WordPerfect users have anxiously awaited concrete signs that Corel plans to update WordPerfect actively. On 08-Aug-96, Corel announced Corel WordPerfect 3.5, an updated version of Novell WordPerfect 3.5. Current Novell WordPerfect users can download the 1.7 MB Corel WP 3.5 Updater, which updates Novell WordPerfect 3.5 to Corel WordPerfect 3.5 (the Get Info dialog labels it Corel WordPerfect 3.5.1, though other version checks show version 3.5). A few foreign language dictionaries and thesaurus files are also available.
(Use the first URL from Netscape Navigator or Internet Explorer, and the second one if you’re using an FTP client like Anarchie.)
Unfortunately, the updater cannot install over Novell WordPerfect 3.5 if the copy of Novell WordPerfect doesn’t precisely match what the updater expects. If you encounter this situation, you’ll get a message saying, "invalid file selected for updating." According to WordPerfect technical support, this is likely to occur if you’ve run disk utilities like Norton Utilities. To solve the problem, WordPerfect technical support recommends that you throw away your current WordPerfect folder (don’t trash any of your own documents, though), and then install a fresh copy of WordPerfect 3.5. The updater should be able to update the fresh copy.
The update improves performance and fixes a variety of bugs. To see the full list of changes, you must download and run the updater installer, and then you’ll see a list of changes within the installer window. In addition to fixing several crashing bugs, notable fixes include ruler bar display problems on PCI Power Macs, cleared tabs unexpectedly re-appearing, Font menus in Preferences and Print Envelopes not working on small monitors, and problems with envelope printing. The new version also improves table display and performance. New features include the ability to create HTML forms and to position a caption above a graphic or text box.
Corel is also shipping Corel WordPerfect 3.5 on CD-ROM, and this version comes with not only WordPerfect but also with MasterJuggler Pro (see TidBITS-334), Netscape 2.02, clip art images, background texture images, stock photography, sounds, 150 TrueType fonts, as well as spelling checkers and thesauruses for Spanish, French, and German. The CD-ROM lists for $249, and upgrades are $89. You can sidegrade for $89 if you own a competitive product. It’s pleasing to see Corel shipping WordPerfect on CD with a large complement of related files, but I think owners of Novell WordPerfect 3.5 should get the CD for $25 or less.