Contents of the NUEPSON.DOC file
The Pop-Up Printer Controller
Copyright (C) 1985
The Pop-Up Printer Controller
NU-EPSON is a memory resident printer controller that pop's up
for you any time you need to set your printer. With NU-EPSON
you can change your printer's style and format instantly. You'll
never need to exit to DOS to change your printer again. You can
stay inside your word processor, editor or whatever.
To load NU-EPSON, put your program disk in your default drive,
type NU-EPSON and then press carriage return. When the brief
installation message comes up, NU-EPSON is loaded. After that
you can call NU-EPSON any time by pressing Alt-Caps Lock.
Just hold the Alt key down and press Caps Lock.
When summoned, NU-EPSON pop's up with a menu of printer styles
and motion controls. The styles are on the left side of the
menu. The motion controls are on the right. The styles are
Compressed, Double-strike, Emphasized, Italic, Tiny, and Wide.
The motion controls are: Form feed, Line feed, Quiet, and
Uni-directional. NU-EPSON also offers Hex Input mode and a Reset
feature. On a color monitor the styles are displayed in
cyan, and the motion controls are white. This is a visual
NU-EPSON is ready for your selections as soon as it comes up.
Just type the letters corresponding to the combination of
features you want. Press the backspace key to delete any entries.
Submit your selections when everything is just right, by
pressing the carriage return. NU-EPSON will disappear, sending
your commands to the printer.
You can enter up to eight selections on the regular entry line.
Although you'll probably never need to send that many. If you
try to enter more than eight selections NU-EPSON will beep to
alert you. If you really want to send more than eight commands,
just submit the first eight and call NU-EPSON a second time and
submit the remaining commands. You can repeat this as often as
If you call NU-EPSON while your printer is turned off, or is off
line, you will get a flashing "Printer" message. Just turn your
printer on, or put it back on line and NU-EPSON will continue.
Press the carriage return if you want to exit instead.
The next few pages cover all the features of NU-EPSON in detail.
If you have any questions or comments please let me know about
them. My address is at the end of this documentation. If you'd
like a reply, please enclose a self-addressed stamped envelope.
Enjoy! Charles Rich.
NU-EPSON'S PRINT STYLES
The following is a detailed description of NU-EPSON's print
styles. The best way to get familiar with them is to experiment.
They can be combined almost any way you'd like, and many combina-
tions are quite useful.
C Compressed Mode
This is easily the most popular print width after the
standard pica. You get 132 characters per line with Com-
pressed Mode instead of 80. This is great for any reports
and spreadsheets that need extra width yet must retain high
legibility. Your printer will print 17.16 characters per
inch instead of the usual 10.
D Double-Strike Mode
This print mode gives you darker type by filling in the
vertical spaces between dots. Your printer reprints each
line after shifting the paper down 1/216".
E Emphasized Mode
This mode reprints each line after shifting the print head
slightly, filling in the horizontal space between dots. This
is darker than Double-Strike, and the two modes used to-
gether make a very dark, solid type style. Note that the
Epson printer won't print Emphasized and Compressed Modes
together, it will ignore the Compressed Mode setting.
I Italic Mode
Use Italic Mode when you want your printing to look a little
fancier. You can mix Italic Mode with any other mode such as
Compressed, Wide, Tiny or any combination.
T Tiny Type
This is a combination of Compressed and Superscript modes,
with 1/12" line feeds. This is the tiniest print you can get
from the Epson, and it's still really legible. This is great
for long program listings, archiving or novelty effects.
You'll find other uses--it grows on you.
