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Questions and Answers for NExS (X/Motif GUI Spreadsheet)


File Formats

  1. Can NExS exchange data with Microsoft Excel and Lotus 1-2-3?

    NExS can read and write several of the file formats that are understood by Excel and Lotus 1-2-3. Due to differences in the spreadsheet programs, however, some information may be lost when transferring data from one to another.

  2. Some of the people I work with use Excel, and they send me spreadsheets in the native Excel format. Can NExS read these files?

    Since NExS understands the Excel file format, most often, the answer is "yes." The file format used natively by Excel is called BIFF (Binary Interchange File Format), and it comes in several different flavors. BIFF 5 was introduced with Excel 5.0, BIFF 7 with Excel 95, BIFF 8 with Excel 97, and BIFF 9 with Excel 2000.

    As you might guess, there are proprietary features of Excel files that Microsoft has never documented, and thus we are unable to support them. Microsoft Excel is a very large and complicated program, and it supports more features than any other spreadsheet, including ours. So, there will be some spreadsheets that will not work in NExS. Excel files that NExS cannot read or write include files that are password protected or that contain Visual Basic scripts/controls.

  3. Doesn't the BIFF file format require OLE support?

    Strictly speaking, no. However, all versions of Excel since 5.0 have encapsulated their files in the OLE structured storage format. The Excel support in NExS includes the ability to read OLE structured storage files. This means that you will be able to read files generated by Excel 95/97/2000.

  4. Does the Excel import in NExS work? Clicking on the type in the Open menu did nothing.

    The only thing that should happen when you select the XLS type is that the file filter should change accordingly. You should be able to read files written by Excel 95/97/2000 that are not password protected or do not contain Visual Basic controls and code.

  5. Will NExS read the Lotus macros stored in my WK1 file?


  6. Can I read and write plain text files which contain tabular data?

    Yes. NExS attempts to intelligently parse plain text by looking for vertical columns of ``white space'' (space or tab characters), assuming that's where the data should be cut into columns. Of course, this is not always what is intended, so there are adjustable parameters on the ``Import/Export Options'' dialog to tweak the way the file is cut into columns.

  7. How can I merge two NExS spreadsheets into one?

    Open the first spreadsheet, then move the cell cursor to the upper left corner of the area where you would like to merge the second spreadsheet. Select ``File -> Import...'' and set the file type to ``Cells.'' Then enter the file name of the .xs3 file you wish to merge and click ``OK.'' The selected file will be merged into the current spreadsheet without overwriting the data that was already there.

Run Time Problems

  1. After ftp'ing, installing, and editing the licence.txt as per your e-mail instructions, I start nexs and get the following messages:
       ERROR:  - cannot allocate color #e38de38de38d
       ERROR:  - cannot allocate color #5555aaaaffff
       ERROR:  - cannot allocate color #ffffaaaa0000
       ERROR:  - cannot allocate color #aaaaaaaa5555
       ERROR:  - cannot allocate color #0000aaaa5555
       ERROR:  - cannot allocate color #aaaaaaaaffff
       ERROR:  - cannot allocate color #aaaaaaaaaaaa
       ERROR:  - cannot allocate color #ffffaaaaffff
       ERROR: Sorry, your NExS license is not valid on display

    What's going on?

    The color allocation errors occur when your color map is all used up. This happens when a program such as Netscape claims all the remaining colors you have available. NExS will still work under these conditions, but the display may look strange. If Netscape is the problem, the documentation that comes with it explains how to limit the colors that it uses. If it is not Netscape, you need to find out which program is taking over your color map.

    The message:

        ERROR: Sorry, your NExS license is not valid on display

    would appear to be resulting from running NExS on one machine while displaying the windows on another. The Personal Edition license does not support network displays.

OS Versions and OS-Specific Problems

  1. With the availability of SCO unix for home users for free, do you have any plans of porting your spreadsheet to SCO 5?

