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We can recover & convert your old 

Amstrad PCW LocoScript  

docs for you to read & edit in Word on PC or Mac

Still from only 5 per disc 

from LuxSoft of Luxulyan

the original independent professional 
& confidential disc conversion service ... 
... still going strong on
 

   

PLEASE NOTE

This page is ONLY for LocoScript & LocoFile on Amstrad PCWs
( aka the Schneider "Joyce" in some countries )

PCW 8256        PCW9512
For LocoScript PC, PC Professional or PC Easy, please click
Here

 

 

For PCW16 & other PC disc & file conversions, please click Here 

 

For all other PCW & PC topics covered, please see our Site Map 

 

Conversion of PCW LocoScript documents  

We can convert Amstrad PCW LocoScript files to suit Microsoft Word, Works and most other popular word processing programs that run on either PCs or Apple Macs. The resulting docs are very easy to open and the text can be edited just as if it had all been entered using your PC or Mac's keyboard in the first place. 

We can also convert LocoFile databases to suit Excel, MS Works, Access etc.

And we charge a small fraction of what other professional conversion services charge. 

More importantly, unlike the others, we do NOT . . . . . .

  • Reject out of hand any faulty discs (we try to recover all the text we can for you)

  • Reject files with names that are unacceptable on PC or Mac (we just correct them)

  • Use a text-only (Ascii) conversion which loses all your text enhancements and document formatting (we use proper Rtf & Word formats)

  • Produce dangerously named files which could wipe clean your computer's hard disc! (Just double click on ours and away you go in complete safety)

Founded in 1986, LuxSoft has been converting Loco discs & files for many years. Our experience is that, as with all good things in life, quality of the result is far more important than speed. Hence, we don't make any rash boasts about ace quick turn-round because our prime concerns are for the accuracy and completeness of the results we achieve for you, particularly when discs are faulty. 

Our main care is for your valuable data

 

 

For your delectation, we have on the menu today ..... 

 

Quick Summary / Overview

  • We can handle all versions of LocoScript on either 3" CF2 and CF2DD or 3.5" discs, and versions can be mixed on the same disc. 

  • There are NO SURCHARGES for files in Loco 4 format. We handle them "as is" and we do not ask you to do any work on them yourself before sending them to us. 

  • We DO accept damaged or corrupted discs. Moreover we make NO CHARGE for the initial data recovery efforts. 

  • We also accept batches of discs of unknown content making NO CHARGE for those which transpire to be unformatted, empty or pure copies of program discs.

  • We convert files to suit all popular PC & Mac word processors and accompany the results with our acclaimed Notes & Tips doc to 'get you going' quickly & easily. 

  • We do not hide our prices so make you have to ask for a quote. Our prices (below) are for complete PCW discs (ie BOTH sides of a single density 3" CF2), no matter how full they are. 

  • We do NOT ask for advance payment. You send us the discs, we do the conversion and then we send you the results (by post or e-mail) accompanied by an invoice and our comprehensive notes which help you to make the most of the facilities offered by modern wp programs. If having received & reviewed the results you still want your original discs returned to you, this is done after your payment has been cleared through our bank. 

If this is all you need to know, click here to skip down to the costs and where to send your discs. 

Otherwise please scroll on down for the full nitty gritty ....

The wrong way to do disc conversions !

PC's tend not to like PCW 3" discs in their drives!


The Full Unexpurgated Story

Introduction

"Are you sitting comfortably ? Then I'll begin .."

Most shop assistants these days are younger than the average PCW so they will likely never even have heard of those venerable beasts, let alone know about the possibility of converting discs or files to suit a PC or an Apple Mac. But yes, it IS possible to convert LocoScript files (whether on 3" or 3.5" disc and from any version, including Loco 4) so that they can be read by word processing programs like Microsoft Word. The even better news is that we can do all this without losing all your document formatting too!

  • Some competitors convert LocoScript files to 'text only' (ASCII) files. This means that you loose all your precious formatting, including all those lovely bolds, italics and foreign language accents. We do not - our method keeps  your text enhancements and as much as is possible of your document formatting.

  • Some charge per file - we charge per complete disc, however full it is.

  • Some produce files which are difficult to load on a PC and could easily corrupt your hard disc if double clicked on in Windows. Our 'Easy Read' system is both simple and safe for all levels of PC user. 

  • Some ask for advance payment with order. We invoice on completion as we make no charge for discs which transpire be empty or purely program discs.

  • Some reject damaged or corrupt discs. We DO accept problem discs ... and we make NO additional charge for evaluation & initial data retrieval attempts.

Our fully confidential disc transfer service keeps all your document formatting and is suitable for the vast majority of DOS, Mac and Windows-based word processors. Post-transfer support comes in the form of a comprehensive and widely acclaimed step by step instruction & tips document as well as free support by e-mail.

Oh yes, and we're about the cheapest professional service too! 