W Wide or Expanded Mode
This doubles the width of your type. When combined with
Double Strike and Emphasized modes, this is the most atten-
tion getting style. This is a good combination when printing
bulletin board notices and announcements. You can also mix
Wide Mode with any other mode for some interesting type
---- END OF NU-EPSON'S PRINT STYLES ----
NU-EPSON'S MOTION CONTROLS
F Form Feed
This is an instant action key for Nu-Epson. Pressing "F"
sends a form feed to your printer, advancing the paper to the
top of the next page. This lets you begin print jobs at the
top of a fresh sheet of paper. It spares you from reaching
over, taking your printer off-line, pressing the form feed
button and then putting it back on line. This doesn't echo
an "F" on the entry line, and you can issue it as many times
as you like. It won't fill the entry buffer.
L Line Feed
This is another instant action key for Nu-Epson. When
you press "L", Nu-Epson sends a line feed to your printer,
advancing the paper one line. This lets you skip lines
instantly. This too, won't echo an "L" on the entry line,
and you can issue it as many times as you like. It won't
fill the entry buffer.
Q Quiet or Half-Speed Mode
This runs your Epson printer at half its normal speed for a
slightly quieter print job.
U Unidirectional Mode
This makes your Epson print in one direction only. This is
good for graphics output in non-standard print modes since it
reduces misalignment from row to row.
H Hex Input Mode
This gives you the "Hex:" prompt so you can send customized
control strings with your menu choices. When you're through
with Hex Input, hit the carriage return to come back to the
regular entry line. You'll see an "H" in the command
line as a reminder of your Hex string, if you entered one.
Your Hex string will then be sent along with your menu
choices. Hex Input is discussed more fully below.
This sends the "Master Reset" code to your Epson. After
that, your printer is in the same state as when it's first
turned on. This means that all the mode settings are
cleared and the current line position is the new top of form.
When used with the line feed key, this is an easy way for
setting the top of form. Just advance to where you want
the new top of form to be and press Reset. NU-EPSON will
chirp and flash "Reset" to alert you, when pressed. Reset
also clears the command entry line.
---- END OF NU-EPSON'S MOTION CONTROLS ----
NU-EPSON'S HEX INPUT MODE
In the back of your Epson User's Manual you'll find a complete set
of control codes for your printer. There are commands for
setting your printer's margins, underlining, changing character
sets, defining form lengths, line feeds and so on. These are all
the possible ways you can set your printer. With Hex Input Mode,
NU-EPSON lets you send all of these, easily.
Press "H" to invoke the Hex Input Mode. The "Hex:" prompt will
appear and you can create your hex string by simply typing it from
As an example, let's turn on underlining. You can make your
printer print underlines by sending it this sequence: "-1".
So, in Hex Input mode press the escape key, then the negative
sign, then the number 1. NU-EPSON will convert them to hex for
you. You'll see these hex values echoed on the Hex Input line
as: 1B 2D 31. Press the carriage return and you'll go back to the
usual input line. The "H" in the entry line reminds you that you
have defined a hex string at that point. Press the carriage
return again and NU-EPSON will disappear, submitting your commands
to the printer. That's all there is to it. No more fooling
around with hex conversion tables and firing up the BASIC inter-
preter every time you want to change your printer.
The Hex Input Mode will let you send up to nine hex characters to
your printer. If you try to send more than nine characters,
NU-EPSON will beep to alert you. Since most control codes are
about three characters long this lets you send two or three
configurations at once.
For example, you could set the left and right margins, and
redefine the number of lines in a page with just one hex input
string. We'll do this later. If you need to send a longer
sequence simply call NU-EPSON again and submit the rest of the
sequence. You can repeat this as many times as you need to.
If you make mistakes in your hex entry, press the backspace key
to correct them. This will step the cursor backwards, clearing
entries one by one.
Press the carriage return when you're happy with your hex input
string. This returns you to the regular entry line where you
can continue setting your printer from the menu if you want. If
you created a hex string in Hex Input mode you'll see an "H" on
the regular entry line where you called Hex Input. This is
to remind you of your Hex input string. If you didn't enter
anything in Hex Input mode, there won't be an "H" in the regular
command line. Since NU-EPSON holds only one line of hex input,
you can only create one hex string at a time. This means you can
only have one "H" on your command entry line.
