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Barry MacDonnell's
Toolbox for WordPerfect

Macros, tips, and templates for Corel® WordPerfect® for Windows®
© Copyright 1996-2017 by Barry MacDonnell. All Rights Reserved.

Page updated Aug 1, 2015

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"Falling between the pixels"


WordPerfect menu choices refer to the <WordPerfect> menu. (Right-click on WordPerfect's top menu bar for a choice of menus.)

If you use a <Microsoft Word> menu, the choices might be absent from your menu (but not from the program), or they might be found under another menu selection.

If the menu choices or toolbars discussed on this site seem to be missing from your program, see here.

Are underscores (_) or underlines disappearing on your screen in WordPerfect -- yet they print?

Do the descenders (i.e., the lower part) on some letters (g, y, q, etc.) appear "cut off" on screen?

What probably is happening is that, in effect, the underlines and/or descending characters are being placed between the pixels of the display screen.

☼  Try changing the zoom with View, Zoom or by rotating your mouse wheel while holding down the <Ctrl> key.

☼  To more permanently solve the problem, you could also create a new, modified Windows shortcut to WordPerfect on your desktop containing a special WordPerfect startup switch. (See WordPerfect Help <F1>, Index tab, for more on these startup switches.) Then use that shortcut to start WordPerfect.


This method is for WordPerfect 10 and later versions.

Users of earlier WordPerfect versions may be able to simply modify the "Target" field (not the "Start in" field) of their existing WordPerfect desktop or Start group shortcut, using a command such as the one in dark red below.

Reason for the new method:

If you used the standard installation for WP10 and later versions, the Microsoft Installer (MSI) will have created a shortcut in your Start>Programs group. The Target field in this shortcut will be grayed (greyed) out and inaccessible in the shortcut's Properties dialog. It is the Target field (not the "Start in" field) that you need to edit to add startup switches to WP10+. So don't try to modify the standard WordPerfect shortcut's Target field. You will need to create a brand new shortcut that can be modified. Here's how to do it:

•  Right-click on your Windows desktop. From the context menu that pops up, select New, then Shortcut.

•  When prompted to "Type the location of the item:" copy and the paste the entire following command, including the quote marks, into the field as a single line. (This will become the Target in the shortcut.)

"C:\Program Files\Corel\WordPerfect Office X4\Programs\wpwin17.exe" : /dm=90

Important notes:

¤  The example path and filename above (everything in quotes) is to the WordPerfect X7 executable program file on most Windows XP systems. If you use a different version of WordPerfect, a different setup, or a different version of Windows you will need to modify the path. Just use the Browse button to find the wpwinxx.exe file. (The "xx" in that filename represents a number that corresponds to your version of WordPerfect.)

¤  Using /dm=90 should fix the underscore problem, and other similar issues. /dm-90 sets the displayed character size on screen to 90% of standard. Its effect is to increase the spacing slightly between characters on your screen. It has no effect on formatting or pagination, or your printouts.

¤  The colon (:) removes the splash screen (which is optional; see WordPerfect's Help <F1>, Index tab, "startup switches"). Some users find that adding the /fl switch (which causes WordPerfect to write directly to the screen, but which might cause some flicker) solves some display problems.

¤  Use spaces between each startup switch.

This tip may also solve the problem where some characters appear "bunched up" or "bolded" on screen at some screen settings, yet the document prints correctly.

Related tips:

If you open documents from Windows Explorer, or My Computer, or Open With, or by any means whereby you double-click the file's name to load the file in WordPerfect, the shortcut discussed above will not be activated since you will have bypassed it.

You can, however, use an alternative which involves adding the WordPerfect startup switch(es) to the file's association in Windows via My Computer or the Windows Control Panel (or Registry, if you are comfortable with Registry edits). See this thread on WordPerfect Universe (scroll down there for the simple, step-by-step instructions).

[The following works in Windows XP. Other operating systems should be similar; however, Windows Vista and Windows 7 do not have an Advanced button as described below, so you might need a third party program to do the job or use a Registry edit as explained on this thread at WordPerfect Universe.]

For example, if you want to remove the WordPerfect splash screen and also add the /dm=90 startup switch, as in the example above:

Open My Computer; click Tools, Folder Options, File Types tab. Scroll down to WPD and select it; then click the Advanced button, then (with "Open" selected in the Actions pane) click the Edit button. You can add the startup switches to the very end of the command in the "Application used..." field. (Be sure to leave spaces between the command and any switches, as well as between the switches you have added.)