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Filename : HELP4.SRC

Output of file : HELP4.SRC contained in archive : FRASRC18.ZIP
~Topic=Startup Parameters\, Parameter Files
; This topic is online only.

{ Summary of all Parameters }
{ Introduction to Parameters }
{ Using the DOS Command Line }
{ Setting Defaults (SSTOOLS.INI File) }
{ Parameter Files and the <@> Command }
{ General Parameter Syntax }
{ Startup Parameters }
{ Calculation Mode Parameters }
{ Fractal Type Parameters }
{ Image Calculation Parameters }
{ Color Parameters }
{ Doodad Parameters }
{ File Parameters }
{ Sound Parameters }
{ Video Parameters }
{ Printer Parameters }
{ 3D Parameters }
~Topic=Summary of all Parameters, Label=HELPCOMMANDS
; This topic is online only.

{Startup Parameters}
@filename[/setname] Process commands from a file
[filename=]filename Start with this saved file (one saved by FRACTINT
or a generic GIF file [treated as a plasma cloud])
('filename=' is required except on command line)
batch=yes Batch mode run (display image, save-to-disk, exit)
autokey=play|record Playback or record keystrokes
autokeyname=filename File for autokey mode, default AUTO.KEY
fpu=387|iit|noiit Assume 387 or IIT fpu is present or absent
makedoc=filename Create Fractint documentation file

{Calculation Mode Parameters}
passes=1|2|g|b|t Select Single-Pass, Dual-Pass, Solid-Guessing,
Boundary-Tracing, or the Tesseral drawing
fillcolor=normal| Sets a block fill color for use with Boundary
Tracing and Tesseral options
float=yes For most functions changes from integer math to fp
symmetry=xxxx Force symmetry to None, Xaxis, Yaxis, XYaxis,
Origin, or Pi symmetry. Useful for debugging.

{Fractal Type Parameters}
type=fractaltype Perform this Fractal Type (Default = mandel)
See {Fractal Types} for a full list
params=xxx[/xxx[/... Begin with these extra Parameter values
(Examples: params=4 params=-0.480/0.626)
function=fn1/.../fn4 Allows specification of transcendental functions
with types using variable functions. Values are
sin, cos, tan, cotan, sinh, cosh, tanh, cotanh,
exp, log, sqr, recip (1/z), ident (identity),
and cosxx (cos with bug)
formulaname=name Formula name for 'type=formula' fractals
lname=name Lsystem name for 'type=lsystem' fractals
ifs=name IFS name for 'type=ifs' fractals
3dmode=monocular|left|right|red-blue Sets the 3D mode used with Julibrot
julibrot3d=nn[/nn[/nn[/nn[/nn[/nn]]]]]") Sets Julibrot 3D parameters zdots,
origin, depth, height, width, and distance
julibroteyes=nn Distance between the virtual eyes for Julibrot
julibrotfromto=nn/nn[/nn/nn] "From-to" parameters used for Julibrot
miim=[depth|breadth|walk]/[left|right]/[xxx/yyy[/zzz]] Params for MIIM
julias. xxx/yyy = julia constant, zzz = max hits.
Eg. miim=depth/left/-.74543/.11301/3

{Sound Parameters}
sound=off|x|y|z Nobody ever plays with fractals at work, do they?
x|y|z can be used to add sound to attractor
fractals, the orbits command, and reading GIFs.
hertz=nnn Base frequency for attractor sound effects
{Image Calculation Parameters}
Begin with these Coordinates
(Example: corners=-0.739/-0.736/0.288/0.291)
center-mag=[Xctr/Yctr/Mag] An alternative method of entering corners.
With no parameters causes command to output
'center-mag=' instead of corners.
maxiter=nnn Maximum number of iterations (default = 150)
bailout=nnnn Use this as the iteration bailout value (instead
of the default (4.0 for most fractal types)
initorbit=nnn/nnn Sets the value used to initialize Mandelbrot orbits
to the given complex number (real and imag parts)
orbitdelay=nn Slows up the display of orbits (by nn/10000 sec)
initorbit=pixel Sets the value used to initialize Mandelbrot orbits
to the complex number corresponding to the screen
pixel. This is the default for most types.
periodicity=[no|show|nnn] Controls periodicity checking. 'no' turns checking
off; entering a number nnn controls the tightness
of checking (default 1, higher is more stringent)
'show' or a neg value colors 'caught' points white.
rseed=nnnnn Random number seed, for reproducable Plasma Clouds
showdot=nn Colors the current dot being calculated color nn.
{Color Parameters}
inside=nnn Fractal interior color (inside=0 for black)
outside=nnn|iter|real|imag|mult|sum Fractal exterior color options
map=filename Use 'filename' as the default color map (vga/targa)
colors=@filename|colorspec Sets current image color map from file or spec,
vga or higher only
cyclerange=nnn/nnn Range of colors to cycle (default 1/255)
cyclelimit=nnn Color-cycler speed-limit (1 to 256, default = 55)
textcolors=aa/bb/cc/... Set text screen colors
textcolors=mono Set text screen colors to simple black and white
shortmap=yes Uses the compact .map file format

{Doodad Parameters}
logmap=yes|old|nn Yes maps logarithm of iteration to color. Old uses
pre vsn 14 logic. >1 compresses, <-1 for quadratic.
ranges=nn/nn/nn/... Ranges of iteration values to map to colors
distest=nnn/nnn Distance Estimator Method
decomp=nn 'Decomposition' toggle, value 2 to 256.
biomorph=nnn Biomorph Coloring
potential=nn[/nn[/nn[/16bit]]] Continuous Potential
invert=nn/nn/nn Turns on inversion - turns images 'inside out'
finattract=yes Look for finite attractor in julia types
exitnoask=yes bypasses the final "are you sure?" exit screen

{File Parameters}
savename=filename Save files using this name (instead of FRACT001)
overwrite=no|yes Don't over-write existing files
savetime=nnn Autosave image every nnn minutes of calculation
gif87a=yes Save GIF files in the older GIF87a format (with
no FRACTINT extension blocks)
dither=yes Dither color GIFs read into a b/w display.
parmfile=filename File for <@> and commands, default FRACTINT.PAR
formulafile=filename File for type=formula, default FRACTINT.FRM
lfile=filename File for type=lsystem, default FRACTINT.L
ifsfile=filename File for type=ifs, default FRACTINT.IFS
orbitsave=yes Causes IFS and orbit fractals orbit points to be
saved in the file ORBITS.RAW
{Video Parameters}
video=xxx Begin with this video mode (Example: Video=F2)
askvideo=no Skip the prompt for video mode when restoring files
Assume this (standard) video adapter is present
Assume the named SuperVGA Chip set is present and
enable its non-standard SuperVGA modes.
afi=yes Disables the register-compatible 8514/A logic
and forces the use of the 8514/A API (HDILOAD)
textsafe=yes|no|bios|save For use when images are not restored correctly on
return from a text display
exitmode=nn Sets the bios-supported videomode to use upon exit
(if not mode 3) - nn is the mode in hexadecimal
Set the reduction factor, final media aspect ratio,
crop starting coordinates (y/n), explicit x size,
and explicit y size

{Printer Parameters}
Set the printer type, dots/inch, and port#
types: IBM, EPSON, CO (Star Micronix),
HP (LaserJet), PA (Paintjet),
PS (PostScript portrait), PSL (landscape)
port# 1-3 LPTn, 11-14 COMn, 21-22 direct parallel,
31-32 direct serial
linefeed=crlf|lf|cr Control characters to emit at end of each line
title=yes Print a title with the output
printfile=filename Print to specified file
epsf=1|2|3|... Forces print to file; default filename fract001.eps,
forces PostScript mode
translate=yes|nnn PostScript only; yes prints negative image;
>0 reduces image colors; <0 color reduce+negative
halftone=frq/angl/styl PostScript: defines halftone screen
halftone=r/g/b PaintJet: contrast adjustment
comport=port/baud/opts COM port initialization. Port=1,2,3,etc.
options 7,8 | 1,2 | e,n,o (any order)
Example: comport=1/9600/n71
colorps=yes|no Enable or Disable the color postscript extensions
rleps=yes|no Enable or Disable the postscript rle encoding
{3D Parameters}
3d=yes|overlay Resets 3D to defaults, starts 3D mode. If overlay
specified, does not clear existing graphics screen
preview=yes Turns on 3D 'preview' default mode
showbox=yes Turns on 3D 'showbox' default mode
sphere=yes Turns on 3D sphere mode
coarse=nnn Sets Preview 'coarseness' default value
stereo=nnn Sets Stereo (R/B 3D) option: 0 = none,
1 = alternate, 2 = superimpose, 3 = photo
ray=nnn selects raytrace output file format
brief=yes selects brief or verbose file for DKB output

