Full Automotive Service Tracking - Version 2.1
This program documentation consists of the following sections:
I General Information
II Vehicles Menu
III Expense Log Menu
IV Reports Menu
V Options Menu
This file (FAST.TXT) may be viewed from within the program
whenever "Information" is selected on the menu screen. Do not
modify the file, or its on-line accessibility may be lost.
Program and documentation contents are Copyright (C) 1992-95 by
TBX Software. All rights are reserved.
I GENERAL INFORMATION
1.1 REQUIREMENTS / INTRODUCTION
FAST will run on IBM-compatible computers using DOS Version
2.1 or greater. Highly recommended are a color monitor and a hard
disk drive. Without color, some features of the program may be
lost. As with many programs, you should also find that
performance is maximized using the highest processor speed
available. In addition, as much memory as possible should be
freed up beforehand. Running FAST with certain memory-resident
programs or from DOS shells may cause unexpected errors or not
leave enough memory for the program to run.
FAST utilizes the following files:
FAST.EXE: Executable program
FAST.TXT: Program documentation
FAST.CAR: Vehicle data
FAST.LOG: Vehicle service history and expense data
FAST.SYS: System set-up data
FAST.IX1/.IX2: Log index files
The first two files (program and text) comprise the actual
software package. FAST is installed by simply copying these two
files to any directory of your choice. To run the program, simply
type FAST and then press .
When the three data files (CAR, LOG, and SYS, above) are
present in the directory where FAST is started, the file data
will be accessed automatically. If any one or two of the three
files are missing, FAST will fail to execute. When all three are
absent, FAST will create and initialize the three data files,
signifying the start of a new (empty) database. New data may then
be entered into FAST.
If you have initially entered test data in order to try out
the program and would like to begin entering actual data, you can
start a new database by pressing on the main menu
screen, which will invoke a file initialization procedure. Two
opportunities will be presented to cancel the operation if you so
choose. Once executed, the old data will be replaced by
initialized (empty) data files. Whenever files are initialized,
the original data held by them is permanently erased, so you must
be absolutely sure you no longer need this data before executing
One way to avoid losing important data under any circumstance
is to regularly back-up your files. FAST data may be backed up
simply by copying the files to another disk or directory,
assuming enough space exists to contain the files. Otherwise, any
backup program should suffice to save your files.
Always remember that whenever you make a backup copy, it is
absolutely essential that all three data files (FAST.CAR,
FAST.LOG, and FAST.SYS) be copied or backed up together. These
files function as a unit within FAST, and if they are not
contemporaneous -- that is, they were not all present at the same
time FAST was last run -- they will be rejected by the program
the next time you try to run it with the files present. FAST
checks for this file linkage every time to see that the files
belong together before running, so do not mix files of different
dates, even if the substitute files are of the same size and
contain essentially the same information. If you fail to observe
this rule, you will quite likely end up with a backup that will
not work when you need it.
Index files, on the other hand, do not require the same level
of caution, as they can be rebuilt anytime within the program.
The only drawback is a potential lengthy wait while the files
rebuild, although this would only pertain to situations where the
log file contains many records. If an index file is not present
when you start FAST, you will be given an opportunity to rebuild
it at that time, or you may quit without continuing. FAST,
however, will not run until you choose to rebuild the missing
index file(s). Refer to the "Re-Index Log" section under "Expense
Log" for information about other situations which make rebuilding
the index files necessary. (Note that the term "re-index log" is
equivalent to the phrase "rebuild log index".)
FAST has been designed to be as easy-to-use as possible. It
permits the service tracking and record-keeping of all your
vehicles, while keeping difficulty to a minimum. Apart from its
automatic scheduled maintenance tracking features, FAST enables
you to to check any past maintenance or repair expense record by
using its selective history reporting capability. Proper vehicle
maintenance, in conjunction with FAST, should save you
significant time and money over the long run. Other advantages
include the proper operation, safety, and improved resale value
of your vehicle(s).
Maintenance service information is usually provided along with
the vehicle owner's manual. Whenever you have a vehicle serviced,
you should retain copies of any receipts, as well as record an
entry in the expense log. It will serve as a convenient reference
whenever you need to check back, and will be used by FAST to
remind you -- if a scheduled item -- when it's time to have
service again performed.
