Contents of the MAILDEMO.DOC file
I N T R O D U C T I O N
Congratulations on your Evaluation of MAILROOM! This initial
release represents a growing line of quality products from CHICAGO
SOFTWARE. We're committed to bringing you the best possible products at
a price that's both reasonable and affordable. Look to us in the future
for the Quality Alternative. Some of the features MAILROOM has to offer
* Keep track of names, addresses, or any other data
* Each database file can contain over 2 billion records
* Colorful, well-thought-out menus and input screens
* Automatic Sorting
* Your choice of TEXT or ICON menus. Change anytime you wish
* An Integrated Text Editor capable of writing letters, memos,
documents, Mail-Merge form letters, and just about anything else
* Auto-Insertion of names/addresses into your documents
* Auto repeat of field contents to speed data entry
* Return Address labels or Envelopes
* Typewriter Emulation to fill out forms etc.
* A pop-up scrolling Calendar
* The ability to dial your phone
* Dynamic Report Format building. Print any fields anywhere you want
* Bold, Italic, Underline, Expanded, and Lines per-inch-settings
* A DOS Shell
* Extended Browse Mode - View 4 records on-screen at once
* Very flexible sort filters: Print all names, one name, a range of
names, names after a certain date, or names with certain field
contents, all sorted by Last name or Zip Code
* Unlimited printing capabilities: Print Labels, Envelopes, Rolodex
Cards, Name and Phone lists, Mail-Merge documents, Letters, Address-
Books, or design your own Formats
* Interactive support for almost any Printer. Design your own
configuration and save it to disk
* Create ASCII files to communicate with other programs
* Screen Preview modes
* Quick-Search data retrieval method
* Much, much more.......
G E T T I N G S T A R T E D
To run MAILROOM you'll need at least the following equipment:
* An IBM PC/XT/AT or compatible computer system with 384-512k
512k needed to run the Integrated Editor.
* One 360k Floppy Drive OR a Hard Drive
* Dot-Matrix Printer [optional, for printing]
* Hayes compatible Modem [optional, for phone dialing]
If you're using a Hard Drive, prepare your system for MAILROOM by
creating a sub-directory called MAILROOM. Then copy the entire MAILROOM
diskette to your hard drive (COPY A:*.* C:\MAILROOM, assuming your hard
drive is drive C:).
If you're using a floppy disk based system, be sure and make a
Back-Up copy of the MAILROOM diskette and store the original in a safe
R U N N I N G T H E P R O G R A M
To run the program, insert your MAILROOM disk in drive A: and type
MAILROOM and the key. If on a hard drive system, be sure and
change to the sub-directory that the MAILROOM files reside in. You'll
see the introductory screen and then the program will begin.
All menus within the program operate in the same fashion, you can
use the ARROW KEYS and , or a highlighted first-letter to select
the option you want. The (escape) key will always back you up one
step. On some screens, such as the PRINT MENU, you may use FUNCTION
KEYS to toggle options. The keys are always displayed on the screen to
let you know when they're active.
S E T T I N G U P MAILROOM F O R Y O U R C O M P U T E R
After starting the program for the first time, you'll be taken
directly to the FILE MENU. This is because in order to use the features
of MAILROOM, you must have a DataBase (the file that holds your
records) active. MAILROOM starts out with the following settings:
Self-adjusts to color or mono screens.
Parallel Printer, Port One
Modem Port One
If you need to change any of these settings, press twice to
go to the MAIN MENU. Select "SETUP MENU" and choose the option you wish
to modify (Printer type, Screen type, Modem port, Menu style, and
custom Editor commands.) After customizing the settings you wish, press
to return to the MAIN MENU. Your settings will be remembered each
time you use MAILROOM. Now select FILE MENU.....
At this point you should start a new DataBase to work with. Select
the "BEGIN NEW FILE" option. A small disk-drive menu will pop-up. Use
the arrows to select the drive you want the database to be created on.
