Category : Word Processors
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Filename : VDE.REF

Output of file : VDE.REF contained in archive : VDE173.ZIP

Reference Manual for the VDE Editor:
version 1.73 (17 Aug 1994)

(c)1987-94, E. Meyer

================================ CONTENTS ==================================


6. COMMAND REFERENCE, alphabetically by topic:
Auto format, Auto indent, Auto number, Auto save, Block commands,
Cursor position, Data files, Deleting, Envelopes, Files,
Find/replace, Foreign characters, Graphics, Header, Hyphenation,
Information, Inserting, Justification, Line spacing, Margins,
Matching files, MenuBars, Multiple files, Pagination, Paragraph
indent, Place markers, Print preview, Print styles/codes, Printer
drivers, Printing, Proportional spacing, Protected mode, Reformat,
Ruler line, Run command/shell, Save/exit, Screen controls, Screen
size, Spelling check, Splitting files, Tabs, Time/date, Undelete,
Upper/lower case, Windows.


(For detailed explanation of MACROS, see the file VMACRO.REF)

(For use of the VINST installation utility, see the file VINST.REF)

========================== 6. COMMAND REFERENCE ============================

AUTO FORMAT (^OM) - Continuously keeps the paragraph of text you are working
on properly formatted (margins and spacing), even as you add to or delete
from the line; format changes are implemented instantly. (Auto format
does NOT affect parts of the file you have not changed.) When off, the
manual ^B command can still be used (see REFORMAT).
Care must be taken in files with mixed formats, as the CURRENT
settings of margins and spacing are always used.
Note that with Auto Format on, certain keystrokes may have additional
(or no) effects, due to immediate reformatting afterward; and some
operations like Find/Replace may be somewhat slower.

AUTO INDENT (^OA) - Causes wordwrap or the [Enter] key, upon moving to the
next line, to indent to match any existing indentation on that line (with
insert OFF) or the previous line (with insert ON). Thus any structured
indentation you create is maintained. Useful as a temporary (paragraph)
indent, or for outlines, program source code, etc. Works in all modes,
including nondocument. Note: Indentation must be done with spaces or
variable tabs, NOT with hard tabs.

AUTO NUMBER (^K#) - VDE can automatically number items in a list. Just type
a "#" character where each number should go:
#. First item.
#. Second item...
You can then mark the list off as a block, and use the ^K# command; VDE
will insert the numbers (1, 2, etc) in place of the "#" markers. You will
be asked for the starting number; the default is 1. If auto format (^OM)
is on, text will be realigned to compensate for varying length numbers.
(Once numbering is done, the markers are gone. For frequently revised
lists, leave the "#" markers in the file on disk; use ^K# just before
printing, and do not save afterward.)

AUTO SAVE (^KA) - Saves any changes you have made to disk automatically, at
regular intervals. This ensures that you don't lose too much work if you
make a mistake, have a power outage, etc. ^KA lets you set the interval
(1 to 255 minutes), or turn this feature off entirely (0). Just press
[Enter] to restore your default, normally 0 [set with VINST].
When auto save is on, changes you've made to any file may be saved to
disk at any moment. If you don't want this to occur for a particular
file, engage protected mode (^KO).
Notes: Auto save will wait for an interval when the keyboard is not
in use. It cannot save "untitled" work. It will make a backup file only
if the file had not been saved previously.

BLOCK COMMANDS (^KB,^KK,^KH,^KZ,^KY,^KC,^KV,^KW; ^QB,^QK; ^KPB) - A block of
text is delimited by two markers, set by ^KB (beginning) and ^KK (end),
which remain in place until reset elsewhere or deleted. Alternatively,
"shift-blocking" can mark a block by moving the cursor to one end, holding
down the Shift key, and using [^,v,<,>], Home, End], or [PgUp,Dn] to move
the cursor to the other end, releasing the Shift key when finished. Once
marked, the block text displays in a contrasting color. ^KH unmarks the
block, removing any marker(s) set.
The block move and print commands (^KV,^KPB) require a block to be
fully marked before use. To save keystrokes, the other block commands
(see also ^K#,^K",AltC), if used when only one block marker is present,
will mark the current cursor position as the other end of the block:
^KY goes to and deletes the block. (^QP may be used to return the
cursor to its position before the deletion.)
^KV moves the marked block to the present cursor location; ^KC copies
it there, leaving the original marked. (^QP may be used to return to the
former position of a moved block.)
^KZ "zooms into" a block: the rest of the text is inaccessible, and
the block is temporarily treated as the entire file. This isolates one
portion of a file for your attention, and also limits the scope of VDE
commands like find/replace to that portion (only "save" commands like ^KS
continue to affect the entire file). Use ^KZ again to zoom back out. In
zoom mode, pagination is off; you can use block operations, though any
block markers within will disappear when you zoom back to the whole file.
^KW writes the block text to a disk file; you will be asked for the
filename (and optional mode). You can also choose to append the text to
an existing file by typing a "+" before the filename, as in:
Write to file: +GORT
(If you don't specify "+", and the file already exists, VDE will ask
whether you want to overwrite or append; press [Esc] or [Space] to
^QB moves the cursor to the block start (if marked); ^QK moves to the
block end.
^KPB (^KP with B option) prints the block text only. (See PRINTING.)

