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Thread: Upgrade A4V7 to A4V8

  1. #1
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    Default Upgrade A4V7 to A4V8

    I've had real problems with Alpha4 upgrades in the past. I am running XP Pro and I would like to get the email capability of V8. Can I expect to install V8 and everything will work seamlessly without problems other than having to setup the email application? I see I have file in a folder Alpha4 and I have files in a folder Alpha4V7. Seems to use way more disc than just a fresh install would. Is that normal, or didn't the upgrade delete some old files. I tried to deleve the Alpha4 folder but then Alpha4V7 wouldn't run properly.

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    A4V7 and A4V8 will both run on the same system with no problems whatsoever, IF they are each installed in their own folders. In your post, you mention that you deleted the 'Alpha4' folder, which leads me to assume that you might have installed both versions in the same folder. If I'm correct in that assumption, you're going to have serious problems!!

    Let's assume both versions are installed on the same system, each in its own folder. The very next thing you should do is to copy the application folders that should exist under A4V7 and copy them to the same named folders under A4V8. That way, what you do with the copy of an application under V7 will not have any affect to the copy that resides under V8. If you make the mistake of editing the SAME copy of an application with BOTH V7 and V8, you are going to have problems at some point.

    I have A4V6, V7, V8 and four versions of A5 coexisting on my system with no problems at all, since they are each in their own folder.

    Dave
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  3. #3
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    Default Alpha 4 version 3?!?

    I just started working at a place that uses Alpha 4 version 3 for all their accounting needs. Unfortunatly the havd just upgraded their systems to Windows XP.
    Now their accounting is down for the count.
    Any suggestions?

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Chaz,

    Two possibilities come to mind:

    1. Make a copy of everything in the A4V3 folder, then see if they can undo the Win XP install. If they can, get them back to DOS for the short term.

    2. The options are to upgrade to A4V8 or A5V7. A4V8 will run under Win XP with no problems. What I don't know is if there are any compatability issues between V3 and V7 that will bite you (I only have V6, V7 & V8 of Alpha Four). I'm sure there are, but I just don't know how extensive they are. If the differences are just new functionality added by A4V7, you shouldn't have any problem; if the differences go deeper than that, who knows.

    3. Upgrading to A5V7 would get you into the Windows world all the way around. The problems you face doing this are rewriting everything other than the .dbf (data) and .dbt (memo) files. Actually, I don't even know what the memo files were called in V3. All scripts, menues, forms, reports, etc. will have to be recreated. Not impossible, but it will take time and will present some 'interesting challenges' to you. The time involved is a direct function of the complexity of the application and your Alpha knowledge.

    If I can help in this project, contact me.

    Dave
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    Women and cats will do whatever they want. The sooner men and dogs realize that, the happier they will be.


  5. #5
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    Default

    Chaz, I support our main materials application which is in A4v3. For other reasons and other integrated application I have not converted to A4v8. But nightly I copy all the database and support files over to a query version which runs off on v7 runtime. All the applications, forms, scripts, etc. all run fine with no problems.

    The only issue you will have if you change any of the forms/browses, reports, field rules, etc in the v7; they are not backward compatible and you will not be able to open in v3. So, either continue to do all your developement work in v3 or switch completely.
    Dave

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave,

    To the best of my knowledge, there isn't a runtime of A4V7, are you possibly talking about A5V7, per chance?

    Dave
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave,

    Sorry, I completely forgot about the runtime version of A4V7. Erase my previous post. Old age bites again.

    Dave
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  8. #8
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    Default Alpha4V7 upgrade to V*

    Well it's not a big surprise to me that I'm having problems with the upgrade to V8 from V7. I just did it and so far have the following complaints

    1. My custom color layouts for the different databases are gone.
    2. My scripts are gone.
    3. The "Email External PDF" option is not there and that's what I bought the
    upgrade to get!

    I downloaded the patches but that didn't help. Any ideas?

    I like the Alpha software, but their upgrades really are pathetic!

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    I have Alpha 4 V7, Alpha 4 V8 and Alpha 4 V6 (for that matter) on both my computers in seperate folders and have not had the problems you mentioned. Could you have possibly intermixed the two versions? Off the top of my head, that is the only thing I can think of that MIGHT cause any of the problems you are having.

    Dave
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    Women and cats will do whatever they want. The sooner men and dogs realize that, the happier they will be.


  10. #10
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    Default

    That is not the problem! Alpha4 doesn't pick up the paths for data in previous versions and you have to be knowledgeable enough to know how to fix it. I'm a couple of notches above novice and fumble my way along. The email problem is not something that I can fix. It's just missing!

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    Excuse me for offering what I thought was a valid suggestion. Good luck in finding a solution.

    Dave
    Dave Jampole
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    Women and cats will do whatever they want. The sooner men and dogs realize that, the happier they will be.


