Contents of the MPRINT30.DOC file
June 15, 1988
" An Enhanced and Inovative Print Utility "
Copyright (c) 1987-1988
Writen by Gerald P. Doyon
Introduction & Overview
Multi-Print came about out of a sheer dislike of the DOS PRINT utility,
and of other such utilities which frustrated me with their clumsiness and
When I ran my own BBS I had to print REAMS of documentation. What I saw
lacking in all these nifty print utilites was a simple running total of
how much of my document had printed already and what was left. How many of
you out there have sent a very large document to the printer and after ten
of fifteen minutes have asked yourself, 'Sheesh, when the heck is this
going to finish ?!' ? Quite a few, I bet !
Also, how many print utilites have you come across that make you use all
these switches ? I mean, who wants to use the darn program if your command
line for printing your document in nearly the length of the screen itself?
I have tried very hard to make Multi-Print easy to use and pleasing to
LOOK at while it is running. While running, Multi-Print will SHOW you what
is being printed as well as:
1. A running total of how much has been printed in the form of:
' Printed: xxx % '
2. An estimation on how long it will take to print your doc based on your
printers speed in characters per second (CPS):
120 cps - xxx min.
160 cps - xxx min.
180 cps - xxx min.
3. An estimated amount of pages it will take to print your doc based on 66
lines per page. That way, you wont get caught running out of paper and
can abort the printing before you begin.
4. Finally you will be shown how many docs are in Que ( waiting to be
printed ) and which doc will be printed next.
Multi-Print v3.0 page 2
In addition to the above statistics you have keys which you can push which
will effect your document as it is printing 'on the fly'. Those keys
SPACE BAR - When hit, all activity is suspended, except of course for the
printer which will continue to crank out the document until it's buffer
has emptied. Use this pause function for previewing the document or in
case of a printer error which you want to correct or head off.
ESCape key - This key in and of itself will prompt you with a window
asking you if you want to either QUIT Multi-Print altogether, even if you
do have more docs in Que, or if in conjuntion with the SPACE BAR ( Pause )
key to continue printing. In the case of QUITing the program you will be
able to resume printing if your really do not wish to quit.
F-1 key - This function key is primarily used when you have multiple
documents in Que. You will be presented with yet another pop-up window
asking you if you really want to abort the document that is currently
printing. You have the opportunity to back out of it if you pushed this
Abort Doc key by mistake.
Multi-Print will only print PURE ASCII text files. If you have typed up
something in say Word Star and wish to print it out outside of it and use
Multi-Print then all you will see is grabage. Word Star and a host of
other word processors extensively use control characters within their
program to delete characters, do underlining, bold print or over strike,
and the list goes on. These are not printable characters and must be
filtered using some utility BEFORE using Multi-Print.
At this time I have not incorporated special drivers for printers that are
not IBM or Epson compatable. Maybe at a future date I might add them. So
for the time being you can only print out exactly what is read from your
document by Multi-Print and without and type of filtering.
How to Use Multi-Print
There is only ONE switch that has been incorporated - the '/S ' switch ?
Basically, what a switch does is turn something either on or off. When you
use the /S switch all ouput will be directed just to the screen, not the
printer. Whenever this switch is NOT used the default output will be to
Multi-Print v3.0 page 3
There are several ways to run Multi-Print, from the perspective of the DOS
- Since you did not specify a filename to print, you will be presented
with a nice pop-up directory of all the files you have. You can also
change active directories within this pop-up directory as well. Just move
around now using your arrow keys and push the return button once you have
selected a file you want to print. Remember, do NOT try to print files
that have the extension: .COM, .EXE, .BIN etc. Most likely you will end up
locking up your system.
- Here you will also get the pop-up directory. The only difference now is
that all your output will go to the screen instead of the printer. This is
a very simplistic way of previewing the document you are going to print.
Just use the SPACE BAR to pause the text scrolling and the ESCape key to
- Multi-Print will first check to see of the file you have specified
actually exists and then proceed to print the document if it does.
A>MPRINT filename /S
- In this case your file will be sent to the screen ONLY.
- Ah, this is the biggest addition to Multi-Print, the capability to use
both wildcards '?' or '*' in any combination. This is VERY nice if you do
not want to monitor your printer for long periods of time but want it to
continually crank out all docs matching your filname unattended.
- Lastly, if you cannot remember all the usages above you will then be
presented with a help screen of sorts detailing the above steps on how
to use Multi-Print.
Multi-Print v3.0 page 4
Another pet peave of mine was when you aborted a document that was being
printed, either by the DOS PRINT command, or another print utility, was
that it KEPT ON PRINTING until it's buffer was empty. I have found a way
around this problem. Rather then wait until the printer had done it's
thing I have it done for it, sooner. When you abort, a code will be sent
to the printer advising it to empty out it's buffer without bothering to
print what is left. ( In some printers this may not work, but for all IBM
or Epson compatable's you should have no problems. )
Finally, I used to do a directory sometimes to get a listing of what a
wanted printed. After I had chose one and printed it every utility I used
had erased the screen thereby causing me to do ANOTHER directory to again
see what I intended to print next. Here again I have solved this problem.
