Dec 262017
VBBS FidoNET Mail Tosser/Scanner Revision 06, for VBBS 5.60a2.
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VBBS FidoNET Mail Tosser/Scanner Revision 06, for VBBS 5.60a2.
File Name File Size Zip Size Zip Type
VFIDO.DOC 19986 6856 deflated
VFIDO.EXE 207564 98589 deflated

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Contents of the VFIDO.DOC file

VBBS / Fido Gateway Version 5.60.06

Copyright Neil J Marshall 2nd February 1993
TransAtlanticBBS (+44-689-890937)
1 @ 440 VirtualNET
Neil J Marshall @ 2:440/211 Fido


Initial Configuration Of VFIDO To Give E-Mail Functionality
Configuration Of VFIDO To Add Conference Functionality
Configuration Of VFIDO To Add Interface To FrontDoor
Creation Of A Fido Network List For Use By VBBS
Summary Of VFIDO Command Syntax
Technical Information
Development History


This program is designed to create an interface between the VBBS
software written by Roland de Graaf and any Fido-compatible
network. FidoNET itself is the largest hobbyist network in the
world, with over 14,000 BBS as members, and there are literally
thousands of smaller Fido-compatible networks worldwide.

This version of the interface program allows the exchange of
private mail and public message areas between VBBS and Fido. It
no longer requires the use of FrontDoor to handle the calls to and
from other Fido BBS, although you can continue to use FrontDoor if
you so desire.

Initial Configuration Of VFIDO To Give E-Mail Functionality

Place the VFIDO.EXE program in your VBBS directory.

Run VCONFIG.EXE, and select Network Configuration for the Fido
(type 4) network you are configuring.

1. Fido Address: 2:440/211
Your Fido network primary address in Zone:Net/Node.Point format)
2. NetMail Directory: C:\VBBS\NETMAIL
Where Fido netmail will be stored - must be the same for all your
Fido networks
3. OutBound Directory: C:\VBBS\OUTBOUND
Where Fido EchoMail will be stored - must be the same for all your
Fido networks
4. Archiver: PAK
Compression method for outgoing EchoMail - PAK, LHA, ZIP, ARJ
5. UnArchiver: PAK
Compression method for incoming EchoMail - PAK, LHA, ZIP, ARJ
6. FIDO Front-End: Standalone
Standalone or FrontDoor are only valid options at this stage
7. Nodelist Name: NODELIST
The name of the nodelist for the network
8. Zones: 1-7
The range of Zones that belong to that network (ie the Domain)

D. Dial List
1. System Address: 2:440/59
Fido address of node to call
2. Phone Number: 0689-824890
Full phone number to dial
3. Poll Priority: Hold
Hold means never call, Priority is call as soon as mail is
waiting, once a day is the final option
4. Preferred Session Type: EMSI (FSC-0056) w/Zmodem (DSZ)
EMSI or TSYNCH handshaking selection
5. Session Password: FRED
The password to use in the EMSI session with the other BBS,
which may be blank

R. Routing
1: 2:440/59 2:440/59
Fido address of server and routing mask including wildcards. The
routing logic works top to bottom through this list so you can't
add anything meaningful after the last line with the *:*/* on it.
2: 1:1/1 1:*/*
3: 2:440/6 *:*/*
A)dd Lines E)dit Lines D)elete Empty Lines Q)uit:

1: 2:440/59.3
Alternative address for the board - must be same Zone
2: 2:440/0
A)dd Lines E)dit Lines D)elete Empty Lines Q)uit:

Once this configuration is completed, go to the main VBBS directory
and run:


You must rerun this every time you change the above configuration

You will also need set up a file containing phone prefix aliases
called VFIDO.FON in your DATA subdirectory. This is used to ensure
that the phone numbers listed in the nodelist are converted to a
format that can be dialed from your BBS. This is used for removing
your country code for national calls and area code for local calls.
VFIDO needs the correct phone numbers listed so it can call any BBS
in the nodelist when Crash Mail, File Attaches or File Requests are

An example of this file for the USA would be:

011- The prefix for dialing international phone numbers
1-616-399- 399- Sets up the toll free codes for your area code
1-616- 1- Makes all other calls in your area code long distance
1- 1- Ensures all US phone numbers are not made international

This example would convert a phone number listed as 1-616-399-4818 to
399-4818, or convert 1-616-772-0482 to 1-772-0482, or 44-689-890937 to

and for Europe:

010- The prefix for international calls
44-689- Strip the country and area code for local calls
44- 0- Add a 0 prefix for national calls

As an example, the above would convert an international phone number
listed in the nodelist as 1-616-399-4818 to 010-1-616-399-4818, or a
national number in the nodelist as 44-689-890937 to 0-689-890937.