1.2 MENU CONTROLS / VEHICLE SELECTION LIST
All program features are accessed off the main (menu) screen.
Menus are selected by pressing the left/right arrows or the
capitalized letters on the menu bar. Functions are selected by
pressing the up/down arrows and then when the desired
function is highlighted, or by pressing the corresponding,
displayed function key.
In order to perform certain functions, a vehicle must first be
selected from a presented list of available vehicles. The
functions which apply are "Modify", "View", and "Delete" on the
"Vehicles" menu, and any new expense addition (the first three
functions) on the "Expense Log" menu. Select a vehicle on the
list screen by moving the ID# indicator (red highlight block
surrounding ID#) to the vehicle of your choice. Use the vertical
direction keys, , and to move the block,
and then press to execute the function for the
On the list screen, two functions are available to help select
a vehicle. can be used to instantly highlight a vehicle
having a specific ID#, while will search for all or any
vehicle having a specific phrase in its basic data. When a
searched vehicle is found, the data can be viewed in its
entirety. These search features are especially helpful if you
have many vehicles on file.
The remainder of this guide will concentrate on using the
program's features, which you should find to be essentially
straightforward. In FAST, can be used, almost universally,
to terminate just about any procedure or step you are undertaking
at the moment, or to exit the program.
II VEHICLES MENU
The "Add" function is the first step in using a new database,
since a vehicle must be identified before services can be tracked
or recorded for it. All new vehicles to be tracked by the program
are entered via the "Add" function. New vehicles may be added
only if the number of active vehicles is less than the total
capacity of the system. Any data entered under "Add" can be later
edited (added to, changed, or removed) by using the vehicle
After pressing to add a new vehicle to the database, a
data entry window will appear, into which you may enter the basic
vehicle data. You will find that the direction keys, ,
, , , , , and all
produce certain actions which facilitate the entry of data. Data
fields may be left blank or words abbreviated as necessary.
The "Description" field can be used to record additional
identifying features about the vehicle. The Vehicle
Identification Number, a serial number issued to all vehicles by
the manufacturer for purposes of title and registration, may be
entered in the field labeled "VIN". Use the "Misc" field to hold
any other information that you would like to keep on file about a
vehicle. You may enter the date and mileage of the vehicle when
first obtained in the "Initial Date/Mileage" fields, and
expiration dates for inspection and registration may be entered
in their respective fields.
The "VCode" field is used to assign an arbitrary identifier,
up to 5 characters in length, which can be later used to restrict
report output to only those vehicles with the VCode specified at
that time. There can be a unique VCode assigned to each vehicle,
or multiple vehicles may possess the same VCode. If you
currently use your own identifying system, you may choose, as a
matter of convenience, to use the VCode field for this purpose.
When you arrive at the "Scheduled Maint(enance) Codes" field
in the vehicle entry window, a maintenance service selection
screen will appear, with items "A" through "Z" listed. Services
must be entered and saved under the "Service Schedules" option
before they will appear on the maintenance selection screen.
Select (or remove codes) by moving the scroll bar to the desired
choice (via , , , , or
the code letter) and then by pressing or . Use
to assign all codes to the vehicle. Press or
when done making selections.
For each vehicle, services must be individually assigned in
the above manner before they will be tracked by FAST. This is
useful because you may not desire to track all services for all
vehicles, especially if certain services only pertain to some and
not others. This is often the case when you have several varied
types of vehicles (e.g., diesel/gas, turbo/non-turbo,
automatic/manual, rear/front/all-wheel drive, etc.).
The "Message" field may be used to place any reminder note or
some other comment that may have particular importance at a later
time. It can, for example, be used to remind of some pending
service appointment, or about something vehicle-related which
expires on a certain date. The date to which the message refers,
if any, is entered in the "Due Date" field. You can, at any time,
conveniently view existing messages for all vehicles by selecting
"Messages" on the reports menu. Upcoming and past-due dates will
also be displayed in such a manner as to alert you to messages as
required. Refer to the "Messages" report section for information
on how due dates are displayed.
Press when you desire to terminate data entry. You then
have the option of whether or not to save your data. If you
choose "Y", the new vehicle will automatically be assigned to an
ID# one consecutive number higher than the last vehicle added to
the database. This is so even if the last vehicle added has been
deleted and no longer appears within FAST.
