Contents of the NLMERGE.DOC file
NLMERGE Documentation, Revision 1.00
Copyright 1993 by Edward J. Beroset. All rights reserved.
NLMERGE.EXE is a freeware OS/2 program which merges FidoNet(r) NodeDiff
files with their corresponding NodeList files.
How to Use NLMERGE
NLMERGE is a text-based OS/2 program which can run either by running it
from the OS/2 command line. or by double-clicking its icon. When run
from the command line, NLMERGE automatically searches for the latest
uncompressed NODELIST and NODEDIFF which are assumed to be in the
current directory. These file names have the form NODELIST.nnn and
NODEDIFF.nnn where the nnn specifies the day of the year (from 0 to 365)
that the file was issued. When NLMERGE finds a NodeList and NodeDiff
file, it opens them both, verifies that they are compatible (e.g. the
NodeDiff file refers to that version of the NodeList) and generates an
output NodeList file which corresponds to the same file naming
convention. On completion, the CRC of the output NodeList file is
checked and if it's verified, the old NodeList and NodeDiff files are
deleted. If the CRC is not correct, the new NodeList file is deleted.
Command Line Switches
-s save the old nodelist and nodediff files. (default is to delete)
-r recursively process multiple nodediff files. (default is single)
-? displays this help text.
When a command line switch is specified, it has the effect listed above.
Multiple switches may be combined except for the -? switch. When the -?
switch is specified, only the help text is printed and no merge is done.
If for some reason, you wish to keep the old nodediff and nodelist
files, you may use the -s switch to save them. Note that if NLMERGE
generates a new nodelist which fails the CRC verification, it will
delete this bad file regardless of whether the -s switch was used. The
-r switch allows multiple nodediff files to be applied successively to a
nodelist. This is useful if, for example, you haven't automated your
point or BBS setup and wish to apply a number of nodediffs at once to
obtain the current nodelist.
Return Errorlevel Codes
NLMERGE will return zero only when at exactly one nodelist has been
successfully merged. In the case that multiple nodelists are merged in
a single pass, NLMERGE will return normally return 1, but it is assumed
that multipass mode will not be used in a batch file. NLMERGE will
return 1 if no nodelists are merged, and -1 if the syntax was incorrect.
The FidoNet(r) NodeList is an electronically distributed text list of
FidoNet electronic bulletin board systems (BBSs). The list details
information on some subset of these BBSs, including their FidoNet
addresses, sysop name, telephone number, and various descriptive flags.
With the explosion of the network, the NodeList has gotten very large.
As of this writing, the NodeList just for zone 1 (roughly North and
South America) is about 2.2 megabytes of data. Because of its large
size, weekly updates to the NodeList are currently distributed as
NodeDiff files instead of complete NodeLists. The NodeDiff file is a
text file which contains instructions on how to modify the current
NodeList to bring it up to date. A computer program is used to
interpret and apply these instructions to the old NodeList. NLMERGE is
such a program.
This program, NLMERGE.EXE was written mixed in C++ and assembly language
and follows the specifications described in FTS-0005 (FTS = FidoNet
Technical Standards) which is available on many FidoNet bulletin boards.
NLMERGE.EXE is Copyright (c) 1994 by Edward J. Beroset.
You may contact me via email through my FidoNet address 1:3641/1.250.
NLMERGE is freeware. You don't have to send me money to use it, but
none will be refused. I think it's worth about $10, and if you agree,
go ahead and send it to me at the address below to earn my gratitude.
That's all I can guarentee you'll receive. Suggestions for new
versions, improvements, bug fixes, general accolades, etc. may be sent
as well and would be (almost) as appreciated as a crisp ten dollar bill.
P.O. Box 16142
Chapel Hill, NC 27516
The next major revision of this program may include a FrontDoor
compatible nodelist compiler and possible some other additional
features. Those who send in ten bucks for this version will be fondly
remembered at that time. 🙂
Fido(r) and FidoNet(r) are registered marks of Tom Jennings and Fido
OS/2 is a trademark of International Business Machines, Inc.