Version 2006.1


Posted: 30 Dec 2005 06:17 pm


We're finishing the year with new versions of both the Free and the Silver Edition, featuring improved digital, paper, and ink modules. Take a look at what's new.

If you haven't upgraded in a while, now would be a good time to do so. Until the user manual becomes available, the Silver Edition will remain a free beta download.

The press and ink file structures have been revised to accommodate the changes. Either edition will transfer your existing data to the new files automatically, before deleting the old files. If you're running both the Free and the Silver Editions (and are running them from the same directory), you will need to upgrade both. Or else one of them will close with an "Invalid File Structure" error, after the other has modified the press and ink files. As always, make sure you back up your data files before you install the upgrade.

Best wishes for a healthy, prosperous, and peaceful New Year.


Version 2006.2


Posted: 01 Feb 2006 10:21 am


"Thank You"

. . . to the now more than 1,000 legitimate users who have downloaded Morning Flight since its introduction nine months ago. By legitimate I mean users who've registered the program as someone other than ""

Version 2006.2 includes some added functionality to pave the way for the soon to be available xpedx PaperShop file, preloaded with paper items offered by xpedx Stores. That file will be a free download from the PrintFire web site. If you're upgrading from a previous version and are planning to download the xpedx PaperShop file, note that the first record in your Vendor file should be "xpedx Stores." In new installations, the Vendor file will come preloaded that way.

Due to popular request, and contrary to what Microsoft recommends, the new MFSetF.exe (Free Edition) and MFSetupS.exe (Silver Edition) will now automatically place shortcuts on your desktop. As always, please back up your data files before you install the upgrade.


Version 2006.6 with built-in Translator


Posted: 12 Oct 2006 11:18 am


The big news for Version 2006.6 is the addition of a built-in translator. Very big news if you're a printer in Stockholm, Amsterdam, or Manila . . . not so big if your shop is in Hoboken. Version 2006.6 includes a minor bug fix as well, so you may want to download it anyway. Click here for the full story on the translator.


Version 2006.8 with new Help System


Posted: 21 Nov 2006 05:00 pm


With the help system for the Free Edition now nearly complete, we decided to release what's already available. The thought being that two-thirds of a help file is better than none. Besides, we have a full page ad appearing in the December issue of "Quick Printing." Talk about major motivation!

The original help system, what there was of it, was written in WinHelp. We chose HTML Help, both web-based and compiled, as the new format. WinHelp goes back a few years and will no longer be supported in MS Vista, the upcoming replacement for XP. HTML Help, the standard for Windows 98, 2000, and XP, should be around forever, at least in its web-based form. It is, after all, standard HTML.

What you'll find when you download version 2006.8 of Morning Flight, either the Free or the Silver Edition, is an abbreviated help system in compiled form that will be installed on your desktop computer along with the application. Within that abbreviated version is a link to where the full help system for the Free Edition is being hosted.

This hybrid approach was necessary for the Free Edition to keep download times acceptable for users with dial-up connections. The Silver Edition, when released, will come on CD, so download times are not an issue. There, the full help system will be part of the installation.

I think we're getting there. Funny thing about writing a help system, though. You can't help but refine the program a little along the way. For instance, when I wrote the topic about how to enter sheet sizes, I discovered that you could enter 8-1/2 inches by either

keying in "8-1/2"
keying in "8" and then clicking on the half-inch mark on a ruler
keying in "8" and then dragging a slider

What you couldn't do was enter "8.5". Well, now you can.



Help System complete for the Free Edition


Posted: 14 Dec 2006 08:13 am


I'm happy to report that the Help System for the Free Edition is now done. The Help System for the Silver Edition, along with the User Manual, is not far behind. As I pointed out in an earlier post, the size of the help file mandated that we take a hybrid approach. A condensed help file with a link to the full system is part of the version 2006.8 program download. The rest is being hosted on the web at

Happy Holidays to all, and a Healthy and Prosperous and Peaceful New Year!


Version 2007.1 with new wallpapers


Posted: 05 Jan 2007 08:14 pm


"Another Thank You"

. . . to the now more than 2,700 users of Morning Flight since its introduction less than two years ago.

Although a minor upgrade, Version 2007.1 does include a significant revision for in-plant shops: The ability to completely eliminate paper markups. You'll need to turn off data validation (click the umbrella) to enter zero in any of the markup fields. Other improvements include the "Save As" feature described elsewhere on this forum.

Finally, three new wallpapers to complement the Carrier and Family on the Beach backgrounds. We've had a number of requests for this, and the holidays offered some free time to play with pictures. Besides, I can see where the aircraft carrier would have limited appeal in countries such as Iran at the moment. Really, I can.

