Installing WordPerfect 8.1 for Linux on a distro current in or after 2020


 

Revision 4.2

August 2020

 

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Introductory note


The installation procedures presented in this webpage are intended for owners of original CDs containing the Light or Deluxe edition of Corel Linux OS and WordPerfect 8.1 for Linux, with the objective of enabling them to continue using their paid-for software.


This page has undergone major revision in July 2020, to introduce a simplified method of installing WordPerfect for Linux 8.1 on current distros. The new method involves use of an install script, recently written by Peter Stone (the operator of this site) and tested with the help of Leon Goldstein.


The script, the versions of which are named:


xwp-install-81-20-deb.sh,


xwp-install-81-20-rpm.sh,


xwp-install-81-20-mageia.sh, and


xwp-install-81-20-slackware.sh,


is available for download from this page. To download such a linked file in Firefox, you should right-click on the link, and then select "Save link As..." from the resulting menu.


There are four versions of the script. The first-mentioned version is designed for debian-based distros (whether 64-bit or 32-bit). It has been tested on Mint 20 and the 32-bit version of MX 19.2. It should work on most current debian-based distros.


The second-mentioned version is designed for and has been tested on OpenSuse 15.2. The third is designed for and has been tested on Mageia 7.1. The fourth is designed for and has been tested on Slackware 14.2.


This page (as now amended) will focus on installation by means of the script. Another page will retain the Information about a manual method of installation, given in earlier versions of this page, since it may be useful to users seeking to install WordPerfect 8.1 in distros which the script is not designed to support. But the manual method of proceeding may be regarded as deprecated in cases where the script could be used.




WordPerfect 8.1 for Linux

 

WordPerfect for Linux 8.1 was released by Corel Corp in 1999 on boxed CDs as part of the Corel Linux OS, which was issued as a Standard Edition and a Deluxe Edition.


Both version 1.0 and version 1.2 of Corel Linux include WordPerfect 8.1, and there is no difference between the versions of WordPerfect contained in these versions of Corel Linux.


But for each version of Corel Linux case there is a Standard Edition and a Deluxe Edition of Corel Linux, and the Standard Edition contains fewer fonts for use by WordPerfect than the Deluxe Edition. Thus these editions of WordPerfect 8.1 may conveniently be referred to respectively as the Light Edition and the Full Edition. Neither of them requires a password.


WordPerfect 8.1 was released only as part of Corel Linux, and never by itself on other media.

 

There is also a Starter Edition of Corel Linux 1.0, which was included on a CD provided with a book entitled "Corel LINUX OS Starter Kit: The Official Guide", by Joseph Merlino and Katherine Wrightson, published by Osborne/Corel Press in 2000. This CD also contains WordPerfect 8.1, but with even fewer fonts. It requires a password to enable it to be run indefinitely. It may conveniently be referred to as the Starter Edition.

 

All the editions of WordPerfect 8.1 released as part of Corel Linux are presented in the form of debian packages. But there are obstacles to installing them on current, even debian-based, systems.


On the CDs of Corel Linux, the core WordPerfect 8.1 code is contained in a deb package named wp-full in the case of the Light Edition and the Full Edition, or wpx-free in the case of the Starter Edition.


There are three accompanying font packages, designed to support WordPerfect, named fonts-16 (included in the Light Edition and the Full Edition; but not the Starter Edition), and fonts-69 and fonts-115 (both included in the Full Edition only).


There is also a repackaged version of WordPerfect, which was issued by Corel on a CD in 2003. This may conveniently be referred to as WordPerfect 8.2. Apart from the repackaging, it is believed to differ little from WordPerfect 8.1. WordPerfect 8.2 installs its own support library and a pre-configured printer destination. It is installed via a script which no longer runs in current distros.

  



Obstacles to installation

 

It was possible to install WordPerfect 8.1 in the normal way via a package manager on a debian-based distro current in 2006 (such as Mepis 3.4-3), but various obstacles have subsequently arisen which prevent such a conventional installation. These include:

- changes made in later distros as to the location of the locales directory;

- their failure to include libc5 libraries in their repositories; and

- complications arising from the introduction of 64-bit distros.