Place the unarchived nodelist into the C:\VBBS\NETMAIL directory and


You will need to rerun this every time you receive a new NODELIST or
you change the VFIDO.FON.

Sending E-Mail Using VFIDO

To send an E-Mail message from VBBS to any Fido-type network, invoke
the E-Mail routine as normal. The User Network Address field should be
completed in the format User [email protected] Address, so to send E-Mail to me
use Neil J [email protected]:440/211.

If you want to send Crash Mail, that is where the E-Mail is sent
directly to the addressee's BBS, ignoring the routing logic, then
add a " +c" after the addressee's name, so to send Crash Mail to me use
Neil J Marshall [email protected]:440/211.

In Fido-type networks it is policy that messages with files attached
must go directly to the addressee's BBS and ignore the routing logic,
so if you attach a file to a message it will be held on your board
awaiting a call from the addressee's BBS unless you send it Crash Mail
or the addressee is one of the BBSs in your dialing list that you call.

File Requests Using VFIDO

If you want to send a File Request to another Fido-type BBS invoke the
e-mail routine as normal. The User Network Address field should be
completed in the format Sysop [email protected] Address, where the " +f" is the
switch to indicate this is a File Request. The Filename requested is
put in the Title field of the message. All File Requests are sent direct
to the addressee's BBS and ignore routing. If the addressee's BBS is not
one that you have set up in your dialing list, then you must also use
the +c switch to make the File Request a Crash E-Mail. To request the
latest version of VFIDO from me, you would invoke the E-Mail function
and address it to Sysop +f [email protected]:440/211, then make the Title of the
message VFIDO.

VFIDO also supports incoming File Requests. When a File Request is
received, VFIDO searches each of the File Areas that you have set up in
VCONFIG and sends the file back if it is found. VFIDO also supports
"Magic Names" for File Requests - this is where a pseudonym is
associated with an actual file for ease of access by calling systems.
Magic Names should be set up in the file VFIDO.MAG in your DATA
directory. The format of this file is one entry per line, giving the
"Magic Name" followed by the full path and filename of the file to
associate with the Magic Name, for example
might be some of the most common ones.

If you want a "standard letter" sent in response to each file request,
create this letter in a file called FILEREQ.TXT in your TEXT path.
Generally a Fido Sysop should use this to list the Magic Names
applicable to their BBS.

Configuration Of VFIDO To Add Conference Functionality

If you want to access public message areas in Fido, you will
need to know the AREA name that uniquely identifies each Fido
conference. Supposing for example you wished to set up VBBS to
participate in a Fido conference whose AREA name was HARPOON:

Run VCONFIG.EXE and select Database Configuration, Message Bases,
the relevant Group and Database. Then select Networks Configuration,
A for add, select the network, and on the line for the Network
Conference Identifier, put the AREA name of the Echomail conference
in the network, and ALSO, separated by a space, the Fido addresses of
the nodes to whom you directly circulate the conference, if you are
acting as a local hub. You are currently limited to 80 characters here
so you can't become a major hub yet. The line will look like this:

Network Conference Identifier: HARPOON 2:440/59 1:2/3
^ ^
* *
* *
* These are the Fido addresses of
* the next BBS in the conference's
* circulation list
This is the AREA name of the Fido

After you have set up all your conferences, you must run VCONFIG,
Database Configuration, Compile Network Configuration - and you
will have to rerun this every time you change the network configuration
of a database.

With these simple steps taken, every message posted on that
conference will be echoed to Fido, and every message from Fido
on that conference will be fed into VBBS.

Using AreaFix To Request Conferences

You can add or remove your BBS to the subscription list for conferences
on other Fido BBS using AreaFix.

All you have to do is to send a NetMail to AreaFix at the BBS address
with your AreaFix password as the title (the AreaFix password is agreed
in advance by yourself and the other Sysop) and a content that lists,
line by line, the Area name of a conference, preceded by a - for remove.

For example, a message whose content read:


would add your BBS to the VFIDO_SUPPORT conference and remove it from
the GAMES_DISCUSSION conference.

VFIDO supports incoming AreaFix requests as well. However, there is no
facility for implementing an AreaFix password, so the title of the
NetMail can be anything.

