More FX Equation Information

It appears that we have had two FX Equation issues operating coincidentally, which makes life much harder for everyone. We have now isolated the two issues and can explain them in full.

The Dodgy Microsoft Update

As noted in the previous blog entry, Microsoft have released an update to Word 2016 that causes FX Equation equations, MathType equations and Microsoft’s own equation editor equations to not align with the text and can possibly have the top of the graphic chopped off. The affected version is 16.0.4498.1000. This issue is totally outside of our control and is currently being worked on by Microsoft.

We have had some reports that removing the update fixes the problem. The update causing the issue is the KB3178674 Security Update. There are three potential problems with this:

a) The update was created to address an undisclosed security issue in the software and removing the update could potentially put your computer at risk.
b) You will need to turn off automatic updates for Office otherwise the update will be automatically reapplied. You will also need to turn automatic updating back on in the future.
c) Uninstalling updates is not simple and will almost certainly require the attention of your IT services.

As this issue is totally outside of our control, we are not making any recommendations as to what should be done.

The Timing Issue

On some computers, when inserting an FX Equation object into Word, FX Equation is not returning the graphic to Word. Instead it is returning a large square. This can either happen intermittently or just about all the time.

This issue seems to be caused by a timing issue between FX Equation and Word. Word is asking for a graphic but not waiting for the graphic to be provided. We have not been able to recreate the issue here but have inserted a very short delay into the process (250ms to be precise) which seems to have fixed the issue for all users who have tested the fix. The new version is available online now.

As far as we can tell the two issues are unrelated but their coincidence has been very frustrating for everybody involved. Hopefully this is the end of the problems.

About efofexsoftware

Efofex Software produces graphic production software designed specifically for secondary mathematics and science teachers.
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