interocular=nnn Sets 3D Interocular distance default value
converge=nnn Sets 3D Convergence default value
crop=nnn/nnn/nnn/nnn Sets 3D red-left, red-right, blue-left,
and blue-right cropping default valuess
bright=nnn/nnn Sets 3D red and blue brightness defaults,

longitude=nn/nn Longitude minumim and maximum
latitude=nn/nn Latitude minimum and maximum
radius=nn Radius scale factor
rotation=nn[/nn[/nn]] Rotation abount x,y, and z axes
scalexyz=nn/nn/nn X, Y, and Z scale factors
roughness=nn Same as Z scale factor
waterline=nn Colors this number and below will be 'inside' color
filltype=nn 3D filltype
perspective=nn Perspective viewer distance (100 is at the edge)
xyshift=nn/nn Shift image in x & y directions (alters viewpoint)
lightsource=nn/nn/nn The coordinates of the light source vector
smoothing=nn Smooths rough images in light source mode
transparent=mm/nn Sets colors 'mm' to 'nn as transparent
xyadjust=nnn/nnn Sets 3D X and Y adjustment defaults,
randomize=nnn smoothes 3d color transitions between elevations
fullcolor=yes allows creation of full color .TGA image with
light source fill types
ambient=nnn sets depth of shadows and contrast when using
light source fill types
haze=nnn sets haze for distant objects if fullcolor=1
lightname=filename fullcolor output file name, default FRACT001.TGA
~Topic=Introduction to Parameters

Fractint accepts command-line parameters that allow you to start it with a
particular video mode, fractal type, starting coordinates, and just about
every other parameter and option.

These parameters can also be specified in a SSTOOLS.INI file, to set them
every time you run Fractint.

They can also be specified as named groups in a .PAR (parameter) file
which you can then call up while running Fractint by using the <@>

In all three cases (DOS command line, SSTOOLS.INI, and parameter file) the
parameters use the same syntax, usually a series of keyword=value commands
like SOUND=OFF. Each parameter is described in detail in subsequent
~Topic=Using the DOS Command Line

You can specify parameters when you start Fractint from DOS by using a
command like:


The individual parameters are separated by one or more spaces (an
parameter itself may not include spaces). Upper or lower case may be
used, and parameters can be in any order.

Since DOS commands are limited to 128 characters, Fractint has a special
command you can use when you have a lot of startup parameters (or have a
set of parameters you use frequently):


When @filename is specified on the command line, Fractint reads parameters
from the specified file as if they were keyed on the command line. You
can create the file with a text editor, putting one "keyword=value"
parameter on each line.
~Topic=Setting Defaults (SSTOOLS.INI File)
Every time Fractint runs, it searches the current directory, and then the
directories in your DOS PATH, for a file named SSTOOLS.INI. If it finds
this file, it begins by reading parameters from it. This file is useful
for setting parameters you always want, such as those defining your
printer setup.

SSTOOLS.INI is divided into sections belonging to particular programs.
Each section begins with a label in brackets. Fractint looks for the label
[fractint], and ignores any lines it finds in the file belonging to any
other label. If an SSTOOLS.INI file looks like this:

sound=off ; (for home use only)\
printer=hp ; my printer is a LaserJet\
inside=0 ; using "traditional" black\
warp=9.5 ; Captain, I dinna think the engines can take it!\

Fractint will use only the second, third, and fourth lines of the file.
(Why use a convention like that when Fractint is the only program you know
of that uses an SSTOOLS.INI file? Because there are other programs (such
as Lee Crocker's PICLAB) that now use the same file, and there may one day
be other, sister programs to Fractint using that file.)
~Topic=Parameter Files and the <@> Command

You can change parameters on-the-fly while running Fractint by using the
<@> command and a parameter file. Parameter files contain named groups of
parameters, looking something like this:

quickdraw \{ ; a set of parameters named quickdraw\
slowdraw \{ ; another set of parameters\

If you use the <@> command and select a parameter file containing the
above example, Fractint will show two choices: quickdraw and slowdraw. You
move the cursor to highlight one of the choices and press to set
the parameters specified in the file by that choice.

The default parameter file name is FRACTINT.PAR. A different file can be
selected with the "parmfile=" option, or by using <@> and then hitting

You can create parameter files with a text editor, or for some uses, by
using the command. Parameter files can be used in a number of ways,
some examples:

o To save the parameters for a favorite image. Fractint can do this for
you with the command.

o To save favorite sets of 3D transformation parameters. Fractint can do
this for you with the command.

o To set up different sets of parameters you use occasionally. For
instance, if you have two printers, you might want to set up a group
of parameters describing each.

o To save image parameters for later use in batch mode - see
{Batch Mode}.

See {"Parameter Save/Restore Commands"} for details about the <@> and
~Topic=General Parameter Syntax

Parameters must be separated by one or more spaces.

Upper and lower case can be used in keywords and values.

Anything on a line following a ; (semi-colon) is ignored, i.e. is a

In parameter files and SSTOOLS.INI:\
o Individual parameters can be entered on separate lines.\
o Long values can be split onto multiple lines by ending a line with a \\
(backslash) - leading spaces on the following line are ignored, the
information on the next line from the first non-blank character onward
is appended to the prior line.

Some terminology:\
KEYWORD=nnn enter a number in place of "nnn"\
KEYWORD=[filename] you supply filename\
KEYWORD=yes|no|whatever choose one of "yes", "no", or "whatever"\
KEYWORD=1st[/2nd[/3rd]] the slash-separated parameters "2nd" and
"3rd" are optional
~Topic=Startup Parameters

Causes Fractint to read "filename" for parameters. When it finishes, it
resumes reading its own command line -- i.e., "FRACTINT MAXITER=250
@MYFILE PASSES=1" is legal. This option is only valid on the DOS command
line, as Fractint is not clever enough to deal with multiple indirection.

Like @FILENAME, but reads a named group of parameters from a parameter
file. See {"Parameter Files and the <@> Command"}.

Causes Fractint to read the named file, which must either have been saved
from an earlier Fractint session or be a generic GIF file, and use that as
the starting point, bypassing the initial information screens. The
filetype is optional and defaults to .GIF. Non-Fractint GIF files are
restored as fractal type "plasma".\
On the DOS command line you may omit FILENAME= and just give the file name.

See {Batch Mode}.

Specifying "play" runs Fractint in playback mode - keystrokes are read
from the autokey file (see next parameter) and interpreted as if they're
being entered from the keyboard.\
Specifying "record" runs in recording mode - all keystrokes are recorded
in the autokey file.\
See also {Autokey Mode}.

Specifies the file name to be used in autokey mode. The default file name

This parameter is useful if you have an unusual coprocessor chip. If you
have a 80287 replacement chip with full 80387 functionality use "FPU=387"
to inform Fractint to take advantage of those extra 387 instructions.
If you have the IIT fpu, but don't have IIT's '' TSR loaded,
use "FPU=IIT" to force Fractint to use that chip's matrix multiplication
routine automatically to speed up 3-D transformations (if you have an IIT
fpu and have that TSR loaded, Fractint will auto-detect the presence of
the fpu and TSR and use its extra capabilities automatically).
Since all IIT chips support 80387 instructions, enabling the IIT code also
enables Fractint's use of all 387 instructions.
Setting "FPU=NOIIT" disables Fractint's IIT Auto-detect capability.
Warning: multi-tasking operating systems such as Windows and DesQView
don't automatically save the IIT chip extra registers, so running two
programs at once that both use the IIT's matrix multiply feature but
don't use the handshaking provided by that '' program,
errors will result.

Create Fractint documentation file (for printing or viewing with a text
editor) and then return to DOS. Filename defaults to FRACTINT.DOC.
There's also a function in Fractint's online help which can be used to
produce the documentation file -
see {Printing Fractint Documentation}.
use "Printing Fractint Documentation" from the main help index.
~Topic=Calculation Mode Parameters

Selects single-pass, dual-pass, solid-Guessing mode, Boundary Tracing,
or the Tesseral algorithm. See {Drawing Method}.

Sets a color to be used for block fill by Boundary Tracing and Tesseral
algorithms. See {Drawing Method}.