    We don't have any current plans for that, but as with other platforms, we will consider it based on demand. We've seen surprisingly little demand for SCO so far.

  2. How about NExS for Linux on DEC Alpha machines?

    Sorry, no current plans for that either.

  3. How should I set up my "Printer" and "Preview" commands for NExS under SunOS 5.x?

    Currently you have to edit the resource file to change the print commands. Create a file named NExS in your home directory with the following line:

    *printers: Default:lp -c %s\nPreview:pageview %s

    Under SunOS 5.x, the -c option is needed to prevent NExS from removing the file before the spooler gets a chance to grab it. Also, lp is the default print command and pageview is the PS previewer on SunOS 5.x systems.

Network Issues

  1. What is your technical suggestion on installing the software on a UNIX application server and using it from HPs and SUNs on the LAN?

    That works fine and many people run it that way. Your NExS Enterprise Edition floating license will work in that mode, or will allow you to run from the individual Sun and HP workstations directly. The approach that is best in your particular case will depend on factors which only you can weigh, such as the loading on your network and your application server.

  2. Can I run NExS on a display-less machine on my network as a spreadsheet server for printing spreadsheet data or controlling access to a global data set?

    Normally, NExS needs to run on a machine with an X Windows display. However, there is now an X server available which does not require a physical display. NExS can run on a display-less machine with the aid of this X server. The information on this X server is reprinted below:

    Subject 113: Is there a ``pseudo-tty'' or fake X display I can use?

    Applications often have a need to run against an X display which isn't tied to a physical display - perhaps to make a screendump, or to run when the software expects to have an open display. In these cases, the X Virtual Frame Buffer can be used. It is a full X server which doesn't open any devices (the output can be a memory-mapped file) but which otherwise behaves as an X display. It is also useful for testing. The Xvfb is part of the X11R6 distribution, in programs/Xserver; set the configuration option in config/{machine}.cf to build the distribution with this server.

X Window Copy and Paste

  1. Native X Window programs allow me to paste selected text from one window to another simply by clicking the middle mouse button in the destination window. Can I do that with NExS?

    Yes. NExS supports the X Window ICCCM copy/paste standard. To embed spreadsheet data in the text of an e-mail message, for example, simply highlight the data you want on the spreadsheet, then click the middle mouse button in the e-mail window.

  2. Suppose I receive an e-mail which contains some tabular data that I would like to load into NExS so that I can analyze and graph it. Can I use X Window cut and paste somehow, or do I have to save the data in a file and import it?

    In most cases you can simply highlight the text in the e-mail message, and click the middle mouse button at the upper left corner of where you want it to go in the spreadsheet. If it didn't come out exactly the way you want, just ``Edit -> Undo'' the paste operation, adjust the relevant parameters on the ``Import Export...'' dialog, and try again.

  3. I was trying to transfer some data from my word processor into NExS by cut and paste, but could not get result I wanted. I selected the text ``Fiscal Year 2000 Results'' in the word processor and clicked the middle mouse button to paste it into NExS. It worked, but each word went into a separate cell, and I wanted the whole phrase to go into one cell. What am I doing wrong?

    In this case, NExS sees the spaces between each word as where it should cut the data into columns. To prevent this, set the white space threshold on the ``Import/Export Options...'' dialog to zero. This tells NExS not to attempt to parse the text into columns, and the whole phrase will go into a single cell.

  4. Can I copy information from one NExS spreadsheet to another by pasting with the middle mouse button?

    Yes. When you select data in one NExS spreadsheet and click the middle mouse button in another, all of the data, including formulas, fonts, and formats, are copied from one spreadsheet to the other. You can even use this method as a shortcut for copying data within the same spreadsheet.

X Resources

  1. I am running NExS on a laptop with 640x480 resolution. Is there any way I can set it up to use smaller fonts so I can get more data on the screen?