PCW Disc Formats accepted 

We can accept :

  • single and double density CF2 3" discs from the PCW 8256, 8512 and 9512

  • double and high density 3.5" discs from all flavours of PCW, be they 9256, 9512+ or 10, which had 3.5" disc drives from the outset, or older 8256/8512/9512 models which have been fitted with replacement drives

  • files which have already been transferred 'as is' to PC on PC floppy, CD or by e-mail attachment(s), including .IMG disc image files.

Sorry, we can no longer accept single sided (173k/180k) 3.5" discs from non-standard single head 3" 8256/8512 drives.

PCW File Formats accepted

LocoScript - all versions (1, 2, 3 or 4) - and it doesn't matter if discs contain some files in one version and some in another. 

LocoFile - versions 1, 2 and 3. Again they can be mixed and it's no problem if they are on the same disc as LocoScript files.

Please note that -

  • LocoScript 'system files' - such as saved phrases, bits of the LocoScript program and printer definition files - are not converted as they are not relevant to the PC environment. 

  • "Limbo" files (erased files and previous edits held in the PCW's "Recycle Bin")
    -
    Erased files can also be recovered & converted by selecting the option on the Conversion Request Form but we reserve the right to make an additional charge for this service if there are more than just a few per disc. 
    - Previous Edits (back-ups) are recovered and converted as part of the data recovery process when the corresponding Active file contains serious errors.  

Format of the converted files

Locoscript 1/2/3/4 Files -  

These are normally converted to the MS Word for Windows 2 (.Doc) format, Word 95 (.Doc) and Rich Text Format (.Rtf) which between them suit just about every known Windows word processing program. As each of the 3 formats has its merits according to software in use and the way the doc has been laid out so you can choose the one that's best for you for each doc.

Upon request, we can also convert to suit LocoScript PC, Word Perfect for DOS, Windows Write and many more.

Please note however that currently we are unable correctly to convert LocoScript text that is in Greek, Cyrillic (Russian) or Old Icelandic or any other characters that have been obtained by switching keyboard layouts.

LocoFile Databases -   

We use a format which can be very quickly & simply read by:

  • Database IV (DB4)

  • Lotus Approach

  • Microsoft Works

  • Microsoft Excel spreadsheet program. 

Note - For those wanting to use Microsoft Access, it's best firstly to open a file in Excel then import the resulting Spreadsheet into a new Access Table via the 'Get External Data' command.

Costs

  • The base price is 7.50 for ALL the files on one complete disc (that means BOTH sides of a 173k CF2 disc from an 8256/8512). 

  • The quantity discounts for 6 or more error-free discs are - 
     - 6 to 10 is 7.00 each 
     - 11 - 15 it's 6.50
     - 16 - 20 it's 5.75 and 
     - 21 - 30 it's 5.00. 
    For larger quantities still, please e-mail or call for a quote.

  • Due to ever rising costs, we have had to introduce a minimum disc conversion charge of 10 (excluding any P&P or data recovery charges)

  • All prices quoted include e-mailing the results worldwide. 
    For results on CD, there is no extra charge if the total conversion cost exceeds 35, otherwise the extra is 2.50 to addresses in UK & Europe (incl Republic of Ireland) or 3.00 to outside Europe. 
    For results on a USB pen drive, these are free when conversion costs are over 70 otherwise it's an extra 4.50

  • For overseas customers, 1 currently translates to approx $1.25 US or 1.20 Euros. Please note that we can ONLY accept payments in Euros or Dollars as cash or via PayPal - cheques, money orders or bank transfers must be in Sterling ('GBP').

  • If you say at the outset that you would like your discs back afterwards, we will invoice you for the postage, packing & posting cost but if you change your mind after seeing the results, you simply omit the P&P element from your payment.

  • Our very competitive charges for more severely faulty discs, recovering Limbo files and correcting invalid file names are discussed under "What we then do" below

Our conversion service is totally confidential. For the police and members of the legal profession, we can produce affirmations of conversion integrity, reports on disc condition, directory content etc all for only a small arm & a leg.

Turnround

Although we aim to achieve a 2-3 day turnround, we firmly believe that the quality of the work is far more important than speed. Sometimes it may therefore take a tad longer, particularly if there are problems with disc read errors or it's a busy period. Naturally, if there were to be a long delay, you would be notified by e-mail. 

A beloved PCW8256

One of our faithful Amstrad PCW 8256's

 

What to send and where to send them:

  • Please Click here to print out our Conversion Request Form. 
    Apart from giving us your details, this gives you advice on packaging the discs as well as our postal address in the form of a mailing label. 

  • If you have a working PCW, we do suggest that you make copies of your discs and send us those. If you are not sure about copying discs with DISCKIT, please click here for detailed instructions. If you don't have a working PCW or the discs won't copy properly due to disc errors, don't worry - please then send us the originals.

  • Either way, please clearly number the discs

  • Some CF2 discs were supplied back in the 80's in clear Perspex cases - please do NOT send these cases as they can shatter in the post and damage the discs!

  • Please do NOT send any money at this stage. Upon completion of the work you will be invoiced; payment options will include direct bank transfer and You can pay with Pay Pal!.

  • Post the package to us. Please note that .....

