Chronolator logo

Release History

This page gives a brief description of the changes made and issues addressed by each published version of Chronolator.

Version 4.0 - released January 27 2021

Major changes

Version 4.0 improves interoperability with the browser tools at The browser tools, hitherto not widely publicised and known only to a few customers, were themselves upgraded and officially released at the same time.

Other significant changes

  • Uncertain Dates and Times. When a date or time is uncertain, it can be prefixed with a question mark. Chronolator sorts it as if it were an exact date or time.
  • Alphabetic times. 'midnight', 'midday ' and 'mid-day ' are allowed in a time column.
  • Abbreviations.
    • More information about a potentially duplicated abbreviation is given in the error message when trying to define or change one
    • Punctuation marks are prevented in terms and definitions so they can be recognised when using the Glossary to review the chronology text

A complete description of all the changes can be seen in this document.

Version 3.5 - released September 26 2019

Major changes

Version 3.5 introduces the ability to interface with new browser tools being developed at It also corrects some minor problems. A complete description can be seen in this document.

The following paragraphs summarise the most significant changes.

  • Browser tools.

    The Chronolator Browser Tools use your web browser to process chronologies.

    It is important to note that only the software resides on the Web. Your chronologies stay on your computer, completely under your control. Their confidentiality is not compromised.

    The tools will eventually include everything in the Microsoft Word™ version of Chronolator - and more.

  • Digitally signed macros. Chronolator Version 3.5 macros use a newer digital signature than Version 3.4. If you made Berrick Computing Ltd a Trusted Publisher under 3.4, you will need to do so again for 3.5.


Version 3.4 - released April 29 2017

Major changes

Version 3.4 improves stability and performance, introduces some new features, and enhances some existing features. A complete description can be seen in this document.

The following paragraphs summarise the most significant changes.

  • Digitally signed macros. Chronolator Version 3.4 macros are 'digitally signed' by Berrick Computing Ltd, which means that Word checks they have not been tampered with since they were published.
  • Analysis Tool. A new Analysis feature at Publish > Analysis analyses event counts and produces a new document summarising them by month and by source.
  • Source Prefix processing.
    • Formatting and case errors in Source Prefixes are automatically corrected when checking tables;
    • When importing a document, the proposed Source Prefix is checked against existing prefixes in the importing document to prevent accidental mistyping resulting in similar but not identical Source Prefixes (e.g. 'Berrick Care' and 'berrick Care').
  • Licensing. Internal Chronologies are now licensed for up to 6 months from when they are created, subject to a maximum of 1 month after the customer's Online Workbench licence expires. Chronology document licences can be extended for up to 3 months at a time by entering a password, again subject to a maximum of 1 month after the Online Workbench licence expires.

Other changes

  • Sequence Number Tool. When adding a Sequence Column, it is now automatically populated with reference numbers.
  • Date processing. '12 noon', '12 midnight', 'noon' and 'midnight' are accepted as valid.
  • 'Advanced' Menu. A new Advanced menu has been added to the toolbar to allow users who cannot add the Developer tab to the Ribbon to use previously hidden macros.
  • Published Add-ins. Add-ins can now be downloaded from here. At the time of writing, one add-in is available:
    • c8Addin34Age03 adds a column to the right hand end of the chronology table, filling it with the interval in years and months between a chosen date and each event.
  • Internal Chronologies now include page numbers in the footer.
  • The Admin > Abbreviations tool has moved to Tools > Glossary > Edit.

Bugs fixed

The list below shows the most significant bugs which have been fixed. Some unreported minor bugs were also eliminated.

Word issues message Word cannot complete the save due to a file permission error, and / or a Microsoft Visual Basic error Run-time Error '5487' when saving a Chronolator document

This seems to be a bug in Word, possibly linked to timing problems between an anti-virus program and something like Google Drive.

Version 3.4 detects the problem and circumvents it.

Chronolator issues Message 3105 Chronolator table contains invalid rows when importing a Chronolator document, but using Check Tables in the documents shows no such rows.

This is a bug in Word. Chronolator Version 3.4 avoids it.

I get a Microsoft Visual Basic error Run-time Error '5992': Cannot access individual columns ... when using the Highlight Source or Sequence features.

This is a bug in Word. Chronolator Version 3.4 avoids it.

Version 3.3 - released May 31 2014

Major changes

Version 3.3 introduces a number of new features which will benefit reviewers as well as administrators. It includes full support for 64-bit versions of Word, helps prevent a number of problems which customers have reported since Version 2.1, and processes large files much more quickly. A complete description can be seen in this document.

The following paragraphs summarise the most significant changes.

  • Anonymisation and Personalisation. Chronolator can anonymise a document according to the entries in its Abbreviations Glossary. As it can be hard for a reviewer to build up a mental picture of the people involved in a review when they are only referred to by their initials, Chronolator allows you to switch between anonymised and personalised views.
  • Colour coding. Documents can be colour-coded according to the agency that reported them.
  • Narrative chronology formats. A new document can be produced which transforms a tabular chronology into a variety of narrative formats, including elapsed times from the start of the chronology.
  • Reference numbers and Sequencing. A Sequencing column can be included in a chronology table which Chronolator can automatically populate with event reference numbers. The column can also be used it to specify the order of events on a particular day when their times are not known.
  • Samples and Exercises. The samples documents have been reworked, and can now be used in conjunction with a set of exercises in the new Using Chronolator Samples document.
  • Add-ins. Add-ins allow new features to be implemented more quickly by the creation of stand-alone additions which can be attached to a chronology. For example, there is an add-in to produce the timelines required by the Child Practice Reviews introduced in Wales in 2013.
  • Default document format. .docm is now the default document format, reflecting Microsoft's withdrawal of support for Word 2003 on April 8 2014. Documents can still be saved and used in the old .doc format if required.

