Welcome to SlipKnot's installation guide.
====== A quick description of SlipKnot: ==================================
1. SlipKnot is a graphical World-Wide-Web browser for PC users running
Windows 3.1+ or a higher level of Windows.
2. It is designed for modem users with ordinary dial-up UNIX shell accounts.
3. It does NOT require SLIP or PPP or TCP/IP services in any form (no TIA
or remosock, etc. if you are familiar with these products).
====== Computer and UNIX service provider requirements ====================
On your computer:
1. Windows 3.1, Windows for Workgroups or higher, running in 386 Enhanced
Mode (SlipKnot cannot be used on 286 processors). Not yet tested with
2. At least 4 MB of memory, recommended 8MB. We have noticed memory
deficiency errors at 4 MB.
3. At least 2 MB of available hard disk space. SlipKnot itself takes
approx. 1.5 MB. When working, SlipKnot's job will be to download
documents for you from the Internet, and these may require plenty of
hard disk space.
4. Mouse or other pointing device required (cannot control SlipKnot via
only the keyboard).
On your service provider's UNIX host:
1. Your UNIX system must have either the program "lynx" (version 2.2 or
later) or the program "www" available. If in doubt, log in to your
host, and try to execute either of these programs. You will then know
immediately whether they are available. To find the version of lynx on
your UNIX host, execute the UNIX command: "lynx -version".
2. Your UNIX host must have a program to send files to you via either the
Xmodem or Ymodem protocol. The actual name of the programs that perform
these file transfers changes from system to system, but try the commands
"sx" (for XModem) or "sb" (for YModem). If these fail, ask your system
administrator or some other knowledgeable person. Likewise, you will
need to know the name of the UNIX program that will receive files from
your PC using Xmodem or Ymodem.
3. Your UNIX system must be able to display individual file sizes using the
"ls -l filename" command. If "ls" has been renamed or works differently
from normal, SlipKnot will fail.
========= Steps to installing it ==========================================
1. Assuming that you have unzipped the SlipKnot distribution file into a
temporary directory (say, C:\TEMP), launch Windows (Enhanced 386 Mode
only), bring up File/Run in the Program Manager: C:\TEMP\SETUP. This
will install SlipKnot and create a new Windows group.
1.1 IMPORTANT: If you receive a message from SETUP indicating that the file
"DDEML..." is in use, you may safely ignore this message and proceed.
1.2 IMPORTANT: If you receive a message from SETUP that it was unable to
install the file "THREED.VBX" then you may have two options: 1) ignore
the message (if it is not fatal), which you will be allowed to do if
there is a version difference between your existing
C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM\THREE.VBX file and the one that SlipKnot is
attempting to install; or 2) follow the instructions below carefully...
NOTE: This message is due to a bug in Microsoft's SETUP program.
For the sake of the instructions below, we'll assume that the
directory you specified for SlipKnot is "C:\SLIPKNOT". In the
instructions below, substitute the appropriate directory on your own
a) Terminate SlipKnot (Pressing OK to the error message will
probably terminate SlipKnot SETUP anyway).
b) Using DOS or any other file manager, get into your
c) You should find the file: "THREED.VBX" there. Rename it to:
d) Get into your SlipKnot directory (say, C:\SLIPKNOT). Delete all
the files there.
e) Now start the SETUP process again.
f) If it fails again, please contact MicroMind at: [email protected]
2. There is a setting in the Windows Control Panel that affects SlipKnot's
background operations. Go to the Windows Main group, launch Control
Panel, go to the "386 Enhanced" settings. There should be a checkbox
called "Exclusive in Background". This box should be unchecked! If it
is unchecked, then everything is OK. If it is checked, then uncheck it,
save the setting by pressing OK, terminate Windows, and then come back
into Windows and make sure it remains unchecked! We have heard of
systems where this is a difficult box to uncheck (it seems to want to
If all else fails (the box insists on remaining checked), then you will
have to force this setting manually by using an ASCII editor to edit the
SYSTEM.INI file in the \WINDOWS directory. Exit Windows. Edit the
\WINDOWS\SYSTEM.INI file. Therein you will find a setting:
"WinExclusive=1". Change this to: "WinExclusive=0". Save the file and
go into Windows Control Panel to make sure that the box is, in fact,
3. Press the ReadMe Icon from the SlipKnot Windows group. There may be
last minute information there.
4. Launch SlipKnot.
5. You will be in SlipKnot Terminal and will have to configure the
communications options, Terminal fonts (make sure you choose a terminal
font small enough that the entire Terminal Window fits onto your
screen and large enough to be comfortable), and Host options. Bring up
Windows Help and keep it visible as a guide to the meanings of the
options (this is important!).
6. Try to connect to your host, to test your login script, if you have
chosen to use login scripts (rather than manual login).
7. Once connected, try downloading a small file from your Host as a test.
The download option is available under the Communications menu item.
7a. If your download attempts fail (with a message like: "Unable to write
to your Host"), the problem may be that your shell has the "noclobber"
option set. Check SlipKnot Help concerning this problem.
8. If downloading works, press the World Wide Web button. This will launch
a one-time process to deposit a couple of short shell scripts onto your
host. This occassionally fails. If it does fail, try again, or use the
Re-Initialize Host menu item under Setup. If it fails repeatedly, send
me mail and we will try to debug this. On the other hand, if it
succeeds, you will not have to go through this again.
9. You are now in SlipKnot's Web renderer, with SlipKnot's Home Page
10. Explore Configure options; check out the SlipKnot What's New Page, etc.
11. Remember that retrieving documents from the Internet can be tricky for
many reasons, not the least of which is that there is heavy traffic out
there that can cause any retrieval to fail (SlipKnot normally retries
in case of failure).
Please send us a message when you have loaded SlipKnot -- we would like to
know who has actually tried it. Also, send bug reports, comments, fan
mail, etc. to [email protected]
Good luck, happy browsing, and thanks in advance for your efforts.
=========== Note from Peter Brooks ========================================
SlipKnot was created because, at that time, there was no other alternative
to accessing the World Wide Web graphically if you did not have SLIP or PPP
or TCP/IP access. Having analyzed Mosaic and some of its competitors, I
concluded that all of these browsers were designed for people with very
rapid communications channels into the Internet, not modem users. Even if
you have SLIP access, most of these browsers do not allow you to save
entire documents (with the included pictures), forcing you to retrieve the
documents again whenever you wish to take a full look at them. It takes a
while to retrieve any document by modem with any browser, and you shouldn't
have to do this more than once.
The Wold Wide Web is a truly wonderful human construct to explore. I hope
that SlipKnot will make the Web accessible for the first time to a very
large number of people, who will take as much delight in it as I have.
Peter Brooks, SlipKnot developer
MicroMind, Inc.[email protected]