    • Use of Recorded or Special Delivery is encouraged for valuable material or when disc copies cannot be made. To avoid missed deliveries causing delay & inconvenience, please OK this with us by phone or e-mail BEFORE using these signed-for services.  

    • Our postcode is not in the database used by Royal Mail (this is Cornwall remember!) so manual entry by a Post Office clerk may be necessary.

    • Royal Mail's rates for mail within the UK are based on thickness of the pack as well as size and weight so even just a single floppy MUST be sent as a 'Large Letter'. If we decide to accept an inadequately stamped package by paying the Royal Mail's punitive surcharge for you, this will be passed on via our invoice. 

  • Please do note that by sending us your discs, you are deemed to have accepted the Terms & Conditions of our service.

What we then do:

  • If we encounter any reading problems with a disc because it has been physically damaged or become logically corrupted, we will spend up to 15 minutes free of charge trying to recover as much data as possible from it. If this free time has expired but we consider that the work should be able to be completed within a further 15 minutes, we will go ahead without recourse to you and make a nominal charge of 7.50 per disc as per our Terms & Conditions. If the data corruption is more serious, we will contact you by telephone or e-mail to discuss options and the likely cost of further efforts.

  • Certain characters allowed by the PCW in filenames - like double quote marks (") and percent (%) - cause mega-grief on a PC. If we find the odd one or two of them we'll change them to comparable acceptable characters free of charge. However, where there are several, we reserve the right to make an extra charge of 2 per disc.

  • Similarly, if you request the recovery and conversion of all deleted files that were in Limbo (Recycle Bin), we will do this free of charge for up to around five per disc but for more than that, we reserve the right to make the same time-based charge as that for faulty discs above.   

  • A CD, a pen drive and a Zipped e-mail attachment can all easily accommodate the results from several dozen PCW discs so they will be sub-divided into separate "folders" for each format type and then each original disc (or side of a disc). There are then further sub-folders corresponding to each old Loco 'Group' so that the results directly reflect the way the original discs were organised.    

  • If you have WinZip on Win 98, ME or 2000 or use Windows XP or later (which have their own in-built facilities to Unzip 'compressed archives'), please ensure that your e-mail, anti-virus or firewall software does not block files with the .Zip file extension. 

  • If you request e-mailed results but you are then not able to unzip / extract from Zipped archives, we will only e-mail you the individual files as separate attachments in very exceptional circumstances, otherwise you will be sent a CD and be invoiced accordingly. 

  • The results are mailed to you together with our Conversion Notes which give step-by-step instructions and useful tips. These describe in simple terms not only how to open and save the files in your PC or Mac's word processor but also contain advice and tips on re-formatting documents. 

  • We do NOT ask for payment in advance so we do ask for prompt settlement of the invoice sent with the results. This will detail all the payment options which include direct inter-bank settlement and  You can pay with Pay Pal

  • If after viewing & saving the results on your computer you still want your original PCW discs returned to you, these will be mailed back to you after your payment has been received and, if by cheque, this has cleared through the bank. Due to high business bank charges and distance from the bank, clearance may on occasions take up to a month from the day a cheque is received.

We look forward to receiving your files and to you joining the 
hundreds of our delighted customers who have discovered 
lots of old material they had completely forgotten!

Customer Feedback

  • "I have just unzipped your e-mailed attachment and WOW! What a result! All my rubbish on a big screen!"

  • "I was so excited and moved by what we discovered on the discs. Many thanks for a priceless service" 

  • "I would like to compliment you on the wonderful service you provide. It is not often nowadays that one gets personal & friendly service" 

  • "You've done for 7.50 what I was quoted 200 to do elsewhere!" 

  • "Those disks have sat in a drawer for ten years and I am delighted to finally be able to access their data again. Thank you for such a speedy, professional, and inexpensive service." 

  • "Thank you. It has been like restoring a chunk of my life that I had forgotten. Amazing what a few old discs can do" 

  • "I am thrilled & delighted to have all that information back again. Thanks to you, 5 years of research and hundreds of hours was not wasted after all!" 

  • Thank you very much for a superb job (and you can quote me on that), done speedily and efficiently. Also much cheaper that your rivals. It was a delight to be able to read the old diaries again.

  • "A business reply laced with a sense of humour wins my vote any time"

 

Other types of PCW to PC Disc Conversion that we can do

Please click here for PCW Supercalc 2 and PCW Protext

Please click here for Masterfile 8000 (MF8000)

With so many other types of file that could be created on a PCW, it's difficult to list all the data file conversions we can and can't do - so please e-mail us for a quote. 

Please do remember that, unless you are running a PCW emulator like "Joyce" on your PC, PCW programs will NOT run on a PC !! (... unless you fancy re-writing those in Basic to run under GW Basic)

 

Contact details

 

An unusually animated LuxSoft of Luxulyan ?

"Clinging to the trailing edge of technology"

Tel (01726) 81 22 57 

e-mail malc@luxsoft.demon.co.uk

 

Established 1986 - This page last amended 1st July 2017

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