2.2 MODIFY / VIEW / DELETE
Use "Modify" whenever a vehicle's basic information requires
updating. The same data fields as encountered in "Add" are
accessible here. A vehicle's current mileage may be updated here,
as well as any reminder message or DMV-related expiration dates.
New services to track may be added, while other services may be
disabled for the vehicle. When at the message field, the entire
message can be removed quickly by pressing .
It is important to update vehicle mileage often, especially
when services are being tracked whose intervals are based partly
or fully upon distance traveled. It is necessary for FAST to have
accurate mileages on file so that you can be alerted at the
proper time when service is due. Current vehicle mileages are
updated automatically and as necessary when entries in the
expense log are made.
"View" displays the full vehicle data without the possibility
of modifying the record inadvertently. "Delete" enables the
"removal" of any vehicle from the database by making the record
inactive. Inactive vehicles are no longer accessible to the
program's features. ID#'s assigned by the program are permanent,
and may not be reused even after the "deletion" of vehicles.
"Deleted" vehicles can be reactivated by using on the
main (menu) screen.
III EXPENSE LOG MENU
3.1 UPDATE MAINTENANCE /
ENTER REPAIR SERV(ICE) / ENTER MISC(ELLANEOUS) EXPENSE
All repairs and scheduled maintenance services performed for
vehicles are entered by using either of the first two menu
functions. The third item accomodates expenses not covered by the
first two. As explained earlier, prior to the logging of any
expense item, the applicable vehicle must first be selected from
the vehicle list screen.
All repairs, maintenance updates, and miscellaneous expenses
are recorded in a common expense log. Since FAST keeps expenses
automatically arranged in order by date of expense, it is not
necessary to log vehicle expense records in the order they
occurred. Service records and other expenses may be entered in
any order, including those which occurred prior to acquiring this
When logging a scheduled maintenance service record via the
"Update Maintenance" function, a window will appear showing the
current status of all scheduled services that are being tracked
for the vehicle. Due dates and/or mileages will appear in
flashing red on service items that are past-due, solid red on
those at the due date, yellow on those upcoming (within the
number of days/miles specified in the "Set Advance Notice"
option), and blue on items that are not yet due or upcoming.
If there has been no prior log entry for a service, FAST will
utilize the initial date and mileage saved in the basic vehicle
data as the last time service was performed. (These will not
appear, however, in the last date/mileage column.) Otherwise, if
no initial date has been recorded for a vehicle, tracked services
without any prior entry will appear with blank entries in both
the last date/mileage and due date/mileage columns.
Select a service to log by scrolling the highlight bar to the
desired choice (via , , , or code
letter) and by then pressing . A record entry window will
appear above, into which you may enter the service date, mileage,
expense amount, and a description of service. Defaults are
assigned automatically to each of these fields, which you may
modify as required. For purposes of tracking, the record will
register as the performed service that is saved, regardless of
what the description is modified to read.
The same record entry window will appear when logging a repair
or other expense for a vehicle. As is the case with maintenance
entries, you may include in the description field anything else
of possible importance, such as parts used, name of service
facility, invoice number on bill, etc. If several services were
performed at the same time, you may either elect to record each
as a separate entry, or to combine them into one. Non-maintenance
expense log entries are not tracked via a schedule by FAST, but
do appear along with such service records in the vehicle history.
Vehicle mileages entered with new log entries, or modified
when editing the expense log (next section), will automatically
be saved as the corresponding vehicle's current mileage if the
new value is greater than the last current mileage value on
3.2 EDIT LOG / START NEW LOG
Edit the expense log whenever an error or omission has been
made in a prior record entry. The edit screen will display all
records with dates equal to or more recent than any date you
specify beforehand. The fields which can be modified are those of
the description, mileage, or cost value. (Note that the
description appears abbreviated here until you attempt to edit
the field.) If, however, you would like to change the date, or
the vehicle to which an expense entry belongs, you must first
delete the record and then re-enter it fully as a new
maintenance, repair, or other expense.
Though the need to use it may never arise, the "Start New Log"
function serves to replace an old log file that has grown to the
point where processing has slowed considerably. This would be
most noticeable when producing reports on services due and
selective expense history. The procedure can be done on an
arbitrary or regular (e.g., every year) basis, as you deem
necessary. All tracked services are automatically updated in the
new log. (These won't show up, though, in a listing of new
history and cannot be edited.)