  12. #12
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave:

    I hope you're not insulted that I gave you a short and honest reply. I wasn't trying to be rude. I just didn't know what else to say. In looking at all the icons in the folder, I found an icon that is a "alpha" character and it's properties are 32 KB and it's an application. I clicked on it and it also opened up a version 8 application but with much different appearance. I went to the printer configuration and what to my suprise but there is the missing "External PDF" option. I closed that up and went back to the a4v8.exe icon and opened up the application and now the missing email option is there. Apparently this was a "patch" without any instructions to install it. Now I'm happier!

    Now if only there was a way to print my reports that are setup in Typeset so I can have boxes in the PDF, but I don't think that's possible so I'll just have to create a new report for invoices.

    Grant

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    No problem.

    Alpha 4 did not have patches as we know them in Alpha 5. There were updates that, if my memory is correct, were complete copies of the program with whatever updates/changes were appropriate, but would only install correctly if you had the correct previous version.

    I kust checked and the version of A4V8 that I have is 8.0.0 and to the best of my knowledge is the latest version. My version does not include a PDF printer listed, you I cannot check that for you.

    Dave
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  14. #14
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave:

    I'm completely disgusted with this upgrade! I've screwed around for about 9 hours with what should be a simple process IF they did their programming right.
    I somehow managed to get the PDF printer to work but now it stopped again, and that prevents the external email PDF from working also. They use someone else's document converter and I have a feeling that is the problem. If it doesn't create the PDF nothing else can happen. I went to their website and they have newer software but I can't incorporate it into Alpha. If Alpha doesn't have a fix for this, I'm just going to return it. I have this same problem everytime I upgrade their program. It has never been simple and their documentation is lacking. This CD came with manuals for V4 and V6 and it's an upgrade from V7 to V8. Does that make any sense?

    Grant

  15. #15
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8 PDF problem

    After being able to generate a PDF a few times, it stopped working and after 6 hours of trying everything I can imagine, it still doesn't work anymore. It puts a file into a folder called SPOOL and stops there instead of proceeding to convert the file and display it. Needless to say, if it stops there it also inhibits the email PDF option. Talked to Alpha and they had not solution at this time. They really are more interested in supporting Alpha5 rather than Alpha4. Unless someone on this board knows the solution, I'm going to have to return the software.

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    This may sound trite, but I don't mean it that way.

    I have not seen the problem you are experiencing, but that doesn't mean that others aren't. You might want to do a search on the messageboard and see what pops up. There are quite a few other A4 users, and hopefully one of them will spot this thread and chime in with some help.

    I know that Alpha's main focus (some might say only focus) is on the current and next version of A5. I think you are correct that they use someone else's PDF creation utility, but I'm not sure. I have a call into someone at Alpha that (hopefully) will know the correct answer for us.

    I don't think I'd blame you if you returned the program and asked for a refund, based on your experiences. Let me know what happens.

    Dave
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  17. #17
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave:

    I have poured over the message boards and found several people who had a similar problem without ever getting an answer on the board. I talked to someone at Alpha in customer service and they basically said "Sometime it doesn't work" and he was stumped. The thing that's peculiar is that it worked for a little while and then stopped. They do use a PDF converter from a French company and they offered to sell me the latest version of their program at a discount. Enough already just to try to email invoices. After all this I could have bought an awful lot of stamps!

    I'm waiting for Alpha to okay returning it.

    Grant

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    No one can convince my that DOS and Windows are 100% compatible. A lot of what goes on between these two operating systems borders on black magic.

    Since the PDF issue is important to what you are doing, I think you're making the right move.

    Good luck.

    Dave
    Dave Jampole
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    Women and cats will do whatever they want. The sooner men and dogs realize that, the happier they will be.


  19. #19
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave:

    Alpha asked me to delete the V8 folder and reinstall the software along with the two patches. Now I'm getting a popup error in LANpack (A4V8.net) which I think is because the reinstall didn't ask me for my key and I think it assumes I'm trying to install it for another user. (I have the one user version.) I'm also getting a message that WPTRINFO.A4 can't be found when I try to configure a Windows printer.

    This just goes from bad to worse. I just want my money back! I think this is great software when it's setup and runniing okay, but getting there is a nightmare of the nth degree. Alpha is no Microsoft!

    Grant

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    Did you use the Windows Control Panel/Add or Remove Programs, or did you just delete the A4V8 folder? I'm not sure, but I believe that Alpha 4 writes to the registry and if that is in fact the case, just deleting the folder won't do it.

    Dave
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    Women and cats will do whatever they want. The sooner men and dogs realize that, the happier they will be.


  21. #21
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    Default Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave:
    It would not uninstall from the Control Panel or from the UNWISE in the program.
    Alpha told me to just delete the folder. They obviously aren't too sharp when it comes to giving advice.
    Grant

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    I have to disagree with that.

