Friday, December 7, 2007

Chemdraw upgrade

Since updating to OS 10.5, I have not used the Chemdraw 9.1 program on my computer. Shortly after updating to Leopard, I downloaded a demo version of Chemdraw 11.0 just for the fun of it, and used that for 2 weeks. I didn't really intend on purchasing it since version 9 does everything I needed.

Well, the two week trial ended and I reverted back to Chemdraw 9.1. Everything was great until I tried to save my file. Apparently, while using OS 10.5, Chemdraw 9.1 can't save. I got the spinning wheel and then Chemdraw would quit. I tried everything. Uninstall, install, repeat.

Eventually, I had a choice. Go back to 10.4 or buy Chemdraw 11.0. Well, like they say, once you go 10.5 you never go back (or something like that). I asked my IT friend if they would foot the bill. They said yes. Apparently, the $270[1] for software is nothing in the grand scheme of IT. So, I now have Chemdraw 11.0.

Since I am a Mac guy and since Cambridge Software is slowly becoming more and more Mac-unfriendly, I purchased the Chemdraw Pro version of 11.0 since the Ultra version contains lots and lots of cool features that work only on a Windows machine.

For how I use it, I have not noticed any big changes or improvements. The interface looks nicer, but the functionality is essentially the same (at least for how I use it).

The one thing I really wish they would include is a shortcut button for the "distribute" function. I use this all of the time. When I have a number of structures, I like them distributed evenly. The "center" and align functions all have shortcut buttons, but not the distribute. Unless there is some way to set this up, I will always be annoyed by this shortfall.

I'm also annoyed by the fact that in all of my installing and uninstalling and upgrading, I forgot to save my stationary files (i.e. document settings). Which means, I'll need to recreate these someday. Oh well, that was my fault. I had different settings for exams, reports, and other things. I hate the ACS document settings for use on exams. The nice thing is, version 11 has Wiley settings which are very close to what I use for exams.

[1] The $270 is the upgrade price for Chemdraw Pro with the educator discount.


Greg the Chemist said...

So far I find chemdraw 11 to be satisfactory but it has new bugs. For example, you have the text tool selected and select part of a text or label characters and change the color. The colors seem to be disabled. You have to create the text for the different colored characters separately, use the select tool and change the color, then text tool copy and paste it. Real Pain.

As for the distribute, I guess I never used buttons but you can access that by right clicking (ctrl-click). No need to use the menus.

Anonymous said...

Chemdraw 8 crashes under 10.5 as soon as you try to save any of your work.

A fix seems to be hidden in the preferences. Go to preferences and select the open/save tab. Under 'Saving Files', check the box that says 'Use Default File Format' and select Chemdraw.

Works for my version of Chemdraw Std. 8.0.3 running Mac OS X 10.5.2.

I was going to upgrade to the newest version of Chemdraw, but I think I might hold off now!


PS Saw the fix mentioned on the MacResearch website.

Chemgeek said...

I guess I should have dug a little deeper before upgrading, but since my IT dept agreed to pay, I had no reason to not upgrade.

Anonymous said...

Andy's fix in the preferences seems to even work with ChemDraw 7.0.1 on MAC OS 10.5.7. Saved me a lot of money or going back to my old 10.4 computer. THANKS! To think ChemDraw was originally written for MAC and now so unfriendly.
Another Andy

Anonymous said...

Thanks to Anonymous and the tip about preferences. I have Version 7.0.1 running on Mac 10.5.8. It kept crashing whenever I tried to save. Now, I can save without crashing. Thanks for saving me money I can't afford to spend!

Anonymous said...

Sick "Fix"! Thanks a lot. I am about to write my dissertation and didn't know what I was going to do without a savable chemdraw.