"; PhraseExpress - Technical Support

How may we assist you?

First Aid

After your phrase selection, PhraseExpress needs to put the input focus back to the target program. Unfortunately, some programs change the input focus into a different input box, other than the input box before activating application fokus.

You can easily test it yourself by manually switching the focus into the target application with the hotkey ALT+TAB and checking the input focus.

Solutions:
  • Add PhraseExpress keypress simulation macros in the beginning of the phrase that navigate the input cursor to the desired input box. E.g., TAB jumps from input box to input box (SHIFT+TAB jumps in reverse order).
  • Contact the maker of the application and ask for correction. It is out of our reach to change any such 3rd party application behavior.
General work around in case of focus issues:
  1. In the phrase menu, CTRL-click a phrase to copy the the phrase contents into the clipboard, instead of pasting it into the target application.
  2. Place the input cursor at the desired position in the target application.
  3. Use CTRL+V to manually paste the clipboard contents.

Make sure to actually register your purchased license key in the software. The act of purchasing alone does not license the software. You need to register the license key you received in the delivery email in the software. See the product documentation how to register the license key.

The "About" window informs if maintenance of your license key is expired. If you get license notifications because you are using a software version that has been released after maintenance expiration, you would need to renew maintenance for your license.

Our software is available in different product variations (Standard, Pro, Enterprise) with different sets of features as advertised in the comparison table of the respective shop webpage.

A special feature of our software is that you can try features of all editions, even if you purchased and registered a smaller edition that does not include such feature of any higher edition. However, in such case you will get occasional license reminders which list the features that triggered the license reminder. Those are not included in your license.

This approach allows you to consider upgrading to higher product variation even after your initital purchase decision.

Options:
  • If you already purchased the higher edition, make sure to actually deregister the license key of a smaller edition and register the license key of the higher edition.
  • Consider to upgrade to a higher edition.
  • Discontinue using features that are not included in your license.
If the first letter of any inserted phrase is capitalized unwantedly:
  • Check the phrase contents in PhraseExpress if the phrase begins with upper case.
  • If the autotext case sensitivity option is disabled, the phrase output is automatically capitalized if you enter an autotext with the first letter in upper case:

  • In rare cases, 3rd party software with a keyboard hook may interfere with PhraseExpress in a way that the SHIFT key gets stuck, thus PhraseExpress auto-capitalize feature may be triggered.
  • Please check if your Word processing software may have a feature that capitalizes the first letter of each new sentence (such as Microsoft Word).

This can happen in text input boxes, when renaming a file or in some applications.

Background: When you select a phrase, the input focus moves away from the input box. When the input focus returns to the target app, some programs highlight the entire text of the input box.

Windows has the behavior to delete any highlighted text if you make any input and this is exactly what happens, if PhraseExpress wants to insert the text.

To test & replicate this phenomen without any influence by PhraseExpress:

  1. Place the cursor in the input box which already contains some text.
  2. Press ALT-TAB to switch focus to any other app.
  3. Press ALT-TAB again until the focus is back to the actual target application.

If the focus anywhere else in that program or if the text highlighted, then the text insertion issue is not PhraseExpress related.

Work around: Usually, such text highlighting goes away if you press the ArrowRight-key. Adding such keypress at the beginning of your phrase may solve the issue.

There are a few situations where PhraseExpress disables editing of phrases:

  • The local phrase file is set to read-only (file attribute "read-only" is set).
  • PhraseExpress was launched with the command-line parameter -readonly which disables editing functions. See chapter "Command line parameters".
  • You are trying to load a phrase file with an older PhraseExpress version. If the phrase file has been touched by any new PhraseExpress version client, it becomes write-protected for older versions which have become incompatible with the new phrase file format. Solution: Install the latest PhraseExpress version.
  • Phrase file provided by us may eventually be write-protected internally.
  • PhraseExpress uses a locally cached SQL database which cannot be edited. Solution: Connect PhraseExpress to the SQL server.
  • If using a PhraseExpress Server (discontinued):
    • Editing is locked while the PhraseExpress window of another user on the network is opened to prevent simultaneous write collisions and synchronization issues. The status column of the Client Manager's monitor shows the current editor.
    • You may not have edit rights for a particular phrase folder.
    • If the network connection is interrupted, PhraseExpress falls back to a write-protected cache file. Editing is disabled as any change would be lost after PhraseExpress switches back to the network phrase file if the network connection is re-established again.
    • All PhraseExpress clients on the network must have the same version number. Editing may be disabled as older clients may not support features of a newer phrase file on the network.

PhraseExpress should launch in about 10 seconds with approx. 10k phrases.

