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Apha 4v4 - Printing issue

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  • Apha 4v4 - Printing issue

    I've never worked with Alpha databases before but have a decent knowledge with databases and techie things in general. My company has asked me to take a look at their Alpha Four programs and get some things working. Specific issue that needs to be addresses ASAP is printing. The user that has the computer with Alpha Four on it, if she attempts to print, it closes out Alpha Four on her. She is running Windows 7. Others are printing to the same network printer that she is without issue. Four users, only 2 can print. Where do I start to get this issue resolved?

  • #2
    Re: Apha 4v4 - Printing issue

    Hi Denise,

    Welcome to the forum

    Most of us left a4 many years ago. There are still a few that remember and a few that still use it.
    I have never used it since windows 2000 came out.
    Hopefully someone with more knowledge and memory will show up to help you.

    One question I am sure will need to be answered. What is different from the 2 computers that DO print and the 2 computers that do NOT print?
    Dave Mason
    [email protected]
    Skype is dave.mason46


    • #3
      Re: Apha 4v4 - Printing issue

      As with anything DOS based, it's going to get increasing difficult to Alpha4 working each successive version of windows. You may wish to consider using a DOS emulator under windows. The following free one has good reviews;

      It is based on DOSbox which is used run old games on modern PC's. It emulates a DOS-PC, but is intended for “serious”, non-gaming, programs. It lacks most of the hardware emulation of DOSbox like non-vga graphics, joysticks, soundcards and the like. Instead it offers a live file system, file/record locking, printing and a scalable font/window. You can have a look at:

      If you watch closely in the third video you will see Alpha4 Version 1.1 run. I haven't used vDos myself yet, but after seeing Alpha4 run I did feel a bit nostalgic, I have a lather large Alpha4 App that I spent far to much time on for something DOS based even in the 1990's.

      Please let everyone know if vdos works for you.
      Last edited by pboomwork; 08-29-2015, 07:33 PM.


      • #4
        Re: Apha 4v4 - Printing issue

        Yeah, I know this is a reply to an old message, but it might help someone. I'm using A4v8. It's been too long since I've used A4v4 so I don't remember how printing worked in Windows.

        I use two solutions to print from A4 on two different computers. On one computer, I installed VirtualBox. This required installing an A4-compatible operating system. I happened to have a copy of Windows 2000, so that's what I used. You install the operating system inside VirtualBox, then install A4, your print drivers, and anything else you might need. Once you're working inside VirtualBox, you may have to unplug your printer and then plug it in again for the operating system to "see" it. It's a bit tricky, but you get the hang of it.

        The other, easier solution is to install a second hard drive containing an A4-compatible operating system. My Windows 7 computer has a second hard drive which has XP installed. I do my data entry in A4 via DOSBox in Win 7. When I need to print, I restart my computer, hit <ESC> as it's booting, and boot from the second hard drive running XP. Then I print my reports. Restart the computer and I'm back to Win 7.

        I suppose, in either solution, you could use a version of DOS rather than Windows. A4 would be happier that way. For that matter, I suppose you could have a dedicated DOS machine just for your A4 applications.

        Hope this helps. (I really need to convert this last remaining application to A5....)



        • #5
          Re: Apha 4v4 - Printing issue

          Will you consider running on compatibility mode?


          • #6
            Re: Alpha 4v4 - Printing issue

            I haven't had success with A4v8 running in compatibility mode on Windows 7. You're welcome to try it and post whether you have success. Certainly the print driver that comes with A4V8 won't run in later versions of Windows. I imagine A4V4 might be even less likely to run in compatibility mode.