Some Frequently-Asked Questions:
Why do you not supply printed manuals any more?
Existing users may wonder what has become of printed instruction manuals. We regret that we no longer supply manuals, simply due to the increased cost of printing them - we would have to pass this cost on to the customer. However, we believe that the Adobe Acrobat PDF manual we supply with the program is superior, with the advantage that we can easily update it when necessary, and make it available to be downloaded from the website. PDF files work with both PCs and Macs, and the Acrobat Reader software is free, reliable, and easily available.
Problems installing programs on systems running Windows Me
Occasionally, users have encountered problems when installing our programs; on running the CD, the Setup routine starts, the blue screen displays, and then the installation process stops, and won't close down without using Ctrl-Alt-Delete. As far as we can tell, this is because the installation stores various temporary files in C:\Windows\Temp or C:\Temp; if there are already any files there, the setup stops. It has only been reported so far with Windows Me, so we assume it is a peculiarity of that operating system. It's easily solved by rebooting the PC, then running the installation again.
How do I find out which version of a program I have? Can I get an update?
On the top toolbar of the program, click 'H
elp', and then select 'About' or 'About Us'. A box will appear, giving the version number of the program you have. Check on the Tech Support page for your program to see if there are updates available.
I entered my data in a spreadsheet program, and saved it as a csv file. When I try to open it in the Pisces software, the numbers are separated by ; not , so the analysis will not run.
This is because some non-British systems use ; instead of , to separate values in a csv file. Open Windows Explorer, and change the file extension from csv to txt (i.e. Filename.csv becomes Filename.txt). Open the txt file in Word or another word-processing program. Use the Find/Replace function to replace every ; with a , then save the file again. Change the txt file extension back to csv. It should now open and run perfectly in the Pisces program.
"I/O error 32 - access denied"
This will occur if the data file you are trying to open is currently being used by another program - normally the spreadsheet which was used to organise the data. Close the file in other programs and try again.
"Invalid floating point operation"
This often indicates that there are rows or columns with no data in them. Use the Zero Issues button on the Working Data tab to find and remove the offending row or column.
Error messages saying '' is not a valid floating point value or "Range Check Error"
This will occur if the raw data holds columns or rows that consist of all 0s. Remove blank columns and rows by using '0 issues' on the Working Data page. It may also occur if the raw data holds a blank cell. In some cases the program will identify the problem cell which should be edited. Normally it is because the data has been prepared in a spreadsheet using blanks to represent zero values.
My data set has a large number of columns (sites/samples), but Excel will only allow me to have up to 255
A common problem with large data sets. The simplest way is to arrange your data the other way round in Excel, so that rows represent samples/sites, and columns represent species. You can then have up to 255 species, and over 65,000 samples. If you are using Community Analysis Package, when you open the data set you can then use the Transpose function on the Working Data Set page to restore the data to the right way round before performing your analyses.
Alternatively, use our ListCombiner
utility to combine large data sets effortlessly!