So another method is now essential.

 

The main aim of the current website is to provide such a method, which will work successfully in current debian-based or rpm-based distros, and in both 64-bit and 32-bit versions of such distros. This method, involving the extraction of the WordPerfect code from the wp-full or wpx-free debs, was originally devised by Leon Goldstein, after his method of installing WordPerfect 8.1 on later versions of OpenSuse, using packages converted to RPM by “alien”, had ceased to be reliable.

 

Much still useful information about WordPerfect for Linux may be gained from Rick Moen's WordPerfect FAQ, published in 2005. Also still useful, although they deal directly with WordPerfect 8.0 for Linux, are volumes entitled "WordPerfect for Linux Bible", by Stephen E. Harris and Erwin Zijleman, and "Using WordPerfect 8 for Linux Special Edition", by Roderick W. Smith, both published in 1999.




Current distros

 

This page was initially written in July 2019, and has undergone major updating in July 2020. References to current distros should be read as referring to July 2020 and beyond.

 

Testing in 2019 of the installation procedure by the manual method was carried out by Peter Stone and Leon Goldstein. Distros used in this testing were Linux Mint 17.3, 18.3, 19.1, 19.3 and 20-beta; KDE neon 5.16 to 5.19; Kubuntu 19.04 and 20.04; MX-18; Antix 17.4; and OpenSuse 13.1, 15.1 and Tumbleweed. No testing was done on distros which were neither debian-based nor rpm-based - such as Slackware or Manjaro.


Testing of the install scripts - xwp-install-81-20-deb.sh, xwp-install-81-20-rpm.sh, xwp-install-81-20-mageia.sh, and xwp-install-81-20-slackware.sh - which are now the recommended method of installation for debian-based distros, OpenSuse, Mageia, and Slackware, was carried out by Peter Stone and Leon Goldstein in 2020. Distros used in this testing were Linux Mint 20, MX 19.2 32-bit, OpenSuse 15.2, Mageia 7.1, and Slackware 14.2.




Summary of the script-based installation procedure

 

The procedure for installation by script involves the following steps, each of which is elaborated in a section below. These steps are:


(1) If you are using a 64-bit distro, you should ensure that the i386 architecture (as well as the amd64 architecture) is available. For information on this, see the Debian Multiarch wiki.


(2) Obtain a copy of Corel Linux OS. This may be the Light Edition or the Deluxe Edition, but not the Starter Edition.


(3) Create a directory named "~/Downloads/wp81inst". This serves as the working directory used by the scripts. (In the case of Slackware, the working directory must be "/root/Downloads/wp81inst".)


(4) Copy the WordPerfect core package and fonts package(s) from the CD to the said working directory.


(5) Copy the install script, downloaded from this page, to the said working directory.


(6) In a normal terminal, from the said working directory, give the command:

          "/sh ./xwp-install-81-20-deb.sh" (in a debian-based system); or

          "/sh ./xwp-install-81-20-rpm.sh" (in OpenSuse); or

          "/sh ./xwp-install-81-20-mageia.sh" (in Mageia).


In Slackware, one must install as root, and use "/root/Downloads/wp81inst" as the working directory. One must give the command:

          "/sh ./xwp-install-81-20-slackware.sh"

in a root terminal.


(7) Respond appropriately to requests for input by the script. For example, with regard to your "sudo" password, or requests to authorise installation of packages.


The script will itself:

- obtain and install the necessary support libraries;

- install the fonts packages;

- extract the WordPerfect code from the core package, and install it;

- set up the installed fonts, so as to be recognised by WordPerfect; and also

- install a wrapper enabling use of the WordPerfect Print Manager to manage printers.

  



Obtaining WordPerfect 8.1

 

As mentioned above, the WordPerfect core package (wp-full or wpx-free) and the associated fonts packages (fonts-16, fonts-69, and fonts-115) are contained in the Corel Linux CDs. Such CDs are sometimes offered on ebay.


The present webpage is intended for owners of original CDs containing the Light or Deluxe edition of Corel Linux OS and WordPerfect 8.1, with a view to enabling them to continue using their paid-for software. It is assumed that the user is moderately familiar with Linux, and moderately experienced in using the current distro on which he is installing WordPerfect.

