Q&A is a well-regarded database, immensely popular with its users, which incorporates an integrated word processor. Although the Windows version, released in 1993, was not a success and has not been further developed, millions of users around the world continue to use the DOS version(s) and find Q&A to be the ideal combination of power and user-friendliness.
What is the latest release of Q&A?
Version 5.01 for DOS dated 6 October 1995 supersedes v4.05 for DOS, dated 23 September 1993. Q&A for Windows v4.01 is dated 3 November 1993.
Can I still buy Q&A?
Certainly. The Q&A "Definitive Edition" CD is available comprising all versions, old and new, including foreign language releases. Keyword Software & Consultancy are the sole UK distributors for the UK. We can supply to other countries, and can provide details of distributors in the US and Germany.
Is Q&A still being developed?
Not by Symantec. However a successor product - SESAME - was released in December 2003, is well established and fast building a user base. Sesame is a 32-bit application able to read in Q&A databases. Go to www.lantica.com for further information about this exciting development. In the meantime some patches have been developed and there are a number of third party utilities available to enhance Q&A.
What about printer drivers?
No printer drivers have been written since 1995. The HP Laserjet series 5, 6, and later printers work pretty well with the Laserjet 4 drivers. The latest HP Deskjets have only limited functionality with the older drivers - printing to these is pretty hit-and-miss. Lack of drivers for some other newer printers such as these, and the Epson Stylus etc is a problem. The safest bet is to use HP Laserjets. You might be surprised to learn how inexpensive the entry-level HP lasers are now - as cheap as Deskjets were a few years ago. However, modern printers often have only a USB connection and Q&A cannot print directly to a USB printer connected to the same PC, only across a network using a virtual port. Some users prefer to use Q&A for Windows for their printing. Others mailmerge using Microsoft Word as their word processor. Although not a direct process (Q&A does not have ODBC drivers) macros can be set up to export data to an ODBC-compliant format. The ultimate answer, of course, is to switch to SESAME. For full details of Sesame database manager go to www.sesamedatabase.com. Sesame is a new, fully supported product. It even has its own quarterly publication: Inside Sesame.
Will Q&A run on the latest PCs?
Yes, although certain safeguards need to be observed. The Q&A program will not run reliably if the hard disk is greater than 2GB. You will need to partition your hard disk or use a small shareware TSR utility called LESSPACE which is supplied on the Definitive Edition CD. Q&A v5 will not run satisfactorily on Pentium II PCs. A free patch has been developed to cure this problem (SPEEDFIX) which is supplied on the CD. All these utilities can be downloaded from either of the web sites mentioned below.
Is Q&A year 2000 compliant?
Essentially yes, but not absolutely. It is important to use one of the date formats with a 4-digit-year. To ensure accurate date entry in all circumstances, a simple line of programming is required in each date field. See the page on this site.
Is technical support available for Q&A?
Keyword Software will try to answer simple technical questions (e-mail is preferred) and full technical advice is available on a chargeable basis.
Does Q&A v4 / v5 (DOS) run under Windows 95 / 98 / Windows NT / 2000 / XP?
Yes, although patches may be needed. There can be no guarantee, however, that it will work with future operating systems. Information about these issues can be found at the Q&A-related websites of PCTA and The Quick Answer.
Q&A for Windows used to not work under Windows NT / 2000 / XP but John Dow has developed a patch so that it can do so. Visit www.johntdow.com for information.
Does Q&A v4 / v5 (DOS) run under Windows Visa / Win 7 / Win 10?
Basically NO. It may run after a fashion but it will be unreliable at best. NOT supported.
Does Q&A v4 / v5 (DOS) run under 64-bit versions of Windows?
NO. Only 32-bit Windows, XP or earlier.
Where can I get further information about Q&A?
Anyone with any interest in Q&A must visit this site:
This information is provided in good faith but no liability can be accepted by Keyword Software & Consultancy for any loss or damage of any description caused or alleged to be caused by using the information contained herein.
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