Plato -- Research Management Software (support)
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More about Plato
Who uses it
Using Plato
Database window
Class library
Cross reference
Plato Support
The pages of this website are the first place to start for a general overview of Plato. For more detail, consult the Plato manual (Which is currently in progress. What you'll get is the latest incomplete version (dated 9/6/2011). Download below. When the manual is complete a help file will also be generated and made available. Check back for more complete updates.
File Downloads
If you are a Norton Security user, please read this important note before downloading Plato files.

Here are the latest available updates to Plato files:

Plato executable (build 894, dated 6/16/2012)

Note that the Plato executable will not function unless Plato has first been installed. To replace the existing executable, simply copy the new file over the old. Or, to be on the safe side, rename the old executable "plato_old.exe" (or whatever you wish) before copying the new file to the executable directory.

Plato resource file (version 000.100.894 dated 6/16/2012)

The Plato resource file is provided in plain text with the extension ".new". To use it, place it in the data directory. When plato starts, it will detect the file and autonmatically prepare it for use. This will involve the following:
  • Back up the old resource file by renaming it ('plato_res.txt' to 'plato_res.txt.bak').
  • Delete the existing binary resource file ('plato_res.mem').
  • Rename the new resource file ('' to 'plato_res.txt').
  • Assemble the new binary resource file ('plato_res.mem').
Plato PDF user manual (version 001, dated 6/16/2012)

Sample Databases

None at present.
What Does Plato Need to Run?
Memory A half-gigabyte (512 MB) of main memory should be enough unless you run several memory-hogging applications concurrently. Large databases and concordances will like as much memory as you can give them. With less than half a gigabyte your mileage will vary, but at the worst performance may falter and creep painfully and that can be frustrating.

Disk space The base installation will consume less than 5 megabytes of disk space. The disk space your databases will consume will vary--I use Plato for research and I currently have 15 database files ranging in size from 100 kilobytes to 18 megabytes.

Operating System Plato is a 32 bit application and will run under Windows NT, 2000, XP, or Vista. It will also run on Windows 95 and 98 (if the machines running these older OS's have acceptable memory and processing speed). It might run on a Mac (using one of the Windows XP emulators), but I haven't tried it.
What Are Plato's Limitations?
Database size Database size will be limited by your computer's memory and performance. Plato's databases are loaded entirely into main memory (although for databases with a lot of text there is a paging option that may reduce memory requirements considerably in some cases).

Number of Objects Setting aside the issue of available memory and acceptable performance, you may put up to 2 billion objects in a single database. I can't really imagine how Plato would perform stuffed with 2 billion objects, though. For reference, I am currently using databases with over 31,000 objects with no noticeable performance problems.

Size of Objects Objects may have no more that 30 field attributes. Text in the note field is limited to 2 billion characters but don't try to test this limit unless you have a lot of patience. Performance will once again dictate practical limits. Performance should not degrade significantly with object text of up to 1,000,000 characters. If you are using a concordance set for real time updating, saving changed records will result in a slight processing delay, which may increase as the amount of text in an object increases. I say 'may' because the increase will be less noticeable on faster computers with more memory.

Number of Folders There is no limit to the number of folders you can create beyond the object limit of 2 billion. Your practical limit will again be based on performance and convenience. Folders can be nested to any depth, but Plato's scripting engine will only descend to ten levels of nesting. Folders nested more deeply than this can still be accessed manually however.
Bug Reports
Plato bug reports are found here. If you're having a problem and wonder if it is a bug, check out the bug list.
Build History
Build 876 (10/21/2011) fixes certain rare conditions where the database list loses track of which database is currently loaded.

Build 860 (9/6/2011) fixed array out-of-bounds errors that may occur when deleting markup, attributes, or objects in the class library.
Other Support
Free technical support is available to all Plato users via email. We will also be hosting a blog on this website in the near future, and perhaps an email forum after the official release.

If you do not get a quick response please be patient--it may take a few days to get back to you. ZorbaSoft is a one-person shop and, for the near future at least, email responses are likely to be a weekend activity.

Use the following form to send queries, or send an email to

All site contents copyright 2012 by Zorbasoft
This page last updated on 2012.06.16