    The folks at Alpha know their stuff. When the question asked is application-based, the users have more experience on that side of Alpha; when the question is on the Alpha side, the Alpha folks are the experts, hands-down. The company folks know more regarding what Alpha can do; the users are much more inventive from the 'how to make the program do something' approach.

    Dave
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  23. #23
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave:

    So are you telling me that they should be able to figure out what's wrong? I had absolutely no problems with V7 running on XP Pro. They assured me that the V8 would install seamlessly. They didn't tell me that I would lose so much in the way of custom setup. I also think that new versions should take you to the path of old version where scripts reside, or at least ask you if you want to do it, or a a minimum give you some documentation telling you what to do.

    My problem with the email is not a problem with my computer or application....in my opinion. I think it's with the PDF converter not being compatible with XP or maybe my Adobe Pro 7.0. They apparently have no way to upgrade the converter software that's imbedded in V8.

    Grant

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    Understand that I'm speaking strictly for myself . . .

    If I was Mr. Alpha Software and I released A4V8, it would be incumbent upon me to make sure I addressed the compatiability issues between V8 and the current versions of Windows available at the time of release. Now let's skip forward from when A4V8 is released to the present. There is no way Alpha can anticipate what issues will pop up between when A4V8 shipped (on my system, the A4.exe shows a date of 12/24/2002, which means that it is presently 3.5 years old) and what Microsoft does with its future releases of Windows. Alpha switches to a reactve mode after V8's release and tries to find ways to work around any problems that manifest themselves down the road. The same holds true with Adobe. In fact, A4V8 was released to specifically address the issues of a DOS-based program trying to print to a Windows-only printer and I believe this was done to support those of us that still use A4.

    I would think that A4V7 and A4V8 are essentially the same, with the exception of the fax and printing functionality. If, as you say, someone at Alpha assured you that V8 would install seemlessly, then it is incumbent upon them (Alpha) to make sure it does that.

    The PDF issue brings another dimension to the problem. Now you have to add Adobe to the mix and what is involved between Alpha, Adobe, Windows and the end user is anyone's guess.

    Long ditribe to say this: I feel that if Alpha sells it, they should support it, or at the very least, advise a customer of all the known pitfalls and potential traps.

    Dave
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  25. #25
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave:

    I restored the original copy from the recycle bin and that got rid of the problem of getting the LANerror message, but I'm still getting the message that it can't find a wprtinfo.a4 file. That is apparently a file to list the available printers. All my printers are showing up in the Printers in Windows, including the ones that Alpha originally put in like the PDF converter. I have no idea what the missing file is and can't find any info on the internet.

    Grant

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    On my system, the wptrinfo.a4 file is in the ALPHA4V8 folder. From the date, it looks like the file is created when you go into Other, Configuration, Printer Configuration, select you available printer/printers and then save what you've done.

    Dave
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  27. #27
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave:

    I don't have such a folder and maybe that's the problem why it's not proceeding beyond the spool folder. It can't find anything to print to! My version is 2-6-03 build date. I'll have to let Alpha know that the file is missing.
    I would assume that when you do the upgrade, it looks at Windows and finds out what printers are on the system and creates the folder with data in it.

    Grant

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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Grant,

    The file wptrinfo.a4 is NOT provided by Alpha; it is created when you go through the steps I enumerated in my last note. Also, the folder that, on my system is named ALPHA4V8, might be named A4V8 on your system. I just don't remember if I used the default name when I installed V8, or if I made up a folder name. Let's forget the specific name and just say that the file should be in the same folder as A4V8. When you run the printer configuration from with A4V8, the program sees all the printers available to Windows and offers them to you.

    Also, A4V8 on my system does not show a 'build date', but I have 'Version: 8.0.0' .

    Dave
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  29. #29
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    Default Upgrading from A4V7 To A4V8

    Dave:

    My version is also 8.0.0 but there were patches made and the build dates vary.
    I found that by reading about it in the "readme" files in the area that I found the patches. Apparently 2-6-03 is the latest date and prior to that you need the patches. When I go to Other, Configuration, etc. that's when I get the message that it couldn't find WPTRINFO.a4. Apparently that folder gets populated by whatever printers Alpha finds on the system.

    Grant

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    Default

    Grant,

    Quote Originally Posted by intewedm
    When I go to Other, Configuration, etc. that's when I get the message that it couldn't find WPTRINFO.a4. Apparently that folder gets populated by whatever printers Alpha finds on the system.Grant
    I believe you're right, except that it looks like the file is created when you choose a printer/s from what Alpha finds on the system. What I'm saying is that I think the file is created in response to what printers you select, but not before. If you don't select a printer from the Other, Configuration, Printer Configuration, then the file won't be created.

    Dave
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    Women and cats will do whatever they want. The sooner men and dogs realize that, the happier they will be.


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