WordPerfect Installation Tips

by Kendall Callas

After personally going through the experience with more than 250 clients, I have a few pointers to share about installing and optimizing WordPerfect for Windows. These tips mainly apply to WordPerfect 9 and 10, but also apply in concept to WordPerfect 6.x, 7 and 8:

Always “custom” install

Don't choose the slightly faster “typical” install. Mainly the custom install lets you specify where WordPerfect files are stored, and which components of the Corel Office Suite are installed, but the choice of custom install also provides:

  1. more templates
  2. the Find button (on FileOpen screen) — a valuable work product retrieval function
  3. Paradox
  4. Dragon Naturally Speaking (if bundled)
  5. Bitstream Font Navigator
  6. additional language sets (such as the dictionary and thesaurus for Spanish)
  7. more conversion filters (such as to read WP 5.1 files).

Optimize the toolbar

Consider removing the buttons for Draw, Clipart, and the web, and adding buttons for:
  1. Envelope
  2. Address Book
  3. Insert paragraph number
  4. Redline ("attribute redline")
  5. Paragraph and section symbols
  6. Line spacing
  7. Undelete
  8. Print (current) page

Customize the menu bar

Add a new item called “Macros” at the right edge (to the right of Help). You can do away with the need for a paper cheatsheet listing your macros if you do a good job naming the menu items and including details in the Quick tip.

Assign keystrokes for frequently used macros

A common scheme is: Alt+L to start a letter, Alt+E to grab the address block and print it as an envelope, Alt+M to start a memo, Alt+P for pleading format with prompted caption, Alt+X to start a Fax cover sheet, Alt+F for a list of forms, etc.

Default template

The optimization tips above (except the first) should all be performed on one PC, then copied to all your other PCs — this is efficient, and serves to standardize the WordPerfect environment throughout your firm. These settings are all stored in the default template (for WP9 it's called WP9US.WPT, for WP10 it's called WP10US.WPT) which may be copied from PC to PC to transport your menu, toolbars, keystroke assignments, styles, and template macros.

Two configuration steps are also worth remembering:

Turn off “intelligent” features that act dumb

Two automatic rules fall into the “more trouble than they're worth” category. Use Tools, QuickCorrect, click the “Format-As-You-Go” tab, then click to deselect QuickBullets and QuickIndent.

Choose “Set QuickMark on Save”

Use Tools, Bookmark (Insert, Bookmark in WP7), then click to select the box at lower left for “Set QuickMark on file save”. This will automatically mark the cursor location each time you save; when you later re-open the file, you may use Ctrl+Q to jump down to that spot and resume your work. If you're aggressive, consider selecting the next box down to automatically jump to that location (“Go to QuickMark on file open”).

By optimizing WordPerfect and making your macros and important WordPerfect features more accessible, you can boost productivity considerably. Ultimately, saving time for your users improves the quality of their work and reduces their level of stress, yielding improved productivity, morale, and turnover — factors with direct impact on the bottom line.

Copyright (C) 2002 by microCounsel. All rights reserved.

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