Dec 132017
 
SoS (Save-Our-Screens) is a TSR program that allows you to save and restore text screens to memory and disk.
File SOS310.ZIP from The Programmer’s Corner in
Category Display Utilities
SoS (Save-Our-Screens) is a TSR program that allows you to save and restore text screens to memory and disk.
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SOS.DOC 24344 7917 deflated

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Contents of the SOS.DOC file


Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro
- All Rights Reserved -
February 9, 1990








Save Our Screens (SoS) is distributed under the SHAREWARE concept. It is
NOT Public Domain. An individual registration costs $20.00.

Please send check or money order payable to:


Gary J. Shapiro
6 Scenic Court
Marlboro NJ, 07746


Please include your name, address, and SoS version you are registering.

You are encouraged to make copies for others to evaluate, as well as for
distribution on Bulletin Board Systems (BBS's). However, you are not
authorized to accept any payment for doing so.

SoS may NOT be used in a corporate, business, government, commercial,
organization or agency environment without a negotiated site license. This
includes the bundling of SoS with any other software for sale. Please
contact me for details on pricing and site license agreements.

Suggestions? Problems? Bugs? Please let me know. Your help will only
improve SoS.



DISCLAIMER
----------

You are completely responsible for determining the fitness or usability of
this package. I will not be liable for any damages, of any kind, arising
from any failure of any programs in this package to perform as expected.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro



INTRODUCTION
------------

SoS is a Terminate and Stay Resident (TSR) program that allows you to save
and restore text screens to memory and disk. Memory saves are limited to a
maximum of 9, while disk saves are only limited by the amount of disk
space available. SoS can be invoked within most text applications. MDA,
CGA, HGC, EGA, MCGA and VGA text modes are fully supported in 40 and 80
column mode. A maximum of 50 rows is supported for users of EGA, VGA and
similar display adapters.

SoS has the additional capability to save screen images to disk in
Text/ASCII format. Screens saved in this manner can be processed by any
Text or ASCII handling program, eg. editors, word processors etc.

All SoS information is presented via POP-UP windows activated by a series
of HOTKEYS.


SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS
-------------------

SoS requires an IBM PC/XT/AT/PS2 or true compatible that has it's text
display buffer at address 0b000h or 0b800h. DOS 2.0 or later is required.

SoS with Extended Screen Support disabled, and a maximum of 1 screen will
require approximately 13K. Each additional screen will add 4K to this
number. The maximum total memory required is 44K with 9 screens requested.

With Extended Screen Support enabled add 8k to the above amounts. The
maximum total memory for this mode is 53K with 9 screens requested.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro


INVOKING SoS
------------

SoS is invoked at the DOS command line or in a batch file as follows:

A>SOS [/Sn] [/Rn] [/En] [/?] [/U]

/Sn (n=1 to 9) Maximum number of screen buffers to keep in memory.
S4 is the default. At most, nine screens can be
kept in memory at any one time. Disk saves are
limited only by available disk space.

/Rn (n=0 or 1) Enable(1) or Disable(0) CGA snow detection.
R1 is the default.

/En (n=0 or 1) Enable(1) or Disable(0) Extended Screen Support.
E0 is the default.

/? Display a summary of SoS options and functions.

/U Uninstall SoS from memory, if possible. SoS MUST be
the last TSR program loaded for this to work.

If no parameters are specified, the default is to allow a maximum of 4
screens with CGA snow detection enabled and Extended Screen Support
disabled. Just as if you specified SOS /S4 /R1 /E0.

The '/' must precede the parameter and at least one space must come
between successive parameters. The order of parameters is not important.

If you're using a display adapter that does not produce 'snow' you should
specify /R0. All IBM CGA users should specify /R1 or take the default.
For all other adapters there is no need to specify this parameter. SoS
automatically assumes /R0 since these adapters do not produce 'snow'. 40
column text, even with a CGA, doesn't produce 'snow', therefore /R0 is
used for this mode.

Extended Screen Support (ESS) provides the ability to save and restore
screens up to 80 columns by 50 rows in size. This feature is designed for
use with EGA, VGA and similar display adapters. Please see the section on
Extended Screen Support for a more detailed discussion of this feature.

If an invalid SoS parameter is entered, you will be informed and help
information will be displayed. Additionally, SoS will not let a second
copy be loaded into memory. If enough memory isn't available to load SoS,
a message will be displayed. In this case, you should decrease the number
of screens requested by 1 until SoS successfully loads. If it still won't
load with 1 screen, you need additional memory on your system. If SoS
fails to load, ERRORLEVEL will be set to 1.