 

The packages intended to be installed should be copied from the Corel Linux CD to a directory on your hard-drive. A directory named "~/Downloads/wp81inst" must be used as the working directory by the scripts.

 

The Debian packages are located:

- in CLOS 1.0 in /dists/corellinux-1.0/corel/binary-i386; or

- in CLOS 1.2 in /dists/corellinux-1.2/corel/binary-i386/editors and /dists/corellinux-1.2/corel/binary-i386/text.


You should copy the following Debian packages from the Corel Linux installation CD to the working directory used by the scripts:

- fonts-16_1.0-5.deb

- fonts-69_1.0-4.deb (only included in the Deluxe Edition);

- fonts-115_1.0-4.deb (only included in the Deluxe Edition); and

- wp-full_8.1-12_i386.deb.

 



Satisfying dependencies

 

The wp-full and fonts packages declare dependency on libc6, libc5, xlib6g, and type1inst. The scripts will ensure that these dependencies are satisfied. They do so by downloading and installing packages from your distro's repositories, along with utilities retrieved, adapted or created by the present author, Peter Stone, which will be downloaded from "www.xwp8users.com/packages".


The support utilities which have been retrieved, adapted or created by the present author, and which will be automatically installed by the scripts, are:


(1) wp-utils (created by the present author), which provides the facilities required by the dependencies on xlib6g and type1inst. Thus it provides a necessary link to the current location of the locales files, and includes code from the old type1inst package, which creates a list of scalable fonts, needed to set up the WP fonts. It also includes a useful installation utility ("installpkg" from Slackware 14.2) used by the scripts; a menu-link with an icon for WordPerfect; and (in the case of rpm-based distros) a needed addition to "etc/ld.so.conf.d" to enable the location of the libc5 libraries installed by shlibs5 to be found by WordPerfect. It also includes a "wrapper" which restores to life the WP Print Manager.


(2) ldso and libc5 (for debian based systems), and shlibs5, for rpm-based systems. These are from, or adapted from old distros, and provide the necessary libc5 libraries.




Running the scripts


(1) In a debian-based system, or OpenSuse or Mageia


After you have copied the WordPerfect core package and fonts package(s) from the CLOS CD to the working directory ("~/Downloads/wp81inst"), and copied the appropriate install script, downloaded from this page, to that directory, you can run the script, in a normal terminal, from that directory, by giving the command:

          "/sh ./xwp-install-81-20-deb.sh" (in a debian-based system); or

          "/sh ./xwp-install-81-20-rpm.sh" (in OpenSuse); or

          "/sh ./xwp-install-81-20-mageia.sh" (in Mageia).


You should give the command as a normal user, without "sudo". The script will ask for your "sudo" password when it first encounters a "sudo" command.


You should respond appropriately to requests for input by the script. For example, by confirming that the installation of a package should proceed, or agreeing to ignore the absence of a keycode.


(2) In Slackware


In Slackware, the procedure is slightly different. One must install as root, and use "/root/Downloads/wp81inst" as the working directory. One must give the command:

          "/sh ./xwp-install-81-20-slackware.sh"

in a root terminal.


(3) In all cases


In all cases the script will itself:

- obtain and install the necessary support libraries;

- install the fonts packages;

- extract the WordPerfect code from the core package, and install it;

- set up the installed fonts, so as to be useable both by WordPerfect and by other programs (such as LibreOffice);

- place a menu-link and icon for WordPerfect 8.1 in the Office folder of your main Linux menu, to enable you to run WP from the menu; and finally

- install a wrapper enabling use of the WordPerfect Print Manager to manage printers.




After running the scripts


After a script has terminated successfully with the message: "Enjoy!", you should be able to load WordPerfect from the command-line, by giving any of these commands:

          "xwp" or "/usr/bin/xwp" or "/usr/lib/wp8/wpbin/xwp"


You should also be able to load WordPerfect from the Office folder main system menu.


