NV1 and New Computers
It's surprising how many NV1 users are still not clear on where DOS / NewViews stands with today's computers. Many of you have upgraded to new computers running Windows 7 or 8, only to encounter pitfalls when the upgrade is not planned properly.
The first assumption commonly made is that there is only one version of Windows 7 or 8. The second is that whatever computer is for sale at the local computer store must be good enough to run NewViews. The third is that there are no other choices.
The Current Status of Windows (April 2013)
Below are some important statistics collected from the Internet over the last few years. You can see the long term trends of operating systems usage (% of users is shown below). Windows XP and Windows 7 are the most popular operating systems, and the Windows family counts for over 80% of operating systems overall.
|Windows 8||Windows 7||Vista||Windows XP||Windows 2000||Apple Mac|
You may be wondering why we're discussing Microsoft's Windows operating system. DOS was last used in Windows 95 and 98 - these were 16 / 32-bit operating systems. DOS is a true 16-bit operating system and Microsoft dropped support for DOS in 2007. The majority of NV1 users are currently running an old version of Windows; so how can you continue to run NV1 on a modern operating system?
Windows 32-bit vs 64-bit Editions
Current Windows operating system are available as true 32-bit and 64-bit editions. All 32-bit versions can emulate the DOS environment and run NV1 directly, and operation is typically smooth and fast. Windows XP was available only as a 32-bit operating system for 32-bit processors until 2005, when Microsoft released a 64-bit edition. This version of Windows XP did not see widespread adoption due to a lack of available software and hardware drivers and could not run 16-bit DOS NewViews.
The 64-bit migration path to Vista was much less complicated due to the Windows on Windows (WOW) emulation layer, which allowed older applications to run. However, most did not see performance increases due to a lack of applications with native support for 64-bit processors.
Initially, the 32-bit version represented 80% of Vista sales, while the 64-bit version only accounted for 20%. This trend reversed over a two year time period as Microsoft continued to push the sale of the 64-bit version. Given the increasing number of 64-bit processors, the Windows 7 x64 Edition did not suffer the same lack of support as Vista. From October 2009 forward, 80% of Windows 7 sales have been 64-bit editions.
|Operating Systems||16-bit||16 / 32-bit||32-bit||64-bit|
|2009 / 13||Windows 7 & 8||Windows 7 & 8|
|1995 / 98||Win 95 & 98|
Windows 7 x64 Edition represents the first mainstream 64-bit operating system from Microsoft in terms of general availability and support from third-party add-on vendors. Because of this, moving from a 32-bit operating system such as Windows XP to a 64-bit operating system such as Windows 7 x64 Edition merits serious consideration in many cases.
The feasibility of successfully making the jump to Windows 7 x64 Edition depends largely on your application and its requirements. For NV2 (NewViews for Windows), Windows 7 x64 Edition offers much needed performance improvement, while for NV1 (DOS) users, it will needlessly complicate things and have a negative effect on performance.
Windows 7 - Which One?
There are 11 versions of Windows 7.
|Windows 7||NV1 on
64-bit with DOSBOX
|Professional||yes||yes in XP mode||yes (not recommended)|
|Enterprise||yes||yes in XP mode||yes (not recommended)|
|Ultimate||yes||yes in XP mode||yes (not recommended)|
Your business depends on your financial information. For most of you, your NewViews accounting data is of utmost importance. Yet we still receive calls from users with no data backup or backups that are months old. We have always stressed the importance of making regular backups of your data, storing backups offsite, and keeping your computer current. It is best not to rely on computers that are more than five years old.
Install Windows 7 Professional 32-bit on New Computers
NewViews is designed for business accounting. It is meant to be run on a business or professional computer, not a computer designed for home use. Unfortunately the $60.00 premium for Windows Professional over Windows Home Premium has most retailers only stocking computers with a Home version of the operating system. If you ask, you will find computers with Windows Professional installed, or computers that can be ordered with Windows Professional. They may cost a little more money, but you will also get a faster and more reliable machine.
What is the Best Operating System for Computers Currently Running NV1 / DOS?
- The best platform to run NV1 is Windows XP but unfortunately it can no longer be purchased from Microsoft. You should, however, be able to transfer your current computer's XP license to your new computer.
- The second best platform to run NV1 is Windows 7 Professional 32-bit. It's an up to date operating system, fully supportive of 16-bit DOS applications like NV1, and properly integrates with the office's network and servers.
- The third choice is any other 32-bit version of Windows 7.
- A distant fourth choice is Windows 7 Professional 64-bit running in XP mode. XP mode runs as a virtual PC within Windows 7, so you would have to run and maintain two operating systems.
We have several users running NV1 on Windows Home 64-bit, but this is currently the worst platform for running DOS programs. If possible, upgrade to Windows Professional 64-bit or, if possible, reformat your drive and install Windows Professional 32-bit. DOSBOX is meant for occasional access to old NV1 data or for converting NV1 to NV2. DOSBOX is not meant as a solution to running NV1 on a daily basis, unless you are stuck with Windows Home 64-bit.
Printing from Windows 7
New computers don't have parallel or LPT1 ports, they must be ordered separately as a $15.00 add-on card. However new printers are not available with the older parallel cables. All new printers come with USB or network connections. Below are the instructions for printing from a 32-bit Windows version.
If NV1 is installed on a computer that is directly connected to a USB printer, you can try simulating a network connection in order to redirect the output from LPT1 to the USB printer. The steps are as follows:
- Go to the Windows Start Menu. Find the computer name by right clicking on My Computer, and then clicking on Properties. Make a note of the full computer name (which should be 8 characters or less with no spaces).
- Access the settings for the printer. For example, in the Windows 7 Start Menu, you would select Devices and Printers, double click the printer to be "shared", then select double click on Customize your printer.
- Access the Sharing options.
- Specify a printer share name that is 8 characters or less, with no spaces. Make sure the Share this printer box is ticked.
- On your Windows desktop, click Start, then click Run.
- In the Open box, type cmd, then click OK.
- At the command prompt, type:
net use lpt1 \\computer_name\printer_share_name /persistent:yes
then press ENTER.
NOTE: Substitute the name of the computer (as determined in step 1) for computer_name. Substitute the printer share name (as specified in step 4) for printer_share_name.
- To quit the command prompt, type exit, and then press ENTER.
Printing from a 64-bit version is not directly supported. There are stories of success from some of our users, but not many. Call us if you require assistance in setting up a 64-bit printer.