Now type in a name for your file. If you use invalid characters,
MAILROOM will let you know and give you a chance to edit the name. Once
you finish entering the name, press the key. All features of
MAILROOM are now available!
THE FILE MENU
Available from the Main Menu, this is where you come to perform
all file-related tasks such as starting/loading database files, viewing
a disk directory, jumping to the DOS SHELL, and deleting files. The
available option are:
Load a File - use this to load a previously created database file. You
can select the disk drive using the Up/Dn arrow keys, then just point
to the file you wish to load and hit
Save a File - Normally, you do NOT have to save your files, MAILROOM
does this automatically while you enter your information. However, in
some cases (such as a power outage) your file's index may become
corrupt. This option can restore all files properly. A good rule of
thumb is: Anytime your database seems inaccurate, or you experience
strange results, use this option to re-create the database index files.
You do not need to use it under normal circumstances though.
Disk Directory- Anytime you wish to see what files are present on
disk, select this option. You can specify a file mask/drive, wildcard
characters are okay (*?) Examples are: C:*.*, A:*.EXE, ??.?C)
Begin New File - You must use this selection whenever you want to begin
a new database. First choose the drive and them MAILROOM will ask you
for a name. If you enter an invalid name, you will have a chance to re-
enter it. Press to abort the process.
Delete a File - If you ever want to permanently remove a database file
from your disk, you may select this option. You use the arrow keys to
point to the file and hit You will be asked to verify the
action. BE CAREFUL! Once you erase a file, it's gone forever, unless
you have a specific program and attempt to restore it.
THE DOS SHELL
While using the File Menu, you may drop to DOS and return to
MAILROOM by hitting the F10 key (you must have enough memory in your
computer for this option to function.) You will remain under DOS until
you type EXIT to return to MAILROOM.
P R O G R A M F E A T U R E S
ADDING NAMES TO YOUR DATABASE
Select the ADD A NAME option from the MAIN MENU. You will be
presented with the Update screen.
You can use the arrow keys to move the cursor through the various
fields. Note the first letter of each name/address field is
automatically capitalized for your convenience. If you don't know what
MAILROOM is expecting you to type in, look near the bottom of the
screen for a HELP LINE. This tells you what the field can be used for.
If you don't know the correct State Abbreviation, hit F1 while on the
State field for a list of valid abbreviations. Continue entering your
information until you are satisfied, the press to leave the
screen and save the data. If you wish to add another record, answer "Y"
to the "Add another name" question.
** NOTE: If you add more than one name consecutively, you have the
option of hitting the F2 key on any field to bring back the data from
the last-entered record. If you have a lot of names with the same city,
for instance, this feature will speed up your entry quite a bit.
When finished adding names, just answer "N" to the "Add another name"
question and you will return to the MAIN MENU.
Anytime you wish, you can elect to change, or edit any or all of
your names. To do this, from the MAIN MENU select "CHANGE A NAME" Enter
the name to change* and hit You will return to the Update
screen, with that record displayed. Use the arrow keys, Ins, Del, and
to change the information. When finished, press
* NOTE: Anytime MAILROOM asks you for a name, you need only enter as
much of the name as needed to distinguish it from your other names.
Always enter LAST NAME first. For example, you could type in
"JO" to find JONES, or "JONES JI" to find JIM JONES.
Select "DELETE A NAME" from the MAIN MENU. Enter as much of the
name as needed to find it and hit If the record is found, it
will be displayed and you will have to confirm your choice to delete
it. If you change your mind, answer "N" to the "Are you sure" question.
If the deletion was successful, you will be notified.
The FIND option is one of the most useful sections of MAILROOM. It
lets you perform a variety of tasks all from the same screen, while
viewing a list of your current records. Use this option to:
Locate a name
Print a single name
Dial phone number(s)
Remove a highlighted name
Change a record
Add a record
After selecting the FIND option, enter part of the name you wish to
find, or just a single letter to start with that letter. If any matches
are found, you will be taken to the Browse Mode. This screen will
display, in full, the current record found, as well as the previous
three records by name. You can use the arrow keys to scroll through
your database entirely. If you come to the end of your names, MAILROOM
will automatically take you to the first name. Notice as the names
scroll by the date the records were last updated is always displayed.