One of the backgrounds was an incidental discovery when I used Google to search for "Morning Flight" images. The photo was taken by Rick Bouthiette, co-owner of Graphic Consumer Services in Candia, New Hampshire. We were fortunate to obtain the rights to it. The image is stunning! Color prints ($10 for an 8 x 10) are available at

As always, please back up your data files (all .TPS files in the PrintFire directory) before you install the upgrade. To change backgrounds, click File > Change Background.




Morning Flight now Code-Signed


Posted: 02 May 2007 11:37 am


When you buy software in a store, the source of that software is obvious. It's easy to tell who published it, and you can see whether the package has been opened. Starting today, when you download and install Morning Flight programs, you can be just as confident that the code really came from us and has not been corrupted or tampered with. That's because all PrintFire programs are now digitally code-signed.

Digital Signatures serve as virtual "shrinkwrap" for software. After we sign our code, if it's modified in any way, the digital signature will break and alert you that the code has been altered and is not trustworthy. To verify that your Morning Flight program is secure, right-click on MFlightF.exe (Free Edition) or MFlightS.exe (Silver Edition) in the C:\Program Files\PrintFire\MorningFlight folder, then select Properties > Digital Signatures.

Haven't had any reports of problems in that area, but it's best to pull up the drawbridge before the Trojans come knocking at the gate.




Arrival of Morning Flight Gold (beta)


Posted: 25 Oct 2007 11:48 am


We're happy to announce a limited beta release to Forum Insiders of not one, but two new Morning Flight programs: The Gold Edition and the Flight Engineer. Morning Flight Gold expands the Estimating functions of Morning Flight Silver with Order Entry, Job Tracking and Invoicing. The Flight Engineer is a plug-in module for the Gold that enables it for Inventory Control.

If you're currently using either the Free or the Silver Edition, you'll want to preserve your quotes and shop data by installing Morning Flight Gold (and the Flight Engineer) into the same directory into which you've previously installed either the Free or the Silver Edition (C:\Program Files\PrintFire\MorningFlight by default). All Morning Flight programs use the same data files, so the transition will be seamless. Because the Gold Edition is a superset of Morning Flight Silver, there is no need to have both programs running on your computer. In fact, once the Gold Edition is installed, you should uninstall other Morning Flight editions, or install compatible, up-to-date versions (2007.2). As always, be sure to back up your data beforehand.

Now that the Gold is done, when can you expect the Booklet Module? The only reason I bring that up is because I know you'll ask. It's the next major project on our list. First we're going to wrap up a few loose ends and catch our breath. Then it's on to expanding the Help System and writing the Manual.

In the meantime, enjoy the Gold.


User Manual for Free Edition now available


Posted: 25 Jan 2008 01:34 pm


Just Arrived . . . a 215-page User Manual for the Free Edition! And, just like the program, forever free as well. The PDF-based manual is a conversion of the on-line help system. Click here for a look inside (No need to register):

What's nice about having the book in the Acrobat format is that you can save the file to your computer and print the manual at your convenience.

As promised on the Printfire web site, an expanded version of the Free Edition will soon be on the shelves as a book/CD combination. Because paper and printing and packaging all cost money, we can't give this one away free of charge. But compared to other books with CD on how to estimate printing (if there were other books with free software on how to estimate printing), you'd have to say it's a real bargain.

Here is what's included in the $48.00 package:

The spiral-bound "Estimating Printing with Morning Flight" Book
A CD with the Passport Edition of Morning Flight
User-defined Prepress, Postpress, Packaging
Full help system installed with the program
Flash tutorials and simulations, all accessible from the main menu

Haven't decided yet how we'll distribute it., definitely, and maybe eBay Stores. Funny thing, now that I think of it: We're software developers, and our first commercial product will be a book. Ben Franklin would have been pleased!


The Top Ten Topics


Posted: 22 Apr 2008 09:39 am


Ever wonder what the hottest topics are on the Morning Flight Forum? I did, so today I decided to find out. To my surprise, the number one topic wasn't about estimating. It was about how to move files from one computer to another.

Here are the "most-viewed" Top Ten:

5,002 views - Moving Files to another Computer (Advanced)

2,911 views - Digital Change requested (Feedback)

2,389 views - Digital Second Side Color (Feedback)

2,327 views - Help with Pricing (Pricing Questions)

2,049 views - Can I have my Logo on Forms? (Advanced)

1,904 views - Problem with Buy as Needed Paper (Troubleshooting)

1,798 views - E-mailing an Estimate (Troubleshooting)

1,759 views - Multi-User and Accounting (Feedback)

1,725 views - File Menu out of Sync (Troubleshooting)

1,590 views - Can I add an Additional Press? (Getting Started)

Three guesses about which topics will get extra coverage in the upcoming manual.