Most fractal types have both a fast integer math and a floating point
version. The faster, but possibly less accurate, integer version is the
default. If you have a new 80486 or other fast machine with a math
coprocessor, or if you are using the continuous potential option (which
looks best with high bailout values not possible with our integer math
implementation), you may prefer to use floating point. Just add
"float=yes" to the command line to do so.
Also see {"Limitations of Integer Math (And How We Cope)"}.

Forces symmetry to None, Xaxis, Yaxis, XYaxis, Origin, or Pi symmetry.
Useful for debugging.
~Topic=Fractal Type Parameters

Selects the fractal type to calculate. The default is type "mandel".

Set optional (required, for some fractal types) values used in the
calculations. These numbers typically represent the real and imaginary
portions of some startup value, and are described in detail as needed in
{Fractal Types}.\
(Example: FRACTINT TYPE=julia PARAMS=-0.48/0.626 would wait at the opening
screen for you to select a video mode, but then proceed straight to the
Julia set for the stated x (real) and y (imaginary) coordinates.)

Allows setting variable functions found in some fractal type formulae.
Possible values are sin, cos, tan, cotan, sinh, cosh, tanh, cotanh, exp,
log, sqr, recip (i.e. 1/z), ident (i.e. identity), and cosxx (cos with
a pre version 16 bug).

Specifies the default formula name for type=formula fractals. (I.e. the
name of a formula defined in the FORMULAFILE.) Required if you want to
generate one of these fractal types in batch mode, as this is the only way
to specify a formula name in that case.

Specifies the default L-System name. (I.e. the name of an entry in the
LFILE.) Required if you want to generate one of these fractal types in
batch mode, as this is the only way to specify an L-System name in that

Specifies the default IFS name. (I.e. the name of an entry in the
IFSFILE.) Required if you want to generate one of these fractal types in
batch mode, as this is the only way to specify an IFS name in that case.
~Topic=Image Calculation Parameters
Reset the iteration maximum (the number of iterations at which the program
gives up and says 'OK, this point seems to be part of the set in question
and should be colored [insidecolor]') from the default 150. Values range
from 10 to 32000 (super-high iteration limits like 30000 are useful when
using logarithmic palettes). See {The Mandelbrot Set} for a description
of the iteration method of calculating fractals.\
"maxiter=" can also be used to adjust the number of orbits plotted for
3D "attractor" fractal types such as lorenz3d and kamtorus.

Example: corners=-0.739/-0.736/0.288/0.291\
Begin with these coordinates as the range of x and y coordinates, rather
than the default values of (for type=mandel) -2.0/2.0/-1.5/1.5. When you
specify four values (the usual case), this defines a rectangle: x-
coordinates are mapped to the screen, left to right, from xmin to xmax, y-
coordinates are mapped to the screen, bottom to top, from ymin to ymax.
Six parameters can be used to describe any rotated or stretched
parallelogram: (xmin,ymax) are the coordinates used for the top-left
corner of the screen, (xmax,ymin) for the bottom-right corner, and
(x3rd,y3rd) for the bottom-left.

This is an alternative way to enter corners as a center point and a
magnification that is popular with some fractal programs and publications.
Entering just "CENTER-MAG=" tells Fractint whether to use this form rather
than corners when saving parameters with the command. The
status display shows the "corners" in both forms. Note that an aspect
ratio of 1.3333 is assumed; if you have altered the zoom box proportions
or rotated the zoom box, this form can no longer be used.

Over-rides the default bailout criterion for escape-time fractals. Can
also be set from the parameters screen after selecting a fractal type.
See description of bailout in {The Mandelbrot Set}.

Causes Fractint to reset all calculation related parameters to their
default values. Non-calculation parameters such as "printer=", "sound=",
and "savename=" are not affected. RESET should be specified at the start
of each parameter file entry (used with the <@> command) which defines an
image, so that the entry need not describe every possible parameter - when
invoked, all parameters not specifically set by the entry will have
predictable values (the defaults).

Allows control over the value used to begin each Mandelbrot-type orbit.
"initorbit=pixel" is the default for most types; this command initializes
the orbit to the complex number corresponding to the screen pixel. The
command "initorbit=nnn/nnn" uses the entered value as the initializer. See
the discussion of the {Mandellambda Sets} for more on this topic.

Slows up the display of orbits using the command
for folks with hot new computers. Units are in 1/10000 seconds per
orbit point. ORBITDELAY=10 therefore allows you to see each pixel's
orbit point for about one millisecond. For best display of orbits,
try passes=1 and a moderate resolution such as 320x200. Note that
the first time you press the 'o' key with the 'orbitdelay' function
active, your computer will pause for a half-second or so to calibrate
a high-resolution timer.

Controls periodicity checking (see {Periodicity Logic}).
"no" turns it off, "show" lets
you see which pixels were painted as "inside" due to being caught
by periodicity. Specifying a number causes a more conservative
periodicity test (each increase of 1 divides test tolerance by 2).
Entering a negative number lets you turn on "show" with that number. Type
lambdafn function=exp needs periodicity turned off to be accurate -- there
may be other cases.

The initial random-number "seed" for plasma clouds is taken from your PC's
internal clock-timer. This argument forces a value (which you can see in
the display), and allows you to reproduce plasma clouds. A detailed
discussion of why a TRULY random number may be impossible to define, let
alone generate, will have to wait for "FRACTINT: The 3-MB Doc File."

Colors the pixel being calculated color . Useful for very slow
fractals for showing you the calculation status.
~Topic=Color Parameters

Set the color of the interior: for
example, "inside=0" makes the M-set "lake" a stylish basic black. A setting of
-1 makes inside=maxiter. Three more options reveal hidden structure inside the
lake. Inside=bof60 and inside=bof61, are named after the figures on pages 60
and 61 of "Beauty of Fractals". See {Inside=bof60|bof61|zmag|period}
for a brilliant explanation of what these do!

Inside=zmag is a method of coloring based on the magnitude of Z after the
maximum iterations have been reached. The affect along the edges of the
Mandelbrot is like thin-metal welded sculpture.

Inside=epscross colors pixels green or yellow according to whether their
orbits swing close to the Y-axis or X-axis, respectively. Inside=starcross
has a coloring scheme based on clusters of points in the orbits. Best with
outside=. For more information, see {Inside=epscross|startrail}.

Inside=period colors pixels according to the period of their eventual orbit.

Note that the "Look for finite attractor" option on the options screen
will override the selected inside option if an attractor is found - see
{Finite Attractors}.

The classic method of coloring outside
the fractal is to color according to how many iterations were required before
Z reached the bailout value, usually 4. This is the method used when

However, when Z reaches bailout the real and imaginary components can be at
very diferent values. OUTSIDE=real and OUTSIDE=imag color using the iteration
value plus the real or imaginary values. OUTSIDE=summ uses the sum of all
these values. These options can give a startling 3d quality to otherwise flat
images and can change some boring images to wonderful ones. OUTSIDE=mult
colors by multiplying the iteration by real divided by imaginary. There was no
mathematical reason for this, it just seemed like a good idea.

Outside=nnn sets the color of the exterior to some number of your choosing:
for example, "OUTSIDE=1" makes all points not INSIDE the fractal set to color
1 (blue). Note that defining an OUTSIDE color forces any image to be a
two-color one: either a point is INSIDE the set, or it's OUTSIDE it.

Reads in a replacement color map from [filename]. This map replaces the
default color map of your video adapter. Requires a VGA or higher adapter.
The difference
between this argument and an alternate map read in via in color-
command mode is that this one applies to the entire run.
See {Palette Maps}.

Sets colors for the current image, like the function in color cycling
and palette editing modes. Unlike the MAP= parameter, colors set with
COLORS= do not replace the default - when you next select a new video
mode, colors will revert to their defaults.\
COLORS=@filename tells Fractint to use a color map file named "filename".
See {Palette Maps}.\
COLORS=colorspecification specifies the colors directly. The value of
"colorspecification" is rather long (768 characters for 256 color modes),
and its syntax is not documented here. This form of the COLORS= command is
not intended for manual use - it exists for use by the command when
saving the description of a nice image.

Sets the range of color numbers to be animated during color cycling. The
default is 1/255, i.e. just color number 0 (usually black) is not cycled.

Sets the speed of color cycling. Technically, the number of DAC registers
updated during a single vertical refresh cycle. Legal values are 1 - 256,
default is 55.

Set text screen colors to simple black and white.