You can easily see when you last changed or added a particular record.
At the bottom of the screen there will be a menu of the available
commands. If you wish to perform one of these commands, highlight the
record you wish to work with and hit the Letter Key associated with the
command. P to Print record, R to Remove (delete), D to dial, A to Add a
new name, or C to change the record. You will always return to this
screen until you hit from it to return to the MAIN MENU.
LISTING NAMES (on screen)
Anytime you wish to see a brief summary of all your names on-
screen, select the "LIST NAMES" option. You can choose to sort on Last
Name, or Zip Code. Each record with name and address will appear on
it's own line until the screen is full. Hit any key to display the next
ten records, or to quit the list. If the record's contents are
longer than a single line, they will be appear only up to 80 characters
THE MAILROOM EDITOR
MAILROOM comes equipped with a powerful built-in Editor that you
can use to write letters, memos, Mail-Merge files, or any other
document you wish. In addition, since it's integrated into MAILROOM,
you do not have to leave the program to use it, and it has several
features that let it 'talk' to your database files. The Editor has a
great deal of commands, but it pretty-much works the way you think it
would. Meaning that most popular editing commands are supported
(Home/End/PageUp/PageDn/Ins/Del/Arrows..) Most commands use a
combination of the CTRL key and a letter key. You can easily move
blocks of text around, copy them, delete them, and print them. The best
way to get to know the Editor is to try it out. It has a full help
system that shows you how every command is used. Press F1 to view the
help screen, and Home/End to switch the help pages. The word-wrap
feature can be disabled by using TypeOver mode (Ins key off.) The files
the Editor produces are plain ASCII and can be used with a wide range
of other programs. You can even use it to write other computer
programs. To use the Editor, press F10 from MAILROOM's Main Menu. You
can pass the Editor a filename to auto-load, or just press to
start a new file. Some of the extra features of the Editor include:
F1 - DISPLAY HELP Show detailed Editor Commands.
F2 - INSERT ADDRESS Upon pressing this key, you can enter a name (just
like the FIND option from MAILROOM) If the name is found the address
will be inserted into your document at the current cursor location.
F3 - INSERT FIXED NAME Use this to insert the four FIXED NAME lines
(explained above) at the current cursor position.
F4 - INSERT DATE This will insert the current date into your document.
F5 - INSERT CLOSING This will insert your CLOSING line (explained
above) into the document.
ALT-M - MAIL-MERGE COMMANDS This feature will bring up a menu of the
available Mail-Merge commands and let you select any one of them to
insert into your document.
These and other special commands are always displayed on the top
and bottom lines of the Editor's screen. The Editor was designed to let
you write letters and reports, using information from your database
files, without having to leave MAILROOM. Although it may not completely
replace your expensive word-processor, you'll probably find it quite
adequate for day-to-day writing needs.
A note on inserting text (F1-F5, ALT-M) into your document. If you are
on a blank, or new line, the text will be inserted exactly where the
cursor was positioned when you hit the function key. If there is
already information on the line, the text will be inserted on the line,
but after the existing text. In-other-words, you cannot insert
information in the middle of an existing word.
Choosing "PRINT MENU" will take you to the section where all
Printing and report building functions take place. There are many
options available from this section. Displayed with the Print Menu at
all times are:
Selected Printer Primary Sort Method
Current Print Format File Destination (Printer or ASCII File)
Current Database file Mail-Merge (On or Off)
Lines between labels Labels Across Page
This status information is displayed in the right half of the
screen at all times while in the Print Menu so you can look over and
easily see what choices you have active at any given time. Some items,
such as Primary Sort method, Destination, and Mail-Merge, can be turned
on or off by hitting the associated Function Key. If you want to switch
between sorting by Last Name or Zip Code, press the F8 key. If you want
to change the destination from Printer to an ASCII file, press F9. If
you want to enable (turn-on) the Mail-Merge feature, press F10 and
enter the name of the Mail-Merge document. Each of these options is
explained below. The available commands from the Print Menu are:
Begin Printing - This option simply starts the Printing process. While
in progress, you may press the key at any time to stop all
Select Printer - This lets you load a Printer definition file into
MAILROOM. These files tell MAILROOM what commands to send to the
Printer for various Fonts and Line-Spacing. You can create as many
additional files as you wish through the SETUP MENU. Just use the arrow
key and to select the printer file to load.
