Software: PaperMaster Pro – worth the wait?

By | June 30, 2003
 It’s been nearly five years some folk have been waiting, but it looks like PaperMaster, a great program for scanning and organizing your paperwork, is back.
PaperMaster is back
PaperMaster — the last full version was 98, to give you some idea how long this software’s been hibernating — was pretty good. It look liked a filing cabinet, and let you scan and store more or less anything you could squeeze through your scanner. The company was sold to j2, which is basically an Internet faxing service and which were very, very quiet about the software until last year, when in response to public interest (well me, and a couple of other people) they released PaperMaster2002, an upgrade for existing licensed users of PaperMaster98 “who have migrated or are planning to migrate to the Microsoft® Windows 2000, XP, or ME operating system”.
That version wasn’t cheap — $150 — and didn’t do much apart from resolve a few of the features of PaperMaster98 that wouldn’t work under XP (unless you happened to stumble across some tweaks that fans had posted to websites). Earlier this year, when I complained about the cost of what was basically a minor upgrade, j2 told me “the PaperMaster upgrade was completed primarily for a few select users who were figuratively beating down j2 Global’s door to get the new product. The cost of the upgrade was a result of j2 Global investing significant resources to complete an upgrade designed for limited distribution. Based on customer response, j2 Global’s PaperMaster users seem to be fine with the price”. Not what I heard, but there you go.
Anyway, Pro is here. Nearly. You can pre-order and get 15% off the retail price of $199 (once again, not cheap). Still, it sounds as if it has some serious features
  •    Create PDFs from any office application or scan
  •    Organize fast and easy
  •    Find anything in seconds
  •    Get powerful OCR – Never re-type any document
  •    Fax easier via the Internet with built-in eFax®
All of which sound useful. I’ll review it once I’ve got hold of a copy. Earlier release date was set for today, so that could be soon. If you’re in a hurry, see my recent review of PaperPort, which does much the same thing.

11 thoughts on “Software: PaperMaster Pro – worth the wait?

  1. Andrew WEiss

    I have used Papermaster for the past 6 years. The latest upgrade, Papermaster Pro is a disappointment. The new program works with Windows XP and 2000, is network comparable, works with efax and can create PDF documents. The is also a more extensive editing and annotation program. While those benefits are nice, a lot was lost from the old version. The losses are significant enough that my office continues to use the old program.

    Features Lost:
    1. Ability to make a stamp opaque or transparent
    2. Double Sided edit feature that allowed the scanning of double sided documents and automatically put the pages in the proper order.
    3. Dragging pages between documents can only be done one at a time. The user cannot select multiple pages using shift or ctrl keys and can’t copy or move using shift
    4. Straighten page function
    5. Moving documents between drawers and cabinets is more difficult because you can’t open more than one drawer in a cabinet or more than one cabinet at a time. Moving documents in and out of the in box seems the only easy way.
    6. Cabinet properties no longer tells you size, number of pages or number of documents. Only the number of drawers is disclosed.
    7. Document names are shorter
    8. Documents are automatically named with an alphanumeric name requiring each newly scanned document to be manually renamed.
    9. The old look of a filing cabinet has been lost.
    10. The new program is much slower.

  2. Nigel Smith

    Has anyone had any success transferring this software between computers? I’ve been trying for the last 3 weeks and the support from j2 has been pathetic.

  3. Ian Winfieldale

    I couldn’t agree more with Nigel Smith’s comments.
    I’ve been using PM98 and PM2002 for many years and thought PMPro would bring more features. Whilst the PDF compatibility and colour ‘printer driver’ to PMPro are good, its the loss of item 2, 3, & 5 in Nigels list that makes PMPro unusable for me.
    PM2002 was really good for scanning and filing. PMPro has been reduced to a filing software only. The loss of the cabinet icons is really irritatng. A cabinet with your banks logo is much easier to find!
    We can only hope that eFax are listening, and bring out a ‘free’ upgrade to PMPro that includes all the lost features from PM2002.

  4. Doug MacLeod

    Used original PM, had a devil of a time finding PM98, (got it from Infoshare in Denmark).. now have upgraded OS from 98SE to XP-pro.. just read above that there are some twraking devices that I should have. Please help — where can I find these ?

  5. gary porter

    I got papermaster with my Imagewave scanner. I liked it & worked great. The problem is that when I upgraded from Win98 to Win XP, it will not work! Is there a solution?

  6. Greg Bryson

    I need someone’s help, please.
    I have old valuable files, maybe 8 years worth, that I cannot open with PaperMaster Pro 7.0.
    I no longer have Documagix or even PaperMaster 98.
    I am desperate.
    Any help would be appreciated.

  7. Robert Hancock

    I agree about support from j2—absolutely the worst support from any company I have ever had! (And even worse than Symantec’s support for Winfax PRO!)
    Our company had been using Papermaster 98 and about 18 months ago we upgraded to 2002, which worked fine. Recently, we upgraded our PCs to XP SP2 and 2002 stopped working for some reason; we asked j2 for technical support and they replied (1 week later after 2 emails) that 2002 was no longer supported and we should buy Pro. We asked for an upgrade price and after about a week got a $99 off coupon code. We tried to buy and download the new version but the coupon code did not work. After another wasted week of emailing then screenshots of the failed coupon code, we still have not got a reply and a working coupon code. Like others, we have about 7 years of cabinets that need opening! If we didn’t, I would ditch this lousy company like the crock of steaming sh*t that its technical support and sales departments have become.

  8. Dr. Bob Waterstone


    My name is Dr. Bob Waterston, and I have used papemaster 98 for years, and now can only look at my old documents. I saw that you posted a question about supposed tweaks that will allow it to work with windows xp. could you share with me if you found the answers?


    Dr. bob Waterstone
    678 923 9593 cell
    770-425-2105 home

  9. Jess Ware

    I have been using PM98 since 1999.
    I presently have it running on W2K and XP. Occasionally I have had to run Cabdoctor to straighten out snafus, and even reconstructed several drawers that lost the index files in a computer crash.

    What does NOT work is PM’s printer driver in W2K and XP. To solve this I bought the Infoshare version which had Northeast Data Corp’s modified driver. This driver does have a memory limitation which does not allow converting in color at 600DPI on hi density documents. Docucab had a driver that worked better, but I have yet to determine if this utility will work with PM98.

    Install PM98 as usual on W2K/XP and skip past the error screen during the installation. If that fails copy the entire Documagix folder, including all cabinets to the new machine over a network connection or flash drive. Then create an icon to run the pfcload.exe on your desktop. If you have access to the NEDIP utility install that and use it to copy documents into your cab. It will put it in the IN Basket if PM98 is not running, or in the selected drawer/folder that is active. It will not put the document into a file that is open, but ask for a place to stash it.

    It you don’t have access to NEDIP drop me an email.


    1. Tomas C

      Would it be possible to acquire that NEDIP file from you?
      Thanks for all your information and any help possible.

  10. Shaun Harrell

    Thanks for the updates to all. I love the old papermaster98. I bought the upgrade – then deleted it before I screwed up my files. I got the Ultra Image Print driver from / and now back to using this great product on Vista & Win2K.


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