Microsoft KB Archive/34568

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Multiplan Version 4.00 README.DOC PSS ID Number: Q34568 Article last modified on 09-06-1988 PSS database name: D_MPlan




The following is the README.DOC file from Multiplan Version 4.00 which contains additional information as well as corrections to the manual.

More Information:

Supported video cards

Multiplan 4.0 supports the following screen adapters:

IBM Monochrome IBM Color Graphics Adapter (CGA) (with and without “Snow Control”, see note below) IBM Enhanced Graphics Adapter (EGA) IBM Video Graphics Array (VGA) Hercules Graphics Card Hercules Graphics Plus Hercules InColor

and all cards that are truly compatible.

The Multiplan 3.0 manual states that Multiplan supports 132 column screen modes. This information is no longer correct. Multiplan only supports 80 column displays.

Snow Control

On some Color Graphics Adapters, most notably the IBM CGA card, whenever something is displayed on the screen, a “flickering” and what seem to be random spots appear on the screen. While this does not damage the screen, or the computer, it can be annoying to look at. Multiplan offers the option to select a screen driver that minimizes this effect. If you have an IBM CGA card installed, you should choose that option in the SETUP menu.

Many CGA compatibles, the COMPAQ for example, do not have this flicker problem, and you can choose the color graphics compatible option in the SETUP menu. The advantage of this option is that it is noticeably faster than the “Snow Control” option above.

If you find that you chose the wrong option, you can change the display adapter option at any time using SETUP.


Multiplan 4.0 now supports printers using printer drivers. This means that you can specify fonts, and font attributes, such as underline and bold, directly within Multiplan. You no longer need to embed control characters in cells, or use the Print Options Setup field to switch your printer into the desired mode.

Note the limitations below:

Multiplan supports only monospaced fonts. Proportional fonts are not supported and not listed in the Format Font command.

Support of character attributes, such as bold and underline, is limited to what your printer can directly support using escape sequences, and is therefore specific to your printer. If your printer can support these attributes, Multiplan will use them. If your printer, however, is unable to print a given attribute, the text is printed normally.

The file PRINTERS.DOC contains an up to date list of the supported printers. If your printer is not on that list, choose “Others” in the SETUP program. Multiplan will then use the built-in “generic” TEXT driver to support your printer.


Multiplan 4.0 can be installed on, and will work properly, on most networks. The installation on a network works similar to an installation on a hard disk, but additional steps are involved. The information herein is intended for the network administrator, and it assumes that the administrator is familiar with DOS and network commands.

Installing on a network

First, make sure that your server maps to a drive letter on your system. Start up the SETUP program, and install Multiplan just as you would install it for a hard disk. After SETUP has completed the installation, switch to the drive and directory Multiplan is installed on. Then follow the instructions explained on page xxvi in the Multiplan 3.0 manual to change the Multiplan files to read-only. Use the DOS or OS/2 ATTRIB command:

ATTRIB +r *.exe

Multiplan can then be executed by more than one user at a time. Please note that all users must be licensed to use Multiplan on the network. Please read the licensing agreement for licensing information.

Running Multiplan on “mixed” installations

If your network has workstations with different display adapters, you may need to take additional steps to have each user’s screen properly supported. If all users have IBM monochrome, IBM EGA, Hercules Graphics Cards, or IBM VGA (or compatibles) installed, you need not do anything. If some users, however, have Hercules Graphics Plus cards, Hercules InColor cards, or IBM Color Graphics adapters, you need to do the following:

Copy *.vid from the SETUP disk to the Multiplan directory.


Set the environment variable “MPVID” on the workstation that has one of these cards installed:

For Hercules InColor, Graphics Plus:


For IBM Color Graphics Adapter (with “Snow Control”):


This will override the display adapter selected with SETUP, and allows different users to use different displays while running the same Multiplan.


On page A122 in the Multiplan 4.0 addendum it is improperly stated that Cell References can be made to other worksheets on the screen. This is not correct. A reference in a formula can only refer to a cell within the same worksheet.

On page A156, the “setup” is wrong - the “adapter” field is referred to here.

Page A97 improperly states the Multiplan automatically detects symbolic files. Automatic detection is only done for Multiplan 3.0 files, Multiplan 4.0 files, and Lotus files. If you wish to load a symbolic file, you must set the Transfer Options command to “Symbolic”.

If you run OS/2, you must have SWAP and MOVE enabled (it is enabled by default.) This limits the amount of memory available to Multiplan only to the space available on your disk - independent of the actual amount of memory installed on your system. Consult your OS/2 manual for additional information.

Page A29, first paragraph states:

“…. computed criteria must refer to at least one database field name or relative reference.”

This is not correct: Computed criteria must refer to at least one database field name, and can also refer to an absolute reference in addition to the database field name.

Copyright Microsoft Corporation 1988.