    Yes. You can specify smaller fonts for the menus and the worksheet area by overriding the default X resources. The simplest way to do this is to create a file called ``NExS'' in your home directory and put in the following lines:

        *fontList: -*-helvetica-bold-r-*-*-10-*-*-*-*-*-*-* 
        *cellFontSize: 8

    The first line sets the font used on all the menus and dialogs to 10 point helvetica (the default is 14 point). The next line sets the help text font to 10 point courier (12 point is default). The last line sets the default font size in the worksheet area to 8 points.

  2. By default, NExS uses a courier font for all the data entered in the worksheet area. I know I can change it by setting the font family to helvetica on the ``Cell Defaults'' dialog, but is there any way I can make it use Helvetica automatically?

    Yes. Just put the following line in your NExS X resource file:

    *cellFontFamily: helvetica
  3. I have a couple of different printers that I use for my work. Can I somehow get NExS to recognize both of them?

    Yes. Suppose a default printer that you get when you type ``lpr'' from the UNIX command line, and a color printer that you get when you type ``lpr -Pc'' from the command line. To set up NExS to recognize this, put this line in your NExS X resource file:

    *printers: Default:lpr %s\nColor:lpr -Pc %s\nPreview:ghostview %s
  4. How can I permanently define Currency 1 (Yen) for all worksheets?

    You have to add the following to your resources file:

    *currency1Neg: PAREN (or MINUS)
    *currency1TagPlacement: PREFIX (or SUFFIX)
    *currency1Tag: Y
  5. How can I change the paper size dialog to millimeters?

    Place the following in the NExS resource file:

    *pageUnits: M


  1. There seems to be a bug in NExS's LaTeX export. If I have a cell formatted as ``dollars,'' for example $50.00, the dollar sign gets propery escaped when I export it to a LaTeX table. However, if I have the text ``Gross Revenues ($)'' in a cell, the dollar sign doesn't get escaped when I export it, and a LaTeX error results.

    This is not a ``bug,'' it's a ``feature!'' (Yeah, right...) Seriously, it was designed that way so that you could put special LaTeX sequences, such as math symbols, in cells and control the formatting yourself. However, so many users thought that automatically escaping LaTeX special characters should be the default, we made it that way. In fact, NExS goes even further by generating special sequences to support most of the ISO-Latin-1 character set in exported LaTeX tables.

  2. In an old version of NExS, I could put the text ``$\Theta$'' in a cell to get the Greek symbol to print in my LaTeX file. However, when I upgraded to the latest version of NExS, this feature was broken! It prints out literally as ``$\Theta$''. Can this be fixed?

    Due to popular demand, we changed the default mode for LaTeX export to ``what you see is what you get'' in NExS. However, it is still possible to get the old behavior so that you can enter your own LaTeX special sequences. Just go into the ``Import/Export Options'' dialog and turn off the LaTeX auto-escape button. If you want to make this the default behavior, put the line ``*latexAutoEscape: False'' in your NExS X resource file.

  3. I use ``psfig'' to include the encapsulated postscript graphs produced by NExS in my LaTeX documents. This works great, except sometimes I need to add annotations to the graph. Is there any way to do this?

    You can do it with most any graphical editor which will read encapsulated postscript images. William Chia-Wei Cheng's ``tgif'' drawing editor used in conjunction with ``ps2epsi'' works great for this purpose. Here's what you do:

    1. Use ``ps2epsi'' to add a bitmap image to the encapsulated postscript file produced by NExS.
    2. Import the .epsi file into tgif. Add your annotations, and use ``File -> Print'' to write out the annotated graph in encapsulated postscript format.
    3. Include this file in your LaTeX document using ``psfig.''

