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Author Topic: XMetaL 5.0 on Windows 7?  (Read 5653 times)
gkhaas
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« on: March 18, 2010, 09:30:17 AM »

We are still using XMetaL Enterprise 5.0 SP 1 (it's a large company so rolling forward to Version 6 is not a priority to the guys with the purse strings). We are running on Windows XP, but have heard we are to be upgraded soon to Windows 7.

Can anyone please tell me if XMetaL 5 will work on Windows 7 (32 bit), or if we'll need to upgrade to a newer XMetaL?
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Derek Read
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« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2010, 12:02:19 PM »

You will have trouble with any of our products with a 5.0 release number and I would not try to install any of them on Windows. The file install-readme.html (ships with our installers) should tell you the minimum hardware and OS requirements for each version.

Keep in mind that 'XMetaL' is really a brand name and not a product name (though it forms part of the name in most products). I assume you are asking about either the first or second product listed below:

XMetaL Author Enterprise
XMetaL Author Essential
XMAX
XMetaL Developer
XMetaL Reviewer

The current version of XMetaL Author Enterprise 6.0 supports Windows 7. The full version number for this release is 6.0.0.122. In this case the install-readme.html contains a note stating that "only preliminary testing has been completed" on Windows 7. This is no longer true as testing is complete and no additional issues specific to Windows 7 are currently known (ie: it is safe to install and run and officially supported). Future releases will not contain that warning the install-readme.

XMetaL Author Essential 6.0 has not been released yet. It will also support Windows 7.
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gkhaas
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« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2010, 02:25:04 PM »

Thanks, Derek,

Let me amend my question. 

We (several dozen writers in a multi-national corporation) are now using XMetaL Author Enterprise version 5.0 on Windows XP SP3.  Moving up to XMetaL Author Enterprise Version 6 will cost the corporation significant dollars/Euros/etc.  (How much per seat?)

Can XMetaL Author Enterprise version 5.0 run on Windows 7?  I've read the ReadMe for version 5 (issued 2007) and it does not mention Vista or Windows 7 at all. 

I'm given to understand (since posting earlier) that Windows 7 offers a mode in which one can install software that runs on older Windows versions (such as XP).  Perhaps there is a performance penalty, but that might be a solution if we are thrust into Windows 7 abruptly.

I also hear that Version 6 offers greatly improved spell checking.  What other features would be good selling points to convince The Powers That Be (TightFisted) to shell out for the upgrade?

What incompatibilities are we  (multiple teams working on multiple release schedules, worldwide, with some docs passing through translation) likely to encounter in doing an upgrade?


Thanks!
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Derek Read
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« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2010, 04:06:26 PM »

Right. So, basically the answer is the same as before. Windows 7 did not exist when we released XMetaL Author Enterprise 5.0 and so no testing was ever done on that OS and it is not supported. This is why the 5.0 release specifically lists only Windows 2000 and XP in the installation requirements.

We did a substantial amount of work between 5.0 and 5.5 to get 5.5 working on Vista and this work was continued after 5.5 to get 6.0 working on Windows 7. I can tell you that many issues will arise if you attempt to run 5.0 on Windows 7 because Microsoft changed many things between XP and Windows 7. It is very likely that the software will not even finish installing in most cases. Better luck can be had with 5.5 because many of the changes we did to support that version of Windows carry over to Windows 7, however, 5.5 is also not supported on Windows 7 because that version of Windows did not yet exist at the time and no testing was done.

If you have purchased a maintenance agreement then upgrades for XMetaL Author Enterprise should be included with that at no additional charge. I believe our sales people have a mandate to include the sale of maintenance with all sales of the software (at least recently) so almost everyone that purchases the product should be getting 'free' upgrades. This is something you should check with our sales people directly as they can tell you what your particular agreement is with us.

A list of "highlights" in 6.0 is listed here:
http://na.justsystems.com/content-XMetaL-author

The following post includes the readme files for versions 4.6 thru 6.0. The 6.0 readme file contains additional detail on specific features and bug fixes:
http://forums.XMetaL.com/index.php/topic,108

Our newer versions strive to always be backward compatible and so most clients do not run into any upgrade issues. If they do, they are typically related very closely to the particular customization they have employed (often script related) but these are usually minor problems and the majority of the time they can be worked around.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2010, 04:38:32 PM by Derek Read » Logged
Derek Read
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« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2010, 05:45:38 PM »

One more detail that I missed: If you want to use the Windows 7 feature called "Windows XP Mode" that may be a viable option. For detailed information on this Windows 7 feature search for "Windows XP Mode" on Microsoft's website (I won't post a link here because this seems to be one of those things that is a constantly moving target on their site).

According to Microsoft, running software in this "mode" is supposed to be equivalent to running the software on XP. Essentially, from what I understand "Windows XP Mode" on Windows 7 is a special build of "Microsoft Virtual PC" designed specifically to aid clients in running software designed for XP on Windows 7. In this case, you will essentially be installing and running our software inside a virtual machine running XP, and that virtual machine will be running on Windows 7 (a computer inside a computer). So, very likely in this case there will be a performance hit over running the 6.0 release directly on Windows 7.

Before you make any hard decisions on rolling this out to everyone I would configure it and test it as much as possible to make sure this solution is going to work for you.
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