Contents of the README.BAT file
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Contents of the READ.ME file
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DEMO VERSION: Make sure you have a copy of COMMAND.COM on the root
directory of this disk. Then run ISC.EXE. The rest of this file, and
the on-line documentation, refer to IS.EXE. You don't have that file
until you buy The Icon Shell. However, almost all the information
contained here is valid for ISC.EXE. The only difference is that you
can't modify or create your own Shell Control Files. Order information is
contained in the file DEMO.DOC, and an order form is in ORDERFRM.DOC.
The Icon Shell READ.ME March 7, 1988
copyright (c) 1988, Saratoga Group
To install IS, place the diskette in drive A: and run A:INSTALL. If your
5 1/4 inch drive is other than A:, or you have no room on C:, look at the
manual to see how to install IS. Briefly, just copy the files on the diskette
to a directory \IS on a hard disk, make sure you have a copy of COMMAND.COM on
the root directory of that disk, and then run IS.
In a nutshell, IS is controlled by two files. IS.SCF is the startup Shell
Control File (SCF), containing the icon definitions. An SCF can be read
at any time by IS either to reset the shell (all the icons), or to create
"subicons". ISICONS.TXT has the icon pictures and the program text, and
is read only when the program is loaded.
Here is a brief description of the files contained on this diskette.
I. Essential files which should be retained on \IS
A. Nonmodifiable files
IS EXE : the program
SHOW EXE : the IS browser
B. Usermodifiable files
IS SCF : the startup Shell Control File
ISICONS TXT : the program text, messages, and icon pictures
ISINSTAL EXE : creates SCF's on new directories
II. Documentation files which can be deleted from your hard disk
All of these files can be read (via SHOW.EXE) by selecting the appropriate
icons from inside The Icon Shell.
COLOR DOC : how to change the colors and shut off the sound effects
RAMDISK DOC : Config.sys and RAM disk info
DATAEXPL DOC : how the data entry example works
DOSCOMND DOC : how to drop through to DOS from inside IS
FLOPPY DOC : how to run on a floppy or on disk D:
GRAPHICS DOC : warning on some graphics progs, like StoryBoard
IMMED DOC : the immediate run program
INFOCONF DOC : Getting Started
DESIGN DOC : how to design your own icon pictures
INFOEXAM DOC : a simple example of a Shell Control File
INFOGEN DOC : general blurb
INFOHELP DOC : including help screens
INFOSCF DOC : Shell Control File format
INFONAV DOC : navigation in IS
INFOPROM DOC : prompting the user
INFORSET DOC : how to reset to a different main level
INFOSCHD DOC : scheduling icons for deferred processing
INFOSUB DOC : how to generate subicons
INFOTITL DOC : how to change the title "The Icon Shell 1.0"
INFOWIND DOC : how to specify a window size
INSTALL DOC : how IS creates its automatic SCF's
MEMRES DOC : warning on memory resident progs (including PRSCF)
ORDER DOC : how icons are placed on the screen
SHOW DOC : how to use the IS show program
TRANSLAT DOC : how to translate IS to other languages than English
III. Shell Control Files part of the documentation, can be deleted
DATANTRY SCF : Data Entry Example
HOWTOMEN SCF : Library of examples
INFOMEN SCF : Library of documentation
LOCMEC SCF : The Medical Library Demo
LOWBACK SCF : ditto
MEDLIB SCF : ditto
MERCK SCF : ditto
MUSCUL SCF : ditto
PART1 SCF : ditto
STRUCT SCF : ditto
PROGLANG SCF : A subicon set of programming languages
SHOWICON SCF : Show the first 34 icons
SUBICON SCF : Subicon Madness Demo
IV. Miscellaneous files which can be deleted
DATA SCR : Part of the data entry example
DATANTRY COM : ditto
INSTALL BAT : Can be used to install the program files to C:\IS
MAP COM : Program to show free memory and TSL progs
READ ME : This file
README BAT : Does a SHOW on READ.ME
ISINSTAL PAS : Pascal source for ISINSTAL.EXE (creates SCF's)
RAMDRV COM : Public Domain program for making a RAM disk
RAMDISK COM : Goes with RAMDRV.COM
V. Shellware distribution files keep these somewhere
ISC EXE : Just like IS.EXE but uses encoded SCF's
ENCODE EXE : Encodes SCF's for distribution with ISC.EXE.
DECODE EXE : Decodes compiled SCF's.
