Difference between wordfast classic and wordfast pro
Thread poster: karen henry

karen henry  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:07
French to English
Jan 15, 2012

I'm just starting up in the business and need to choose a CAT tool. I've decided to start off with wordfast but am not sure whether to use the classic or the pro version. I've heard that the classic version is easy to learn and I have words 2010 for it to work on but I don't want to waste time if the pro version is more effective. I'm also wondering whether once you have learnt how to use one if this makes learning how to use another one easier?

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John Di Rico  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 04:07
Member (2006)
French to English
Try WF Anywhere Jan 15, 2012

Hi Karen,

You might consider trying Wordfast Anywhere as well. It is free and offers a lot of great collaboration features. Do also check out all of the free, on-line video tutorials and the training guides (the latter for Wordfast Classic). As for which one of the three to use, search through the forums and you will find lots of past discussions on this.

Whatever you choose, do invest in training! A CAT tool is one of the most important tools you'll need to know how to use (besides your brain) in this business, so it's best to learn how to use it properly.

There are some online webinar trainings as well as in-person trainings in France from time to time. You can also contact trainers individually, here is a list of them in France: http://wordfast.net/index.php?whichpage=trainers&lang=engb#FR

Good luck!

John Di Rico


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Yasmin Moslem  Identity Verified
Egypt
Local time: 04:07
English to Arabic
Try yourself! Jan 15, 2012

karen henry wrote:

I'm just starting up in the business and need to choose a CAT tool.


Dear Karen,

I suggest you try both for some time. The demo version should be suitable for small-to-medium projects.

Both Wordfast Classic and Wordfast Pro translate MS Word, Excel and PowerPoint files as well as many other formats. If the majority of your work is in MS Word format and you receive only small (in size and number) Excel and PowerPoint files or DTP files, you might prefer working directly in MS Word using Wordfast Classic. If you rather translate large numbers of big Excel and PowerPoint files or DTP files, you might prefer to use Wordfast Pro whose a stand-alone interface making translation of such files easier.

However, it is all up to you, that is why we usually recommend trying it before purchasing.

You can download and install the latest version of Wordfast Classic available at:
http://www.wordfast.net/index.php?whichpage=downloadpage

It is an MS Word template (.dot). The ZIP file contains both Wordfast.dot and WFReadMe.doc including the instructions of installing. (Make sure you extract the ZIP file first and then follow the instructions in WFReadMe.doc).

I hope this interactive training course can help you grasp Wordfast Classic main concepts and features:
http://www.wordfast.net/?kb=99-27

You can also download the manual of Wordfast Classic at:
http://www.wordfast.net/zip/wf_en5.zip

You can also watch useful Wordfast Classic videos at:
http://www.wordfast.net/index.php?whichpage=video&lang=engb

============

You can download and install the latest version of Wordfast Professional available at:
http://www.wordfast.com/store_download.html

This interactive video should give you a clearer idea about how to use Wordfast Pro:
http://www.wordfast.net/?kb=149-35

You can download Wordfast Pro's Manual at:
http://www.wordfast.com/docs/WF_Pro_2.4_User_Guide.pdf

You can also navigate Wordfast Pro up-to-date online help at:
http://www.wordfast.com/Wordfast_Pro/Wordfast_Pro_Help.htm

You can also watch useful Wordfast Pro videos at:
http://www.wordfast.com/support_learning.html
http://www.wordfast.com/tips_and_tricks.html

============

As John suggested, you can also try Wordfast Anywhere, a web-base CAT tool. You can create a new account at www.FreeTM.com and watch useful videos at: http://www.freetm.com/doc/videos.html

If you have any further questions, please let me know


Best regards,
Yasmin Moslem
Wordfast Support Team
www.wordfast.com | www.wordfast.net


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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 04:07
Spanish to English
+ ...
Fit for purpose Jan 16, 2012

karen henry wrote:

I'm just starting up in the business and need to choose a CAT tool. I've decided to start off with wordfast but am not sure whether to use the classic or the pro version. I've heard that the classic version is easy to learn and I have words 2010 for it to work on but I don't want to waste time if the pro version is more effective. I'm also wondering whether once you have learnt how to use one if this makes learning how to use another one easier?


