Subject: Information about COM_PKG2
COM_PKG2 is a buffered serial port I/O package. This allows the PC to overlap
computation with serial I/O. John Romkey wrote the original version at MIT at
a time when there was no accurate information published on the quirks of
the National 8530 uart chip. This package allowed him to run early versions
of the IP/TCP package over a serial line without doing busy wait I/O.
Among many commercial and non-commercial programs which use descendants of this
package is DLX the multi line BBS from Inner Loop Software (our own editor
and founder of Info-IBMPC: Dick Gillmann). DLX has expanded this driver to
support 9 simultaneous serial ports. It would not be possible to support
9 users at one time on a standard PC without this sort of serial I/O package.
I should also mention that DLX is written in Microsoft Pascal and is the BBS
we use in support of info-ibmpc.
COM_PKG2.ASM is one of the most popular programs in the info-ibmpc library.
I thought that since it is nearly 4 years old a little history might be
in order for some of the newer readers of the digest.