On loading WordPerfect, you may get an error message referring to "too many processes". This error is not fatal, and you can get rid of the message permanently by running WordPerfect once as superuser. This can be done either by giving the command: "sudo xwp -admin"; or by creating and loading a menu-item with the command "xwp -admin" and the setting: run as another user, "root". Only the latter will work on OpenSuse 15.2.

 



Adding printers

 

At this stage WordPerfect has been installed. But no printer has been made available. Moreover, without a wrapper, the WP Print Manager, which is designed to add, modify and delete WordPerfect printer drivers, will not run in a current distro. To enable it to run, it must be called by way of a wrapper. A wrapper, suitable for recent distros (whether debian-based or rpm-based), has been devised by the present writer. We are grateful to Jack (also known as DisneyDumbazz at youtube) for suggesting this method.


The wrapper is automatically installed by the scripts, which install a wppmwrapd or wppmwrapr utility. It works by installing "ld-2.27.so" (from libc6:i386 version 2.27) in you "/lib" directory, and a script named "xwppmgr" in your "/usr/bin" directory. The script is designed to use ld-2.27.so to access the libc5 utilities necessary to load the WP Manager. (It should be noted that, since the libc5 utilities have a different location in debian-based distros from their location in rpm-based distros, the scripts differ accordingly.)

 

To install a WP printer driver, the following procedure should be followed.


First ensure that a Linux printer is installed on the distro; usually a CUPS printer. For testing at least, it may be useful to install the cups-pdf printer (by installing the cups-pdf package from your distro's repository), especially if no actual physical printer is available.


Then, in a terminal, give the command: "sudo xwppmgr", to load the WP Print Manager using the wrapper. This should achieve the desired result of successfully loading the WP Print Manager, and thus enabling you to install a WP printer driver. After thus installing a WP printer driver, you will then be able to make that driver available as a user by using the print command within WordPerfect. The said command should work successfully in debian-based distros, and in Mageia.


But in OpenSuse 15.2 you must instead load the wrapped WP Print Manager by creating and loading a menu-item with the command "xwppmgr" and the setting: run as another user, "root".


In Slackware you should give the command "xwppmgr" in a root terminal.


A tutorial on using the WP Print Manager, once it has been loaded using the wrapper, kindly contributed by Leon Goldstein, is provided on the Tutorial page.

 

If you have a monochrome printer, or do not wish to print in colour with WordPerfect, the Passthru Postscript driver, supplied as part of WordPerfect, pointed to the Linux Cups driver for your printer, should work well. If you have a colour printer, you may find it useful to use the HP Color LaserJet 4600 (Postscript) driver, devised for the Columbia University WPdos website, and available on its page entitled "New Printer Drivers for WordPerfect 6.x". This driver, named "hpc4600p.prs", is included by the wrapper among the drivers available for installation, and should work well with a colour printer, even if it is not postscript capable, so long as the CUPS driver, at which the WP driver is pointed, is suitable for the physical printer.


If you cannot get the wrapper to work, you may still be able to use WordPerfect to create and edit documents. You may then wish to print your WordPerfect documents using LibreOffice. This and other ways of printing .wpd documents are discussed on the Tweaks page.

 



The euro-currency symbol


The scripts provides, in the "/usr/lib/wp-extra-fonts" directory, an amended version of the WP font for Typograpical Symbols, created by the current author. You may wish to install this in WordPerfect by using the WP Font Installer utility, which can be called from the font menu in WordPerfect, when loaded as superuser by the command: "sudo xwp -admin".




Some tweaks

 

Having installed WordPerfect, you may wish to carry out some tweaks to improve its useability. Further information - on printing; importing MS Word document files; colour-schemes; the euro-currency symbol; menus, abbreviations and dialog boxes; and keypad keys - is provided on the Tweaks page.

 



Other possibilities

 

Other versions of WordPerfect for Linux are considered on the versions page. More specifically, version 8.0 is considered on the WordPerfect 8.0 page.


The use on Linux of a version of WordPerfect for Windows, or WordPerfect for MSDOS, through a compatability layer, are considered on the emulation page.

 



Further assistance

 

The author of this site, Peter Stone, may be contacted by email as "peter@xwp8users.com".

 

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Last updated in August 2020.

(c) Peter Stone, 2020.