COMPATIBILITY
-------------

If you are using other TSR programs and SoS fails to function properly, or
system problems are experienced, try changing the loading order of your
programs. While SoS was designed to 'behave well' some 'ill behaved'
TSR's might cause problems. Generally, if SoS is loaded first there
should be no problems. If you are using SIDEKICK, load SoS first to
insure complete compatibility.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro



ACTIVATING SoS
--------------

I Save to Memory
--------------
Pressing the Ctrl-LeftShift-S keys simultaneously will invoke the SoS Save
to Memory window. At the blinking cursor you enter a number from 1 to the
maximum number of screens specified when SoS was loaded. The range of
valid numbers is provided. Entering a valid number, followed by pressing
the RETURN key, will save the screen image to memory under that number.
You will then be returned to where you were. SoS messages that appear will
NOT be saved, only the original screen will be. If you press an invalid key
or a number out of range, an SoS message will be displayed. At this point
you can enter a valid number or press F3 to exit SoS without a save. A
successful save will be be indicated by another SoS message.

Any existing memory images with the same screen number will be overlayed.


II Save to Disk
------------
Pressing the Alt-LeftShift-S keys simultaneously will invoke the SoS Save
to Disk window. At the blinking cursor you enter a filename to which the
screen image will be saved to. Pressing the RETURN key will cause SoS to
save the screen image to disk with that filename. You will then be
returned to where you were. Filenames are limited to 8 characters and must
be a valid DOS filename. Invalid characters will be indicated by an SoS
error message. Pressing F3 will exit you from SoS without a save.

The screen images saved to disk will have the extension .SOS appended to
the filename. Disk screen images are always saved to the current disk
directory. If the file already exists, you will be asked (Y/N) if you want
want to overwrite the file.

To save a screen image in Text/ASCII format press the F7 Function key. The
word TEXT will appear in the SoS window. Pressing the F7 key toggles
between Text mode and non-Text mode. Saving a screen image while in Text
mode will produce a screen saved as a text file. Screens saved in this
manner can not be restored since they are not true screen images. They are
meant to be used by external programs that can process text files. As in
non-Text mode you will be prompted if the file exists. However, an added
response, 'A', allows you to append the screen to the exisitng file.

The screen images saved to disk in Text mode will have the extension .SOT
appended to the filename entered. Spaces and nulls at the end of each line
are removed. Each line ends with a Carriage Return/Line Feed. All blank
lines (spaces or nulls) at the end of the Text screen image are also
removed.


III Restore from Memory
-------------------
Pressing the Ctrl-LeftShift-R keys simultaneously will invoke the SoS Save
to Memory window. At the blinking cursor you enter a number from 1 to the
maximum number of screens specified when SoS was loaded. The range of
valid numbers is provided. Entering a valid number, followed by pressing
the RETURN key, will cause SoS to restore that screen image from memory.
If you press an invalid key or a number out of range, an SoS message will
be displayed. Pressing F3 will exit SoS and return you to where you were.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro



If a valid number is specified, the saved screen image will appear. At
this point you can press F3 to exit SoS or press any other key to return to
the Restore from Memory window. Here you can select another screen number
to restore.

Entering a valid screen number, but one that has not been previously saved
to, will result in an SoS message indicating so.

Screen Cycling
--------------
You can cycle through your saved screens by pressing the SPACE BAR. The
cycling will start at screen 1 if SoS has just been activated, or at the
next screen if a screen is already being displayed. If cycling is begun
when a screen number has been chosen but not restored, the screen number
displayed will be the first screen restored. Cycling and screen selection
by number can be intermixed.


IV Restore from Disk
-----------------
Pressing the Alt-LeftShift-R keys simultaneously will invoke the SoS
Restore from Disk window. At the blinking cursor you enter the filename of
the screen image to be restored from disk. Filenames are limited to 8
characters and must be a valid DOS filename. Invalid characters will be
indicated by an SoS error message. Disk restores are always from the
current directory.

In addition to choosing a filename, the screen number to save it to must be
chosen. Entering a screen number has already be discussed. The TAB key is
used to position the cursor between the FILEname and SCREEN number line.
Once a filename and screen number have been entered, you press the RETURN
key to restore the screen image. At this point you can press F3 to exit
SoS or press any other key to return to the Restore from Memory window.
Here you can select another filename to restore.

If you fail to enter a filename and screen number SoS will remind you. If
the filename entered is not in the current disk directory you will be
informed. You can then exit SoS via F3 or select another filename.

As in a restore from memory, the disk image restored will overlay the
corresponding screen image in memory with the same screen number.

Screen Cycling
--------------
You can cycle through your saved disk screens by repeatedly pressing the
SPACE BAR. There are two types of disk cycling available. The first type
is initiated when the SCREEN number field does not contain a number. In
this mode, only the filenames of the SoS files on the current disk
directory are displayed. They will be displayed, one at a time, with every
press of the SPACE BAR. They appear in the order in which they are stored
in the current disk directory. At anytime you can restore the filename by
entering a valid screen number and pressing the RETURN key.