Foreign Language Versions

  1. Are international versions of NExS available?

    NExS is currently available only in English with some abilities for the user to customize number formatting for various types of currencies. On the broader issues of internationalizing NExS for other languages, here is where we are on each:

    Internal cell contents and string functions
    The cells are set up for 8-bit character codes. There may be some issues with collating sequences for sorting etc.
    Error messages
    These are isolated in separate files and can be easily redefined, however, this must be done at compile time.
    Text strings on menus, buttons, dialogs, etc
    These are all defined with X resources and can be changed very easily at compile time or later.
    On-line help
    The on-line help is an ASCII file that can be altered at any time.
    User manual
    The user manual is written in LaTeX, and we use latex2html to produce the on-line version. It seems that this translation would constitute the bulk of the work.
  2. Are you planning Japanization of NExS?

    Unfortunately, we do not have current plans for Japanization. We would consider it if we had a Japanese company interested in partnering with us.

Spreadsheet Operations

  1. Are there any facilities for multi-sheet work?

    Somewhat limited in the current version. The @xvalue() function will retrieve values from external sheets.

  2. Can your spreadsheet easily do a frequency analysis? That is, can it take a range of cells and sort their contents, according to bin widths given in another range of cells, and then give the number of the original cells that fall within each bin.

    The @CCOUNT (conditional count) function will do what you need. It is able to count the number of occurences of cells in a range whose contents satisfy a specified constraint. Just create a set of cells containing @CCOUNT functions with constraint expressions that reflect the bin boundaries you are interested in. NExS will update these cells with the number of cells whose contents fall within each bin.

  3. I have a bunch of titles in row 1 that I would like to lock into place so that I can continue to see them as I scroll down and place figures under each heading. But once I lock that row, it won't let me underneath it so I can't enter anything in those columns. And, when I page down, those titles aren't visible anyway.

    The way the ``lock view titles" works is that you place the cell cursor at the upper left corner of the scrollable region and select View->Lock View Titles. Then all rows above the cell cursor and all columns to the left of the cell cursor become locked. You should enter the data that you want displayed in those cells first because you can't move into them once they are locked.

  4. I want to enter a currency amount. Will NExS do the right thing if I put a $ (for dollars) or Y (for Yen, as I've defined in Currency 1)?

    The appearance of the data in the cell will depend on the formatting of the cell. Use the toolbar to set the format of a cell (or range of cells) to "Dollars" for $1,234, or "Currency 1" for Y 1,234, etc. Entering a leading "$" or "Y" will cause the input editor to interpret your entry as text rather than a numeric value.

  5. Often when I click to move to another cell, it just inserts that cell number in the edit window.

    That is true if the edit window is active, meaning that you are editing a cell's contents. That is signified by the red X and green checkmark buttons to the left of the edit window. To get out of edit mode without altering the cell's contents, click the red X.

  6. I can't figure out how to change the print commands. It's always greyed out.

    Currently you have to edit the resource file to change the print commands. Create a file named NExS in your home directory with the following line:

    *printers: Default:lpr %s:ghostview %s

    Note that this is the default. The printers are defined in name:value pairs; i.e., "Default" is "lpr %s" and "Preview" is "ghostview %s". You can add new definitions, separated by "", or edit the two existing ones.

  7. Is it possible to define division by 0 as 0 instead of an error (yeah, yeah, I know this violates mathematics)?

    Not on a global basis, but you can achieve the effect on a per cell basis with the @iserror function:

    @iserror(a1/a2) ? 0 : a1/a2

  8. I cannot seem to find the inverse logarithm function or the pow(x,y) function.

    You can use the ``@EXP()'' function to get tex2html_wrap_inline181 or use the ``**'' operator to raise any number to any power (e.g. 5**3.5 = tex2html_wrap_inline183 ).


  1. I have tried several spreadsheets and discovered that they don't support true XY graphs. Is this a problem with NExS as well?

    No. NExS allows both the X and Y data sets to consist of arbitrary values, so you get true XY graphs. This situation comes up a lot in scientific data, for example where you want to plot the correlation of a pair of data sets.

  2. There is a bug in NExS where sometimes when I plot a graph, I get a whole bunch of tic mark labels along the X or Y axis. Can this be fixed?