I prefer WF Classic myself, because it is simpler and quicker to learn to use. I tried Pro when it came up but for my purposes it had too many "bells and whistles" (i.e. too many features that I personally don't need), so I cancelled that and renewed my Classic licence. I disliked the interface, which reminds me of Deja Vu (columns) rather than the vertical segmentation in Classic and found that almost everything "extra" compared to Classic was just getting in the way.

I tend to work on my own and like to keep hold of my TMs so I don't fancy WF Anywhere, but might try it some day when I have spare time. The question of whether Pro or Classic is "more effective" is rather moot, as my own definition is that I can use it quickly and easily without a prolonged learning curve beforehand. However, you may be planning to work with others who have diferent requirements so in the end it depends on your own criteria, but I'd say that Pro is sufficiently similar to Clasic so you might want to try that first, as it certainly does more than Classic, if that's what you need.

I should add that once I have something that works, I don't like to change it - or have it whipped out from under my feet and replaced by an irritatingly shiny new version - for example I still dislike Windows 7 after 3 months - so maybe I'm not the best person to ask

PS: I've always found the WF support service very helpful with any queries about the versions.



[Edited at 2012-01-16 06:50 GMT]

[Edited at 2012-01-16 06:51 GMT]


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Dominique Pivard  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:07
Finnish to French
I beg to differ Jan 16, 2012

neilmac wrote:
I prefer WF Classic myself, because it is simpler and quicker to learn to use.

Funny: I also happen to prefer Classic, but I think it's actually easier for a beginner to get started with Pro.

Pro is dead easy to install (just click on the installer) and there are very few things that can go wrong once you have imported your text in the editor. You do have to understand what "placeables" are and what to do with them, but once you've understood that, translating is just a question of filling boxes.

Classic, OTOH, can prove challenging already with the installation process, especially with recents versions of Word. There are many things that can go wrong, mostly with segmentation. But once you've overcome the initial difficulties, Classic is much, much feature-richer.

One side note to Karen: don't let the product names mislead you. "Classic" doesn't imply it's some kind of old-fashioned, no longer being developed, soon to become obsolete product. "Pro" doesn't imply it's bleeding-edge technology targeted at people who don't want to be "amateurs". The names were just chosen for marketing reasons, they do not imply that one product is better than the other.

[Edited at 2012-01-16 07:35 GMT]


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karen henry  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:07
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks for all the advice Jan 16, 2012

This is just the sort of answers that I needed!
Funny, I had myself wondered about the choice of names Domininque!

I'll certainly look at the wordfast links that you sent me Yasmin, I had contacted wordfast directly but they didn't seem to want to compare the two products.

I will invest in some training John, but I want to be sure about which one I need first, hence my initial question so thanks for the tips and link.

One other thing, seeing as you all seem to experts , and me not at all! When I started looking into what hardware I needed, I read in several books that most translators use a dual-screen. This sounded like a good idea to me, but I assumed that this meant having the source text on one screen and the target text on the other, was this a stupid assumption and in which case what's the point of having two sceens, except to have the internet on one screen for searches, which I admit is pretty convenient?

Kind regards to you all


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Dominique Pivard  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:07
Finnish to French
Some answers to your questions Jan 16, 2012

karen henry wrote:
Funny, I had myself wondered about the choice of names Domininque!

Yes, I know from experience that many people new to Wordfast assume that if one product is called 'Pro', the other one must aimed at amateurs or dilettantes, which couldn't be farther from the truth.

karen henry wrote:
I'll certainly look at the wordfast links that you sent me Yasmin, I had contacted wordfast directly but they didn't seem to want to compare the two products.