Select Report Format - This option takes you to the Report Format
section where you can dynamically build a format for the printed
material. You can also save/load format files. Format Building is
explained in detail under the "Building a Report Format" below.
Use Typewriter - Select this to go to the Typewriter Emulation Mode.
While in this mode, anything you type is sent directly to the Printer
when you press the key. You can use this to fill-in forms, or
anything else you might use a conventional typewriter for. You leave
this mode by hitting the key.
Headers/Footers - MAILROOM maintains two additional lines - one Header
line and one Footer line. Once you select this option, you can edit
these lines and they will be remembered each time you start MAILROOM.
If you want to print the same information before and/or after each
address, answer "Y" when you are asked to use Headers and Footers. An
example of a Header might be: If you are sending out catalogs to
people, you could define the Header as "DISTRIBUTED BY Your Company"
Each time you print information, the Header will also be printed:
DISTRIBUTED BY ABC Company
1 Cherry Drive
Washington, DC 01234
DISTRIBUTED BY ABC Company
543 Elm Street
Reno, NV 89505
If you wish only a Header and no Footer, just leave the Footer
line blank, and visa-versa.
Configuration - Choose this to set: Lines between labels, Exact
positioning, and Labels across page.
Lines between labels: This tells MAILROOM how many blank lines to
print between the information. For Mailing labels, 1-2 lines is usually
correct. If you are printing envelopes or using deep labels or Rolodex
Cards, you might want to change this to 3 or 4 lines or more.
Exact Positioning: This tells MAILROOM exactly where to start
printing your information (right margin.) If you select this option,
you will be presented with a screen that has a sample address. Use the
Right/Left arrow keys to position the information anywhere across the
page. For example, if printing envelopes, you want the data to appear
in the middle of the line, not at the first position.
Normal Labels <-------> Envelopes
Your setting will be remembered each time you change it.
Labels across page: MAILROOM can print from 1 - 4 labels across a
page. You can use this feature in addition to Lines between labels and
Exact positioning to ensure the information is printed in the correct
places, and to use a wide variety of forms.
Set Page Length - This lets you enter the proper page length of a
document. This effects only the Mail-Merge option.
Set Range - This option tells MAILROOM what information you want
printed from your database. MAILROOM has a vast array of flexible
filters to let you print just about any range of names. These are:
One Name - Print only one name. Enter a name and if it is found
you will be asked how many repetitions to print. This is useful for
return address labels or anything that requires more than one copy.
Range of names - With this option, you enter a starting, and an
ending name. For example, if you wanted to print everything with last
names starting at "A" and ending at "C", just enter "A" as the starting
name, and "C" as the ending name. You can also enter full names, or
anything in between ("JONES" through "SMITH",
"JO" through "YOUNG", etc...)
Field contents - Print all records with certain field contents.
You select the field from a menu, and then enter something that the
field should contain. This can be used if you want to print only for a
certain state, or a certain zipcode etc. Again, you can enter anything
from one letter to full words. Examples: If you select the Last Name
field and enter "C", all names that have a "C" in the last name will be
printed. Or, if you select state and enter "CA" only records with a
state of California will be printed. You can even select Remark lines.
After a date - If you want to print only records entered or
updated after a certain date, use this option. This can be used for
follow-up mailings and new editions to your database. After selecting
this option, enter a date like this: 10/10/1989 and only records
entered on or after this date will be printed. If you're creating
Address Book pages, you can print only your recent entries.
All names - This will print every name in the current database.
