WordPerfect for DOS Edit

In 1989, WordPerfect Corporation released the program's most successful version ever, WordPerfect 5.1 for DOS, which was the first version to include Macintosh style pull-down menus to supplement the traditional F-key combinations, as well as support for tables, a spreadsheet-like feature. The data format used by WordPerfect 5.1 was, for years, the most portable format in the world. All word processors could read (and convert) that format. Many conferences and magazines insisted that you shipped your documents in 5.1 format.

WordPerfect for Windows Edit

WordPerfect was late in coming to market with a Microsoft Windows version. The first mature version, WordPerfect 5.2 for Windows, was released in November 1992. Prior to that, there was a WordPerfect 5.1 for Windows, introduced a year earlier. That version had to be installed from DOS and was largely unpopular due to serious stability issues. By the time WordPerfect 5.2 for Windows was introduced, Microsoft Word for Windows version 2 had been on the market for over a year and had received its third interim release, v2.0c. WordPerfect's function-key-centered user interface did not adapt well to the new paradigm of mouse and pull-down menus, especially with many of WordPerfect's standard key combinations pre-empted by incompatible keyboard shortcuts that Windows itself used (e.g. Alt-F4 became Exit Program as opposed to WordPerfect's Block Text). The DOS version's impressive arsenal of finely tuned printer drivers was also rendered obsolete by Windows' use of its own printer device drivers.

WordPerfect for MacintoshEdit

Development of WordPerfect for Macintosh did not run parallel to versions for other operating systems, and used version numbers unconnected to contemporary releases for DOS, Windows, etc. The first release reminded users and reviewers of the DOS version, and was not especially successful in the marketplace. Version 2 was a total re-write, adhering more closely to Apple's UI guidelines.

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WordPerfect X4 Branch
Preceded by
WordPerfect 4.x
WordPerfect 5.x Followed by
WordPerfect 6.x
Word 2008 Branch
Influenced by
Word 6.x
WordPerfect 5.x Influenced
Microsoft Windows Branch
Influenced by
Microsoft Windows
WordPerfect 5.x Influenced
Mac OS X Branch
Influenced by
WordPerfect 5.x Influenced