Microsoft KB Archive/58746

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New Features of Multiplan Version 4.20 PSS ID Number: Q58746 Article last modified on 05-14-1990 PSS database name: D_MPlan




The following is a description of the enhancements made to Multiplan version 4.20:

New Features

  1. “New Binary File Format” (NBFF) is the fastest loading and fastest saving file format ever. This file format has not been used by any previous version of Multiplan.
  2. Excel, Chart, WKS, WK1, and SYLK file formats can be selected in the Transfer Save menu (see More Information: #1). Chart format is the BIFF file format used by versions 4.00, 4.01, and 4.01a of Multiplan.
  3. Multiplan automatically detects the kind of file prior to loading (see More Information: #2).
  4. Line heights adjust automatically depending upon the font size selected (see More Information: #3).
  5. Transpose has been added the Copy menu. Transpose allows data in rows to be copied into columns, or data in columns copied into rows.
  6. The Copy function can now copy formulas, values, or format separately.
  7. Enumerated file listings such as Transfer Load include drive and directory selections for easy disk and directory navigation.
  8. Multiplan has new functions that include: ROWS(), COLUMNS(), RANK(), ROUNDUP(), ROUNDDOWN(), CELL(), TEXT(), AREAS(), and CLEAN() (see More Information: #4).
  9. Multiplan supports International Codepage Conversions.


  1. Spreadsheets containing external links load much faster than earlier versions of 4.x (see More Information: #5).
  2. The Multiplan manual is now concise and consolidated into one manual.

More Information:

  1. To save in a different file format in earlier versions of Multiplan, the desired file format must be chosen from the Transfer Options menu before executing the Transfer Save command. In version 4.20, the default file format can still be set in the Transfer Options menu; however, the default file format can be changed in the Transfer Save menu without changing the settings in the Transfer Options menu.

  2. Earlier versions of Multiplan load and save only in the file format selected in the Transfer Options menu. Multiplan 4.20 detects the file format at load time and configures itself to load the file without requiring you to change the file format in Transfer Options.

  3. Multiplan 4.20 utilizes the line spacing label in the PRD font description table. By changing the value of the line spacing label in the PRD, the line spacing for any font can be changed.

  4. ROWS(ref): Returns the numbers of rows in ref.

    COLUMNS(ref): Returns the number of columns in ref.

    RANK(number,ref,order): Returns rank of number within ref sorted to order.

    ROUNDUP(number,n): Returns number rounded up to n decimals.

    ROUNDOWN(number,n): Returns number rounded down to n decimals.

    CELL(type-of-info,reference) Returns information about reference.

    TEXT(number,format-string): Returns number as text formatted by format string.

    AREAS(ref): Returns the numbers of areas in ref.

    CLEAN(text): Removes nonprinting characters from text.

  5. Files containing external links are slow to load in Multiplan 4.00, 4.01, and 4.01a when loaded with the Transfer Load command because of the time taken to update the external links. The code used to update this informations has been improved.

Copyright Microsoft Corporation 1990.