When you start a new log, the old log file is considered to be
an archived (non-active) history file, and is renamed on disk as
FAST_???.HST, where "???" represents the next available,
consecutive file number. Therefore, FAST_001.HST would denote the
first archive file in the directory. Subsequent archive files
would correspond to 002, 003, 004, etc. Archive files may only be
used to produce reports, and may not be edited or added to. For
this reason, you must be certain that an expense log is complete
and error-free before you decide to terminate it and start a new
one. (Archive files can be accessed for reports by utilizing the
"Set Active History" option.)
3.3 RE-INDEX LOG
Log index files (FAST.IX1 and FAST.IX2) are automatically
maintained during the entry of new log records. Under most
circumstances, there should be little or no reason to rebuild
them (though it never hurts to do so). However, circumstances can
arise that might make it necessary. For example, if your computer
loses power or is turned off while it is in the process of saving
an expense log entry, re-indexing is recommended. If, for any
reason, records that otherwise have been entered do not appear in
the log history, or the program freezes or fails outright during
processing (at expense log service status window, or service
status or history reporting), the log file should be re-indexed.
If you have previously deleted many expense log records and/or
have deleted one or more vehicles, re-indexing may speed up
processing somewhat. And if you have since re-indexed after
deleting a vehicle and then decide to undelete it ( on
menu screen), you will need to re-index in order to again have
access to the prior log records of the vehicle.
Because index files only permit chronological accuracy to
within one day, please be aware that multiple log entries on a
single car for the same record date may not appear in the log in
the order they were entered. Although they will appear properly
grouped together for the record date, their ordering will be
random. This could have an effect on proper service status
information (in terms of last/due mileage) when two entries for
the same service item are logged for the same date with differing
mileages. Subsequent deletion of the false service record will
correct this situation.
IV REPORTS MENU
4.1 RUNNING REPORTS
FAST may be instructed as to the format and scope of reports
by changing the default prompt parameters, which are presented in
succession before the report is run. Reports are printed
according to the specification saved under the "Set Report
Printer" option. If, when attempting to print a report, an
"Output Error" message appears on the screen, check to see that
the current report printer setting is valid. Otherwise, check
your printer and paper. You will, however, have to start the
report over once the problem is corrected. (See the "Set Report
Printer" option for info on valid printer settings.) A report
title may be included when sending output to a printer or file.
A printer line width of at least 80 characters is required for
the report to be formatted properly. Reports do not use margins.
FAST utilizes a page length of 66 lines. If a report is made to a
file, the file can then be viewed using a text file viewer/editor
(e.g., word processor), the TYPE command (in DOS), or later
printed using any similar means. Either of the following DOS
commands can be easily used in the following way to output a file
to a printer at LPT1:
C:\>TYPE filename > LPT1
C:\>COPY filename LPT1
4.2 SERVICE STATUS
Through the use of this feature, the status of all tracked
services, or of only those upcoming, due, or overdue, may be
checked for one or more vehicles on record. The report will be
restricted to the vehicle whose ID# or all vehicles whose VCode
you specify. A vehicle is considered to be due or overdue for
service when either the due date or the due mileage, as
determined by the service interval saved under "Service
Schedules", has been reached or exceeded. A service is considered
upcoming if it will become due within the number of days or miles
specified under the "Set Advance Notice" option.
Replying "D" to the "Show Due Only Or All Svcs?" prompt will
restrict the report to those services that are presently only
upcoming, due, or overdue. A reply of "A" will produce the status
of all services, whether they are upcoming, due, overdue, or
otherwise (not upcoming yet). If there has been no prior log
entry for a service, FAST will utilize the initial date and
mileage saved in the basic vehicle data as the last time service
was performed. In this case, however, nothing will appear in the
last date/mileage column. Otherwise, if no initial date has been
recorded for a vehicle, tracked services without any prior entry
will not appear on any service status report.
Respond "S" to the "Arrange By Car Or Service?" prompt if you
want to group together all vehicles needing a specific service.
You may restrict the output to a particular service by then
entering the respective code letter (A-Z). If output is to the
screen, all applicable services will be produced, starting with
the specified or lowest alphabetical code, in which case you may
to the previous or next service or use to jump
to any applicable service in the report. In a vehicle-arranged
status report where no ID# has been specified (reply of "C"), the
report will start with the lowest numerical ID# which applies.
