How to work with text files  

    You can open various kinds of text files (*.txt, *.tab, *.bta, *.pro, *.crd ) with MusEdit by either using File|Open and selecting the appropriate type from the "Files of type:" list box, or you can simply drag the file's icon onto either the icon (or shortcut) for MusEdit (if it is not open) or onto the open MusEdit window.

There are several ways MusEdit can handle text files, depending on the options set in File|Set Preferences|Translating, Scrolling, Text Files, MIDI. Initially, MusEdit has none of the options checked, which is the situation described here.

When you open the text file a window will appear with the text file visible. You may get a message "This file doesn't have normal line breaks. Do you want them inserted automatically?" This means the text file was probably created on a Mac or a Unix computer, both of which use a different system to represent "start a new line" from that used by Windows computers. You probably want to insert breaks, otherwise the whole file will appear as one long line, so choose yes, and wait a moment... (note, however, that after line breaks are inserted the file will now have extra square-shaped symbols if it is now viewed on a Mac). Once line breaks are inserted you have a Text file, in a Text window (NOT a MusEdit window!)  You can't insert staff, tab or any other MusEdit style lines in this window -it's more like an ordinary Notepad window.
Note: The first Text File preference allows you to force MusEdit to insert Windows-style line breaks automatically (without asking you) if it detects the fact they aren't present.

Example 1: Converting Text-Tab to Graphical Tab
    Now you can copy any or all of the text to a MusEdit window if you wish.  First create a new MusEdit window with File|New (or Ctrl+N).  Now go back to the Text window and select everything, if you wish (use the Windows Notepad sytle short cut to do this: Ctrl+Shift+End), copy it (Ctrl+C), click on the new MusEdit window, then paste the text (Ctrl+V).  You've now translated all the plain ascii text lines into a series of MusEdit-style text lines.
Note: The second Text File preference allows you to "Open text files as MusEdit" meaning MusEdit will automatically convert all the text to MusEdit-style "text lines" and open them in a MusEdit document, accomplishing the same as the steps described above.

Now you probably want to change all those text-tab lines (tab lines written as text) into graphical MusEdit tab lines so that they can be easily edited, translated to treble, transposed, etc.  To do this you will have to put the caret in the top of each group of six text-tab lines (anywhere in the top line, but do make sure it's the TOP line!) and select Options|Translate Current Line(s)...|To Tab.  The graphical tab version of the text lines should appear under the last text-tab line:

Slight corrections might be necessary...

Repeat these translation steps for each group of text-tab lines.
Note: Instead of doing one text-tab group at a time, you can select the entire document (Ctrl+Shift+E) and then select Options|Translate|To Tab and MusEdit will scan the entire document for what seem to be text-tab groups of lines and then automatically translate them to graphical tab, accomplishing the same as the steps described above.
Also note: The third Text File preference "Auto-translate text-tab" means that when you open the document MusEdit will do the same "auto-translate" described in the previous note.

If you want to extract all your newly created tab lines into a purely graphical file, hit the "Show/hide text lines" button in the main toolbar (about 2/3 of the way down the row of buttons) -this will hide all the text lines; then choose Edit|Select Everything (Ctrl+Shift+E); copy everything (Ctrl+C); create a new MusEdit file (Ctrl+N); and paste the clipboard into the new file (Ctrl+V).  Done!  If all you want is the tab, you can dump the "intermediate files" you created along the way, but you may want to copy comments, lyrics, etc. from either the text or the MusEdit file.
Note: The last Text File preference "Remove text-tab after translation" means that when you open the document MusEdit will do the same "auto-translate" described in the previous note and then remove the original text-tab lines, accomplishing the step above. This is risky though, since you probably want to check MusEdit's translation against the original lines before removing them!

Example 2: Converting Chord Names to Chord Diagrams
    For this example you would want to open a text file which contains chord names (eg. A D Fm Cmaj7 etc.), ideally they would be in lines consisting solely of chord names (eg. above lyrics).  Select everything (use the Windows Notepad style short cut to do this: Ctrl+Shift+End); create a new MusEdit file; then paste the clipboard into the new file.  Once again, you've translated all the text into MusEdit-style text lines.

The easiest thing to do now is to select everything (Ctrl+Shift+E) then choose Options|Translate Current Line(s)...|To Chord and hopefully all the chords (and only the chords) will translate to chord diagrams.  A few things can go wrong however:

1) the chord names must be separated by spaces on each side of each name:
     eg.  Am  B7  F#m7               is OK,
  but    AmB7  F#m7(5th fret)    won't work.

2) Some chords may not be recognized  eg. Amb7add9Dim5

3) If you select everything then lyric lines containing things such as
      " A cowboy likes beans, and eats ' Em every day! "
    may get translated into two chords ( A and Em ) which you weren't expecting!

Here's an example, using the actual line above ( if you're running MusEdit right now you can
actually select the line above, and paste it into a MusEdit document, then translate the line ):

Notice that the B7 chord name shows up, but the chord diagram isn't visible.  That's because it's too close to the Am diagram.  If you insert a couple of spaces in front of the "B7" the chord diagram will suddenly pop into view when there's room for it.

Example 3: Converting MusEdit tab to text
This is the easiest!  Select the tab lines in the MusEdit document, copy them, and paste them into a text document.  Suddenly you'll see text-tab similar to the sample in example 1 above.  This works for chord lines too!