The loading time depend on following parameters:
  • Phrase file location
  • Network speed
  • Number of phrases
  • Phrase contents
  • Computer performance (barely relevant for modern PCs)
Optimization tips:
  • Minimize redundancy: If you use the same phrase multiple times in different phrase folders in your library, don't copy the phrase but use phrase links.
  • Remove formatting from formatted text phrases wherever possible.
  • The obvious: Remove contents, that is not required.
  • Review bitmaps embedded in phrases: A bitmap, that may look stamp-sized in editor can have a 300MB uncompressed source. Consider linking bitmap files into a phrases rather than embedding the bitmap file itself into the phrase file. If you need to embed bitmaps, make sure that you embed the bitmap in the size you actually need.
  • Review the clipboard cache contents and consider restricting the max number items in this folders. You many also enable the option to clear the cache on program shutdown.
To resolve unwanted text replacements:
  • If you delete the text replacement with Backspaces, PhraseExpress will suppress the text replacement for the very next time you enter it's associated autotext abbreviation. This unwanted autotext detection can be configured in the program settings under "Settings » Features".
  • Alternatively, press & hold the SHIFT-key and click the PhraseExpress tray icon right after an unwanted text replacement occurred. PhraseExpress will open the edit window of the unwanted text replacement, allowing you to edit the autotext or hotkey association. You can also restrict the detection of the autotext to specific programs.
  • Or, right-click the PhraseExpress task bar icon to get additional options to exclude that phrase or PhraseExpress in general from particular programs by unchecking the context menu option "Detect typing in [program xyz]".
  • Perhaps, it's not PhraseExpress, doing the text replacement: Exit PhraseExpress and repeat entering the text, that triggered the unwanted text replacement. PhraseExpress can't replace text if it is not running. If the text replacement still occurs, you would need to investigate which other application may cause the unwanted behavior (e.g. Microsoft Office AutoCorrect).

If you get an unwanted popup menu with text suggestions or phrases, you can right-click such entry in the popup menu to get options to prevent future suggestions.

You can define a custom hotkey to open the last executed phrase in the PhraseExpress settings in the program setttings under "Settings » Hotkeys".

If an imported phrase file has no contents:
  • Check the phrase file size in Windows Explorer. If it shows 0 KB, it really may be empty. It either never had contents or the phrase file has been exported by user who had no read access permission.
  • You may not have such read access permissions to the contents within the phrase file. Contact the user who exported the phrase file and let him add read permission to your user name.
  • The contents may accidentally be deleted and reside in the recycle bin. Click the recycle bin to expand any content (if any).

If an e-mail is currently marked in your inbox and you press the Backspace key, the marked e-mail will be put into the mailbox recycle bin.

When entering an autotext, PhraseExpress also simulates pressing the delete key to remove the typed autotext and replace it with the desired text module.

Solution: Do not use autotexts that you type whily you have marked but not opened e-mails in your mail program.

Following trouble-shooting tips should be able to help you if you experience connection issues:

General

  • Make sure to use the latest software versions. The PhraseExpress clients must have the same major version number as the PhraseExpress server. Example: If you use PhraseExpress v14 clients, you also must use a PhraseExpress server v14. You cannot use a v12 Server with a v14 client for example.
  • Make sure that the computer running the PhraseExpress server has a TCP/IP network connection to all computers running the PhraseExpress clients.
  • Check any firewall or any other “security” program does not block PhraseExpress from accessing the network.

Server Trouble-Shooting

  • Make sure to run the latest PhraseExpress server version.
  • Check whether if PhraseExpress server service is running on the server PC: Open the Windows Management Console by right-clicking the "My Computer" desktop icon and select the popup menu item "Management". Switch to the list of Services and find the entry "PhraseExpress server" from the list. Make sure that the PhraseExpress server service is marked as "Running". If "Stopped", click on "Restart". If this fails, reboot your computer and try again.
  • Launch the Client Manager and switch to the "Monitor" tab. Red-colored status text indicates a problem.
  • If you ran out of available licenses purchase additional licenses or remove license key association if you wish to use a license for another user.
  • Switch to Client Manager tab "Log" and have your IT administrator inspecting the log file to identify entries that could point to a problem.

Client Trouble-Shooting

  • A green-colored exclamation mark in the task tray icon indicates a proper connection to the PhraseExpress server and everything should be fine. Hover the task tray icon for additional information.
  • If the task tray icon contains a red-colored exclamation mark, the client is not connected to a PhraseExpress server and uses a local phrase file instead:
    • Open the PhraseExpress client main program window, select Tools » Settings » Networking and enable the Networking option.
    • Connect to a PhraseExpress server by selecting File » Open » Connect to PhraseExpress server.
    • If the client cannot automatically find the server, your network configuration may blocks UDP broadcast polls used for the automatic server search. In this case, enter the server PC's IP address manually.
  • If the exclamation mark of the client task tray icon is missing, it lost network connection to the PhraseExpress Server and now uses a temporary copy of the network phrase file. Try to reconnect to the PhraseExpress server as explained above.

PhraseExpress supports formatted text and bitmaps in phrases. To turn an unformatted phrase into a formatted phrase, simply start apply formatting, like bold, italic, font changes or adding a table or bitmap.

You can export a phrase into a phrase file or as a txt/rtf/doc text file.