When you run Multi-Print it will first to a 'picture' of your screen
before it does it's thing and restore it where you left off when the
program is finished. Neat, huh ?!
System & Memory Requirements
- Any IBM or Compatable.
- Any computer with atleast 60k of free memory.
How Much does Multi-Print Cost ?
Multi-Print versions 1.0 to 2.2 is Public Domain and there is no charge.
However, Multi-Print version 3.0 is SHAREWARE. Shareware is a concept by
which you may use this program for trial period by the end of whic time
you should either pay the author for his services or discontinue use of
The reason why version 3.0 is now Shareware is because it took me
considerably more time and money to develop it. There us a built in delay
of 15 seconds after Multi-Print has finished. This was just done to
encourage you to register your copy. But, if you can deal with the
annoyance than you are a better person then I am and I say use it to your
hearts content. The registerd version, without the annoying delay of
course, costs $10. A very modest amount, I think.
Included in the archive that you got this program from should be a file
called ORDER.DOC. Simply fill it out along with your check for $10 plus
$1.60 for mailing costs ( .80 cents for mailer, .35 for the diskette, and
.45 cents for mailing the package. )and I will PROMPTLY send you your
registered copy of Multi-Print, along with some other SHAREWARE software
that I especially like. You are encouraged to apply the same principals to
the other Shareware a you have for Multi-Print.
If you decide not to continue to use Multi-Print v3.0 and register it but
wish you could then feel free to use my earlier version 2.2 which is still
free but has ALOT less neat doodads this version 3.0 has. In any case, I
hope I have made a dull and frustrating chore more enjoable.
Multi-Print v3.0 page 5
How Can I get a FREE Copy ?
If you have an ideas that would make a future version that much better
than it is then by all means write to me ! If I use your idea in a later
version I will send you a registered copy FREE. You can contact me in
Lastly, if you are a Shareware author and think that you have something
which you have written that I would like then maybe we can send each other
a registerd copy of each others software ?!
Throught GEnie: Send me mail using the name G.DOYON. I use GEnie alot and
will be able to respond faster then if you send me a letter via:
Compuserve: I.D. # 75340,272
My mailing address is:
Gerald P. Doyon
246 Collins Ave
You can also reach me via the BBS's I frequent most:
Georgia Board BBS 300-2400 baud (912) 923-8180
PC Ohio - 1200 - 9600(?) (219) 381-7946
Channel-1 1200-9600 (617) 384-8873
Please make sure the following files are included in the archive
Order.Doc <- Order blank for your registerd copy.
Mprint30.Exe <- Newest version of Multi-Print. SHAREWARE.
Mprint22.Exe <- Older but still very good FreeWare version.
Mprint30.Doc <- This documentation.
Please feel free to distribute this program to friends and BBS's.
Special thanks to:
Melvin Douglas for your encouragement and good ideas, AND for being my
FIRST registered user.
Borland International for the outstanding compiler (version 4.0) in which
I wrote this program in, Turbo Pascal.
To James LeMay for his terrific windowing and quick write utilites
Wndwxx.ARC, Qwikxx.ARC and Pullxx.ARC. All fine Shareware.
Notification of updates will be provided to registered users. Updates for
registered users will be provided for $5 plus postage and handling.
Multi-Print v3.0 page 6
Version 3.0 (06-16-88) * Major Revision *
. Added the capability of using Wild Cards.
. Added an unlimited amount of docs to be in 'Que' with a
look ahead to see which doc will be printed next.
. Redirection of printing to the screen only via the /S switch.
. Added a smart screen saver.
. Added the capability to abort and load next doc 'on the fly'.
. Saftey features: the ability to resume printing if you tried
to quit or abort printing.
Version 2.2 (02-27-88)
. Corrected line word wrap to screen if it was in excess of 78
characters. Have no fear, the full line is being sent to the
Version 2.1 (01-16-87)
. Corrected the loss of the cursor if Multi-Print could not find
the file to print upon load-up.
Version 2.0 (01-09-87)
. Added the estimation of print time.
. Added the estimation of pages to print.
Version 1.2 (01-06-87)
. Introduced in-line code to speed the process of recognizing
keyboard input to pause or abort the program.
. Added the ability of MULTI-PRINT to clear the printers text
buffers when the user aborts the program.
Version 1.1 (01-04-87)
. Corrected the loss of cursor upon normal/abnormal completion
of the program.
. Corrected the overlap of the first five screen writes.
Version 1.0 (01-03-87)
. Beta version released for testing.
Multi-Print (MPRINT3x.ARC) is ShareWare. You are directed to understand the
following: This program is supplied as-is and the author disclaims all
warranties expressed or implied, including, without limitation, the
warranties of merchantability and the warranties of fitness for any
purpose. You may copy it and distribute it provided all modules,
documantation, and readme files are included. You may make NO charge for
copying the program beyond the cost of the diskette.