Set text screen colors. Omit any value to use the default (e.g.
textcolors=////50 to set just the 5th value). Each value is a 2 digit
hexadecimal value; 1st digit is background color (from 0 to 7), 2nd digit
is foreground color (from 0 to F).\
Color values are:
0 black 8 gray
1 blue 9 light blue
2 green A light green
3 cyan B light cyan
4 red C light red
5 magenta D light magenta
6 brown E yellow
7 white F bright white
31 colors can be specified, their meanings are as follows:
1 Fractint version info
2 heading line development info (not used in released version)
3 sub-heading
4 main text
5 instructions at bottom of screen
6 hotlink field
7 highlighted (current) hotlink
menu, selection boxes, parameter input boxes:
8 background around box and instructions at bottom
9 emphasized text outside box
10 low intensity information in box
11 medium intensity information in box
12 high intensity information in box (e.g. heading)
13 current keyin field
14 current keyin field when it is limited to one of n values
15 current choice in multiple choice list
16 speed key prompt in multiple choice list
17 speed key keyin in multiple choice list
general (tab key display, IFS parameters, "thinking" display):
18 high intensity information
19 medium intensity information
20 low intensity information
21 current keyin field
disk video:
22 background around box
23 high intensity information
24 low intensity information
diagnostic messages:
25 error
26 information
credits screen:
27 bottom lines
28 high intensity divider line
29 low intensity divider line
30 primary authors
31 contributing authors
The default is
(In a real command file, all values must be on one line.)
~Topic=Doodad Parameters

Selects a compressed relationship between escape-time iterations and
palette colors. See {"Logarithmic Palettes and Color Ranges"} for details.

Specifies ranges of escape-time iteration counts to be mapped to each
color number. See {"Logarithmic Palettes and Color Ranges"} for details.

A nonzero value in the first parameter enables the distance estimator
method. The second parameter specifies the "width factor", defaults to 71.
See {"Distance Estimator Method"} for details.

Invokes the corresponding decomposition coloring scheme.
See {Decomposition} for details.

Turn on biomorph option; set affected pixels to color nnn.
See {Biomorphs} for details.

Enables the "continuous potential" coloring mode for all fractal types
except plasma clouds, attractor types such as lorenz, and IFS. The four
arguments define the maximum color value, the slope of the potential
curve, the modulus "bailout" value, and whether 16 bit values are to be
calculated. Example: "POTENTIAL=240/2000/40/16bit". The Mandelbrot and
Julia types ignore the modulus bailout value and use their own hardwired
value of 4.0 instead. See {Continuous Potential} for details.

Turns on inversion. The parameters are radius of inversion, x-coordinate
of center, and y-coordinate of center. -1 as the first parameter sets the
radius to 1/6 the smaller screen dimension; no x/y parameters defaults to
center of screen. The values are displayed with the command.
See {Inversion} for details.

Another option to show coloring inside some Julia "lakes" to show escape
time to finite attractors. Works with lambda, magnet types, and possibly
others. See {Finite Attractors} for more information.

This option forces Fractint to bypass the final "are you sure?" exit
screen when the ESCAPE key is pressed from the main image-generation
screen. Added at the request of Ward Christensen. It's his funeral .
~Topic=File Parameters

Set the filename to use when you ave a screen. The default filename is
FRACT001. The .GIF extension is optional (Example: SAVENAME=myfile)

Sets the savename overwrite flag (default is 'no'). If 'yes', saved files
will over-write existing files from previous sessions; otherwise the
automatic incrementing of FRACTnnn.GIF will find the first unused

Tells Fractint to automatically do a save every nnn minutes while a
calculation is in progress. This is mainly useful with long batches - see
{Batch Mode}.

Backward-compatibility switch to force creation of GIF files in the GIF87a
format. As of version 14, Fractint defaults to the new GIF89a format which
permits storage of fractal information within the format. GIF87a=YES is
only needed if you wish to view Fractint images with a GIF decoder that
cannot accept the newer format. See {GIF Save File Format}.

Dither a color file into two colors for display on a b/w display. This give
a poor-quality display of gray levels. Note that if you have a 2-color
display, you can create a 256-color gif with disk video and then read it
back in dithered.

Specifies the default parameter file to be used by the <@> and
commands. If not specified, the default is FRACTINT.PAR.

Specifies the formula file for type=formula fractals (default is
FRACTINT.FRM). Handy if you want to generate one of these fractal types
in batch mode.

Specifies the default L-System file for type=lsystem fractals (if not

Specifies the default file for type=ifs fractals (default is

Sets the default file extension used for the command.
When this parameter is omitted, the
default file mask shows .GIF and .POT files. You might want to specify
this parameter and the SAVENAME= parameter in your SSTOOLS.INI file if you
keep your fractal images separate from other .GIF files by using a
different suffix for them.

Causes the file ORBITS.RAW to be opened and the points generated by orbit
fractals or IFS fractals to be saved in a raw format. This file can be read
by the Acrospin program which can rotate and scale the image rapidly in
response to cursor-key commands. The filename ORBITS.RAW is fixed and will
be overwritten each time a new fractal is generated with this option.\
(see {Barnsley IFS Fractals} {Orbit Fractals} {=@ACROSPIN Acrospin});
~Topic=Video Parameters

Set the initial video mode (and bypass the informational screens). Handy
for batch runs. (Example: VIDEO=F4 for IBM 16-color VGA.)
You can obtain the current VIDEO= values (key assignments) from the
"select video mode" screens inside Fractint. If you want to do a batch run
with a video mode which isn't currently assigned to a key, you'll have to
modify the key assignments - see {"Video Mode Function Keys"}.

If "no," this eliminates the prompt asking you if a file to be restored is
OK for your current video hardware.\
WARNING: every version of Fractint so far has had a bigger, better, but
shuffled-around video table. Since calling for a mode your hardware
doesn't support can leave your system in limbo, be careful about leaving
the above two parameters in a command file to be used with future versions
of Fractint, particularly for the super-VGA modes.

Bypasses Fractint's internal video autodetect logic and assumes that the
specified kind of adapter is present. Use this parameter only if you
encounter video problems without it. Specifying adapter=vga with an SVGA
adapter will make its extended modes unusable with Fractint. All of the
options after the "VGA" option specify specific SuperVGA chipsets which
are capable of video resolutions higher than that of a "vanilla" VGA adapter.
Note that Fractint cares about the Chipset your adapter uses internally,
not the name of the company that sold it to you.

Specify no to bypass VESA video detection logic. Try this if you encounter
video problems with a VESA compliant video adapter or driver.

Normally, when you attempt to use an 8514/A-specific video mode, Fractint
first attempts to detect the presence of an 8514/A register-compatible
adapter. If it fails to find one, it then attempts to detect the presence
of an 8514/A-compatible API (IE, IBM's HDILOAD or its equivalent).
Fractint then uses either its register-compatible or its API-compatible
video logic based on the results of those tests. If you have an
"8514/A-compatible" video adapter that passes Fractint's
register-compatible detection logic but doesn't work correctly with
Fractint's register-compatible video logic, setting "afi=yes" will
force Fractint to bypass the register-compatible code and look only for
the API interface.

When you switch from a graphics image to text mode (e.g. when you use
while a fractal is on display), Fractint remembers the graphics image, and
restores it when you return from the text mode.
This should be no big deal - there are a number of well-defined ways
Fractint could do this which *should* work on any video adapter. They
don't - every fast approach we've tried runs into a bug on one video
adapter or another. So, we've implemented a fast way which works on most
adapters in most modes as the default, and added this parameter for use
when the default approach doesn't work.\
If you experience the following problems, please fool around with this
parameter to try to fix the problem:\
o Garbled image, or lines or dashes on image, when returning to image
after going to menu, display, or help.\
o Blank screen when starting Fractint.\
The problems most often occur in higher resolution modes. We have not
encountered them at all in modes under 320x200x256 - for those modes
Fractint always uses a fast image save/restore approach.\
Textsafe options:\
yes: This is the default. When switching to/from graphics, Fractint
saves just that part of video memory which EGA/VGA adapters are
supposed to modify during the mode changes.
no: This forces use of monochrome 640x200x2 mode for text displays (when
there is a high resolution graphics image to be saved.) This choice is
fast but uses chunky and colorless characters. If it turns out to be
the best choice for you, you might want to also specify
"textcolors=mono" for a more consistent appearance in text screens.
bios: This saves memory in the same way as textsafe=yes, but uses the
adapter's BIOS routines to save/restore the graphics state. This
approach is fast and ought to work on all adapters. Sadly, we've found
that very few adapters implement this function perfectly.
save: This is the last choice to try. It should work on all adapters in
all modes but it is slow. It tells Fractint to save/restore the entire
image. Expanded or extended memory is used for the save if you have
enough available; otherwise a temporary disk file is used. The speed
of textsafe=save will be acceptable on some machines but not others.
The speed depends on:\
o Cpu and video adapter speed.\
o Whether enough expanded or extended memory is available.\
o Video mode of image being remembered. A few special modes are
*very* slow compared to the rest. The slow ones are: 2 and 4 color
modes with resolution higher than 640x480; custom modes for ATI
EGA Wonder, Paradise EGA-480, STB, Compaq portable 386, AT&T 6300,
and roll-your-own video modes implemented with customized
"yourvid.c" code.
If you want to tune Fractint to use different "textsafe" options for
different video modes, see {"Customized Video Modes\, FRACTINT.CFG"}.
(E.g. you might
want to use the slower textsafe=save approach just for a few high-
resolution modes which have problems with textsafe=yes.)