BUILDING A REPORT FORMAT
MAILROOM goes far beyond just printing labels and envelopes. You
can design unlimited formats for all your needs. These can range from
rolodex cards, to phone lists, to nametags, to cassette/VHS labels, and
anything in between. Building a format is easy because you can SEE
exactly what the printed information will look like while you design
it. After choosing SELECT REPORT FORMAT from the Print Menu, you will
move to a screen that is divided horizontally in two parts. The top
half is the Printed Information Area, your blank blueprint, and the
bottom area has a menu of all your available fields (name, city...)
Sample Report Format Screen
First Name Last Name City, State Zip Address1 Address2
You first select a field from the Field Menu, and then use the
arrow keys to place the field anywhere in the box at the top of the
screen. This way, you can have your information appear in any order, in
any position. Each field is shown in it's MAXIMUM WIDTH so you can't
overlap any fields. You may save and load as many formats as you want.
If you load a format, it is immediately displayed in the box so you can
see what it will look like on paper. MAILROOM comes with a few standard
formats already created for labels/envelopes, rolodex cards, and name
A standard labels format looks like this:
City, State Zipcode
A standard Rolodex format looks like this:
City, State Zipcode
You have 80 characters across and 11 full lines to create your
formats, and you can include Any or All of your fields in any format.
Some hints on using this section follow:
1) While placing a field, you can press and the field will be
erased. Selecting it again will bring it back.
2) You can hit the F10 key to clear ALL fields. Use this to erase and
3) If you try and place OR remove a field while it overlaps another
field, MAILROOM will 'bleep' at you. A field must not overlap another
4) From the Field Menu, you can use the arrow keys OR the highlighted
letter to select a field.
5) While placing fields, the HOME key will move the field to the first
position of the first line. The END key will move the field to the last
6) Although you do not have to save a format once you add/modify it,
MAILROOM will remember it (even after you quit the program) until a new
format is created or loaded. This way you can use temporary formats
without keeping track of them.
MAILROOM has full Mail-Merge capabilities for creating form
letters and mass-produced documents. For those of you who aren't
familiar with what Mail-Merge does, we'll explain: Mail-Merge lets you
produce numerous letters and documents, all customized to specific
names, without writing multiple copies. You create a document with
imbedded codes, and at the time of printing these codes are replaced
with actual information from your database. This has an obvious
usefulness when writing form letters, but it can be used for other
things as well. MAILROOM has several features that help automate not
only the creation of documents, but also the routines used to print
them. MAILROOM comes equipped with a built-in Text Editor that you can
use to write letters, memos, or just about any other documents you need
to create. A more specific explanation of the Editor is given below in
it's own section (THE MAILROOM EDITOR.) Although you may use ANY ASCII
editor or word processor to create your Mail-Merge documents, it is by
far easier to use MAILROOM's integrated Editor to perform these tasks.
The Editor has all the Mail-Merge commands available from a menu, and
they are automatically inserted into your document! To get to the
Editor, press the F10 key from the Main Menu. You can pass the Editor a
filename to load, or just hit to start a new one. Once in the
Editor, you may hit ALT-M to bring up a menu of all the merge commands.
You can then use the arrow key to select a command, hit , and
the command will be inserted into your document at the current cursor
location. If you prefer to type in your own commands, the menu can be
used as a reference to what commands are available. An example of a
Mail-Merge document follows. Suppose you own a mail-order business and
you wish to send the same letter to many people in your DataBase.
.CITYS .ZCODE .DATE1 .TIME1
Since our last conversation on .RDATE, we have added many new
products to our Spring Lineup. Please find the enclosed brochure
showing our complete inventory. If you wish to place and order, you can
call our toll-free number 24 hours a day.