    The problem is that you have inadvertently entered some of your numeric data as text. When NExS finds text values in a data set, it assumes that the data are labels. NExS allows strings of digits to be entered into a cell as a label, so it is not always easy to tell by inspection whether a cell's data type is numeric or string. You can always tell by looking at the cell's contents on the edit line, however. Numeric cells will always have a leading equal sign (=) on the edit line, and cells containing labels will not. If you have a large dataset and suspect that some of the values may have been entered as labels rather than numbers, you can use the ``Search -> Find'' dialog to quickly locate the problem cells. Here is the procedure:

  3. I am trying to plot some data in my spreadsheet. I have no problem when they X and Y data are in adjacent columns, for example X in column A and Y in column B. I just select the two columns and click the line graph icon on the tool bar. Sometimes my X and Y data are not in adjacent columns and I don't know how to select two columns that are not adjacent. For example how do I plot a graph where my X data is the first 1000 rows in column A and my Y data is in column C?

    This can be easily done. Here is the procedure:

  4. How many datasets can be plotted on a single graph is NExS, and how large can each dataset be?

    NExS can handle up to 20 datasets of 32,767 data points each on a single graph.

API and tclNExS

  1. I have a stock market feed coming into my workstation from the network. Can I feed that data into NExS and have it update the worksheet in real time?

    Yes, that can be easily done. Take a look at the sample program ``test8.c'' in the NExS API kit.

  2. I have a lot of NExS spreadsheets to print. Is there any way I can print them in ``batch mode'' so that I don't have to manually bring up each one and print it?

    Yes, that is quite easy to do with a tclNExS script, as shown in the following example, named ``printxs3.'' To use it just invoke it from the command line as ``printxs3 file1.xs3 file2.xs3 ...''

    #!/usr/local/bin/tclNExS -f
    # Print .xs3 files in "batch" mode.
    # We don't want a "wish" window:
      wm withdraw .
    # Make sure one or more .xs3 file names are specified on the command line:
      if {( $argc < 1 )} then {
        puts stderr "Usage: $argv0 <filename>...
             (where <filename>... is one or more NExS .xs3 files)"
        exit 1
    # Launch NExS with API connections enabled, iconified:
      set nexspid [exec nexs -con a -iconic &amp;]
    # Set up a connection named p1 to the newly launched NExS:
      nexs connect p1 -name printxs3
    # For each .xs3 file clear the worksheet, read the file, and print it.
      foreach file $argv {
        p1 clear_sheet
        p1 read_file $file
        p1 print [con get_extent] -type ps
    # Shut down NExS and exit the script:
    exec kill -HUP $nexspid
    exit 0

    This script can be easily modified to perform a variety of batch-oriented tasks, such as converting a batch of spreadsheets from .xs3 to .wk1 format.

  3. I am running NExS on my desktop workstation, which is a Linux system, and using your API I have written my own spreadsheet ``@-function'' which does some heavy-duty number crunching on my data. I would like for that @-function to run on our Solaris compute server rather than my 486. Is it possible with the API to run NExS locally on my Linux system but have the @-function run remotely on the Solaris? Do I have to worry about big-endian little-endian issues?

    All you have to do is compile and run your @-function on the Solaris system. Binary compatibility issues between platforms, such as big/little-endian and 32/64-bit architecture are handled automatically by the NExS API library.

  4. Which version of Tcl/Tk is supported by tclNExS?

    The pre-built tclNExS binaries are based on Tcl/Tk 8.x. However, the tclNExS source code is distributed in the kits, and can be built to work with older or newer versions of Tcl/Tk. If you are running a different version on your system, it will be automatically detected during the build and the tclNExS binaries will built accordingly.

  5. Do you intend to extend the APIs to Perl/Tk in the future ?

    We have no plans for that at this time.

  6. I installed the spreadsheet successfully. Unfortunately, the conNExions API and tclNExS do not run because some of the required shared libraries are not found.