Sets the bios-supported videomode to use upon exit to the specified value.
nn is in hexadecimal. The default is 3, which resets to 80x25 color text
mode on exit. With Hercules Graphics Cards, and with monochrome EGA
systems, the exit mode is always 7 and is unaffected by this parameter.

For TARGA+ adapters. Setting this to 'no' pretends a TARGA+ is NOT

For TARGA+ adapters. Setting this to 'yes' will configure the adapter to a
non-interlaced mode whenever possible. It should only be used with a
multisynch monitor. The default is no, i.e. interlaced.

For TARGA+ adapters. This determines the number of bits to use for color
resolution. 8 bit color is equivalent to VGA color resolution. The 16 and
24 bit color resolutions are true color video modes which are not yet
supported by Fractint but are hopefully coming soon.

For TARGA+ adapters. Lowers the video mode resolution by powers of 2. For
example, the 320x200 video resolution on the TARGA+ is actually the
640x400 video mode with a pixel zoom of 1. Using the 640x400 video mode
with a zoom of 3 would lower the resolution by 8, which is 2 raised to the
3rd power, for a full screen resolution of 80x50 pixels.

Set the reduction factor, final media aspect ratio, crop starting
coordinates (y/n), explicit x size, and explicit y size, see {"View Window"}.
~Topic=Sound Parameters

We're all MUCH too busy to waste time with Fractint at work, and no doubt
you are too, so "sound=off" is included only for use at home, to avoid
waking the kids or your Significant Other, late at night. (By the way,
didn't you tell yourself "just one more zoom on LambdaSine" an hour ago?)
Suggestions for a "boss" hot-key will be cheerfully ignored, as this
sucker is getting big enough without including a spreadsheet screen too.
The "sound=x/y/x" options are for the "attractor" fractals, like the
Lorenz fractals - they play with the sound on your PC speaker as they are
generating an image, based on the X or Y or Z co-ordinate they are
displaying at the moment. At the moment, "sound=x" (or y or z) really
doesn't work very well when using an integer algorithm - try it with the
floating-point toggle set, instead.

The scope of the sound command has been extended. You can now hear the
sound of fractal orbits--just turn on sound from the command line or the
menu, fire up a fractal, and try the rbits command. Use the
orbitdelay= command (also on the menu) to dramatically alter
the effect, which ranges from an unearthly scream to a series of discrete
tones. Not recommended when people you have to live with are nearby!
Remember, we don't promise that it will sound beautiful!

You can also "hear" any image that Fractint can decode; turn on sound
before using to read in a GIF file. We have no idea if this feature
is useful. It was inspired by the comments of an on-line friend who is
blind. We solicit feedback and suggestions from anyone who finds these
sound features interesting or useful. The orbitdelay command also affects
the sound of decoding images.

Adjusts the sound produced by the "sound=x/y/z" option. Legal values are
200 through 10000.
~Topic=Printer Parameters

General printer parameters are described below.\
Additional parameters for specific types of printers are described in:\
{PostScript Parameters}\
{PaintJet Parameters}\
{Plotter Parameters}\

Defines your printer setup. The SSTOOLS.INI file is a REAL handy place to
put this option, so that it's available whenever you have that sudden,
irresistible urge for hard copy.
Printer types:
IB IBM-compatible (default)
EP Epson-compatible
HP LaserJet
CO Star Micronics Color printer, supposedly Epson-color-compatible
PA Paintjet
PS PostScript
PSL Postscript, landscape mode
PL Plotter using HP-GL
In dots per inch.
Epson/IBM: 60, 120, 240
LaserJet: 75, 150, 300
PaintJet: 90, 180
PostScript: 10 through 600, or special value 0 to print full page to
within about .4" of the edges (in portrait mode, width is full page and
height is adjusted to 3:4 aspect ratio)
Plotter: 1 to 10 for 1/Nth of page (e.g. 2 for 1/2 page)
1, 2, 3 for LPT1-3 via BIOS
11, 12, 13, 14 for COM1-4 via BIOS
21, 22 for LPT1 or LPT2 using direct port access (faster when it works)
31, 32 for COM1 or COM2 using direct port access

Serial printer port initialization.\
Options: 7,8 | 1,2 | e,n,o (any order).\
Example: comport=1/9600/n81 for COM1 set to 9600, no parity, 8 bits per
character, 1 stop bit.

Specifies the control characters to emit at end of each line: carriage
return and linefeed, just linefeed, or just carriage return. The default
is crlf.

If specified, title information is added to printouts.

Causes output data for the printer to be written to the named file on disk
instead of to a printer port. The filename is incremented by 1 each time
an image is printed - e.g. if the name is FRAC01.PRN, the second print
operation writes to FRAC02.PRN, etc. Existing files are not overwritten -
if the file exists, the filename is incremented to a new name.
~Topic=PostScript Parameters

Forces print-to-file and PostScript. If PRINTFILE is not specified, the
default filename is FRACT001.EPS. The number determines how 'well-behaved'
a .EPS file is. 1 means by-the-book. 2 allows some EPS 'no-nos' like
settransfer and setscreen - BUT includes code that should make the code
still work without affecting the rest of the non-EPS document. 3 is a

COLORPS=YES|NO - Enable or disable the color extensions.

Enable or disable run length encoding of the PostScript file. Run length
encoding will make the PostScript file much smaller, but it may take longer
to print. The run length encoding code is based on pnmtops, which is
copyright (C) 1989 by Jef Poskanzer, and carries the following notice:
"Permission to use, copy, modify, and distribute this software and its
documentation for any purpose and without fee is hereby granted, provided
that the above copyright notice appear in all copies and that both that
copyright notice and this permission notice appear in supporting
documentation. This software is provided "as is" without express or
implied warranty."

Translate=yes prints the negative image of the fractal.
Translate=n reduces the image to that many colors. A negative value causes
a color reduction as well as a negative image.

Tells the PostScript printer how to define its halftone screen. The first
value, frequency, defines the number of halftone lines per inch. The
second chooses the angle (in degrees) that the screen lies at. The third
option chooses the halftone 'spot' style. Good default frequencies are
between 60 and 80; Good default angles are 45 and 0; the default style is
0. If the halftone= option is not specified, Fractint will print using the
printer's default halftone screen, which should have been already set to
do a fine job on the printer.

These are the only three used when colorps=no. When color PS printing is
being used, the other nine options specify the red, green, then blue
screens. A negative number in any of these places will cause it to use
the previous (or default) value for that parameter. NOTE: Especially when
using color, the built-in screens in the printer's ROM may be the best
choice for printing. The default values are as follows:
halftone=45/45/1/45/75/1/45/15/1/45/0/1 and these will be used
if Fractint's halftone is chosen over the printer's built-in screen.
Current halftone styles:
0 Dot
1 Dot (Smoother)
2 Dot (Inverted)
3 Ring (Black)
4 Ring (White)
5 Triangle (Right)
6 Triangle (Isosceles)
7 Grid
8 Diamond
9 Line
10 Microwaves
11 Ellipse
12 Rounded Box
13 Custom
14 Star
15 Random
16 Line (slightly different)

A note on device-resolution black and white printing\

This mode of printing can now be done much more quickly, and takes a
lot less file space. Just set EPSF=0 PRINTER=PSx/nnn COLORPS=NO
RLEPS=YES TRANSLATE=m, where x is P or L for portrait/landscape, nnn is
your printer's resolution, m is 2 or -2 for positive or negative
printing respectively. This combination of parameters will print
exactly one printer pixel per each image pixel and it will keep the
proportions of the picture, if both your screen and printer have
square pixels (or the same pixel-aspect). Choose a proper (read large)
window size to fill as much of the paper as possible for the most
spectacular results. 2048 by 2048 is barely enough to fill the width
of a letter size page with 300 dpi printer resolution. For higher
resolution printers, you will wish fractint supported larger window
sizes (hint, hint...). Bug reports and/or suggestions should be
forwarded to Yavuz Onder (post to sci.fractals, no e-mail yet).