John Q. Public, President ABC Company
Once we have created this letter, we can select Mail-Merge from
the Print Menu by hitting F10. Next, we enter the filename we gave the
letter when we saved it to disk. MAILROOM's Print Menu Status box will
show Mail-Merge as active and display the name of the letter. At this
point, we can use any of the printing filters (One name, Range, All
names, Field contents, After a date) with the Mail-Merge option. You
can also set the Page Length for your printer. After selecting the
"Begin Printing" option, the letters will be printed according to all
our current settings. Pressing will stop the printing. In the
mail-order example above, each command will be replaced with actual
data corresponding to a particular record.
If we had elected to print for only one name (Jeff Jones), the mail-
order letter would look like this:
555 Elm Street
Reno, NV 89431 February 5, 1989 10:00
Since our last conversation on Mar 10, 1988, we have added many
new products to our Spring Lineup. Please find the enclosed brochure
showing our complete inventory. If you wish to place an order, you can
call our toll-free number 24 hours a day.
John Q. Public, President ABC Company
If we wanted to print for more than one name, each letter would
contain the appropriate information. By now you can see the power of
Mail-Merge. You don't have to create only letters though, you can use
it to fill in forms, create reports, and many other things as well.
SUMMARY OF MAIL-MERGE COMMANDS
.FNAME First name
.LNAME Last name
.ADDR1 Address line 1
.ADDR2 Address line 2
.CITYS City, State
.ZCODE Zip Code
.HFONE Home phone #
.WFONE Work phone # and extension if any
.BDATE Birth date
.RDATE Date record was last modified (or added)
.STKEY Sort key
.REMK3 Remark lines 1 - 3
Mail-Merge Commands (Continued)
.FLOAD To insert another file into document. Use .FLOAD "filename"
.DATE1 Date in January 10, 1988 format
.DATE2 Date in 01/10/88 format
.TIME1 Time is standard format 10:05
.TIME2 Time in 24 hour format 22:05
The .FLOAD command can be used to insert (print) a separate file.
Printing begins wherever you put the .FLOAD command. This can be used
if you have non-changing paragraphs, or you wish to import other text
into your letters. The syntax is: .FLOAD "filename" Don't forget the
SELECTING THE DESTINATION FOR YOUR OUTPUT
A little while ago we mentioned you could select between Printer
and ASCII file for output destination. Here's a more detailed
explanation. Normally, if you wish MAILROOM to print your information
on paper, you would leave this setting on "Printer". However, creating
ASCII files has many uses in itself. For instance, you could create
plain ASCII files, then load them into the MAILROOM Editor and
customize them even further with lines, boxes, extra text, etc.. You
may also use these files to import into other programs. Another use
would be while using a new report format. You can create a file and
then use MAILROOM's Editor to view what the output will look like
before you actually print in on paper, saving on paper costs if the
format isn't what you wanted. Note that the ASCII file will be exactly
like the printed pages, except for any printer codes that wouldn't show
Selecting Font Styles - MAILROOM let's you use various character fonts
to alter the way characters are printed. Examples are bold, underline,
expanded, italics, and condensed. You may choose this option and then
use the arrow keys and to select/mix the fonts you want. Your
settings are remembered each time you load MAILROOM. Also from this
screen you may select different lines-per-inch settings for your
Printer. Additionally, you can create separate Printer Definition files
and store them on disk. To do this, choose the "Define Printer" option
from the SETUP MENU.
THE SETUP MENU
This section is used to configure MAILROOM for your particular
computer set up. The available options are:
Select Printer - Use this option to choose between Parallel and Serial
printers. Also, you may define printer codes. MAILROOM uses these codes
to print special fonts such as bold and underline. If you choose to
edit these codes, you will be presented with a screen that displays all
current codes. Use the arrow keys to move through the fields and enter
the Printer Codes in the spaces provided. This feature was designed to
let you use just about any Printer with the program, no matter what the
special control codes are. You can save as many definition files as you
wish and load them anytime.
IMPORTANT: When entering codes, you must enter the DECIMAL VALUES, not
the ASCII characters. Consult your Printer's manual for these codes.
Use a single SPACE to separate multiple codes on the same line.
Underline Code: 27 10 5
1--2--3-----3 separate codes.
Use "27" as the code for the sequence.