Yes, I think *I* was "they". We really should have a KB article about the Classic vs. Pro comparison, because it's a FAQ that many potential buyers are asking.

karen henry wrote:
When I started looking into what hardware I needed, I read in several books that most translators use a dual-screen.

Yes, some people swear by dual-screen setups, some even have more than two. My personal stand is that Wordfast (Classic) doesn't require such a setup. At least, I have been doing just fine with my laptop's built-in screen, and it's not even big (13 inches). I value mobility more than desktop real-estate and I refuse to enter into any "mine is bigger than yours" contests. Again, this is a matter of personal preferences: don't let other people decide what's good for you, try it yourself. Start with a single monitor, translate for a while with it and see if a second one is absolutely necessary.


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karen henry  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:07
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
Is dual-screen possible with Wordfast? Jan 16, 2012

[quote]Dominique Pivard wrote:

Yes, some people swear by dual-screen setups, some even have more than two. My personal stand is that Wordfast (Classic) doesn't require such a setup. At least, I have been doing just fine with my laptop's built-in screen, and it's not even big (13 inches). I value mobility more than desktop real-estate and I refuse to enter into any "mine is bigger than yours" contests. Again, this is a matter of personal preferences: don't let other people decide what's good for you, try it yourself. Start with a single monitor, translate for a while with it and see if a second one is absolutely necessary.


Sorry, are you saying that you can use dual-screen with Wordfast ie. one screen with the source text and one screen with the target text? I couldn't work out how to do this. I have two screens and I can move windows across but I couldn't see how to do this in the Wordfast software


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Dominique Pivard  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:07
Finnish to French
In Classic, source and target must be inside the same window Jan 16, 2012

karen henry wrote:
Sorry, are you saying that you can use dual-screen with Wordfast ie. one screen with the source text and one screen with the target text? I couldn't work out how to do this. I have two screens and I can move windows across but I couldn't see how to do this in the Wordfast software

No, there's no way to do this with Classic: both source and target texts are intertwined inside the same window (the Word window the document you're translating is in), with the active source and target segments on top of one another.

There is a special feature in Wordfast Classic called the "Companions", which are separate windows that contain additional information related to the ongoing segment pair, eg. the terminology it contains. It may be possible to display these windows on a 2nd monitor; I can't say for sure, since I don't use that feature myself and I don't use a 2nd monitor either.


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karen henry  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:07
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
dual-screen in wordfast Jan 16, 2012

[quote]Dominique Pivard wrote

No, there's no way to do this with Classic: both source and target texts are intertwined inside the same window (the Word window the document you're translating is in), with the active source and target segments on top of one another.

There is a special feature in Wordfast Classic called the "Companions", which are separate windows that contain additional information related to the ongoing segment pair, eg. the terminology it contains. It may be possible to display these windows on a 2nd monitor; I can't say for sure, since I don't use that feature myself and I don't use a 2nd monitor either.


That's what I thought but seeing as I don't know much about Wordfast I thought maybe there was something I had missed. Thanks for this precious information which will save me a lot of time!


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Angel Llacuna  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 04:07
English to Spanish
why not make a Training Guide for WordFast Pro too ? Sep 12, 2016

just a suggestion

John Di Rico wrote:

Hi Karen,

You might consider trying Wordfast Anywhere as well. It is free and offers a lot of great collaboration features. Do also check out all of the free, on-line video tutorials and the training guides (the latter for Wordfast Classic). As for which one of the three to use, search through the forums and you will find lots of past discussions on this.

Whatever you choose, do invest in training! A CAT tool is one of the most important tools you'll need to know how to use (besides your brain) in this business, so it's best to learn how to use it properly.

There are some online webinar trainings as well as in-person trainings in France from time to time. You can also contact trainers individually, here is a list of them in France: http://wordfast.net/index.php?whichpage=trainers&lang=engb#FR

Good luck!

John Di Rico


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