A word from the author (Scott Taylor)\

Color PostScript printing is new to me. I don't even have a color printer to
test it on. (Don't want money. Want a Color PostScript printer!) The initial
tests seem to have worked. I am still testing and don't know whether or not
some sort of gamma correction will be needed. I'll have to wait and see about
that one.
~Topic=PaintJet Parameters
Note that the pixels printed by the PaintJet are square.
Thus, a printout of an image
created in a video mode with a 4:3 pixel ratio (such as 640x480 or
800x600) will come out matching the screen; other modes (such as 320x200)
will come out stretched.

Black and white images, or images using the 8 high resolution PaintJet
colors, come out very nicely. Some images using the full spectrum of
PaintJet colors are very nice, some are disappointing.

When 180 dots per inch is selected (in PRINTER= command), high resolution
8 color printing is done. When 90 dpi is selected, low resolution
printing using the full 330 dithered color palette is done. In both
cases, Fractint starts by finding the nearest color supported by the
PaintJet for each color in your image. The translation is then
displayed (unless the current display mode is disk video). This display
*should* be a fairly good match to what will be printed
- it won't be perfect most of the time but should give some idea
of how the output will look. At this point you can to go ahead
and print, to cancel, or to cancel and keep the
adjusted colors.

Note that you can use the color map PAINTJET.MAP to create images which
use the 8 high resolution colors available on the PaintJet. Also, two
high-resolution disk video modes are available for creating full page

If you find that the preview image seems very wrong (doesn't match what
actually gets printed) or think that Fractint could be doing a better job
of picking PaintJet colors to match your image's colors, you can try
playing with the following parameter. Fair warning: this is a very
tricky business and you may find it a very frustrating business trying to
get it right.

(The parameter name is not appropriate - we appropriated a PostScript
parameter for double duty here.)\
This separately sets the "gamma" adjustment for each of the red, green,
and blue color components. Think of "gamma" as being
like the contrast adjustment on your screen. Higher gamma values for all
three components results in colors with more contrast being produced
on the printer. Since each color component can have its gamma separately
adjusted, you can change the resulting color mix subtly (or drastically!)\
Each gamma value entered has one implied decimal digit.\
The default is "halftone=21/19/16", for red 2.1, green 1.9, and blue 1.6.
(A note from Pieter Branderhorst: I wrote this stuff to come out reasonably
on my monitor/printer. I'm a bit suspicious of the guns on my monitor;
if the colors seem ridiculously wrong on your system you might start by
trying halftone=17/17/17.)
~Topic=Plotter Parameters

Plotters which understand HP-GL commands are supported. To use a plotter,
draw a SMALL image (32x20 or 64x40) using the iew screen options. Put
a red pen in the first holder in the plotter, green in the second, blue in
the third. Now press

to start plotting. Now get a cup of coffee...
or two... or three. It'll take a while to plot. Experiment with
different resolutions, plot areas, plotstyles, and even change pens to
create weird-colored images.

0: 3 parallel lines (red/green/blue) are drawn for each pixel, arranged
like "///". Each bar is scaled according to the intensity of the
corresponding color in the pixel. Using different pen colors (e.g.
blue, green, violet) can come out nicely. The trick is to not tell
anyone what color the bars are supposed to represent and they will
accept these plotted colors because they do look nice...
1: Same as 0, but the lines are also twisted. This removes some of the
'order' of the image which is a nice effect. It also leaves more
whitespace making the image much lighter, but colors such as yellow are
actually visible.
2: Color lines are at the same angle and overlap each other. This type
has the most whitespace. Quality improves as you increase the number of
pixels squeezed into the same size on the plotter.
~Topic=3D Parameters

To stay out of trouble, specify all the 3D parameters, even if you want to
use what you think are the default values. It takes a little practice to
learn what the default values really are. The best way to create a set of
parameters is to use the command on an image you like and then use an
editor to modify the resulting parameter file.

Resets all 3d parameters to default values. If FILENAME= is given, forces
a restore to be performed in 3D mode (handy when used with 'batch=yes' for
batch-mode 3D images). If specified, 3D=Yes should come before any other
3d parameters on the command line or in a parameter file entry. The form
3D=Overlay is identical except that the previous graphics screen is not
cleared, as with the <#> ( on some keyboards) overlay command.
Useful for building parameter files that use the 3D overlay feature.\

The options below override the 3D defaults:
PREVIEW=yes Turns on 3D 'preview' default mode
SHOWBOX=yes Turns on 3D 'showbox' default mode
COARSE=nn Sets Preview 'coarseness' default value
SPHERE=yes Turns on spherical projection mode
STEREO=n Selects the type of stereo image creation
RAY=nnn selects raytrace output file format
BRIEF=yes selects brief or verbose file for DKB output

INTEROCULAR=nn Sets the interocular distance for stereo
CONVERGE=nn Determines the overall image separation
CROP=nn/nn/nn/nn Trims the edges off stereo pairs
BRIGHT=nn/nn Compensates funny glasses filter parameters
LONGITUDE=nn/nn Longitude minimum and maximum
LATITUDE=nn/nn Latitude minimum and maximum
RADIUS=nn Radius scale factor
ROTATION=nn[/nn[/nn]] Rotation about x,y, and z axes
SCALEZYZ=nn/nn/nn X,y,and z scale factors
ROUGHNESS=nn Same as z scale factor
WATERLINE=nn Colors nn and below will be "inside" color
FILLTYPE=nn 3D filltype
PERSPECTIVE=nn Perspective distance
XYSHIFT=nn/nn Shift image in x and y directions with
LIGHTSOURCE=nn/nn/nn Coordinates for light-source vector
SMOOTHING=nn Smooths images in light-source fill modes
TRANSPARENT=min/max Defines a range of colors to be treated as
"transparent" when <#>Overlaying 3D images.
XYADJUST=nn/nn This shifts the image in the x/y dir without

Below are new commands as of version 14 that support Marc Reinig's terrain

RANDOMIZE=nnn (0 - 100)\
This feature randomly varies the color of a pixel to near by colors.
Useful to minimize map banding in 3d transformations. Usable with all
FILLTYPES. 0 disables, max values is 7. Try 3 - 5.

AMBIENT=nnn (0 - 100)\
Set the depth of the shadows when using full color and light source
filltypes. "0" disables the function, higher values lower the contrast.

Valid with any light source FILLTYPE. Allows you to create a Targa-24 file
which uses the color of the image being transformed or the map you select
and shades it as you would see it in real life. Well, its better than B&W.
A good map file to use is topo

HAZE=nnn (0 - 100)\
Gives more realistic terrains by setting the amount of haze for distant
objects when using full color in light source FILLTYPES. Works only in the
"y" direction currently, so don't use it with much y rotation. Try
"rotation=85/0/0". 0 disables.

The name of the Targa-24 file to be created when using full color with
light source. Default is light001.tga. If overwrite=no (the default), the
file name will be incremented until an unused filename is found.
Background in this file will be sky blue.
~Topic=Batch Mode

It IS possible, believe it or not, to become so jaded with the screen
drawing process, so familiar with the types and options, that you just
want to hit a key and do something else until the final images are safe on
disk. To do this, start Fractint with the BATCH=yes parameter. To set up
a batch run with the parameters required for a particular image you might:
o Find an interesting area. Note the parameters from the display.
Then use an editor to write a batch file.
o Find an interesting area. Set all the options you'll want in the
batch run. Use the command to store the parameters in a file.
Then use an editor to add the additional required batch mode
parameters (such as VIDEO=) to the generated parameter file entry.
Then run the batch using "fractint @myname.par/myentry" (if you told
the command to use file "myname" and to name the entry "myentry").

Another approach to batch mode calculations, using "FILENAME=" and resume,
is described later.

