For What It's Worth (FWIW) - Monthly Comic Value Updater V5.3.5

Updated with data through June, 2010    

New Users:  Follow the directions below and be sure to download and extract ALL 3 FILES.  Some new users forget the third file, in which case, the app won't work.


DISCLAIMER:  This information is provided absolutely free, and in no way implies any connection with any comic price guide or publisher.  This is simply the electronic version of asking a friend to look up a value.

IMPORTANT: Make sure you always have the latest version of the program files (last updated on 04/09/2004 - v5.3.5) and the Monthly Update file (last updated 06/27/2010 - through June 2010).

1. The Monthly Update File (1006.EXE)

This is a self extracting zip file that contains the Access database with the actual data (VALUPDATE.MDB), updated through June, 2010. This file now includes over 220,000 records, and updates for nearly 300,000 issues.  Extract this file into the directory where Realms is installed (the default is C:\REALMS50)

There is also a "No History" version (no_history_1006.exe) available.   This file contains only the most recent value for any issues in the full database.   It's somewhat smaller than the full file, if you wish to save some space and download time, and don't care about seeing the history of value changes for any particular issue. 

2. The Update Application Program files V5.3.5 (PROGRAMS.EXE)

It is a self extracting zip file containing 2 files.  

File Name


Last Updated


VALUPDATE32.EXE This is the executable file that runs the update application 04/09/2003 (V5.3.5) You always need the most current version (5.3.5) of this file.  Click here to see what's new in this version.

Create a shortcut to this to run it.
VALHELP.CHM This is the new helpfile 08/29/2003 You can review this in FWIW, run it stand alone, or look at the help here on the web, which has the same info.

You should always get the latest version of the PROGRAMS.EXE file. It was last updated on  April 9, 2004 (version 5.3.5)

Please Note:  The current version includes a great idea from a user that should significantly speed up your update.  On the Options window (click the Options button on the toolbar), check Show Issues for Matched Titles Only, and the update process will only look at the titles that match those in your collection, instead of going through everything.  It should have always worked this way, but I never thought of it (duh!!!).  You can run the option to check all your titles for matches from the File menu, and, it will run automatically anytime you make changes to the matches.

It may take a minute or so to update your data with the matches, but the time saved during the actual update process is well worth it.

PROGRAMS.EXE is a self extracting zip file. Extract the 2 files into the same directory where you installed Realms V5.x.x (the default is C:\Realms50). The name of the actual program to run is VALUPDATE32.EXE, so be sure to create a shortcut to it so you can run the application from your desktop.

3. One time only download files (FIRSTTIME.EXE)

This is a self extracting zip file containing 2 files.    

File Name Description Last Upd Comments
CROSSREF32.MDB This file holds the cross ref between the titles as you named them, vs. how they appear in the update database 10/8/99 You only need to download this once.  Realms will import your current match data when you run the new version the first time.
UPDATE.INI This holds all your settings 10/8/98 This is the "default" version.  You will have to reset some of your settings from your earlier version

You should only download this file once, since it contains files that you update every time you run the update program. These files contain the defaults, so if you copy them over your existing files, you will lose the links you've made on the Match window, and will have to do that again. So, only download this the first time. Copy both files into the directory where you installed Realms

You should download the actual application files (number 2 above) any time a more recent version is available (which shouldn't be too often). Other than that, each month all you have to do is download the the Monthly Update file (number 1 above) and then extract it (it will copy over over the old one).

If you have not gotten the message from the clever little graphic to the left, let me reiterate (I cannot stress this point strongly enough) - before running the Update,

Backup your Realms of Wonder data file - REALMS50.MDB.

I always copy my Realms50.mdb file to another directory before running the update. That way, if anything goes wrong (it shouldn't), I simply copy it back, and I'm back where I was. In addition, I would make sure I have a copy on a floppy (or anywhere other than the hard drive).

The update process changes data on many of the records in your collection. Making a backup prior to running the update guarantees you can always set everything back to the way it was.

Make sure to review the detailed instructions here. The help has been updated with the latest version info, so please review it here, or download the latest help file.

Return to Realms of Wonder

 Creating Shortcuts to files:
     If you're fairly new to windows, this sometimes seems like a pain, but it's really pretty easy.
  • Open Explorer
  • Find the file you wish to run (VALUPDATE32.EXE, in our case)
  • Drag it off the explorer window and drop it anywhere you want on the desktop
  • Single click on the label below the icon - it will say "Shortcut to Valupdate32.exe"
  • Change the label to anything you want