MAILROOM comes with several definition files for popular printers, but
you may have to use this feature in order to get correct results. You
may also create different definition files for different printed
results. For example, MAILROOM let's you select (anytime) Bold,
Underline, Italic, Expanded, and 2 Condensed styles. However, you may
enter any codes you like for each of these settings. For example, if
your Printer has special fonts or features, you can enter them in place
of one of the type styles (bold, italic...) and save them as a separate
definition file. For instance, when you select Bold print, MAILROOM
uses whatever code Bold is set to, it doesn't HAVE to be the Bold code.
Anytime you want to use these, just load the file.
Use Text/Icon Menus - MAILROOM lets you choose between the style of
menu you feel the most comfortable with (MAIN MENU.) You can have
either TEXT (words) or ICON (pictures) and switch anytime you wish. You
do NOT need a graphics card to use ICON menus, they work on everything
from Monochrome to VGA. Try them both to see which you prefer. You
preference will be remembered each time you use MAILROOM.
Set Up Modem - This lets you choose between COM ports 1 and 2 depending
on your particular system.
Set Up Editor - MAILROOM keeps track of four lines called FIXED NAME,
and one line called CLOSING. Choose this option to change these lines
to whatever you wish. FIXED NAME can be used to store YOUR return
address, and CLOSING can hold your sign-off (Yours Truly, Sincerely...)
While using the Editor, you can insert any of these lines into your
document by hitting a single key. F3 to insert FIXED NAME and F4 to
insert your CLOSING. See the section entitled "THE MAILROOM EDITOR" for
more details on using the Editor.
Choose Monitor - Use this to select between Monochrome and Color
monitor styles. The first time you run MAILROOM, the program will
detect what display adapter you have installed and automatically adjust
to the proper colors. You may, however, change these at any time. On
some Monochrome systems, using COLORS will look better than not.
Experiment with this setting if you have trouble seeing the screens.
NOTE: If you select Monochrome and then go back to Color in the same
session, not all colors will re-appear. You must restart MAILROOM for
all screens to be properly updated.
MAILROOM has a pop-up calendar that you can call from the Main
Menu by hitting the key. Use the Up/Dn arrows to change months,
and the PageUp/PageDn keys to change the year. The calendar goes from
Jan, 1980 to Dec, 2088. The current date is displayed in reverse video.
This feature is for your reference if you want to see what day a
particular date falls on, or how many days in a certain month, etc..
SOME TIPS ON GETTING THE MOST FROM MAILROOM
You can automatically skip the intro and load a database file by typing
the database name on the same line when starting the program. If your
database is called "NAMES" here's an example: MAILROOM NAMES
The Editor works faster if Insert is off.
While a screen listing of names is being performed, you can hit any key
to immediately return to the Main Menu.
If you want to preview new or complex report formats, or just see what
the printed information will look like before printing, select your
destination as an ASCII file (instead of PRINTER.) The file will be an
exact duplicate of the printed material. At this point you can go to
the Editor, or the DOS SHELL and view the file.
If you have a hard drive, copy the entire MAILROOM disk to a sub-
directory on your hard drive. This will not only speed up execution,
but you'll be able to have much larger database files than on a floppy
Pressing will back you up, or cancel what you're doing from just
about anywhere. This can be used if you change your mind or make an
When entering any information in MAILROOM, you can use the
Home/End/Ins/Del keys. Also, on many screens the status of the Caps-
Lock, Insert, and Num-Lock keys is displayed on line 24 of your screen.
After electing to DIAL a number from the BROWSE screen, you can press
"H" to dial the home number, or "W" to dial the work number of the
currently highlighted record. Also, you can press "M" to manually dial
a number (you type in numbers and press ).
MAILROOM use direct screen writes for speed. If using under a multi-
tasking or windowed environment, keep this in mind.
Anytime MAILROOM asks for a name to find, you need only enter as much
of the names as needed to identify it (ie: JO to find JONES)
Anytime MAILROOM is printing for you, you can hit the key to stop
printing and return to where you were previously.
