Contents of the FOCKEPRO.DOC file
Procomm Dialing Directory Conversion Utility
for Mike Focke's Monthly BBS Listing
Users Guide and Reference Manual
by Stephen C. Green
Copyright (C) 1991 Emerald Software, All Rights Reserved
FOCKEPRO was developed to fulfill a perceived need for a quick and easy
conversion utility of Mike Focke's monthly verified local and national Bulletin
Board Systems (BBSs) listing, distributed on most of the area BBSs in one form
or another, to a dialing directory that could be read by any version of
Procomm, including the shareware and commercial versions through Procomm Plus
2.0. At the time the FOCKEPRO utility was introduced, none of the other
directory conversion programs supported Procomm Plus 2.0 and this was crucial
to the success of FOCKEPRO.
FOCKEPRO was originally written in BASIC and only supported the PCPLUS.DIR
directory format for Procomm Plus 1.1b. It was rudimentary in the sense that it
did not use color and was not very flexible. The program simply prompted you
for responses to directory entry questions, like baud rate to use and area code
to mask, with very little error checking. I had just completed the advanced C
course at Montgomery College and decided to pretty up the program and make it
more functional. So, I rewrote the program in C (Microsoft C 5.1) and added a
friendly interface supporting user-definable defaults, a file selection window
which eliminates typing errors of filenames, context sensitive help, and
extensive error and file protection features.
It wasn't until after releasing FOCKEPRO 2.10, even with built in help, that I
realized there were users that need supporting documentation, even for a small
utility such as this. It is difficult for most software developers, including
myself, to perceive the pitfalls of using programs created by others without
knowing the thought processes used in the development. User feedback is vital
and I encourage registered users to submit suggestions for future enhancements
of this product or ideas you may have for other types of programs.
This program is user supported and distributed as shareware. Please register
this software by printing the closing screen of the utility, filling in the
requested information, enclosing the registration fee, and mailing to Emerald
Software at the address provided. Thank you for your continued support!
Mike Focke holds all rights to the data contained in DCBBmmyy.ZIP, including
the FOCKE.EXE program developed by Jeff Morley. Many thanks to you both.
When visiting various BBSs in the area, you will eventually come across a file
called DCBBmmyy.ZIP in a download file area, where "mm" is the month and "yy"
is the year of the listings contained in the archive. As the name implies,
these listings are updated and verified every month and provide an
exhaustive, if not the most complete, listing of the active bulletin board
systems of interest to IBM users in the Washington DC metro area. The raw
listings are maintained in a comma delimited ASCII text format which must be
converted and combined in ways only you can imagine by using the FOCKE.EXE
program supplied along with the listings.
FOCKEPRO Copyright (C) 1991 Emerald Software, All Rights Reserved p. 2
Mike's monthly listing is built from individual BBS directory files (DC.DIR,
MD.DIR, etc.) by running FOCKE.EXE (written by Jeff Morley) which combines
these files in numerous ways in several formats. Please see the documentation
provided with FOCKE.EXE for details.
FOCKEPRO requires pure ASCII text as input. I will briefly describe how to
obtain this text file by using FOCKE.EXE. There are other methods to generate
the same listing as described in the FOCKE documentation. After entering
FOCKE on the command line, a screen of DC, VA, MD and other data files is
displayed. Select the file(s) you wish to include in your directory. To
continue to the next screen (if you didn't select "All DCBBmmyy Data"), select
"No Further Choices". Following this, a screen of sort keys is displayed. Make
the desired sort selection(s), then select "No Further Choices".
Now, the IMPORTANT (for correct execution of FOCKEPRO) selection screen is
displayed. You may select any EXCEPT "ANSI (Color version)" which will not
work because of all the embedded ANSI color codes (and you obviously cannot
select "Printer, No Graphics" since there will be no directory to convert).
Recommend using the "ASCII, No Page Breaks" or "ASCII, No Graphics" which
result in generating DCBBmmyy.ASC and DCBBmmyy.TXT, respectively.