When modifying a parameter file entry generated by the command, the
only parameters you must add for a batch mode run are "BATCH=yes", and
"VIDEO=xxx" to select a video mode. You might want to also add
"SAVENAME=[name]" to name the result as something other than the default
FRACT001.GIF. Or, you might find it easier to leave the generated
parameter file unchanged and add these parameters by using a command like:
fractint @myname.par/myentry batch=y video=AF3 savename=mygif

"BATCH=yes" tells Fractint to run in batch mode -- that is, Fractint draws
the image using whatever other parameters you specified, then acts as if
you had hit to save the image, then exits to DOS.

"FILENAME=" can be used with "BATCH=yes" to resume calculation of an
incomplete image. For instance, you might interactively find an image you
like; then select some slow options (a high resolution disk video mode,
distance estimator method, high maxiter, or whatever); start the
calculation; then interrupt immediately with a ave. Rename the save
file (fract001.gif if it is the first in the session and you didn't name
it with the options or "savename=") to xxx.gif. Later you can run
Fractint in batch mode to finish the job:\
fractint batch=yes filename=xxx savename=xxx

"SAVETIME=nnn" is useful with long batch calculations, to store a
checkpoint every nnn minutes. If you start a many hour calculation with
say "savetime=60", and a power failure occurs during the calculation,
you'll have lost at most an hour of work on the image. You can resume
calculation from the save file as above. Automatic saves triggered by
SAVETIME do not increment the save file name. The same file is overwritten
by each auto save until the image completes. But note that Fractint does
not directly over-write save files. Instead, each save operation writes a
temporary file FRACTINT.TMP, then deletes the prior save file, then
renames FRACTINT.TMP to be the new save file. This protects against power
failures which occur during a save operation - if such a power failure
occurs, the prior save file is intact and there's a harmless incomplete
FRACTINT.TMP on your disk.

If you want to spread a many-hour image over multiple bits of free machine
time you could use a command like:\
fractint batch=yes filename=xxx savename=xxx savetime=60 video=F3\
While this batch is running, hit (almost any key actually) to tell
fractint to save what it has done so far and give your machine back. A status
code of 2 is returned by fractint to the batch file. Kick off the batch
again when you have another time slice for it.

While running a batch file, pressing any key will cause Fractint to exit
with an errorlevel = 2. Any error that interrupts an image save to disk
will cause an exit with errorlevel = 2. Any error that prevents an image
from being generated will cause an exit with errorlevel = 1.

The SAVETIME= parameter, and batch resumes of partial calculations, only
work with fractal types which can be resumed. See
{"Interrupting and Resuming"} for information about non-resumable types.
~Topic=Video Adapter Notes

True to the spirit of public-domain programming, Fractint makes only a
limited attempt to verify that your video adapter can run in the mode you
specify, or even that an adapter is present, before writing to it.
So if you use the "video=" command line parameter, check it before using
a new version of Fractint -
the old key combo may now call an ultraviolet holographic mode.

Comments about some particular video adapters:\
{ EGA } { Tweaked VGA } { Super-VGA }\
{ 8514/A } { XGA }\
{ Targa } { Targa+ }\

Also see {Customized Video Modes\, FRACTINT.CFG}.

Fractint assumes that every EGA adapter has a full 256K of memory
(and can therefore display 640 x 350 x 16 colors), but does nothing to
verify that fact before slinging pixels.
~Topic=Tweaked VGA

The IBM VGA adapter is a highly programmable device, and can be set up to
display many video-mode combinations beyond those "officially" supported
by the IBM BIOS. E.g. 320x400x256 and 360x480x256 (the latter is one of
our favorites).
These video modes are perfectly legal, but temporarily
reprogram the adapter (IBM or fully register-compatible) in a non-standard
manner that the BIOS does not recognize.

Fractint also contains code that sets up the IBM (or any truly register-
compatible) VGA adapter for several extended modes such as 704x528,
736x552, 768x576, and 800x600. It does this by programming the VGA
controller to use the fastest dot-clock on the IBM adapter (28.322 MHz),
throwing more pixels, and reducing the refresh rate to make up for it.

These modes push many monitors beyond their rated specs, in terms of both
resolution and refresh rate. Signs that your monitor is having problems
with a particular "tweaked" mode include:
o vertical or horizontal overscan (displaying dots beyond the edges of
your visible CRT area)
o flickering (caused by a too-slow refresh rate)\
o vertical roll or total garbage on the screen (your monitor simply
can't keep up, or is attempting to "force" the image into a pre-set
mode that doesn't fit).

We have successfully tested the modes up to 768x576 on an IBM PS/2 Model
80 connected to IBM 8513, IBM 8514, NEC Multisync II, and Zenith 1490
monitors (all of which exhibit some overscan and flicker at the highest
rates), and have tested 800x600 mode on the NEC Multisync II (although it
took some twiddling of the vertical-size control).

Since version 12.0, we've used both John Bridges' SuperVGA Autodetecting
logic *and* VESA adapter detection, so that many brand-specific SuperVGA
modes have been combined into single video mode selection entries.
There is now exactly one entry for SuperVGA 640x480x256 mode, for instance.

If Fractint's automatic SuperVGA/VESA detection logic guesses wrong,
and you know which SuperVGA chipset your video adapter uses, you can use
the "adapter=" command-line option to force Fractint to assume the presence
of a specific SuperVGA Chipset - see {Video Parameters} for details.
8514/A MODES

The IBM 8514/A modes (640x480 and 1024x768) default to using the hardware
registers. If an error occurs when trying to open the adapter, an attempt
will be made to use IBM's software interface, and requires the preloading
of IBM's HDILOAD TSR utility.

The Adex 1280x1024 modes were written for and tested on an Adex
Corporation 8514/A using a Brooktree DAC. The ATI GU 800x600x256 and
1280x1024x16 modes require a ROM bios version of 1.3 or higher for 800x600
and 1.4 or higher for 1280x1024.

There are two sets of 8514/A modes: full sets (640x480, 800x600, 1024x768,
1280x1024) which cover the entire screen and do NOT have a border color
(so that you cannot tell when you are "paused" in a color-cycling mode),
and partial sets (632x474, 792x594, 1016x762, 1272x1018) with small border
areas which do turn white when you are paused in color-cycling mode. Also,
while these modes are declared to be 256-color, if you do not have your
8514/A adapter loaded with its full complement of memory you will actually
be in 16-color mode. The hardware register 16-color modes have not been

If your 8514/A adapter is not truly register compatible and Fractint does
not detect this, use of the adapter interface can be forced by using afi=y
or afi=8514 in your SSTOOLS.INI file.

Finally, because IBM's adapter interface does not handle drawing single
pixels very well (we have to draw a 1x1 pixel "box"), generating the zoom
box when using the interface is excruciatingly slow. Still, it works!

The XGA adapter is supported using the VESA/SuperVGA Autodetect modes -
the XGA looks like just another SuperVGA adapter to Fractint.
The supported XGA modes are 640x480x256, 1024x768x16, 1024x768x256,
800x600x16, and 800x600x256. Note that the 1024x768x256 mode requires
a full 1MB of adapter memory, the 1024x768 modes require a high-rez
monitor, and the 800x600 modes require a multisynching monitor such
as the NEC 2A.

TARGA support for Fractint is provided courtesy of Joe McLain and has been
enhanced with the help of Bruce Goren and Richard Biddle. To use a TARGA
board with Fractint, you must define two DOS environment variables,
"TARGA" and "TARGASET". The definition of these variables is standardized
by Truevision; if you have a TARGA board you probably already have added
"SET" statements for these variables to your AUTOEXEC.BAT file.
Be aware that there are a LOT of possible TARGA configurations, and a LOT
of opportunities for a TARGA board and a VGA or EGA board to interfere
with each other, and we may not have all of them smoothed away yet. Also,
the TARGA boards have an entirely different color-map scheme than the VGA
cards, and at the moment they cannot be run through the color-cycling
menu. The "MAP=" argument (see {Color Parameters}),
however, works with both TARGA and
VGA boards and enables you to redefine the default color maps with either

To use the special modes supported for TARGA+ adapters, the TARGAP.SYS
device driver has to be loaded, and the TPLUS.DAT file (included with
Fractint) must be in the same directory as Fractint. The video modes with
names containing "True Color Autodetect" can be used with the Targa+. You
might want to use the command line parameters "tplus=", "noninterlaced=",
"maxcolorres=", and "pixelzoom=" (see {Video Parameters})
in your SSTOOLS.INI file to modify Fractint's use of the adapter.
~Topic="Disk-Video" Modes

These "video modes" do not involve a video adapter at all. They use (in
order or preference) your expanded memory, your extended memory, or your
disk drive (as file FRACTINT.$$$) to store the fractal image. These modes
are useful for creating images beyond the capacity of your video adapter
right up to the current internal limit of 2048 x 2048 x 256,
e.g. for subsequent printing.
They're also useful for
background processing under multi-tasking DOS managers - create an image
in a disk-video mode, save it, then restore it in a real video mode.

