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October 1996 Reviews TOC

10/96 Reviews SW: Here & Now 2.0

Bridge the Gap Between Mac and PC

By Hailey Lynn McKeefry

Although most of us spend the bulk of our time on one side or the other of the PC/Macintosh divide, some of us do have to cross over from time to time. At work, I'm squarely in the Windows camp, but my home office includes a Mac. With Here & Now, I can safely bridge the gap between Mac and PC.

H&N lets you swap files between Mac and Windows using various media, including high-density floppy diskettes, HFS-formatted CD-ROMs, rewritable optical disks and hard drives. Curiously, however, it has trouble reading standard 800KB, double-density diskettes. I had to recopy Mac files archived onto these disks onto high-density diskettes before Here & Now could use them.

Using Here & Now, my Windows 95 PC treated any Mac diskette as if it were Windows, using extension mapping to translate Mac documents into their Windows counterparts. Accessing the files was as easy as clicking on the filename of my choice in Windows Explorer; Here & Now automatically launched the appropriate program. When transferring files from the PC to the Mac, Here & Now transparently added the Type and Creator information my Mac Classic needed to access the file.

The Macintosh operating system uses dual data streams (a data fork and a resource fork), instead of a single stream as a PC does. H&N's control panel let me choose whether I wanted to be able to see the resource fork when I viewed Macintosh files. It also let me decide whether or not to automatically truncate long filenames.

The program supports several dozen file types on both systems, including Canvas, ClarisWorks, FoxPro, QuarkXPress, Excel, PageMaker, Photoshop and FreeHand. And, if you know the Macintosh Type and Creator extensions, any programs not already supported can be easily added from the control panel of the program. Here & Now supports 200 different file-type definitions.

You can also format Macintosh diskettes with an included utility. Choosing this utility brings up a familiar dialog box that asks you to name the diskette, choose the drive and whether you want the disk "quick formatted."

Here & Now's simplicity belies its power. The chasm between the Mac and PC platforms has gotten a whole lot smaller as a result.

Info File
Here & Now 2.0
$99.95; upgrade from 1.0, $39.95
Pros: Automatic
Cons: High-density diskettes only
Platforms: Windows 95, 3.1x; DOS
Disk Space: 1MB
Software Architects
800-863-9297, 206-487-0122
WinMag Box Score: 3.5

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