Frequently Asked Questions

When I use the Web Lookup function on certain dictionary sites, MicroSpell sometimes locks up. How do I prevent this?
This problem seems to occur on some systems when you visit a dictionary site that contains ad images. Microsoft knowledge base item 269802 describes this behavior. Unfortunately, this is a problem with the html control and Microsoft currently offers no practical solutions.

To close MicroSpell when it becomes unresponsive, press the Ctrl, Alt and Del keys simultaneously to invoke the Task Manager. You can then select and end the MicroSpell process (ms32.exe). To restart MicroSpell, click the "Start" button, then "All Programs." In the "MicroSpell" group, click "MicroSpell - Tray Icon."

If you are experiencing this problem and do not wish to avoid the associated sites, MicroSpell offers the following workaround. On the Options|General Preferences|Web Lookup dialog, make sure the "Use External Browser" option is checked. This will force MicroSpell to use your default browser instead of its internal browser window in certain cases, e.g., when you use the Web Lookup keyboard shortcut (CTRL+W) or when you right-click on the MicroSpell tray icon and use the "Look Up Definition of Clipboard Word" command. (Other ways of doing a web lookup lead to the normal dialog so you can choose which interface you prefer on a case-by-case basis and so you can still have access to the settings that are only available through this dialog.)

Where do I get non-English dictionaries for use with MicroSpell?
MicroSpell currently only comes with American English dictionaries. However, there are Ispell word lists available for a variety of languages and MicroSpell can import the plain (i.e., ASCII, non-hashed) versions. See the following link for sources and instructions:

How do I get MicroSpell to start automatically on reboot, but only as a tray icon, not a visible window?
Assuming you opted to allow the installation program set MicroSpell to start as a tray icon, this should happen automatically. If you did not allow this installation option initially, you can copy the "MicroSpell - Tray Icon" shortcut (from MicroSpell's program group) to the Startup folder (right click on the Start button, choose Explore, then Programs).

If MicroSpell is starting automatically, but always opening it's main window, try closing it so the main window disappears from the screen but the red check mark tray icon is still there. Then shut the speller down by right-clicking on the tray icon and using the Shut Down Speller command. Restart it by going to the MicroSpell group on the Start menu and selecting "MicroSpell - Try Icon". Does it work the way you want now? If so, then it will probably continue to do so. If not, try disabling the Quick Start dialog if it is coming up when you start the speller, and also try turning off the "Tip of the Day" feature.

What is the size limitation for user-created custom dictionaries?
For "main" (i.e., compressed) dictionaries, there is no hard size limitation. You can put hundreds of thousands of words in each, and you can create and open several, if necessary. For "user" dictionaries, there is a limit of about 30,000 words, and we'd suggest having fewer. Main dictionaries have a dark blue book icon and user dictionaries have a light blue book icon in the Dictionaries dialog. Whenever you save a word using one of MicroSpell's Save commands it can only go to a user dictionary. But you can periodically move the contents of any user dictionary to a main dictionary using the View/Edit function or by simply dragging the user dictionary book icon and dropping it on a main dictionary icon in the Dictionaries dialog.

Please refer to Tips and Techniques for more information on additional topics.

Last updated 18 October 2004