ISC ARC : Demonstration of IS to pass around for free
Notes March 7, 1988
1. A small RAM disk will work wonders for IS. You don't need to put
everything on the RAM disk. There is one random access workfile,
ISPOOL.RAN, which takes time to create on a hard disk. You can tell IS
to place this file on your RAM disk by putting the RAM disk specification
in the first line of the file ISICONS.TXT.
Unless you create large help screens and long lists of DOS commands,
about 8K should be enough for ISPOOL.RAN. While running the shell,
do a directory on your RAM disk and note the size of this file. If it's
always less, you can reduce the size of the RAM disk.
ISPOOL.RAN has one 80 byte record for each help line, each prompt, and
each DOS command in the current Shell Control File. It is rewritten
whenever an SCF is read.
Placing the Shell Control Files themselves on a RAM disk will speed up
this process even more.
2. The addition of some snow reduction techniques has caused the shell
to grow an additional 3K, so that it now takes up 84K bytes of RAM.
3. The procedure for determining where IS was installed has been changed.
When run without a parameter, the program searches for ISICONS.TXT on
a) on the current default directory
b) on a directory \IS on the current drive
c) on the directory C:\IS
This will allow you to test the program even if you don't first copy
the files to a directory \IS. You can start out from any directory
which contains the program files. The only requirement is that a
copy of COMMAND.COM exist in the root directory of that disk. You can
even run IS from the installation diskette, if you first copy COMMAND.COM
there, although it will take a LONG time to do anything.
Run with a parameter, say G:, IS will look for ISICONS.TXT on G:\IS.
4. It is now possible to replace the copyright information in the upper
right corner with any 40-character text string. The string to be placed
there is in the third line of ISICONS.TXT. This text is read only when
the program is loaded. On the other hand, the text below the copyright
information can be modified whenever you reset the icons to a new main
level via the "title =" command in the Shell Control Files.
You may copyright your shell using this feature. The copyright you place
on the screen in this way applies to your particular implementation of
The Icon Shell. It is not a replacement of ours, which is hard-coded
to appear with the logo at the beginning of each run. Therefore, if you
replace the copyright in the upper right corner with your own, you must
also replace the title on the second line, by default "The Icon Shell 1.0",
with an appropriate title for your shell. This is done by using a
"title =" command in your startup Shell Control File.
The Icon Shell functions something like a compiler in this respect. You
create a shell with it, which you can copyright, just as you can copyright
a program you create with a compiler. The Icon Shell, like a compiler,
retains its own copyright.
The text in the third line of ISICONS.TXT is written to the first line
of the screen starting at column 41. The maximum length for this text
is 40 characters. It is NOT centered, so you will probably want to
include spaces before your text to locate it as you like.
5. The license agreement lets you distribute your implementations of The Icon
Shell, by encoding your Shell Control Files so that they can be used by
ISC.EXE. The encoder is called ENCODE.EXE and it takes one parameter:
the SCF to encode. There is also an DECODE.EXE to go the other way.
ISC.EXE, ENCODE.EXE, and DECODE.EXE are all included on the diskette.
You may bundle your software and Shell Control Files along with ISC.EXE,
ISICONS.TXT, and SHOW.EXE, and sell or give away the result to anyone.
The demo file ISC.ARC is also provided on this diskette. This file
may be uploaded to Bulletin Boards and passed on to friends. The
conditions are spelled out in the file DEMO.DOC, in the .ARC file.
With the exception of these four -- ISC.EXE, ISICONS.TXT,
SHOW.EXE, and ISC.ARC -- you may not sell or give away any
of the files on this diskette.
Don't try to use both IS.EXE and ISC.EXE on the same directory. Neither
one can read the other's file format.
6. The maximum length for a title created with the "title =" command is
now 40 characters.
7. Control of sound and color has been added to ISICONS.TXT. See the icon
"Sound and Color Control" in "Guide to The Icon Shell" for instructions.
8. Stuart Schechter has found that the program UNIFORM, used for formatting
diskettes, has a resident portion that causes strange problems. ProComm
failed to operate correctly within the shell when this program was
resident. Thanks are due to Stuart for several useful suggestions.
9. Since IS uses BIOS scrolling, it is subject to whatever flicker may be
present on CGA displays. Monochrome, EGA, and VGA displays don't have
this problem. If you have excessive scrolling flicker with IS, there
is a Shareware program called Flicker Free which may help out.
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