Software That Shuffles A Pc's Cards

PCMCIA CARDS, WHICH MAKE possible credit-card-size modems, disk drives, and memory add-ins for laptop computers, were designed to be super-easy to use. Computers were supposed to recognize cards when they were inserted and automatically reconfigure themselves.

Alas, the execution has fallen short of the promise. Older laptops, in particular, have a hard time working with many PCMCIA cards, and using more than one card, even if a PC has multiple slots, can be frustrating.

CardWizard Pro from SystemSoft Corp. is designed to bring order to the chaos. The $69.95 software package examines the cards in your system and helps you through the process of eliminating conflicts and installing missing support software--sort of a built-in support technician. Then, CardWizard Pro remembers and automatically configures the card each time it is inserted.

Sound pretty good? Microsoft Corp. thinks so. The company has licensed similar software from SystemSoft for use in Windows 95, expected later this year. But CardWizard Pro is more advanced, supporting 400 cards and up to 95% of portable PCs on the market. Even better, it will be available in retail outlets in May.