Dec 292017
 
Equal Partners. Simple serial-card based LAN system. Will perform limited LAN services, but speed is slow.
File PARTNER.ZIP from The Programmer’s Corner in
Category Network Files
Equal Partners. Simple serial-card based LAN system. Will perform limited LAN services, but speed is slow.
File Name File Size Zip Size Zip Type
50-50.SYS 4134 1456 deflated
EQUAL.COM 9893 3586 deflated
PARTNERS.COM 13846 4724 deflated
PARTNERS.DOC 83294 21549 deflated
README.DOC 19886 6211 deflated
REMOTE.BAT 1275 566 deflated
SERVER.BAT 1394 585 deflated

Download File PARTNER.ZIP Here

Contents of the README.DOC file




EQUAL PARTNERS

The

Virtual Disk System

by

Downlink Systems

COPYRIGHT (c) 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

1377 K. STREET N.W., SUITE 189, WASHINGTON D.C, 20005

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
REVISION HISTORY
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Version 4.00 - Support for PC/MS DOS 4.0x added.
FEB 1 1989
- Supports DOS 4.0x with drives formatted greater than
32 meg.

- Force DOS , on server, to flush buffers after updating
(writing) to a disk drive.

- Corrected bug with 'normal' mode write to server.

- Added option to display drive usage read/write (sector)
statistics, on the server (Partners) machine.

- support IBM PS/2 at 115kb, with IBM Multiprotocol Adapter
(as Com2). IBM PS/2, with built-in Com1 only supports
maximum of 38kb-56kb (baud rate) data transfer speed.

- supports DOS PRINT.COM. Allows remote printer LPT1 to be
redirected to server printer and still allow disk read/
writes to server while also printing to server. This works
in all Equal Partners operating modes now.

- Shareware version 4.00 is initially being distributed on
---------

1). THE PUBLIC (software) LIBRARY

P. O. Box 35705
Houston TX 77235-5705

Ph :713-721-5205 - 713-721-6104

Ask for 'Utilities, Other -disk 2-UT-858'


2). PC ROCKLAND BBS - NY (bulletin board, one of the BEST)

Download file : PARTNR40.ARC

Ph :914-353-2538 (open public - non-subscribers)
914-353-2157 (paid subscribers only)



Version 3.10 - Squashed a Major bug and updated documentation.
July 15, 1988

- Corrected bug with disabling com ports from DOS and BASIC.
Bug may cause unpredictable system problems depending on
where Equal Partners loaded into memory.

- Update documentation with INDEX and options explanations.

- Sorry for an update so soon, but the MS MASM 5.1 assembler
let us use an invalid addressing construct without flagging
it as such. We will call Microsoft and see what they say,
as the 8088 Intel manual was right and we were wrong , but
we would have liked the MASM to flag our misuse.

The instruction we attempted was : STOS WORD PTR ES:[SI]

The STOS segment cannot be overridden and USES the DI
register BUT MASM should have flagged our override attempt,
we would have thought.

- Shareware version 3.10 is initially being distributed on
---------

1). THE PUBLIC (software) LIBRARY

P. O. Box 35705
Houston TX 77235-5705

Ph :713-721-5205 - 713-721-6104

Ask for 'Utilities, Other -disk 2-UT-858'

(Our note: Only IBM PD/Shareware software disk
distribution group WE recommend!)


2). PC ROCKLAND BBS - NY (bulletin board, one of the BEST)

Download file : PARTNR31.ARC

Ph :914-353-2538 (open public - non-subscribers)
914-353-2157 (paid subscribers only)


Version 3.00 - Major internal program modifications for future growth,
July 1, 1988 as well as program enhancements.

- Version 3.0 is NO longer downward compatible with 1.x and 2.x
versions of Equal Partners.

- Modified to support not so compatible PC clones. Corrects
potential stalemate/lockup of/between the server and remote
under some bootup conditions.

- Supports "shutdown" of server (PARTNERS) from a remote. Same
as pressing ESC on server PC, while PARTNERS running.

- Allows a virtual 'write-protect tab' to be placed on all
disk drives on the server (PARTNERS) machine.

- Added a "turbo +" mode.

- Auto-detect of 8250 UART or compatible chip.

- Equal Partners less sensitive to ANY particular processor
speed (CPU/Mhz and wait states).

- Able to handle disks that have not been formatted to IBM
DOS specifications (boot sector does not contain correct
BPB information). This applies to virtual disks on the
server only.

- Virtual printer support. LPT1 on the remote may be re-
directed to print on server's LPT1.

- Most server options may be activated/de-activated
without leaving PARTNERS program.

- a HELP command line option.

- Shareware version 3.00 is initially being distributed on
---------

1). THE PUBLIC (software) LIBRARY

P. O. Box 35705
Houston TX 77235-5705

Ph :713-721-5205 - 713-721-6104

Ask for 'Utilities, Other -disk 2-UT-858'

(Our note: Only IBM PD/Shareware software disk
distribution group WE recommend!)


2). PC ROCKLAND BBS - NY (bulletin board, one of the BEST)

Download file : PARTNR30.ARC

Ph :914-353-2538 (open public - non-subscribers)
914-353-2157 (paid subscribers only)



Version 2.10 - Revised to allow 'less restricted' Shareware usage
January 15, 1988 (as requested by some non-registered users)

- Modified to support not so compatible PC clones. Some clones
(BIOSs) initialize async ports, at boot up, differently
(such as sending sustained break signal, or initialize
interrupt state different than expected).

- Both Com1 and Com2 supported in Shareware version 2.10

- Transfer rate is 19.2kb in Shareware version 2.10

- Other non-registered 'restricted usage' options still apply

- This Shareware version 2.10 is initially being distributed on
---------

1). THE PUBLIC (software) LIBRARY

P. O. Box 35705
Houston TX 77235-5705

Ph :713-721-5205 - 713-721-6104

Ask for 'Utilities, Other -disk 2-UT-858'

(Our note: Only IBM PD/Shareware software disk
distribution group WE recommend!)


2). PC ROCKLAND BBS - NY (bulletin board, one of the BEST)

Download file : PARTNR21.ARC

Ph :914-353-2176 (open public - non-subscribers)
914-353-2157 (paid subscribers only)



Version 2.00 - Complete revision
December 1, 1987

- Comparable to Lap Link Plus ($139) and Brooklyn Bridge ($129)

- EQUAL PARTNERS costs $40 to register

- Supports IBM PS/2 workstations

- Enhanced data transfer rate

- 4+ to 8+ thousand characters per second

- Enhanced co-existence with other Ram-resident software

- Enhanced memory management

- NO LONGER compatible with Version 1.x releases

- Enhanced data validity checking

- Continued support for "well-behaved" mode with DOS

- Added support for "less well-behaved" mode (TURBO)

- Allows user to toggle between data transfer modes

- Allows user to display the remotes startup environment


Version 1.20 - corrected major bug, within Equal Partners
June 30,1987
- only 4 server drives could be successfully
accessed. Accessing the 5th thru 8th drive
would ,in most cases, lock up the remote.

- typo corrections and additions to manual


Version 1.11 - typo corrections and additions to manual
April 4,1987


Version 1.10 - corrected bug with DOS 3.2
FEB 28,1987
- some DOS commands thought drives were Network drives
and would not function (ex: CHKDSK)


- DOS 2.0 and 2.1 incompatibility

- added support for DOS 2.0 and 2.1

- modified code to function with DOS 2.0
and 2.1 as IOCTL DOS function call 44
causes DOS to function slightly different
than DOS 3.x.

Version 1.00 - initial release of EQUAL PARTNERS
FEB 7, 1987

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
'PARTNERS' CORNER
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I. WHAT'S UP 'PARTNER'.

We are a small startup group, with no capital backing. The shareware
media allows us to present to you a product that we feel has a market,
and present this product in such a form as to let you try before you
buy. Also this distribution media allows us to pass this product on
to you at a substantial cost saving over similar products.

However, at this time, we can't provide 800 phone service, fancy logos,
pre-printed glossies, binders, bulletin board, plus all the other
costly items.

We are looking to provide a bulletin board in the near future, and
if registration volume warrants, an 800 number, and Visa/MasterCard
support. We are brainstorming for a logo for the product, so any ideas
would be appreciated. Also we can assure you that you will not get
lost in the system, as we seem to be with so many other vendors we
have sent our registration cards into. Your order form goes on file
and is saved permanently and as with most of us now days you will
be in a computer database (ours). We do not give your name and address
to anyone for any purpose, without your written permission.

Let us also stress that EQUAL PARTNERS is NOT a LAN, a zero-slot LAN
or any other kind of LAN. If your requirements are for record/file
lockout capabilities, peer-to-peer computer interaction in a star/
ring/tree topology THEN we recommend spending 500+ minimum to acquire
such hardware and software. We can't and don't expect to sell
EQUAL PARTNERS as such a solution, especially for $40.00.


II. WHAT WE ARE WORKING ON.

We are considering what other utilities could be added to
provide you with a better working environment with EQUAL PARTNERS.
We may include other public domain utilities, of interest , in
assisting you in working under the EQUAL PARTNERS environment.

Since Version 1.11, we have considered adding support for the
DOS maximum of 26 drives. In other words, allow the remote to
read/write up to 26 drives on the server. We have considered allowing
you to specify the first drive on the "server" that the "remote(s)"
are allowed to access. For example, you may just want the servers
"C:" drive and above to be the drives accessible by all remotes.

We are also looking into offering a version of Equal Partners that
uses the parallel ports, in addition to the serial ports. This
would a offer a 200kb+ transfer rate ,over the serials max of 115+.

What do you think of any of the above ideas? Please lets us know.

III. LET US KNOW.

If you have any concerns, questions, suggestions, gripes, ideas,
or just want to write a few lines, please feel free to use the
"USER COMMENT FORM" for this purpose.

Also drop us a line if you feel you have found what you consider a
unique application for this product.



IV. WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW !!!

There are several critical points that we feel should be emphasized
here, as is in the documentation.


FIRST
------

If you must mix versions of DOS on the server and remote, then
you MUST run the "REMOTE with the LATEST version of DOS. This
----------------------------------------------------
is the only way to insure that your disk(ette)s and their data
will be safe from corruption. Unless you know absolutely what
you are doing (mixing DOS versions) then follow this RULE.

Again, the reason is that each version of DOS ONLY KNOWS about
------------------------------
certain disk formats and media type, so you really can't expect
DOS 2.1 to know about a 10 or 20 meg hard disk with 2k clusters,
or know how to read/write 3.5 disks. Even though we have stressed
this, some users still are putting their data in danger by not
considering the effects of mixing DOS versions, on the server
and the remote(s).

As a general rule , do the DOS "DIR" command on EACH disk on the
server. If the results come back garbled or you are not sure that
the result are what you expect then DO NOT do any DOS commands
-----------------------
that would transfer data (such as COPY..etc) or run any applications
that would transfer data from/to the server/remote(s) to the
the drive in question.


SECONDLY
--------

Though we have not brought it to your attention before, we give
examples of using a "ABC" switch box to link PCs to a server and
other examples of the possibility of multiple remotes attached
to a "server".

Let us CLARIFY AND EMPHASIZE that from the remotes point of view,
---------------------
all virtual disks (even harddisks) are removable.

What this means is that each virtual disk can be virtually removed
and other virtual disk(s) placed in the virtual (RS232) drives

If this is abused, then disk directories and data files have the
potential of being corrupted or destroyed. This all goes back to the
original days of DOS 1.0.

For example:

You could put a disk in the "A:" drive and run a program that reads
and updates the disk in the "A:" drive. However if you were careless
enough to remove the original disk from the "A:" drive and replace
with another disk (with different data..etc) then DOS would not know
what you had done, and would just write over the new disk. Well , you
can see that you could do the same type of thing with the virtual disks
on the remote (and server).




SO, if you are going to be switching remote PCs on the RS232 link,


ALWAYS DISCONNECT OR SWITCH THE REMOTE WHILE THE REMOTE IS AT THE
-----------------------------------------------------------------
"DOS PROMPT", AND ABSOLUTELY NEVER WHILE YOU ARE RUNNING AN APPLICATION
---------------------------------------------------------------------
PROGRAM ON THE REMOTE (AS FILES MAY BE OPENED AND IN USE ON THE SERVER)!!
-------------------------------------------------------------------------


THIRDLY
--------

If you are going to run a PC as a EQUAL PARTNERS "server" then:


NEVER use the DOS commands , "ASSIGN", "JOIN", "SUBST", or other
-----
DOS commands on the "server" that would "hide" the true type and
nature of disk devices.

Please adhere to these rules, unless you know absolutely what you are
doing and its effects on DOS and applications. In such situations, if
you choose to do so, YOU bear the responsibility for the integrity
of your data and the effects on the DOS operating system, on both
the server and the remote(s)!!.



V. WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT THE "SHAREWARE" EQUAL PARTNERS

The Shareware version of EQUAL PARTNERS is NOT a DEMO version.

The shareware version has ALL the functionality of the registered
user version, but the Shareware version is not implemented to the
same degree. The Shareware version is basically version 1.0 as it
was initially distributed, to allow file transfers from a desktop
PC to machines with 3.5 micro floppy drives, in a safe and reliable
manner, with little or no relearning on the users part. The Share-
ware version does this VERY well. If your requirements then grow
such that you need full BI-DIRECTIONAL PC-to-PC data transfer
capabilities at HIGH speeds (4-8+ thousand characters/second) with
FULL error checking and recovery , virtual printer support, then
YOU have the option to register your Shareware version (or spend $100+
on a retail commercial product) , so that you can address your new
requirements.


PROGRAM EXECUTION RESTRICTIONS


If you are using a Shareware version of EQUAL PARTNERS, and have not
registered, then the following program execution restrictions
apply:

1). Only 19.2 baud transfer rate is available.

2). Only "NORMAL" mode supported (1000 chars/second transfer)

3). Only sector mode transfer used (not block mode)

4). Only one virtual drive may be specified in
config.sys.

5). Only reading from the server is allowed.

You may only copy data "from" the server. You
may not perform any DOS function that would
"write" to the server, even virtual printing.

6). The starting drive, on the server, is always the
"A:" drive. This means that the first virtual
drive assigned on the "remote" is the first
physical drive accessed on the "server".
========================= END OF README.DOC ==================================


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