You may then or jump () as necessary to view the
vehicles applicable to the report (screen output only).
Due dates/mileages are coded in such a way so that you may be
instantly alerted as to the correct service/vehicle status. On
the screen, flashing red is used to indicate overdue, solid red
for services exactly due, yellow for those upcoming, and blue for
services not due yet. On printouts, these are in turn shown with
the preceding symbols "***" for overdue, "**" for those at due
date, "*" for upcoming, and none for otherwise.
4.3 EXPENSE HISTORY
FAST's selective history features can be used to restrict the
content of reports to only those items of interest at the moment.
You have the option of whether or not to include cost information
on the report. Reports can also be made consisting of cost
information only. History used for a report is read from the file
specified under the "Set Active History" option.
Parameters which may be used to restrict the scope of the
report include vehicle ID# or VCode, starting and ending dates,
maintenance codes, and search phrases. If you provide a vehicle
ID# or answer "Y" to the "Arrange History By Car?" prompt,
history is grouped separately for each vehicle. Otherwise,
another format is presented, which consists of a general two-line
listing arranged chronologically by date of service/expense. If a
specific vehicle ID# has not been named, and a report is then
arranged by car, the report will start with the lowest numerical
ID# which applies. You may then or jump () as
necessary to other vehicles in the report (screen output only).
The inclusion of cost information is determined by the letter
entered in the "Incl(ude) Costs" field. Valid responses include
"Y" to show on report, "N" to omit, or "O" for the report to
consist of cost information only. When output is by vehicle, cost
information consists of total cost, miles traveled, and cost per
mile, abbreviated "CPM". Printed reports include an additional
summary at the end of the report which indicates the number of
vehicles in the report, the total miles traveled and cost for all
vehicles, the overall cost per mile, and the average per vehicle
The "Codes" and "Search For" fields work together to produce a
comprehensive listing of items for the report. In the "Codes"
field, place the letter codes of all scheduled maintenance
services to be included for the report. In the "Search For"
fields, up to three separate phrases which might appear in any
expense record description may be entered. Blank fields will
produce all history unless at least one code or phrase is
entered, in which case the report scope will then be restricted
to just the specified codes and/or phrases.
In the "Codes" field, may be used repeatedly to cycle the
various options available to redefine the report scope. The
options, with the corresponding restrictive effect of each, are
as follows: "All (Codes Only)", to access scheduled maintenance
history only; "None (Repairs Only)", to access expenses entered
as repairs only; "None (Misc Only)", to access miscellaneous
expenses only; and "All (W/Repairs Only)", to access scheduled
maintenance and repair (non-miscellaneous) history only.
4.4 EXPIRATIONS / MESSAGES / VEHICLE LISTING
Use "Expirations" when you want to check on expiring vehicle
registrations or inspections. Expiration dates will first show up
on a report when they are forthcoming within the number of days
specified under the "Set Advance Notice" option. These dates are
displayed on-screen in yellow. Solid red denotes expirations at
the current date, while flashing red is used to signify those
past expiration. On printed reports, the symbol "*" precedes
upcoming expirations, "**" precedes those at the expiration date,
and "***" precedes those already expired. Non-expired dates that
are also not upcoming do not appear in the report.
"Messages" can be used to produce a report for all vehicles
which contain a message in the basic vehicle record. Messages can
be especially useful as a vehicle-related reminder. A message
will show up on a report regardless of whether it has an
associated due date. Due dates are shown on-screen in the
following manner: flashing red, message overdue; solid red, at
due date; yellow, upcoming; and blue, not due yet. Printed
reports use the following symbols to display the message status:
"***", overdue; "**", at due date; "*", upcoming; and no symbol
for not due yet.
"Vehicle Listing" is used to display all information on record
for each vehicle in a 3-line listing. Vehicle messages and due
dates, however, do not appear, as such may be easily viewed by
V OPTIONS MENU
5.1 SERVICE SCHEDULES
Scheduled maintenance services, which are defined by the user,
are set up using this feature. Each service must be entered in
the table before it can be assigned to a vehicle for tracking.
Entering a service consists of first selecting any available code
(A-Z) by moving the highlight bar and then pressing to
begin entering data. The following keys may be used to move the
highlight to the code of your choice: , ,
, , or the code letter itself.
