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Tongue-tied

Anything to say? My sister (yes, she has a name–it’s Di) mailed me and asked me if I had anything to say today. Not really. I finally won a major victory at work that will result in the departure of two Macintoshes that have become the bane of my existence. The battle came at a high personal price–I’m exhausted and have little to say. Other than an observation that AppleShare IP 6.3 appears to be about as rude as its predecessors. It seems to like MacOS 9, but it also seems very willing to crash MacOS 8.6 and earlier clients. Seeing as these are 100, 120, and 132 MHz machines, upgrading to 9 isn’t exactly practical or worthwhile or cost-effective. So they’re getting brand spanking new Micron PCs with Pentium III 600 chips or whatever it is we’re buying these days. I will be very joyfully installing them in the morning.

———- From: al wynn
Does McAfee still sell Nuts&Bolts?

Exactly how do you use Nuts&Bolts to “sort directory entries by the file’s physical placement on the hard drive” (ie. under which menu item can I find it ?)

Also, what are some good web links (or other resources) that will show me how to optimize Norton Utilities configuration ?

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It’s in Disk Tune. Click Advanced–>Directory Sort–>Sort Criteria. There you can select Cluster number as your directory sort criteria. Under Win95, this makes N&B’s Disk Tune the best defragmenter/optimizer, but under Win98, NU’s Speed Disk and Fix-It’s Defrag Plus have features that will make them outperform Disk Tune in spite of this feature (they actually do some strategic fragmentation to increase speed). I suppose you could optimize the disk with one of the others, then try to get Disk Tune to skip the defragmentation part and just optimize the directories, but I think I tried to figure out how to do that and gave up. Alternatively you could optimize with Disk Tune first, then defragment with one of the others and not do anything with the directory entries–assuming you want to save absolutely every microsecond possible. (Be aware that Disk Tune is a very slow program, so we’re talking diminishing returns here to run it, then run one of the others.)

I haven’t seen a better resource for the utilities suites than chapters 3 and 5 of Optimizing Windows; those chapters were the result of about seven years’ experience messing around with disk utilities (starting under DOS, of course). I’ve never seen a Web site on the subject (good or bad); nor much other information outside of the manuals that came with some of the older versions. That was part of the reason why I wrote my own. I tried to explain what to do with whatever suite you happened to have, as well as the reasoning behind it.

Ultra-useful Windows and DOS utilities (plus Linux stuff)

4/3/00
There are loads of links in this mail. Explore them; you won’t be disappointed.

Hello. I maintain the Interesting DOS programs website and I was pleasantly surprised when I got an email telling me my site was mentioned in your book as a download reference site for XMSDSK.

While I only provided a link to the XMSDSK file on Simtel, it was still great to see my site which I never thought will ever get mentioned in any book, especially a Windows one 🙂

I got your book and I like it (a lot). However, there were some tools I thought should have gotten mentioned (most are mentioned on my site)

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On Page 65, you mentioned FIPS as a tool to resize partitions. While I haven’t tried FIPS, there is another freeware utility which I’ve used several times :

Partition Resizer v1.33 It resizes/moves your FAT16/FAT32 partitions safely without losing the data on it. It doesn’t eliminate the need for FDISK. You use Partition Resizer to resize and rearrange the FAT16/FAT32 partitions to create free space on your drive and then run FDISK to create the partition.

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The Infozip link at http://www.cdrom.com/pub/infozip is orphaned and is no longer updated. An updated link is at ftp://ftp.info-zip.org/pub/infozip/Info-ZIP.html

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On Page 209, you mentioned that internal Zip drives lack DOS drivers, this is not true as I have an internal ZIP drive and I access them from DOS. Perhaps you were trying the older drivers that came with the first Iomega parallel port drive?

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FastVid v1.10 Improves video performance on Pentium Pro and Pentium II PCI/AGP systems. I haven’t tested this myself but you may want to check it out.

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LFN Tools v1.48 These are DOS commands (as stand alone EXE’s) that can handle long filenames in plain DOS. Supports FAT32

For example there is LCOPY which works like XCOPY under a DOS window (copying the long filenames) but in plain DOS. This is useful for diaster recovery situations when you can’t get into Windows and you need to get files off your Windows drive. Other commands include

LMD – create a long directory name LRD – remove a directory with a long directory name (e.g lrd “Program Files”) LDIR – like the DIR command showing long filenames.

The Tools are released under the GPL so source code is available and it is free.

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AVPLite Build 134 Free (yet powerful) command-line antivirus detection and removal program.

The engine is only is only 49K (the antivirus updates are about 1.7MB) but it can scan inside ZIP, TGZ, CAB, mail folders in Netscape and Outlook, DOC files). If there is a virus on a machine, you can have a bootable disk with XMSDSK to create a ramdisk, then have the AVPlite and the antivirus update on separate floppy disks unzipped to the ramdrive and then run AVPlite from the ramdrive.

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Some Linux links :

SET’s editor v0.4.41

GREAT text editor with the fimiliar Borland IDE interface with syntax highlighting. This is literally the FIRST app to install after you boot Linux. Editing text files with Joe, Vi and Emacs were ummmmmm….. kinda difficult ;-). Released under GPL.

(SET edit is also available for DOS with a built-in MP3 player 😉 )

The one page linux manual A PDF containing a summary of useful Linux commands You mentioned on your Silicon Underground that you wished there was a command reference for Linux. This one is close

————————————————————————- Since you mentioned Win3.x program manager, thought I’ll mention this

Calmira II v3.02 Freeware Win95 shell/interface for Windows 3.x, including explorer, etc.

Mask for Windows – PRWin98 Gives Win3.x apps the look and feel of Win9x apps

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Looking forward to your upcoming Linux book (I agree with your sentiments on Silicon Underground – documentation is the main holdback for Linux)

Dev Teelucksingh
devtee@trinidad.net
Interesting DOS programs at http://www.opus.co.tt/dave
Trinidad and Tobago Computer Society at http://www.ttcsweb.org

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Wow. Thanks for all the links. That’ll keep my readers busy for ages and ages to come. I did immediately go download SET edit. Very, very nice.

I’m very glad you like my book and look forward to the Linux book. It’s coming along, faster than the Windows book did, but not as quickly as I’d like. I’m not even willing to hazard a guess when it will be finished at this point.

A year from now, there will probably be twice as many Linux books available as there are now. Maybe more. The quality will vary widely. But we need them. The stuff coming out of the Linux Documentation Project is getting better (or maybe I’m just getting smarter) but the stuff available even six months ago very frequently had gaps that a newcomer wouldn’t be able to climb over: missing steps, poor or inaccurate description of output–all kinds of little things that suggest the author didn’t take the time to step through the process one last time. A plethora of available Linux books will help in more ways than one.

Back to DOS and Windows… Although many people deny it, DOS is still an integral part of Windows, and some things just can’t be accomplished without diving into DOS. Even under NT, I always keep a command line open. I can tell you the last day I didn’t use a command line. It was in June of last year. I know because I was in New Mexico, far away from work and from any of my computers.

So Iomega finally got around to releasing Zip drivers that work with the internal IDE and ATAPI models? About time. We bought a big batch of them at work about two years ago, and I needed to access them from DOS, and nothing. The drivers wouldn’t work. We contacted Iomega, and their line was, “These drives require Windows 95 or newer.” A year later, when I was writing that chapter, drivers still hadn’t appeared. But better late than never.

Thanks again.