In order to convert Mike Focke's BBS listing into a Procomm dialing directory,
the list must be a pure ASCII text file. This file can either be obtained by
running FOCKE.EXE as described in the previous section, or captured from a BBS
in the form of a bulletin, a message, a screen dump, or an ASCII download. The
FOCKEPRO utility must be in the same directory as the text file to be
The first time FOCKEPRO is run, the utility creates a configuration file,
FOCKEPRO.CFG, containing the dialing directory format, the area code to mask
(if any), the lowest allowable baud rate used for BBS selection, and the baud
rate to be entered into the directories for each entry. This allows the user to
enter the parameters once instead of every time the utility is used. Of course,
these can be changed at any time if desired.
The user interface is based on a windowed menu structure with selections made
from highlighted menu/window items. The "status bar" indicates what keys are
functional at any given time and what action will be performed after the
keystroke is entered. In the center of the status bar, "< to Change" will
appear when the highlight bar is on any selectable directory entry parameter.
Once the return key is pressed, a window of valid choices will be displayed
and the status bar will indicate "< to Accept." When all of the parameters
are set to your liking and the highlight bar is on "Begin directory
conversion", the status bar will indicate "< to Execute" and the conversion
will begin if the return key is pressed.
FOCKEPRO Copyright (C) 1991 Emerald Software, All Rights Reserved p. 3
Context sensitive help is available for the highlighted option by pressing the
F1 key when the menu is displayed (and all selection windows are closed).
The program can be aborted at any time by pressing the Escape key.
Command Line Options
FOCKEPRO can be initiated in one of three ways:
Typing only the program name will load the software and the menu will be
displayed with the highlight bar on the "Input filename" area. "DCBBmmyy.TXT"
is displayed as a reminder of the FOCKE output filename, but is has not
actually been selected. To select an input filename, press the return key
while the highlight bar is on the "Input filename" area. A window will pop up
listing all of the files in the current directory which could be used as input
files. Remember, a pure ASCII text file is required. Use the up or down arrow
keys to move through the list until the filename you wish to convert is
highlighted. Press the return key to select the file.
The highlight bar will move to the "Begin directory conversion" menu option
after a valid input filename has been selected. If you are willing to accept
the program defaults (for format, area code, and baud rate), press return to
begin the conversion. If you wish to change any of the default settings, move
the highlight bar with the up or down arrow keys to the appropriate setting,
press return, highlight the new selection from the pop up window, and press
return to accept the new setting.
C:\> FOCKEPRO filename
This method of starting the utility will bring up the program and, if
'filename' is valid, will place the highlight bar on the "Begin directory
conversion" option. If the file is not found, 'filename' will be ignored and
the program will begin as described previously.
C:\> FOCKEPRO [filename] /m
This method, with or without the input filename, will start FOCKEPRO in
monochrome compatibility mode. The "/m" switch forces a color scheme
(black and white) that is readable on monochrome monitors.
FOCKEPRO Copyright (C) 1991 Emerald Software, All Rights Reserved p. 4
The main focus of this utility is to convert an ASCII text file to another in
the format of a Procomm dialing directory. As such, the only files that will
be changed throughout the process will be the newly created directories and
the configuration file. All other files will remain intact.
When the return key is pressed on the "Begin directory conversion" option, the
program will check for the existence of FOCKE001.DIR. If it is found, a
warning screen will be displayed with options for keeping or overwriting the
existing directory files. Move the highlight bar to the appropriate action and
press the return key to continue. Depending on your response, this check will
be performed for each subsequent file to be created during the conversion
Updates -- Updates -- Updates
FOCKEPRO is distributed as shareware on local BBSs under the filename
FOCKExxx.ZIP, where "xxx" is the version number. This archive file contains
FOCKEPRO.EXE (the conversion utility software) and FOCKEPRO.DOC (this file).
Updates to FOCKEPRO will initially appear on:
Mystery (301-588-8142) BBS Area, and
Interconnect (Jeff's board) (703-425-2505)
I will try to upload updates to others as time permits. Please register the
software and submit along with the registration fee as described on the closing
screen of the utility. Thank you for your support and enjoy!
Emerald Software is dedicated to providing solutions to your problems.
Suggestions for future enhancements of this product or ideas you may have for
other types of programs can be addressed to:
3764 Bel Pre Road #12
Silver Spring, Maryland 20906-2626
-[ End of Documentation ]-
FOCKEPRO Copyright (C) 1991 Emerald Software, All Rights Reserved p. 5