    The API library should be independent of the shared libraries on your system.

    TclNExS is provided as source code. (It was not actually developed by us, it was written by researchers at General Electric.) You can easily build a version that will run on your system by using the "configure" script to build the Makefile. The README file contains some hints on modifying the Makefile if it does not build properly on your system.

  7. All files I am importing consist of two columns of numbers separated by one space. So I have set the import whitespace-threshold to 1. If I import any of the files by hand (eg using the File->Import etc. or via the X-clipboard and dropping it in the sheet) all goes well. If I use nexs_import(port,type,name,row,col) either from a C program or from a perl script, then most of the files get imported OK (i.e. the two values on each line are stored in two cells as a number). However some files are stored as text, one cell for each line. If I call the C program (or perl) again, other files get imported as text and some (or all) of the files that where previously imported as text are now imported as two columns of numbers.

    The problem may be a misunderstanding about the whitespace threshold parameter. What it does is attempts to identify column boundaries by vertical cuts through the file. It is a percentage value. In other words, if it is set to 80, then any vertical line through the file which intersects 80 more whitespace characters will constitute a column break.

    In the case of your data, it sounds like you want to set the ``one word per cell'' flag. This overrides the rule that looks at vertical cuts through the file, and will separate data at any whitespace boundary. To do this from the API:

    int one_word_per_col = 1, ws_threshold, autoesc;
    nexs_import_characteristics(port, &one_word_per_col,
                                &ws_threshold, &autoesc, ONE_WORD_PER_COL);

Licensing, License Managers, and Host IDs

  1. I have a desktop system and a laptop, both running Linux. Can I buy one Personal Edition license and use it on both of them?

    Yes, as long as it is for your own personal use. The Personal Edition license is for a single individual only. If you have multiple machines for your own personal use, you may use your license on each of them.

  2. In our workgroup we would like to share a single copy of NExS. Is this allowed?

    Only with the Enterprise Edition licenses. These licenses are designed for workgroups on a network and use the FLEXlm floating license manager.

  3. In our workgroup we have some people on Sparc stations and some on HP. Do we have to buy separate licenses for each?

    No. The Enterprise Edition license is good for any platform. You must specify the particular machine that will run the FLEXlm floating license manager for the workgroup, however.

  4. We already have several packages licensed that use FLEXlm. Can I run NExS with my existing FLEXlm server?

    Yes. You will need to install the ``Xscd'' vendor daemon from our kit, and add the NExS license keys to your existing FLEXlm license keys.

  5. I already have a flexlm running on our system and would like to combine the NExS license files with our existing licenses. Is this possible?

    You may want to upgrade your lmgrd and other lm-utilities to the binaries in our kit. We built with FLEXlm 4.1b. If you are running an older version you may have problems with our vendor daemon. If you upgrade, however, you existing vendor daemons should work with the newer lmgrd. Here are the compatibility rules from the FLEXlm manual:

    FLEXlm License Manager Component Compatibility

    When you combine license files for two different FLEXlm-licensed products, it may be the case that those products do not use the same version of FLEXlm. FLEXlm is designed to handle this situation. There are two basic compatibility rules for FLEXlm:

    1. A newer lmgrd can be used with an older vendor daemon, but a newer vendor daemon might not work properly with an older lmgrd.
    2. A newer vendor daemon (or lmgrd) can be used with an older client program, but a newer client program might not work properly with an older vendor daemon.

    From these two compatibility rules come the simple rules for selecting which version of administration tools to use:

    1. Always use the newest version of lmgrd and the newest version of each vendor daemon.
    2. Use the newest FLEXlm utilities if they are FLEXlm v2.4 or later; otherwise use the oldest version of the utility programs (such as lmstat) you have.

    (This applies to FLEXlm 2.4 or later.)

  6. Our system requires that I install NExS under /usr/contrib/lib/NExS. I stored the license in /usr/contrib/lib/NExS/NExS-license.txt and modified my /usr/lib/X11/app-defaults/NExS file as follow:
    *helpFile: /usr/contrib/lib/NExS/NExS-help.txt
    *licenseFile: /usr/contrib/lib/NExS/NExS-license.txt

    Then when I try to start nexs I get:

    LICENSE: Cannot find license file (-1,73:2) No such file or directory

    That message is from the floating license manager, FlexLM. You need to install the FlexLM kit. By default, it expects to find the floating license file in /usr/local/flexlm/licenses/license.dat. If you install license.dat in another location, for example, /usr/contrib/flexlm/licenses, you will need to set the LM_LICENSE_FILE to point to it:

    export LM_LICENSE_FILE=/usr/contrib/flexlm/licenses/license.dat

    Then set the environment variable as follows:

    setenv LM_LICENSE_FILE /usr/contrib/flexlm/licenses/license.dat

    Finally, start the license manager daemon:

    /usr/local/flexlm/bin/lmgrd -c /usr/contrib/flexlm/licenses/license.dat > logfile &

    (You would normally put this command in your system boot scripts.)

  7. I want to log usage information on NExS for capacity planning. Can I see how many licenses are checked out at any time and who is using NExS?

    Yes, the license manager daemon logs licenses in and out, including the user ID and node name. Also, the ``lmstat'' program will query the daemon and report the current state of license usage.

  8. What is the FLEXlm hostid number?

    The FLEXlm hostid number is a key used by the floating license manager for the NExS Enterprise Edition. It is associated the node in your network that serves as the network license manager. With the floating license manager installed, your NExS licenses can be used from any supported node in your network.

  9. How do I determine the FLEXlm hostid number for my machine?

    On Linux, type the command hostid. The output of this command, minus the leading ``0x'' if any, is the FLEXlm hostid number.

    On Solaris, type the command hostid. The output of this command is the FLEXlm hostid number.

  10. How do I determine the the FLEXlm hostid number for my system without the hostid command?

    Download the ``lmhostid'' program for the platform type that you intend to set up as your license manager. The lmhostid program can be downloaded from

    Linux (x86) lmhostid

    Solaris (SPARC) lmhostid

    Download the binary, uncompress it, make sure it is marked executable, and type ``lmhostid''.

  11. Can we set up NExS on a server and run it on X terminals?

    You can do this with the Professional and Enterprise Editions, but not the the Personal Edition.

  12. What is your pricing policy on NExS version upgrades?

    There are three categories of NExS version releases: major releases, minor releases, and maintenance releases. Our policy is that minor and maintenance releases are no-cost updates. Simply download the new binaries and use them with your existing license. Existing licensees will be granted a discount for major release upgrades.

  13. Do you have OEM license options and pricing?

    Yes. OEM licenses are negotiated on an individual basis.


  1. Is it possible to get a demo of NExS with more than 150 cells?

    You can get a free, 30-day license using the on-line order form found on the downloading page of our Web site. This license will remove the 150-cell limit and unlock all the capabilities of the NExS spreadsheet.

  2. NExS looks very similar in form and function to another X Windows spreadsheet on the market. Are they, in fact, exactly the same?

    GreyTrout Software, Inc. is the owner and author of the NExS spreadsheet software. We also license versions of the source code to third parties. They are allowed to sell their versions of the spreadsheet under their own names, and they can make modifications to the source to fix bugs and add their own new features. The licensee companies are completely responsible for supporting any customers who purchase their version of the spreadsheet.

  3. Will NExS remain compatible with the versions offered by licensee companies?

    Probably not. The licensees can modify the source code as they see fit. Over time, the functionality and features of these other derived spreadsheets will diverge from those found in NExS.

  4. Are the original authors of the spreadsheet software still with GreyTrout, or have they gone elsewhere?

    One of the original authors has retired from the spreadsheet business entirely. The others remain with GreyTrout. They maintain their committment to improve and enhance the NExS spreadsheet software.

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