While you are using a disk-video mode, your screen will display text
information indicating whether memory or your disk drive is being used,
and what portion of the "screen" is being read from or written to. A
"Cache size" figure is also displayed. 64K is the maximum cache size. If
you see a number less than this, it means that you don't have a lot of
memory free, and that performance will be less than optimum. With a very
low cache size such as 4 or 6k, performance gets considerably worse in
cases using solid guessing, boundary tracing, plasma, or anything else
which paints the screen non-linearly. If you have this problem, all we
can suggest is having fewer TSR utilities loaded before starting Fractint,
or changing in your config.sys file, such as reducing a very high BUFFERS

The zoom box is disabled during disk-video modes (you couldn't see where
it is anyway). So is the orbit display feature.

{=@ColorCycling Color Cycling} can be used during disk-video modes,
but only to load or save a color palette.

When using real disk for your disk-video, Fractint will not generate some
"attractor" types (e.g. lorenz) nor "IFS" images. These would kill your
disk drive. Boundary tracing is allowed - it may give your drive a bit of
a workout, but is generally tolerable.

When using a real disk, and you are not directing the file to a RAM disk,
and you aren't using a disk caching program on your machine, specifying
BUFFERS=10 (or more) in your config.sys file is best for performance.
BUFFERS=10,2 or even BUFFERS=10,4 is also good. It is also best to keep
your disk relatively "compressed" (or "defragmented") if you have a
utility to do this.

In order to use extended memory, you must have HIMEM.SYS or an equivalent
that supports the XMS 2.0 standard or higher. Also, you can't have a
VDISK installed in extended memory. Himem.sys is distributed with
Microsoft Windows 286/386 and 3.0. If you have problems using the
extended memory, try rebooting with just himem.sys loaded and see if that
clears up the problem.

If you are running background disk-video fractals under Windows 3, and you
don't have a lot of real memory (over 2Mb), you might find it best to
force Fractint to use real disk for disk-video modes. (Force this by
using a .pif file with extended memory and expanded memory set to zero.)
Try this if your disk goes crazy when generating background images, which
are supposedly using extended or expanded memory. This problem can occur
because, to multi-task, sometimes Windows must page an application's
expanded or extended memory to disk, in big chunks. Fractint's own cached
disk access may be faster in such cases.
~Topic=Customized Video Modes\, FRACTINT.CFG

If you have a favorite adapter/video mode that you would like to add to
Fractint... if you want some new sizes of disk-video modes... if you want
to remove table entries that do not apply to your system... if you want to
specify different "textsafe=" options for different video modes... relief
is here, and without even learning "C"!

You can do these things by modifying the FRACTINT.CFG file with your text
editor. Saving a backup copy of FRACTINT.CFG first is of course highly

Fractint uses a video adapter table for most of what it needs to know
about any particular adapter/mode combination. The table is loaded from
FRACTINT.CFG each time Fractint is run. It can contain information for
up to 300 adapter/mode combinations. The table entries, and the function
keys they are tied to, are displayed in the "select video mode" screen.

This table makes adding support for various third-party video cards and
their modes much easier, at least for the ones that pretend to be
standard with extra dots and/or colors. There is even a special
"roll-your-own" video mode (mode 19) enabling those of you with "C"
compilers and a copy of the Fractint source to generate video modes
supporting whatever adapter you may have.

The table as currently distributed begins with nine standard and several
non-standard IBM video modes that have been exercised successfully with a
PS/2 model 80. These entries, coupled with the descriptive comments in the
table definition and the information supplied (or that should have been
supplied!) with your video adapter, should be all you need to add your own

After the IBM and quasi-pseudo-demi-IBM modes, the table contains an ever-
increasing number of entries for other adapters. Almost all of these
entries have been added because someone like you sent us spec sheets, or
modified Fractint to support them and then informed us about it.

Lines in FRACTINT.CFG which begin with a semi-colon are treated as comments.
The rest of the lines must have eleven fields separated by commas.
The fields are defined as:

1. Key assignment. F2 to F10, SF1 to SF10, CF1 to CF10, or AF1 to AF10.
Blank if no key is assigned to the mode.
2. The name of the adapter/video mode (25 chars max, no leading blanks).
The adapter is set up for that mode via INT 10H, with:
3. AX = this,
4. BX = this,
5. CX = this, and
6. DX = this (hey, having all these registers wasn't OUR idea!)
7. An encoded value describing how to write to your video memory in that
mode. Currently available codes are:
1) Use the BIOS (INT 10H, AH=12/13, AL=color) (last resort - SLOW!)
2) Pretend it's a (perhaps super-res) EGA/VGA
3) Pretend it's an MCGA
4) SuperVGA 256-Color mode using the Tseng Labs chipset
5) SuperVGA 256-Color mode using the Paradise chipset
6) SuperVGA 256-Color mode using the Video-7 chipset
7) Non-Standard IBM VGA 360 x 480 x 256-Color mode
8) SuperVGA 1024x768x16 mode for the Everex chipset
9) TARGA video modes
10) HERCULES video mode
11) Non-Video, i.e. "disk-video"
12) 8514/A video modes
13) CGA 320x200x4-color and 640x200x2-color modes
14) Reserved for Tandy 1000 video modes
15) SuperVGA 256-Color mode using the Trident chipset
16) SuperVGA 256-Color mode using the Chips & Tech chipset
17) SuperVGA 256-Color mode using the ATI VGA Wonder chipset
18) SuperVGA 256-Color mode using the EVEREX chipset
19) Roll-your-own video mode (as you've defined it in YOURVID.C)
20) SuperVGA 1024x768x16 mode for the ATI VGA Wonder chipset
21) SuperVGA 1024x768x16 mode for the Tseng Labs chipset
22) SuperVGA 1024x768x16 mode for the Trident chipset
23) SuperVGA 1024x768x16 mode for the Video 7 chipset
24) SuperVGA 1024x768x16 mode for the Paradise chipset
25) SuperVGA 1024x768x16 mode for the Chips & Tech chipset
26) SuperVGA 1024x768x16 mode for the Everex Chipset
27) SuperVGA Auto-Detect mode (we poke around looking for your adapter)
28) VESA modes
29) True Color Auto-Detect (currently only Targa+ supported)
Add 100, 200, 300, or 400 to this code to specify an over-ride "textsafe="
option to be used with the mode. 100=yes, 200=no, 300=bios, 400=save.
E.g. 428 for a VESA mode with textsafe=save forced.
8. The number of pixels across the screen (X - 160 to 2048)
9. The number of pixels down the screen (Y - 160 to 2048)
10. The number of available colors (2, 4, 16, or 256)
11. A comment describing the mode (25 chars max, leading blanks are OK)

NOTE that the AX, BX, CX, and DX fields use hexadecimal notation (fifteen
==> 'f', sixteen ==> '10'), because that's the way most adapter
documentation describes it. The other fields use standard decimal

If you look closely at the default entries, you will notice that the IBM
VGA entries labeled "tweaked" and "non standard" have entries in the table
with AX = BX = CX = 0, and DX = some other number. Those are special flags
that we used to tell the program to custom-program the VGA adapter, and
are NOT undocumented BIOS calls. Maybe they should be, but they aren't.

If you have a fancy adapter and a new video mode that works on it, and it
is not currently supported, PLEASE GET THAT INFORMATION TO US! We will
add the video mode to the list on our next release, and give you credit
for it. Which brings up another point: If you can confirm that a
particular video adapter/mode works (or that it doesn't), and the program
says it is UNTESTED, please get that information to us also. Thanks in

  3 Responses to “Category : C Source Code
Archive   : FRASRC18.ZIP
Filename : HELP4.SRC

  1. Very nice! Thank you for this wonderful archive. I wonder why I found it only now. Long live the BBS file archives!

  2. This is so awesome! 😀 I’d be cool if you could download an entire archive of this at once, though.

  3. But one thing that puzzles me is the “mtswslnkmcjklsdlsbdmMICROSOFT” string. There is an article about it here. It is definitely worth a read: