Dec 232017
Prints two to four pages on one sheet using a HP Laser Jet. Great, saves lots of paper.
File MCRTXT30.ZIP from The Programmer’s Corner in
Category Printer Utilities
Prints two to four pages on one sheet using a HP Laser Jet. Great, saves lots of paper.
File Name File Size Zip Size Zip Type
MICROTXT.DOC 19917 7304 deflated
MICROTXT.EXE 102920 55817 deflated
TINY3.SFP 4490 1255 deflated

Download File MCRTXT30.ZIP Here

Contents of the MICROTXT.DOC file

MicroText -- The Document Cruncher
Version 3.0

New Features in MicroText 3.0!

*** Printer drivers now built-in.
*** Printer selection menu.
*** HP LaserJet, Series II now fully supported.
*** Now supports Epson LQ and IBM Proprinters.
*** Faster operation.


MicroText is protected under the copyright laws of the United
States. The program and this document are Copyright, 1989, by
the author, George Campbell. All rights reserved.

MicroText is not in the public domain. It is shareware. If
you use this program, please register your copy by sending the
$10 shareware fee to:

George Campbell
1472 Sixth St.
Los Osos, CA 93402

The latest version of this program is always available on the
SLO BYTES BBS. (805) 528-3753.

BBS SysOps and shareware distributors are welcome to distribute
this program, as long as no changes are made without my written
permission. Users of MicroText are welcome to share the
complete program with their friends and others. Please keep
the program and documentation together.

Registered users will receive the latest version, without the
shareware screen at the end of the program. They are also
entitled to mail and BBS support, and will receive upgrades to
the program automatically without charge.

SPECIAL NOTICE: Any user who contributes a new printer driver is
entitled to free registration for MicroText, and will receive a
complimentary copy of the registered version. Just send your driver
to the address above or upload it (with your address) to the BBS
number listed above.


MicroText does just one thing: it cuts down on the amount of
paper needed to print documentation for shareware programs.
Now you can print the equivalent of two or four pages on a
single sheet of 8.5" X 11" paper.

There are other programs which do this, but none of them have
the options included in MicroText.

MicroText can:

1. Use any dot matrix printer which can print condensed,
italic, or superscript characters with 7/72" line spacing.

2. Remove all extra blank lines from a document.

3. Remove all control characters which can confuse printers.

4. Replace graphics characters with an asterisk (*).

5. Print graphics characters if you wish. (default)

6. Automatically word wrap long lines to fit.

7. Display a page preview of your document. (CGA/EGA/VGA).

8. Allow you to set custom screen colors.

9. Add a 1" left margin for hole punching.

10. Format your document for one or two-column printing.

11. Print source code files from any language, with lines up to
156 characters long. (or longer)

12. Re-format most Word Processor files and database files into
a form which can be printed by MicroText.

13. Print just part of a file. MicroText has a powerful search
routine to help you find a starting point.

14. Support IBM ProPrinter's or compatibles which only offer a
137 character line length.

15. Print directly to the Printer or to a temporary file.

16. Now prints on HP LaserJet, Series II, using a special font.

17. Now prints on EPSON LQ-series printers and compatibles.

Once you try MicroText, you won't know how you lived without


You can run MicroText from a hard or floppy disk. Simply copy
the file, MICROTXT.EXE to a floppy disk or to a directory on
your hard disk.

COLOR.DAT, along with any added printer drivers MUST be in
the current directory, or MicroText won't be able to find
them. You must run MicroText from its own directory!

Once installed, run MicroText with the command:



MicroText requires DOS 2.0 or later, 256K of RAM, and CGA, EGA,
or VGA ONLY for the page preview. If you have a monochrome
system and try to use the page preview feature, you'll see an
error message.

USING MicroText

The first time you run MicroText, it will show you a menu and
ask you to select one of 5 possible printers for use with the
program. Choose the number which is closest to your printer.
If your exact printer isn't shown, check for compatiblitiy in
your printer manual and choose the most compatible. After
you choose, you'll be asked whether you want to make that
printer the default for MicroText. If you're experimenting,
answer "N" to this question, only answering "Y" once you've
found the correct printer type.

If, later, you want to change printer types, start MicroText
again, but this time with the "?" switch. This will present
the printer selection menu again. The command looks like


After you start the program, you'll see a menu. You'll also
see a flashing warning telling you to make sure your printer
is on. While I've trapped printer errors, some AT-class
computers can be fooled. Just make sure you turn your
printer on and have paper in it. Leave the printer on until
you exit MicroText. To get rid of the message, press any key.

Position your paper approximately with about 1/4" of paper
above the actual printing position. This top margin is
important, since MicroText starts printing immediately at the
current paper location, and uses the entire page. You may have
to experiment.

Naturally, if you're using a LaserJet, just make sure the
paper bin isn't empty. The LaserJet will take care of paper

Look at the menu, and you'll find that it's pretty
self-explanatory. [F1] offers a brief help screen. The
remaining Function Keys are arranged basically in the order in
which you'll use them. Press Function keys only at the main
menu. [F10] is an exception. It aborts printing and only
functions during printing.

[F2] asks for the name of the file you want to crunch. You can
include path information if you wish.

Once you enter a file name, another prompt will ask you for the
name of a scratch file. MicroText creates a file for storing
its output. The default filename is MICROTXT.TMP, but you can
supply any filename you wish, if you want to save the file for
later use. Again, path information is accepted at this prompt.

NOTE: You can also tell MicroText to crunch the file directly
to your printer, instead of creating a temporary file. Just
type in LPT1: or LPT2: instead of a filename. The crunched
document will go directly to your printer. This option saves
disk space, but is riskier if your original material causes
excessive line wraps.

[F3] begins the crunching process. That process will be
followed on the status line, counting lines as it proceeds. You
can watch each line being crunched, then written to the scratch

Once crunching is complete, you'll see a screen which is a
report of the savings you'll get.

[F4] prints the file you just crunched. Again, make sure your
printer is on and has enough paper to print the number of pages
shown in the report. Tractor feed is HIGHLY recommended for
dot-matrix printers.

You can abort printing by pressing [F10]. Since your printer
has a buffer, it may take some time for printing to stop. If,
after pressing [F10], you need instant printer stoppage, turn
off the power to the printer. Be sure to turn it back on
again, though. NOTE: don't do this with the LaserJet unless
you plan to restart the program.

Once printing is complete, you'll be asked if you want to
delete the scratch file. It's up to you.

[F5] prompts you for the name of a document to print. This
could be a previously-created crunched file from MicroText,
although other files can also be printed in tiny type. You
might try this for source code files with line lengths up to
156 characters. Longer lines will be wrapped automatically.

After entering the filename ( alone aborts), you'll be
asked if you want to start printing from the beginning of the
file. If so, just press Y.

Otherwise, press N and MicroText will prompt you for a search.
You have two choices: [1] accepts a MicroText page number.
Enter ONLY the number....nothing else. [2] lets you enter any
search text you wish. This search is case-sensitive so CURSOR
won't find Cursor.

After you enter your search text, MicroText will search the
file for the first line containing your search text, then will
begin printing on that line. Use this feature if you have to
interrupt a printing job in the middle for some reason, or if
you just want to print part of a file.

Again, after printing, you'll be asked about deleting the file.

[F6] is the key that allows you to customize the program for
YOUR printer. You'll need your printer's manual. You need the
ASCII codes for Elite type size, Condensed printing, Super or
subscript and 7/72" or 10 lines per inch line spacing.

When prompted, enter the codes ONE AT A TIME, always using the
ASCII code in decimal format. Enter one code, then press enter
and you'll be prompted for the next code for that feature.


On EPSON printers, the code for Elite Printing is {Esc}{M}.
You would enter 27 at the first prompt, then 77 at the second
prompt, then press alone to move to the next feature.

A help screen is always shown during printer configuration.

Once you've finished, you'll be asked for a filename for your
configuration file. Again, path information is OK.

Finally, you'll be asked if you want to make the entries you
made effective immediately.

[F7] allows you to load a previously-created driver. Just
enter the filename for your driver, with path information if

[F8] is the key that toggles graphics characters. When you
start, MicroText is in full graphics mode. Pressing [F8]
switches back and forth between the two modes. You'll see the
result right on the menu. With graphics [OFF], all ASCII
extended graphics characters are replaced with an asterisk (*).
NOTE: The soft font used in the HP LaserJet doesn't have the
IBM graphics characters. MicroText automatically turns
graphics [OFF] when you use this printer. Don't try to
disable this feature manually, or you may see unexpected

If your file has many line-drawing characters, I suggest
turning graphics [OFF] since most printers will cause improper
pagination if they print these characters in Elite, Condensed,
Superscript. It's up to you. Try both ways.

[F9] exits to DOS. You'll have a chance to abort. Once you
abort, you'll see my shareware request. Please take the time
to read it. If you register, you'll receive the version
without this screen.

[F10] is only used to cancel printing, and operates only during
printing. See the note above.


The four main arrow keys also control functions in MicroText.

[UP CURSOR] takes you to the page preview. Notice that you
must have either crunched a file or loaded another file for
printing before this command will function. Again, you must
have CGA, EGA, or VGA capabilities for this preview. If not,
you'll see an error message and will return to the main menu.

Also, the appearance of your page may differ if you are using
printers other than the Epson 86 series.

[LEFT CURSOR] sets one or two column mode. Default is two
columns on the final printout. Press the key to toggle between
modes. You'll see the status displayed on your menu. NOTE:
You must do this before crunching a file. ------ Use one column
mode for text files or source code files where the line length
is consistently over 64 characters. This prevents excessive
line wrapping and will make your printout easier to read.

In one-column mode, only two pages will print on each final
page. This may be especially useful for users with
ProPrinters or compatibles, especially if you are seeing
too many word wraps in your printout.

[DOWN CURSOR] Takes you to MicroText's screen color setting
menu. Full instructions are shown on the screen. When you
select the colors, you'll see a sample of your selection, then
MicroText will ask if these are OK. If so, just press Y. If
not, press N and you'll get another chance.

Once you decide, you'll have the chance to save your selection
in a configuration file, COLOR.DAT. If COLOR.DAT exists,
MicroText will automatically start with the colors stored in
that file. NOTE: COLOR.DAT must be in the current directory.
If you operate MicroText from other directories, copy COLOR.DAT
to those directories.

[RIGHT CURSOR] sets the left margin on your printout on or
off. This key is a toggle. You can see the status of the
toggle on the menu screen. The default is no left margin. If
the margin status is ON, then a 1" wide margin will be added to
your printout. This allows for hole punching or other binding
techniques. NOTE: HP LaserJet users may want to turn on the
left margin switch, since that printer can print wider lines
than some others. It makes a neater page.

NOTE: If you elect to have a left margin, MicroText will
automatically wrap lines over 64 characters wide in two-column
mode and over 140 characters wide in one-column mode. Use
margins carefully to avoid excessive wrapping. In ProPrinter
mode, started with the P switch, line lengths will be shorter.
HP LaserJet lines will be longer, up to 200 characters in
one-column mode and 90 characters in two-column mode.

HINT: If you're not sure whether to use margins or not, try
setting margins on, then pressing [F3] to crunch the file.
Check the report, then press [UP CURSOR] to see a page preview.
If you don't like what you see, press [F3] again after leaving
the preview and re-setting the margin toggle. MicroText will
re-crunch your document in the new mode, and you can preview it

This hint also applies to one and two-column printing. Once
you've loaded a file for crunching, you can re-crunch it at any
time, overwriting the scratch file.


1. Since MicroText creates a scratch file, you must have enough
disk space to hold that file. Typically, it will be somewhat
larger than the original text file. Allow for it.