Bugs fixed

The list below shows the most significant bugs which have been fixed. Some unreported minor bugs were also eliminated.

Invalid characters pasted from Age and Interval Calculator

This could occur in some maintenance levels of Windows 8. Chronolator now circumvents the underlying problem.

Runtime error 52 when opening the Chronolator Online Workbench if it is stored on a Sharepoint site

The VBA Dir command fails when a document is stored in Sharepoint. Chronolator no longer uses the Dir command.

Word documents becomes temporary ones, causing work to be lost

In Word XP and 2003, a particular combination of Word options causes an open document to become a temporary one when Auto Save is triggered. Unfortunately, one of the offending options is recommended by Chronolator for performance reasons. If the user accepts the recommendation and also has the other options set, this bug can be activated. The document title shown at the top of the Word display changes to something like ~WRC0001.tmp, and subsequent changes are made to this temporary file rather than the one the user opened originally, resulting in work being lost.

Chronolator now avoids this combination of options.

Cannot password-protect a chronology

There are two ways to set a password for a Word document. One of them fails in Chronolator versions prior to 3.3.

Refer to Word bugs affecting password protection of Chronolator documents for more information.

‘No Data Tables Found’ when table contains smart quotes

Chronolator could not find tables whose headings contained Word's Smart Quotes. As of version 3.3, it can.

Version 2.1 - released September 15 2010

Major changes

Version 2.1 includes support for the 32-bit version of Word 2010 and helps prevent a number of problems which customers have reported since Version 2.0. A complete description can be seen in this document.

The following paragraphs summarise the most significant changes.

  • Enforcement of the Word 97-2003 file format (.doc), which provides maximum compatibility between organisations who circulate Chronolator documents. Please note that Word 2007 and 2010 are perfectly happy to process this file format.
  • Improved processing of files stored on Network Drives. Chronolator 2.1 encourages and simplifies setting a Word option which was introduced in Word XP. Using this option has been found to improve performance and prevent problems experienced by some customers. 
  • Suspension of Chronolator processing when Word's Tracked Changes feature is active. Tracked Changes can corrupt any Word table, not just a Chronolator one. Chronolator 2.1 detects when the feature is active and will not make potentially dangerous changes while it is. It also provides an easy way to accept all changes and turn the feature off.

Bugs fixed

Runtime Error - 2147418113 ... Could not set the Curline Property ... when opening a Chronolator document

This error was encountered when opening an unlicensed document, or when trying to view the licence in a licensed one. Chronolator now circumvents the underlying bug in some word versions.

Word 2010: 64-bit version crashes or hangs when opening a Chronolator document

Chronolator 2.1 issues a message that 64-bit Word is not supported, and then allows the user to close the document normally. Full support for 64-bit Word is included in Chronolator Version 3.3.

Word 2010: Runtime Error 5891 - That property is not available on that object when opening the Online Workbench

Word 2010 withdrew one of the commands Chronolator used when opening the Online Workbench. Chronolator now uses the command which replaced it.

Version 2.0 - released August 20 2007

Major changes

Version 2.0 is a major release including extensive enhancements. A complete list can be seen in this document. The following paragraphs summarise the most significant changes.

  • The Online Workbench now includes a Wizard to help produce new Internal Chronology documents. The Wizard simplifies the process in several ways: for example, you can model a new chronology on an existing one, and changing the order of columns is much easier.
  • Chronolator Documents include a number of new features:
    • they can include a Glossary of Abbreviations. A column can be designated which can only include abbreviations which are defined in the Glossary;
    • duplicate rows can be highlighted or deleted, making it much easier to incorporate updates to agency chronologies which have already been imported into Composite Chronologies;
    • a handy Age and Interval calculator is included on the Toolbar.
  • Animated Tutorials demonstrate the principal features of the product.

Bugs fixed

Runtime error 5991 when checking or merging tables.

This error was encountered if a table included vertically merged cells. Chronolator now checks for vertically merged cells and highlights them along with other errors.

Version 1.3 - released May 22 2006

Major changes

  • Dates can be formatted to the International Standard Date format (ISO 8601) as well as 'dd mmm yyyy'. The ISO standard is 'yyyy-mm-dd', for example 2006-05-22.
  • Tables can be sorted in Descending order as well as Ascending.

Version 1.2 - released February 3 2006

Bugs fixed

Errors are not highlighted, or corrected errors stay highlighted after pressing 'Check Tables'.

This could be circumvented by scrolling up or down until the highlighting is off the page, then scrolling back.

Occasionally when merging tables, a row would split into two or more rows.

The most likely symptom you would notice is that the resulting rows are marked as errors because they do not have a valid date.

Certain maintenance levels of Word 2000 fail to sort a table correctly

The changes to VBA table processing included in Word maintenance KB824936 fix this problem. However, rather than expecting customers to ask their IT departments to apply maintenance to Word, we developed a circumvention in this release. Affected users can change the dates to the ISO date format before sorting. The dates can be redone as 'dd mmm yyyy' after the sort if desired.

Other changes

  • An error message is now issued if the Word version is lower than 2000.
  • Documentation about setting macro security has been improved, it being made clear that Word must be shut down and restarted after making changes.

Version 1.1 - released June 2005

First publicly released version.

Chronolator - the chronology tool. Copyright © 2005 - 2021 Berrick Computing Ltd. All rights reserved.

Contact us at