if I am no longer able/willing to use WriteNow?
A: DataViz <http://www.dataviz.com> publishes MacLinkPlus. MacLinkPlus allows you to convert files between many different file formats. While there is always a possibility that some special formatting may be lost during the conversion process, I believe this is an excellent solution for many WriteNow users . (You should check with DataViz to verify the currently shipping version of MacLinkPlus includes a translator for your version of WriteNow.)

By the way, MacLink Plus also includes many other useful features, and I find it to be a very handy resource.

Q: Will WriteNow work under OS X?
A: WriteNow will not work with OS X, though you may be able to use it under the Classic environment.

Q: Are there any good replacements for WriteNow?
A: Yes! I have been using Mariner Software's <http://www.marinersoftware.com/> Mariner Write word processor and I like it very much. Mariner Write has a "feel" that is similar to that of WriteNow: it's fast, it's loaded with useful features without being bloated, it's easy to use, and it has low system overhead.

Also, Mariner Write is available for both the Classic OS and OS X. Unfortunately, as far as I know, there are no file translators available for directly converting WriteNow files to Mariner Write files.

I've come to like Mariner Write so much that there now is a special price being offered for a bundle that contains WebPrint Plus X (my highly rated OS X utility) and Mariner Write.

While Nisus Writer isn't yet available for OS X, it's an impressive higher-end program that's well supported and has a legion of loyal users; it's definitely worth looking at <http://www.nisus-soft.com/>.

Additionally, MacLinkPlus <http://www.dataviz.com> can convert WriteNow files to Nisus Writer files. I successfully tested this with some of my WriteNow files, though files with complex formatting will almost certainly require some significant manual adjustments in order to fully reproduce the formatting of the source file.

 (I'll update this page whenever new information about WriteNow materializes.)


Latest User-Reported Fixes - Updated 7/23/00

When using WriteNow 4.0.2 with OS 9.0, I would get a crash whenever I quit WriteNow. However, this problem disappeared when I used WriteNow with OS 9.0.4.

Since WriteNow 4.0.2 is working well for me (and I've had many requests for the WriteNow 4.0 to 4.0.2 updater), I've uploaded the updater to my web site! Download WriteNow 4.0 to 4.0.2 Updater

A WriteNow user has sent me the 4.0.1 to 4.0.2 updater, so I've also uploaded this file to my web site. Download WriteNow 4.0.1 to 4.0.2 Updater

Some users are having difficulty downloading files from the Kagi server when they use Netscape. If you experience this problem, I suggest you use Internet Explorer for downloading the file.



"I found that I can get WriteNow to work pretty well if I sharply reduce the number of fonts available to it. If I use only System fonts, it [also] works well."

I've recently had several users report that simply changing their monitor's color depth from millions of colors to either thousands of colors or 256 colors has made WriteNow much more stable for them.

 

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