If you run MAILROOM from a two-floppy system, try and use drive A for
the MAILROOM program, and drive B for the database files. This will
give you more room to store names. If you run MAILROOM from a one-
floppy system, after MAILROOM loads and you get to the Main Menu, you
can take out the program disk and put in your database disk. This will
give you more room for storage. Remember to switch them back before
quitting if you change any permanent settings though, so they can be
written back to disk. Also keep in mind what disk your Print files and
Editor files are on.
Don't forget to set up the Editor with a return address (FIXED NAME)
and a CLOSING. This will make letter-writing easier.
While on MAILROOM's Main Menu, the bottom of the screen shows the
selected database, total records, and the current date.
Typewriter Emulation can be used to print VHS labels, Cassette labels,
or oddly formatted forms.
If you're adding a lot of records, you can hit the F2 key on any field
to bring back the same data from the last record.
To Import ASCII or Mail-Merge files, use the separate MRCONVRT program
supplied with your original MAILROOM disk.
With normal day-to-day use, you DO NOT have to Save your files.
MAILROOM does this for you anytime you change an item. Use the Save
option only when your file seems incorrect (like after a power
Anytime you are selecting a file, you can move to other sub-directories
by highlighting them and hitting
You can create customized labels and such using the MAILROOM Editor and
Mail-Merge. To do this however, you must change the FORM-FEED character
in the MAILROOM configuration File. While in the Editor, load the file
"MAILROOM.ILG" The last line in the file is the FORD-FEED character. It
is currently displayed as an "L" (ascii code 12). Change it to ascii
255 by holding down the ALT KEY and entering 255 on the numeric keypad.
Nothing will show on the screen, but it is the correct code. Save the
file next. What this does is tell Mail-Merge NOT to go to a new page
after each document. Now you can use the editor to create any format
you wish, using lines, special characters, or any other text you want
to appear on the printed information. Use Mail-Merge to Print.
IMPORTING ASCII FILES
You've already learned how to Create a plain ASCII file with
MAILROOM, but you may also create a MAILROOM DataBase from an existing
ASCII file, sometimes referred to as 'File Importing.' For this
purpose, we've included a program called "MRCNVRT." MRCNVRT (short for
"MAILROOM CONVERT") is a stand-alone program, meaning you use it while
at the DOS prompt, not from within MAILROOM. There is one guideline you
need to follow when using the program. First, the ASCII file should
have only ONE field per line. The only exception is on City and State,
which are expected in the standard "City, State" format. To use the
conversion program, you will need to create a Report Format file within
MAILROOM that matches the ASCII file format. For example, if your ASCII
file looks like this:
555 Elm Street
345 Norman Ave.
Then you should create a Report Format that has the same fields in the
First Name ---|
Last Name --------|
City, ST ---------|
After doing this, save the Report Format file and exit MAILROOM.
Now, make sure your MAILROOM disk is in drive A:, or you are in the
MAILROOM sub-directory on your hard drive and type MRCNVRT and the
key. You can now type in the name of the MAILROOM DataBase you
want created. NOTE: If the MAILROOM DataBase already exists, it will be
added-to, not over-written. Next, you will see a menu of all your
existing Report Format files. Use the arrow keys to select the proper
Format file and hit the key (you can highlight a sub-directory
and hit to move to that directory). Now you will be asked to
type in the name of the ASCII file. If it does not exist, you will have
to re-enter until the file is found, or press to abort. Lastly,
you will need to enter the number of blank lines between each record in
the ASCII file. If there are NO blank lines, enter 0. Once all the
files are verified, the conversion process will begin. You will see
each name on the screen briefly while that record is being converted.
Anytime you wish to cancel an operation, just press the key.
Need a custom version of MAILROOM? CHICAGO SOFTWARE can create a
customized version containing your Company Name/Logo, or other such
items for a minimal fee. Call (702) 356-5852 for details.
MAILROOM One (c) 1989 CHICAGO SOFTWARE LTD All Rights Reserved