Pitney Bowes
MapInfo Pro™ Monthly Journal

New Preferences in the 64-bit MapInfo Pro

64bitThe 64-bit version of MapInfo Pro includes a number of new preferences that you might find helpful. This article will point these out so you can take advantage of them. If you make to the end of the article (it's not long) you'll also get a hint of something on the road map for MapInfo Pro!

Note that you can get hints about the preferences by "mousing" over them. The Help file may also have useful information for you.

First, you'll need to know the location of the Preferences. These are now in the MapInfo tab (also known as the Backstage Area). The tab is called Options.

Below is a screen shot. The new preferences are highlighted. 

Backstage Options

This preference does appear in the 32-bit version but is new to version 12.5 so I thought it should be mentioned here. It allows you to determine how much of your computer's processing power should be used when multiple CPU's are employed. 

  • None - use only one CPU
  • Moderate - use 25% of the available processors
  • Intermediate - use 50% of the available processors
  • Aggressive - use 75% of the available processors
  • Full - use all of the available processors.

This option is set to Full by default.

The options here control behaviour of the ribbon user interface. This includes options for saving your configuration (referred to as the "state") of MapInfo Pro when exiting and restarting. You have separate controls for the ribbon and the tool windows.

Ribbon tab switching - it is probably worth going into detail on the ribbon tab switching behaviour. This refers to what happens to the ribbon tabs when you switch amongst your Map, Brower and Layout Designer windows. Should the ribbon tab change or not change as you change the window you are working in?

You have three options:

  • None - the selected ribbon tab does not change when you change windows. This means whatever tab you have chosen stays chosen.
  • Last tab - each window "remembers" the last ribbon tab that was used. When you revisit a window then the ribbon is automatically switched to the associated (remembered) tab.
  • Automatic - each window type (Map, Browser and Layout Designer) switches back to the same applicable tab. This means one ribbon tab is remembered for all the Map windows and one is remembered for the Browser windows, etc.

The new workspace options permit automatic saving and backups. This was covered in detail in the November 2014 issue. Click here to learn more

The MapBasic window now offers syntax highlighting. Also, by default, the enter key does not execute the command (which is different from earlier versions of MapInfo Pro). You can restore that behaviour with this preference.

This refers to the new Workspace Explorer in the 64 bit version. There are options for what to include in this window. For more information on how to use the Workspace Explorer, check out this tutorial video

Window list
The Window list is new in the 64 bit version. It can appear in the Workspace Explorer or you can view it on its own. There is just one option here - you have the ability to control whether or not the Tool windows (Ruler tool, Statistics window, etc) appear in this list or not.

Finally, what is that Task Manager preference for?
The Task Manager is providing you with a hint of things to come. On the road map for MapInfo Pro is the ability to run tasks in the background. This option controls notifications for when tasks complete. This new capability will be available to MapBasic developers and will be used by add-ons as well. 

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Article by Tom Probert, Editor of "The MapInfo Professional" journal 

When not writing articles for "The MapInfo Professional", Tom enjoys talking to MapInfo Professional users at conferences and events. When not working he likes to see movies with car chases, explosions and kung-fu fighting.