The second type of cycling is initiated when the SCREEN number field
contains a number. Every press of the SPACE BAR will restore, one at a
time, all the disk screen images on the current disk directory to the
screen number chosen. This mode is like cycling through memory screens.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro



Depending on the type of cycling chosen, SoS will display or restore all
SoS filenames it finds, from the current disk directory, if no filename was
entered. The DOS wildcard characters * and ? are allowed as part of the
filename. If used, all files that match will be displayed or restored.
The filename can be changed at anytime in order to cycle through different
files.

When the last SoS filename has been displayed or restored an SoS message
will inform you. Pressing the SPACE BAR at this point will repeat the
cycling process.

NOTE
----
Cycling for the current filename, or part of, will stay in affect until one
of the following occurs:

o Restoring a disk screen image by using the RETURN key.
o Altering the filename (even to the same name).

If cycling is then begun, the current filename will be used.


EDITING
-------

The following keys are available for editing both the filename and screen
number:

o BackSpace Key - Pressing this key will move the cursor one position to
the left erasing what is on the line.

o Esc Key - Pressing this key will erase the complete line.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro



SCREEN MANAGEMENT
-----------------

It is up to you to keep track of all saved screen images. Memory saves are
fairly easy to manage since there are at most only 9. Disk screen images
are best managed by giving them meaningful filenames.


SCREEN INFORMATION
------------------

When doing a screen restore from memory or disk you sometimes can't
remember which screen number you are currently displaying. This is
especially true if you are cycling through many screens.

To determine which screen number is currently being displayed, press the F2
Function key when in RESTORE mode. The screen number you are currently
viewing will then appear. If a disk restore is being requested the
filename will be displayed. From here you can continue restoring other
screens or return to the current screen by entering the ACTIVE screen
number.

In SAVE mode this function is meaningless and pressing the F2 key is
treated as an invalid key.


CHANGING COLORS
---------------

The default colors for SoS's windows are black on white. This appears as
reverse video on monochrome monitors. To alter this, use the F9 key to
change the background color and the F10 key to change the foreground color.
Changes are not permanent, they will last only until SoS is loaded again.

If you wish to change the default colors permanently, absolute offset 5F
hex in SOS.COM is the color byte. The default is 70 hex, black on white.
You can use DEBUG to change this to whatever colors you desire. Please
refer to the IBM Technical Reference manual or any good DOS book that
explains color values.

Example debug session:

c>debug sos.com ;Enter at the DOS prompt.
-e cs:15f ;Enter the edit command with the color address.
xxxx:15f 70._ ;Enter the color value you want and press enter.
-w ;Write out your new copy of SOS.COM.
-q ;Enter the quit command to exit debug.


If the SoS window disappears while setting colors with F9 and F10, you set
the background and foreground colors to black. Pressing either key will
make the window reappear with a new color.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro



EXTENDED SCREEN SUPPORT
-----------------------

Extended Screen Support (ESS) is the ability for SoS to save and restore
screen images greater then 80 columns by 25 rows. It is activated by
specifying /E1 at SoS load time. A maximum screen size of 80x50 is
supported. If a screen exceeds 80x50, only this amount is saved or
restored. Since most applications utilize an 80x25 screen size, the
default is to disable ESS (/E0). This provides saving/restoring a maximum
screen image of 80x25 regardless of the actual screen size in affect. If
you can't or never plan on using extended screen sizes take the default,
/E0, which will save you 8k of memory.

When using ESS please consider the following:

1. As with any screen size, SoS restores screens from memory or disk based
on the CURRENT screen size, NOT the screen size that was active when
the image was saved. Depending on the current screen size, you might
see less data or data remaining from the original screen.

2. Any screen image greater then 80x25 will require two consecutive memory
screens. This means for example, that saving to memory or restoring
from disk, a screen image to memory screen #1 will not only fill that
screen in memory but will also use the next consecutive screen, #2 in
this case. SoS will allow #2 to be restored from memory even though a
screen image was not saved under this number. This is a feature only
applicable to ESS mode. This is particularly useful when restoring an
80x50 screen image while in an 80x25 screen. To see the entire 80x50
screen image just restore screens #1 and #2 from memory.

Disk saves with ESS are the same as without ESS except that the
resulting files are larger. Disk restores are processed in the same
way as memory saves, ie. two consecutive memory screens are used.

Screens saved to the maximum screen number as specified at SoS load
time are possible. There is an extra memory screen space available
beyond the highest screen. It can not be referenced directly however.

3. As a rule, if a screen image is restored to the same size screen in
which it was saved, it will be displayed as it originally appeared.