Summary Of VFIDO Command Syntax

VFIDO {channel number} {option} NETWORKID=#

# is the network identifier as specified in the NET.0 file for
the network you are connecting to.

{channel number} is only necessary with /DIAL, /HOST and /POLL options.

{option} is one of:

/A Build network list from nodelist
/C Compile initial Fido information
/DIAL Make a call to another Fido address, specifying the address
right after the switch like /DIAL2:440/211
/HOST Answer an incoming Fido call
/POLL Call all systems for whom Crash Mail is pending
/U Scan VBBS mail and toss to Fido
/T Scan Fido mail and toss to VBBS

Technical Information

VFIDO creates FTS-0001 packets for NetMail with FSC-0039 extensions for
Zone and Point 4D addressing, FTS-0004 ARCmail packets for EchoMail,
and FTS-0006 WaZOO-format File Requests.

Connections can be using FTS-0001 (TSynch) using XMODEM or
FSC-0056 (EMSI) using ZModem.

Outgoing Crash Mail is only supported using EMSI.

Release Notes

5.60.06 Modified packet creation routine to make the packet show
the address in the correct network as the origin
5.60.06 Corrected a bug caused by the switch to 60 byte null
packets in 5.60.05 which caused outgoing mail to be
ignored or two bytes out of phase

5.60.05 Modified the /c and /f email switches to +c and +f
because of conflict with MultiMail function
5.60.05 Modified null packet length to the correct 60 bytes
5.60.05 Modified EchoMail processing to detect NetMail containg
AREA: in the text as NetMail instead of EchoMail
5.60.05 Introduced a quick return to Waiting For Call where call
was unsuccessful
5.60.05 Modified incoming and outgoing call routines to improve
success rate with VFIDO, FrontDoor and Binkley connects
5.60.05 VFIDO now remembers the telephone numbers of Crash Mailed
systems so the nodelist does not need to be searched again
if further Crash Mail is sent or redials are needed
5.60.05 Modified routine that processes EMSI caller's address
information to handle 5D addressing and spurious .0
point addresses

5.60.04 Modified telephone answering routine to handle incoming
Binkley 2.56 calls using EMSI or FTS-0001
5.60.04 Modified incoming file request processor to take account
of comments and directory names
5.60.04 Improved the incoming EMSI handshake performance
5.60.04 Modified the EMSI handshake routine to detect carrier
dropped right at the start of the handshake
5.60.04 Modified the routine to detect nodelists in VFIDO /A
so that it runs a bit faster

5.60.03 Corrected bug in Crash Mail introduced in 5.60.02
5.60.03 Incoming EchoMail is now forced to appear from the same
network as it is addressed to, preventing reflection
5.60.03 Added even more code to remove junk in incoming MSGID,
REPLY and Origin fields

5.60.02 Corrected bug in receive EMSI handshaking that was
causing an infinite loop
5.60.02 Corrected a bug causing a crash if you sent crash mail
to the same address more than once then made a connect
5.60.02 Modified incoming mail processor to add a /c to crash
mail to allow the reply to be sent as crash mail
5.60.02 Changed MSGID, REPLY and * Origin routines to detect
where Zone is 0 and default the network to FidoNET
5.60.02 Completely rewrote inbound EchoMail processor to allow
for situations when the from and to addresses are in
completely different networks
5.60.02 Corrected origin network processing for mail whose
origin line indicates an invalid Zone
5.60.02 Corrected incoming File Request processing routine
5.60.02 Suppressed sending of null packets during EMSI session
5.60.02 Enabled routing to #:#/0 addresses
5.60.02 Corrected routine that takes modem off hook during
tossing to use correct COM: port and only activate if
VCONFIG is set to Idle Modem
5.60.02 Checks VCONFIG file request flag to see if file areas
are FREQ'able or not
5.60.02 Added code to recover from invalid addresses in the
REPLY field from other Fido mailers
5.60.02 Added some strategically placed pauses to allow screen
to be read to assist debugging
5.60.02 Spacebar now aborts the whole redial sequence for a node
5.60.02 Checks for null packets received during a TSynch session
to prevent attempting to apck mail for 0:0/0