If you try to get into Hex Input Mode twice from the regular
command line NU-EPSON will beep, alerting you that you have
already created a hex input line.
If you want to get into Hex Input Mode anyway, just delete the "H"
from the previous hex input. NU-EPSON will then let you enter hex
If you need to submit a hex string that's too long for one entry
line, simply send it piece by piece. Enter the first nine hex
characters and send them. Then call NU-EPSON again and send
another nine characters. You can repeat this as many times as you
USING THE ALT-KEYPAD
Some of the Epson printer commands need you to give a number for
a parameter. For instance, you need to give a number when setting
margins, or the number of lines to print per page, or for the
number of line feeds per form, and for character spacings, etc.
The control codes in the back of the User's Manual ask for these
numbers like this: CHR$(n), with "n" being the number you want.
The Alt-Keypad lets you send these numbers to NU-EPSON. Whenever
a control code says CHR$(n), you'll use the Alt-Keypad to send
The Alt-Keypad is a normal feature of the IBM PC's keyboard. If
you hold the Alt key down and then enter a number using only the
numeric keypad on the right hand side of the keyboard, the
keyboard will send the ASCII character corresponding to that
number. In Hex Input mode, NU-EPSON converts all your keystrokes
into the hexadecimal value for the character you pressed, in-
cluding characters entered from the Alt-Keypad.
So, to put the number 50 in NU-EPSON's Hex Input line, hold the
Alt key down and press the 5 and 0 on the numeric keypad. when
you release the Alt key you'll see a 32 in the hex string. That
is the number 50 in hexadecimal. As another example, to put the
number 127 into a hex input command, hold the Alt key down and
type 127 on the numeric keypad, release the Alt key. This
generates a 7F in the entry line. 7F is 127 in hexadecimal
Note that when the Caps Lock key is turned on, your computer will
invert the case of the letters of the alphabet, changing "A"'s to
"a"'s and vice versa. This means then, that if Caps Lock is set
and you enter the number 100 from the Alt-Keypad, which corres-
ponds to the letter "d", with Caps Lock on, your computer will
intervene and convert that lowercase "d" to a capital "D". Now,
the "D" character is ASCII character number 68, not 100 as you
intended. Since NU-EPSON converts keboard input into hexadecimal,
you'll get the hex number 44 instead of hex 64. The upshot of
all this is that if you start getting numbers that aren't right,
check the Caps Lock key.
The numbers from 65 to 90 correspond to uppercase letters. They
should all start with 4's or 5's in hexadecimal.
The numbers from 97 to 122 correspond to lowercase letters.
They should all start with 6's or 7's in hexadecimal.
Note that if you forget to hold the Alt key down when you type
on the keypad it will generate 00's. This is useful for when
you need to send a CHR$(0). Also, ProKey users should remember
that ProKey wants you to press Shift-Alt while using the numeric
keypad, otherwise you'll only get 00's, too.
AN EXAMPLE OF HEX INPUT
Hex Input Mode is a very simple way to send your custom codes.
You'll get the hang of it quickly. for practice, try sending "Hi
there" to your printer by just using the Hex Input Mode. Call up
the Hex Input Mode and type "Hi there" right from the keyboard.
You should see: 48 69 20 74 68 65 72 65. Those are the hexa-
decimal values for those letters. Before sending it do one more
thing. Enter the number 10 from the Alt-Keypad. Hold the Alt key
down and press 1 and 0. This generates a 0A, the line feed
character. We need the line feed to flush the printer buffer and
print our message right away. Your Hex Input Line should look
like this now: 48 69 20 74 68 65 72 65 0A.
Now, let's submit it. Press the carriage return and get back to
the regular entry line. Then press carriage return again to exit
NU-EPSON and submit the hex string. Your printer will print
"Hi there". Sending hex command strings to your printer is the
very same thing. But instead of being sequences of characters
that spell something meaningful to you, they say something
meaningful to your printer.
