TMA SoftStar News November 2010

by Hank Friedman

AstroDatabank Revisited

Because I've had several requests from astrologers, I looked into the issue of running AstroDatabank on Windows Vista and Windows 7 PCs. I found a couple of different solutions, which you can read on my software weblog page: /softstar.htm

I tested one method on a PC running Windows 7 Professional. I installed the free XP Mode (available from Microsoft), and then installed AstroDatabank within the XP Mode, and it worked like a charm. This is the easiest method of getting AstroDatabank to work on a Windows 7 PC.

If you are planning to upgrade to Windows 7, and want to run AstroDatabank, be sure to get the Professional or Ultimate edition, which are required in order to install XP Mode.

Kepler 7.0 with Windows Vista And Windows 7

I just discovered that for versions of Kepler 7.0 shipped before the release of Windows Vista, if installed on PCs running Windows Vista or Windows 7, the Avalon School astrology lessons, the Help System, and the AstroEncyclopedia do not work.

Fortunately, you can purchase an update CD from Cosmic Patterns for $26 (including U.S. shipping) that fixes these issues and includes all of the updates to Kepler, too.

Planetary Aspects and Transits - A new astrology program

Planetary Aspects and Transits, aka PAT, is available from Hermetic Systems for $29.45, and runs on Windows PCs. It was primarily designed to help astrologers explore world transits, i.e. patterns between transiting planets. As such, it doesn't employ an atlas or use location coordinates (except for time zones) and doesn't calculate angles, houses, or Moon positions. It offers both Tropical and Sidereal Zodiacs, and the ability to choose aspect orbs and to select the color of aspect lines.

PAT's author, Peter Meyer, created PAT to find and depict the patterns mentioned in Richard Tarnas's landmark book "Cosmos and Psyche". Like Dr. Tarnas, PAT constructs charts using conjunctions, oppositions, trines, squares, sextiles, semisextiles, and quincunxes.

You can enter the date and time (to the nearest half hour) for a transit chart, and optionally for two natal charts. PAT can display a chart wheel, or an aspect grid (and list how many of each type of aspects there are in the chart and any midpoints & aspect patterns that exist).

PAT can also display a text listing of the start and end dates of each aspect (for transit and transit-to-natal charts), and a listing of the aspects by orb for natal charts. While viewing a table of the transit-to-natal aspects, if you click on an aspect, PAT displays a graph of the aspect's formation over time (both before and after the transit date).

For two charts (either transit-to-natal or the two natal charts), PAT depicts both sets of planets within one circle, highlighting one of the sets of planets in inverse (white background), and drawing aspect lines between the planets from each chart.

You can animate the transit chart, or transits around a natal chart, and watch the aspects form and subside. More importantly, you can quickly search for when specific patterns will occur, including grand trines, kites, mystical rectangles, T-squares, grand crosses, yods, yod kites, and trapezia.

Planetary Aspects and Transits is an inexpensive astrology program that is well designed for those who want to explore what patterns between the planets will form over time.


2010 Hank Friedman - all rights reserved

Hank Friedman is a professional Western and Vedic astrologer, author, and teacher. Visit his Web site,, for free in-depth astrology tutorials and software guidance. You can contact him at for help in choosing the right astrology software for you.

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