4. Screen sizes greater then 80x50 can be processed by SoS. However, only
the beginning 80x50 area will be saved and subsequently restored.

5. Since extended screens occupy two memory screens, the number of screens
of this type, that can be saved or restored, is reduced.


You will soon discover that restored extended screen images can result in
some unexpected looking screens especially if a screen image is restored
to a screen size that is different than the one in which it was saved
from. To get an idea of what this means, consider the following examples
of screen saves to memory. Note that these examples also apply to disk
restores after they are in memory.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro



o An 80x25 screen image is saved to #1. Another 80x25 screen image is
saved to #2. You now switch to an 80x50 screen size. Screen #1 is
restored. What you will see is screen #1 AND screen #2. Remember,
data is restored to fit the current screen size.

o You now restore screen #2. You will see #2 on the upper portion and
empty space in the lower half. Since SoS is restoring data to fit the
screen size, #3 is also restored. Since #3 never had a screen saved to
it, it is blank.

o Suppose you now save an 80x50 screen to #2. Restoring #2 while in an
80x50 mode will display the screen as it originally appeared. If you
now restored screen #1 you would see #1 in the top half of the screen
and #2 in the bottom.


With a little practice you will quickly get the feel for processing
extended screens.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro



ERRORS
------

Any errors that are encountered during SoS processing will be indicated by
an error message and are self explanatory. In most cases, you should try
to correct the problem then retry the operation. Entering F3 will
immediately exit you from SoS back to where you were if all else fails.


TIPS ON USING SoS
-----------------

The more you use SoS, the more uses you will discover for it. To help you
along, consider some of these:

o The ability to save important screen information from one application
to be referenced in another.

o The ability to make customized HELP screens with the use of an editor.

o Saved screens can provide an audit trail of past work.

o Saved screens can be used to recover past work or even data in the
event of accidental loss due to machine failure or human error.

o Saved screens can be used for tutorial purposes to aid in training.

o Screens saved in Text mode can be incorporated into documents via a
word processor or editor. Very helpful in creating manuals.


MISCELLANEOUS
-------------

Saves and restores within graphic modes are not supported. If you try to
activate SoS in a graphics mode, the request will be ignored.

All pages are supported within SoS. SoS will always restore to the
current page, not the one in which the screen image was saved.

Once a screen image is saved you can save any number of other screens
under that same screen number. Just keep in mind that the last one saved
is what you will see when doing a restore function.

Disk screen images can be saved and used between sessions. They are not
tied to the session which created them. Memory screen images on the
otherhand cease to exist when the machine is turned off.

The .SOS and .SOT files can be deleted when not needed. Each 80x25 .SOS
file is 4000 bytes in length. Each 40x25 .SOS file is 2000 bytes in
length. The size of an extended screen .SOS file can be determined by
the following formula.

( Number of Screen Rows * Number of Screen Columns ) * 2

The .SOT files vary in size and are at most 1/2 the above lengths.
Save Our Screens (SoS) v3.10 (c) 1987-1990 Gary J. Shapiro






HISTORY OF CHANGES
------------------

V1.01, July 07, 1987 - First official release of Save Our Screens (SoS).

V1.02, July 13, 1987 - Fixed a minor problem with the critical error
handling routine during a disk restore.
- Added restore screen cycling via the SPACE BAR.

V1.03, March 03, 1988 - Internal memory improvements.
- Added support for MCGA and VGA display adapters.
- Added PS/2 support.
- Added ability to remove SoS from memory.
- Added ERRORLEVEL setting for load failures.

V1.04, March 20, 1988 - Added memory utilization statistics at load time.
- Added screen information via the '?' key while
doing restores.
- Internal improvements to make SoS more
compatible with other TSR's.
- Cosmetic changes to the SoS pop-up windows.

V2.00, April 17, 1988 - Provide full support for screen sizes up to
80x50 (EGA, VGA and similar display adapters).
- Increased the maximum number of memory screens
from 8 to 9.
- Increased the maximum number of screen images
to disk from 9 to 90.

V2.10 May 5, 1988 - SoS now requires the RETURN key to be pressed
after selecting a screen.
- Added a Text mode for disk saves.

V3.00 January 21, 1989 - Eliminated the 90 disk screen limitation by
allowing saves to filenames.
- Created two types of screen cycling for disk
screen images.
- Reduced filesizes for TEXT screen images.
- Changed all special SoS keys to function keys.

V3.01 March 1, 1989 - Added the ability to change the SoS window
colors via the F9 and F10 keys.

V3.10 February 9, 1990 - Added key info on the SoS windows.
- Added the /? parameter to display help info.
- Added the /U parameter to uninstall SoS from
memory.
- Added the ability to append screen saves to an
existing SoS Text file while in TEXT mode.



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