Specified for each code must be a description of the service
and its associated interval, which indicates exactly how
frequently the service should be performed. The interval period
can be configured on time, distance, or both. In the latter case,
a vehicle is considered officially due for service when it
becomes due first by either parameter.
Valid service interval values are as follows: 1 to 120 for
months, 1 to 900 for days, and 1 to 99999 for distance traveled.
Time/distance parameters that have a value of zero are not used
for tracking. A service must have a description and at least one
interval parameter defined before it is can be used for purposes
of tracking. If a service is later changed (redefined in terms of
description or interval), all vehicles which are tracked for the
particular service will be affected accordingly, i.e., they will
all in turn adhere to the new scheduling information.
A maximum of twenty-six anticipated scheduled maintenance
services for all vehicles on record may be entered in the table.
As mentioned under the section on adding vehicles, due to
differences in service recommendations by vehicle type and how
each vehicle is operated, you need only assign to a vehicle those
services in the table which apply.
If you are not sure what services should be tracked and how
often for your vehicle(s), refer to the owner's literature for
each vehicle of a particular year, make, and model. Otherwise, a
dealership or other service facility can often provide the
necesssary information. It is also possible, of course, to design
a service schedule to fit your needs, accomodating whatever items
you would like to have performed on a routine basis. Services
need not imply actual work to be performed, since some are closer
to the nature of a regular check or inspection of certain items.
Examples of commonly tracked services include the following:
Oil And Filter Change 3 3000
Spark Plug Replacement 20 20000
Air Filter Replacement 24 24000
Fuel Filter Replacement 12 12000
Cooling System Check 12
Coolant Flush And Replace 24 24000
PCV Valve Replacement 20 20000
Crankcase Filter Replacement 24 24000
Drive Belts Check And Adjust 10 10000
Transmission Fluid Check 12 12000
Steering/Suspension Lubrication 15 15000
Power Steering Fluid Check 12
Brake System Check/Replace Linings 30 30000
Front Wheel Bearing Repacking 30 30000
Exhaust System Inspection 6
Tire Tread Wear Check 6
Tire Pressure Check 1
Exterior Lamps Check 1
5.2 PROGRAM SETTINGS
The "Set Advance Notice" option can be used to set the number
of days and/or miles in advance when an expiration, message, or
scheduled service will first be considered upcoming by FAST and
be indicated as such on a report. Values from 1 to 999 are
permitted for days, 1 to 9999 for miles. If a value of zero is
entered, expirations and services will not appear on an
expired/due report until the actual date of expiration or due
date or due mileage is reached.
The "Set Heading/Colors" option is used to save a heading,
which may consist of a name or anything else you may want to
display at the top of the screen. The heading also appears at the
top of all printed reports. Screen colors which can be set using
this option include the menu highlight bar, menu background, and
menu screen background. Colors are selected by using the
keys and then when the desired color is displayed.
FAST normally uses the expense log file FAST.LOG to produce
history reports. If you have expense history in non-active
(archive) files, "Set Active History" can be used to change the
file to be accessed for history reports. FAST will check to see
if any files are available, and if found, will display the
corresponding file numbers. You must then enter the archive
number of the file. For example, the archive number would be 1 to
access an existing file FAST_001.HST. The "Start New Log" section
contains additional information relating to history files.
The "Set Report Printer" option enables you to change the
output specification for printed reports. You may specify
printers attached to the first, second, or third parallel port
(if so equipped), or a filename with an optional drive and
pathname. If you specify a file which already exists on disk, the
file will be overwritten when the report is made.
Valid settings also include printers specified as filenames.
If you receive an output error when a line printer (LPTx) is
specified, and cannot otherwise find anything wrong, try
specifying the printer port as a filename. For example, if the
normal LPT1 setting won't work, enter LPT1 as a filename and
attempt to re-run the report.
If you happen to have a printer connected to a serial port,
specify it as a filename according to the following format:
COMx:[speed][,parity][,data][,stop] (Items in brackets are
optional -- see printer manual for correct values; x is port
number.) For example, if you have a serial printer connected to
COM1 with a speed of 4800 bps (bits per second), no parity, 8
data bits, and one stop bit, you would specify COM1:4800,N,8,1 as
the filename to use. (The filenames LPTx and COMx, when specified
without the colon, route the output commands through DOS, and
will adhere to the settings (if any) specified in the DOS MODE