AN EXAMPLE USING MANY FEATURES
When you use Tiny Type to print programs source code, or long
lists, you'll find that margins of 26 and 106, with skip over
perforation set for 12 lines make nicely formatted listings.
You can set it as follows.
Start by re-establishing the top of form three lines down from
the perforation, about 1/2-inch down. Simply tap "L" three
times, until the paper is positioned correctly, then press "R"
to send a Master Reset to the printer. That is now the new top
of form. You'll see why we did this when we set our skip over
perforation "clear zone," below.
Next, press "T" to invoke Tiny Type.
Press "H" for Hex Input Mode. In Hex Input Mode press Escape, l
(lower case "L"), and use the Alt-Keypad to send the hexadecimal
number for 26. This will set the left margin at 26 spaces.
Next press Escape, Q (capital "Q"), and use the Alt-Keypad to send
106. This establishes the left margin at 106 spaces.
Finally, press Escape, N (capital "N"), and use the Alt-Keypad to
send the Number 12. This sets the skip over perforation zone to
twelve lines. We want to reserve 1/2-inch above and below the
perforations. One-half inch is equal to six tiny lines, since
we're setting the printer to Tiny Type. That's why we set the
top of form 1/2-inch below the perforation. Now, subsequent
perforations will fall right in the middle of our 12 line perfor-
ation zone, giving us 1/2-inch top and bottom margins.
Your Hex Input entry line should say: 1B 6C 1A 1B 51 6A 1B 4E 0C.
Press carriage return and you'll come back to the regular entry
line. It should look like this: "TH". "T" for Tiny Type, and "H"
for your Hex Input string. Press the carriage return to send your
new configuration to the printer, and that's it. That's all there
is to it. In practice it's very simple.
Now print a listing from your word processor, or from DOS. It
will be centered in the pages with a half inch margin at the top
and bottom of each page.
---- END OF NU-EPSON'S HEX INPUT MODE ----
SOME USEFUL COMMAND STRINGS
These are some of the control codes you'll probably use the
Set Elite Mode On
M That's Escape, then uppercase "M".
Set Elite Mode Off
P That's Escape, then uppercase "P".
Set left margin at #
l# That's Escape, then lower case "l", then
use the Alt-Keypad to enter the number for
your left margin.
Set right margin at #
Q# Press Escape, then capital "Q", then the
number for your right margins.
Skip over perforation, variable
N# Press Escape, then capital "N", then the
number of lines for your "perforation zone".
Set the form length in lines
C# Press Escape, then capital "C", then use the
Alt-Keypad to enter the number of lines for
your new page definition.
Set the form length in inches
C(00)# Press Escape, capital "C", hex 00 (get
this by pressing any of the numeric keypad
keys without pressing the Alt key), then use
the Alt-Keypad and send the length of your new
page in inches.
Turn underline on
-1 Press Escape, the minus sign, then press the
number 1. Use the numbers at the top of the
keyboard for this.
Turn underline off
-0 Press Escape, then minus sign, then type the
number 0. Again, use the numbers at the top
of the keyboard for this.
Sound the printer bell
7 Use the Alt-Keypad and press 7. The printer
bell will ring once.
A Word About ShareWare
Shareware is based on the concept that good
software shouldn't cost an arm and a leg. Share-
Ware gives you a chance to use your software before
paying for it. Also, you are actually encouraged
to copy ShareWare programs and share them with your
friends. Once you know you like a program, then
send a check or money order for the price of the
utility. Prices are usually very modest.
NU-EPSON is a ShareWare program. Please make as
many copies as you like and share it with others.
I only ask that you don't alter NU-EPSON or this
documentation, and that you include this documen-
tation when passing it around. You can support
ShareWare development, and share back by sending
your $25.00 donation to:
P.O. Box 95650
Seattle, WA 98145-2650
Thanks! and enjoy NU-EPSON