2. MicroText can handle some Word Processor files directly.
Try it out on a short file. Turn Graphics [OFF] for best
results. I've tested it with Microsoft WORD files with good

Also, most database files are amenable to MicroText crunching.
You may not like the format, but you can read it just fine.

3. If you're designing printer drivers, test them with short
files. It saves lots of time.

4. Any time you're testing MicroText, work with short files.

MicroText has a few obvious uses, like printing shareware
documentation, but it has other uses as well. Here are a few
options you might consider:

Spreadsheet Printing:
MicroText can crunch a spreadsheet print file in it's
one-column mode and handle text up to 156 columns wide. That
beats the typical 132-column condensed printing. HP LaserJet
users can print single-column text up to 200 characters wide.

Source Code Printing:
MicroText is ideal for printing archival copies of programmer's
source code files. If your source code files have long lines,
use the one-column mode. Also, you can print source code files
without crunching them if pagination is impractical. This
feature allows you to view your screens perfectly, complete
with all ASCII graphics characters.

To print without crunching, use the [F5] key to load any ASCII
file for printing.

NOTE: MicroText prints 105 lines per 8.5"X11" page.

Special Printing:
Use MicroText's [F5] key to load any ASCII file for printing.
You can customize your print output by using the [F6] key to
insert printer codes. If you choose, you can even save these
codes in special configuration files for repeated printing.
There is no limit to the number of printer control codes you
can enter at any control code prompt. Just enter them one code
at a time.

Working With Print Enhancers:
Various programs are available to enhance print quality for
most Epson-compatible 9-pin printers. MicroText interfaces
perfectly with these program. My favorite is "The Image
Printing Utilities." LETTRIX is another good bet. Using one of
these programs, you can produce near-laser quality printing.

USING MicroText with Laser Printers:
HP LaserJet, Series II printers use some special techniques
for printing with MicroText. A soft font, TINY3.SFP is
downloaded by MicroText to your printer. It remains in the
printer until you shut the printer off. In order not to
conflict with other soft fonts, this font uses the font
number, 1333, as an identifier. You can even specify that
font number for other printing chores, if your software can
handle soft fonts.

The font, TINY3.SFP is a fixed-space font at 3.8 points, with
21.5 characters per inch. It has only the normal keyboard
characters, ASCII 33 to ASCII 127, and takes up very little
memory. As used in MicroText, line spacing is set at 12 lines
per inch.

You may download the font to your printer outside of
MicroText for other uses. Use the command:


The font number, 1333, is built into the font itself, as is
the 12 lpi line spacing. I just wanted to add that
information for LaserJet junkies.


You may bypass MicroText's printer selection menu by adding a
command line switch. There are five possible switches:

This sets up the program for EPSON FX-86, EPSON FX-286,
LX-86, and other compatible printers.

Sets up the program for IBM ProPrinter, IBM Graphics Printer
5152, MX-80, FX-80 and other compatible printers.

Sets up the program for the Epson LQ series of printers, and

Sets up the program for HP LaserJet, Series II printers, and

Calls the printer selection menu, even if a PRINTER.DAT file
exists. Use this switch for changing printers.

Command line switches may be entered in upper or lower case.


Version 3.0, June 18, 1989

Added HP LaserJet, Series II support.
Added internal printer type selection menu.
Added LaserJet soft font, TINY3.SFP
Compiled MicroText with QuickBasic 4.5 for more speed.
Added command line options for printers.

Version 2.2, April 1, 1989

Added Direct Printing Option

Version 2.1, March 28, 1989

Fixed filename bug.

Version 2.1, March 27, 1989

Added Search routine for printing after interruption.

Version 2.0, March 26, 1989

Added Cursor Key commands. Added One or Two Column Modes. Added
Color Customizing. Added Left Margin Capabilities Fixed
pagination bug.

Version 1.0, March 24, 1989

So far, this is the only version. I'm sure there are things to
be done to the program. I welcome your suggestions, especially
when accompanied by registration fees.

I will try to change the program to suit any reasonable
request, at least as far as I'm capable.

MicroText was written in Microsoft QuickBASIC.

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