5.60.01 Modified the /POLL routine to only poll within the
specified NETWORKID
5.60.01 Added display of EchoMail From Address during tossing
to assist correct configuration of EchoMail processor.
5.60.01 Corrected TSYNCH handshake to cope with empty incoming
5.60.01 Corrected the AreaFix message format to follow the Fido
standard for add requests
5.60.01 Modified the initial handshake after CONNECT to support
mailers that generate a single Escape character
5.60.01 Added code to mask out REPLY lines reading 0:0/0
5.60.01 Added code to mask out invalid MSGID lines from Xenolink
5.60.01 Added support for Session Passwords
5.60.01 Updated processing of Origin information in EchoMail to
handle invalid formats of the Origin without crashing
5.60.01 Corrected incoming EchoMail processing logic to handle mail
from multiple networks simultaneously
5.60.01 Takes phone off hook during mail tossing
5.60.01 Modified call to DSZ to handle duplicate incoming file names
5.60.01 Added abort by spacebar in dialouts
5.60.01 Added pause between redials
5.60.01 Corrected processing of nodelists with sub-100 extensions
5.60.01 Added Carrier Detect functions to detect loss of connection
in incoming and outgoing calls

5.60.00 Added incoming AreaFix functionality
5.60.00 Added incoming & outgoing Crash Mail functionality
5.60.00 Added incoming & outgoing File Attach functionality
5.60.00 Added incoming & outgoing File Request functionality
5.60.00 Integrated the FrontDoor telephone handling functionality
5.60.00 Introduced support for Domains
5.60.00 Upgraded routing to give unlimited routing flexibility
5.60.00 Introduced support for Aliases
5.60.00 Introduced support for simultaneous multiple Fido-type networks
5.60.00 Reintroduced the PATH statement in EchoMail
5.60.00 Introduced support for unarchived EchoMail
5.60.00 Improved the detection of origin information on incoming EchoMail
5.60.00 Added processing to correct Private EchoMail and Public Netmail
5.60.00 Added support for To: field in EchoMail
5.60.00 Upgraded to support VBBS 5.60

5.52.04 Corrected the problem that was preventing messages from Fido being
gated out to VirtualNET clients and servers
5.52.04 Improved the detail provided on-screen as messages are being
processed (to give you something to read as the program chugs
slowly along!)
5.52.04 Cured the problem of VFIDO "reflecting" EchoMail back to the
original sender thereby causing duplicates
5.52.04 Corrected the display of the From address for incoming EchoMail so
that it no longer always shows the Server's address
5.52.04 Removes the AREA and SEEN-BY lines from incoming EchoMail before
posting it to VBBS
5.52.04 Introduced an automatic word-wrap on incoming messages to cater for
those annoying Fido mailers that fail to word-wrap their messages as
they are entered

5.52.03 Corrected another bug in the usa of LHA for archiving

5.52.02 Corrected a bug that was making the VBBS mail tosser skip messages

5.52.01 Corrected the use of LHA as an archiving and unarchiving protocol
since it was making VFIDO crash

5.52.00 Completely rewrote echomail handling for multiple clients (the
last version was my first attempt and was not too good!)
5.52.00 Added recognition of soft carriage returns in message text
5.52.00 Corrected SEEN-BY line on echomail to show NET/NODE only
5.52.00 Forced e-mail to use real name
5.52.00 Corrected FLAGS for file-attached archived message packets
5.52.00 Corrected expected name of NODELIST files
5.52.00 Added a VFIDO.LOG file that records file access attempts to help
debug obscure file problems

5.51.00 Added support for VBBS 5.51

5.50.06 Added support for multiple servers and multiple EchoMail clients
(this was a MAJOR job, let me tell you!)
5.50.06 Corrected bug causing crashes if subdirectories under NETMAIL
5.50.06 Fixed crash caused by blank lines in NET.0
5.50.06 Fixed crash caused by archived NODELIST in VFIDO /A

5.50.05 Fixed ARCmail file attach message bug
5.50.05 Fixed INTL addressing bug

5.50.04 Fixed horrendous bug in the 5.50.03 EchoMail processor

5.50.03 Rewrite of mail processor to handle large messages

5.50.02 Fido mail addressed to SysOp is routed to #1 account
5.50.02 Origin line now has only 1 leading space
5.50.02 SEEN-BY and PATH now in correct order on Conference mail

5.50.01 Failure to toss Fido Conference mail to VBBS message areas

2.2 Fixed bug in showing Fido node in VBBS

2.1 Fixed bug in Fido echomail to VBBS conversion

2.0 First Public Release

1.5 Beta

1.4 Beta

1.3 Beta

1.2 Beta

1.1 Beta

1.0 Beta

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