Category : System Diagnostics for your computer
Archive   : SPM.ZIP
Filename : SPM.DOC

 
Output of file : SPM.DOC contained in archive : SPM.ZIP


SPM.DOC Copyright (c) 1991 Information Technology, Ltd.



What is LiteSPM?
---------------

LiteSPM(tm), or SPM for short, is a background(TSR) Serial Port
Monitor. Once started, it sits quietly in the background, and
listens to one of the system's serial ports. SPM writes the
information that it receives to a disk file at either intervals
you choose, or at a predefined, by SPM, point, whichever comes
first.

Why Use LiteSPM?
----------------

We originally designed LiteSPM for use with the newer generation
of telephone systems. Many telephone systems in use today have a
provision for periodically sending data to a serial (RS232)
device. Frequently, a standard printer records this information.
At some later time, the printed information will be entered into
a computer for the purposes of analysis and billing.

With SPM you can bypass the data entry step. SPM records the
information directly on your disk, but doesn't tie up your
system. The result is a saving in both time and money.

SPM has other uses. Since SPM will record anything, it can
monitor and record any type of serial information. The
information does not have to be ASCII characters. And SPM does
not interpret or alter the data it receives in any way. It can
monitor and record information from laboratory systems,
manufacturing equipment, scales, or anything, in fact, that can
produce serial (RS232) output.

What Is Required?
-----------------
SPM requires about 24K of free memory and 1 serial port and at
least MS-DOS 2.1, nothing more, nothing less. If you are
fortunate and have MS-DOS 5.XX, you may load SPM into upper
memory. See your MS-DOS documentation for details on the LOADHIGH
command.

SPM is flexible as well. You can configure SPM using command line
switches, selecting the serial port, baud rate, parity, end of
line characters, and path name of the file that SPM should use.
Once SPM is running, you can instruct SPM to rename its file so
that you can process it. Of course, SPM can be unloaded on
command.

Installation Instructions
-------------------------
You may install SPM by copying the file SPM.EXE into any
directory on your system's disk. We recommend that you place SPM
in a directory that is usually on the DOS path, but that is not a
requirement, it will just make your life somewhat easier. Once
you have copied SPM.EXE, you are ready to go.

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Starting SPM
------------
To use SPM, you may simply type

SPM

to start SPM with its default parameters. Normally, however, you
will want to change one or more of these parameters. The command
line switches to do this are described below.

The more general form of the SPM command is

SPM -cn -bnnnn -pX -eXXX -hX -fXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX | -u

where:


-cn specifies the COM port SPM is to monitor, values
of n may range from 1 to 4. If you intend to use COM3
or COM4, please see the information about these ports
below. The default value is 1.

-bnnnn specifies the baud rate SPM is to use. The rate
may range from 300 to 9600. The default value is 2400.


-pX specifies the parity of the data that SPM will
monitor. Values of X may be E - even parity, O - odd
parity, or N - no parity. The default value is N.


-eXXX defines the character string that SPM is recognize
as the end of a record. By default, SPM recognizes
CR-LF as the end of record. To specify a new end of
record string, use the -e switch followed by up to 6
characters enclosed in quotes ("). Control characters
are specified by using the common notation ^ followed
by the ASCII character to be used. To specify a CR,
for example, you would use ^M. Control sequences like
^M count as a single character.

-hX specifies the type of handshaking that SPM is to
use. By default, there is no handshaking. If you wish
to use XON-XOFF handshaking, specify X. To use DSR/DTR
handshaking specify D. To use RTS/CTS handshaking
specify R. Note that to use handshaking, the device
that SPM is monitoring must support handshaking.


-fXXXXXXXXXXXX defines the full path name of the file
into which SPM will place the information it captures.
By default, the name of the file is SPM.LOG. SPM.LOG
will be placed in the default directory in use when

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SPM was started. We STRONGLY recommend that you
specify a full path name to avoid problems.


-u Unload SPM from memory. As with any TSR, SPM will only
unload successfully if it is the last TSR in memory.

Examples
--------

SPM -c1 -b1200

This command starts SPM on COM1 using 1200 baud. All other
parameters are defaulted.


