Advice needed for MS Works 8

  Southernboy 12:52 11 Jul 05
Locked

I am converting Lotus 123 Spreadsheets to MS Works Spreadshhets.

I have succeeded in converting one 123 file to MS Spreadsheet. A lot of messing about as Works did not like any of my settings, and it took me ages (as I had never experienced Office or Works before) to work it all out. However, I have some queries:

1. What is the purpose of the large outlined cross when you open a Spreadsheet, and how do you get rid of it?

2. What does the warning "your footer is too tall" mean. Can't find it in the Help files, and it doesn't seem to make any sense.

3. Printing. It insists upon including the Row number in the printout, whereas Lotus did not. I can't see any point in them being included in the printout - how can I get rid of them?

4. Printing. It does not seem possible to alter the Header/Footer text to BOLD. This was much easier with Lotus.

5. Why does the printout not centre the Spreadsheet? At the moment, those that are too big for Portrait, but do not fill Landscape, are aligned to the left-hand side. This should be automatic.

6. It is disappointing that, when altering Cell Width manually, it does not display the numeric width as Lotus does. One is left to visually judge the distance.

Thanks to all.

  mgmcc 19:27 11 Jul 05

I think the first thing to bear in mind is that the Spreadsheet application in MS Works is extremely basic compared to Lotus 123. The equivalent Microsoft program is Excel.

<<<What is the purpose of the large outlined cross when you open a Spreadsheet, and how do you get rid of it?>>>

That is the default "mouse pointer" used to click on cells, highlight them, drag them and so on. The same "cross" is used in both Works and Excel.

<<<What does the warning "your footer is too tall" mean. Can't find it in the Help files, and it doesn't seem to make any sense.>>>

I would suspect that you have imported an incompatible page setup from the original Lotus file into the Works spreadsheet. Have a look at the Page Setup settings.

<<< Printing. It insists upon including the Row number in the printout, whereas Lotus did not. I can't see any point in them being included in the printout - how can I get rid of them?>>>

In the "File > Page Setup" menu, select the Other Options tab and untick PRINT ROW AND COLUMN HEADERS

<<<Why does the printout not centre the Spreadsheet? At the moment, those that are too big for Portrait, but do not fill Landscape, are aligned to the left-hand side. This should be automatic.>>>

The feature isn't available in Works. Even in Excel, the option to centre vertically and horizontally has to be specifically set within the page setup - not everyone wants a spreadsheet centred vertically so that it is half way down the page, although it may be desirable to centre horizontally.

<<<It is disappointing that, when altering Cell Width manually, it does not display the numeric width as Lotus does. One is left to visually judge the distance.>>>

The column width isn't shown when dragging it to a different size, as it is in Excel, but its size can be selected in the menus - "Format > Column Width".

If you need the sophistication of Lotus 123 then you would be better with Excel. You may also have noticed that Works only has a single "sheet", it doesn't support multiple sheets in a "workbook" like Excel.

  Southernboy 13:10 15 Jul 05

Some background. I bought my first PC in 1995 which came with W3.1 and Lotus Smartsuite 3.1. I used the software supplied. When I bought my next PC in 1998 (from Mesh) this came with W98 and Lotus Smartsuite 97. This was convenient for me as I was familiar with Lotus, so I carried on with it. I never saw the need to change to MS Office as I had a perfectly good Office Suite and did not want to learn a whole new system. Anyway, MS Office was very expensive.

I now have a new PC from Evesham which came with MS Works 8. However, last year (in anticipation of getting a new PC), I checked my version of Lotus out and was told I needed to buy Lotus ME 9.7 to get XP compatibility, which I did. It cost a fortune and did not even include a box! I did not, however, install it until I got my new PC.

I now find I have printing problems with Lotus, which (in a nutshell) means that the print layout cannot be changed. Any attempt to do so means that, whilst the printer selects the right paper orientation, the actual text printed is not changed, meaning that it either prints portrait on landscape, or landscape on portrait, leaving blank spaces. This problems appears only to affect Lotus - changes in layout are not a problem with other applications.

I decided that the only way to solve this was to attempt to transfer well over one hundred databases and spreadsheets to MS Works, provided Works will do what I want in terms of layout and printout. I am not sure that I need a sophisticated Office Suite as I use spreadsheets to record household bills and other financial information. The only calculation action I take is to total the columns after each new entry and print them off for filing. I have never explored, and do not understand, all the technical aspects of 123. I use it purely because it will make totals and because the grid lines are easier to read in printouts. It would be nice to be able to amend the fonts to bold in the headers and footers, but I cannot discover how to do this. Likewise, as far as I can see, it is not possible to highlight a column to make changes to layout - eash cell has to be done individually. 123 is much easier to use and all the basis options are on the bottom toolbar. By the way, why does Works have two files for a spreadsheet?

My biggest number of files are Approach databases, but I cannot work out how to transfer these to MS Works. With 123 files, I chose XLR which seems to have worked - unless you know different - but I am lost with databases.

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