SPM -c3

This command starts SPM on COM3, with all parameters defaulted.
If you intend to use COM3 or COM4, please review the section on
COM3 and COM4.


SPM -c1 -fd:\logfiles\spm.log

In this example, SPM will monitor COM1 at 2400 baud. The data
that SPM receives will be placed in SPM.LOG in the logfiles
directory on drive D.


SPM -c1 -e"^M"

Start SPM on COM1. The end of line string is Ctrl-M (or Carriage
Return).


SPM -c2 -hr -f\logfiles\spm0630.log

Here, SPM is started on COM2. The device that SPM is monitoring
recognizes RTS/CTS hardware flow control. All data is placed in
the file spm0630.log in the logfiles directory of the current
drive.


SPM -fC:\logfiles\spm0630.old

With SPM already running, the -f argument renames the existing
logfile to SPM0630.old. We specify the full path name in case the
logfile is in another working directory or on another drive. The
next time SPM needs to write data, a new log file with the
original path name will be created.




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SPM -u

Unload SPM when it is safe to do so. Flush any unwritten data to
the log file.


Using COM3 and COM4
-------------------

SPM can be used with COM3 and COM4. To do so successfully, your
serial ports must be setup so that the base port address of COM3
is 3e8H (2e8H for COM4); In addition, the COM3 interrupt must be
IRQ4 (IRQ3 for COM4). If your serial ports can be set to these
values, then you should have no difficulty using COM3 or COM4.

Tips and Techniques
-------------------

In general, the loading of SPM is best done in your system's
autoexec.bat file. If this is not convenient or not sufficiently
flexible, you may use another method to load SPM.

If the data you are attempting to capture with SPM is
identifiable as discreet records, we STRONGLY urge you to use the
-e switch to define the characters that identify the end of the
record. While SPM will never loose information, including the -e
switch helps insure that SPM will place discreet records in the
log file. Put another way, when you use the -e switch correctly,
the log file should never contain partial records.

SPM can survive in a network environment. In a network
environment, you may specify that the SPM log file be placed on a
network drive.

DO NOT attempt to directly process the current SPM log file. We
have included the rename facility so that you can keep SPM
active, yet access the data in a convenient fashion. Of course,
the simplest way to accomplish this is through the use of a .bat
file. Typically, the bat file would instruct SPM to rename the
log file, process the data, then delete the file.

DO specify the complete path name of the SPM log file when using
the -f pathname switch. This is particularly important when you
use the -f switch to rename the current log file.

DO NOT delete the current SPM log file while SPM is active. While
you might do so successfully, on occasion, there is no way to
insure that SPM will not attempt to write to the file while you
are deleting it. If this should happen, the results are
unpredictable. At best there would be some data loss. At worst, a
system hang might result.



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DO pay attention to the hardware flow control signal restrictions
when you select either DTR/DSR or RTS/CTS flow control. LiteSPM
assumes that these signals are active HIGH signals. Check your
hardware reference carefully if you have difficulty that seems to
be related to hardware flow control.

Serial port wiring can be one of the most difficult areas to
understand, since some equipment manufacturers have chosen to
bend the standards. If you plan to do a lot of work in this area,
we recommend that you acquire a good quality breakout box to help
you make the right connections. A breakout box will let you
monitor and experiment with the various RS232 signals quickly and
conveniently without spending time soldering unknown connections.
One such device that we use is the Blue Box 100, manufactured by
International Data Sciences, 7 Wellington Road, Lincoln, RI
02865. You can contact them at (401) 333-6200 for current pricing
and availability.

Problems And Questions
------------------------
If you are having difficulty using LiteSPM, and you are a
registered user, please feel free to contact us by telephone. If
you want to register LiteSPM, see the file REGISTER.DOC for
additional information. We will also respond to Electronic Mail
on Compuserve (ID 70166,1152) or GEnie (ID I.TECH). Finally, we
will be happy to respond to mail inquiries by conventional
first-class mail. Regrettably, we are not equipped for FAX
service at this time.

And if you have special requirements for SPM, please feel free to
contact us as well.
























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  3 Responses to “Category : System Diagnostics for your computer
Archive   : SPM.ZIP
Filename : SPM.DOC

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