CURSOR POSITION (Arrows; ^F,A,C,R; ^QE,X,S,D; ^QR,C; ^QI,L,N,P; AltO) - VDE
supports two sets of arrow keys: the four arrow keys [^,v,<,>] on the PC
keyboard, and the WordStar "diamond" ^E,^X,^S,^D. These move the cursor
one unit up, down, left, and right respectively. On repeated use, the PC
arrows [^,v] attempt to restore the original column after moving across a
shorter line; ^E,^X do not.
^F or ^[>] moves right, to the start of the next word; ^A or ^[<]
moves left, to the start of the current, then the previous, word. ^C or
[PgDn] scrolls forward (down) one screen; ^R or [PgUp] scrolls backward
(up) one screen.
Preceded by ^Q, any arrow key moves more Quickly: thus ^QE, ^QX go
to the top or bottom of the screen; ^QS, ^QD to the left or right end of
the line. Similarly, ^QR and ^QC jump to the beginning or end of the
^QI moves directly to a given page (for documents) or line (for non-
documents); see also "[_]" option, under SYNTAX. In documents, ^QL and
^QN move to the start of the Last or Next page, respectively.
^QP returns the cursor to its Previous position -- before the last
large movement occurred. (This means AltM,AltO,^B,^QR,^QC,^QF,^QM, or any
block command that moves to the block.) After a block move (^KV), ^QP
will return to the previous position of the block. ^QP can be repeated to
cycle between two positions in a file.
AltO displays an Overview ("scroll") bar at the top of the screen.
The length of the bar corresponds to the filesize. You can move the
cursor left or right with the arrow keys; a marker remains indicating the
original (current) position. To move to the selected position, press
[Enter]; press [Esc] instead to cancel.

DATA FILES (AltU) - AltU allows you to change many VDE settings by using
(loading or saving) specific types of data files.
.VDF files can be Loaded and Saved - see KEY DEFINITION FILES.
.VDG files can be Saved - see GRAPHICS (CHARACTERS).
Any of these may also be loaded with a semicolon on the command line (see
SYNTAX). If no directory is specified, files must be in the current or
VDE directory (see DIRECTORIES).
Note: .VDG files can be loaded, and .VDP,C,I files saved, by VINST.
In the event that VDE cannot load a data file created by an earlier
version, VINST can usually convert it by reading the old file and writing
it back to disk in the new format.

DELETING (^G,[BkSp],[Del],^T,^[BkSp],^[Del],^Y; ^QY,^Q[Del],^QT) - ^G deletes
the character at the cursor. By default, [Del] does the same, while
[BkSp] deletes the one to the left. [But instead, [BkSp] may move
nondestructively, and [Del] may delete at the cursor.]
^[Del] deletes the entire current word. ^T deletes a word to the
right (everything from the cursor to the next word break). ^[BkSp]
deletes a word to the left.
^Y deletes the entire current line. ^QY deletes just the part of the
line to the right of the cursor; ^Q[Del] deletes the part to the left.
^QT, followed by a character, deletes everything up until the next
occurrence of that character. EXAMPLE: ^QT. (period) deletes to the end
of the sentence. Special cases: ^QT[Enter] deletes to the next HARD CR,
the end of the paragraph; ^QT^Z deletes to the end of the file.
Unintended deletions can be recovered (see UNDELETING).

ENVELOPES (^KPA) - VDE provides an easy way to print a single envelope to
accompany a letter, via the "A"ddress option of the print command:
1. Begin by moving the cursor to the address of the recipient, and
marking this as a block (see BLOCK COMMANDS):
{Chester Fludd
193 Lakota St "{}" = block markers
Norman, OK 73069}
2. Then use the print command (^KP), and at the options prompt, type
"A", followed by "1" or "2" to specify the envelope size: 1 for smaller
(letter) size envelopes, about 3.625 x 6.5"; 2 for larger (business) size,
4.25 x 9.5".
3. Optionally, you may include a return address for the upper left
corner of the envelope: enter this in "double quotes", using a backslash
(\) to mark the beginning of a new line. Example:
Options: A2"C. Fludd\193 Lakota St\Norman, OK 73069"
(You may find it convenient to set up envelope printing with your usual
return address as a FUNCTION KEY, if you will use it often.)
4. Load the envelope correctly in your printer, and press [Enter] to
print it. Then you can continue to edit or print the letter itself.

NOTES: Printers handle envelope feeding in various ways. With some
you can feed in a single envelope, and manually position it on the platen;
with some others, a separate tray is available for envelopes, and you will
need to install special codes to select the proper tray. Many laser
printers expect to feed envelopes lengthwise, so you will need codes to
print in a landscape font. [To install control codes to prepare your
printer for an envelope, see PRINTER INSTALLATION.]
Vertical positioning of text on the envelope can easily be changed by
adding linefeeds to the initialization string. Horizontal positioning can
be changed with the "L" print option. Because of the way laser printers
operate in landscape mode, VDE prints both envelope sizes with their RIGHT
edge in the same place. This means that on other printers, the LEFT edge
of the smaller envelope must be placed 3" (30 columns) in from the left
margin. If this is inconvenient, it can be overridden by specifying the
left margin option (e.g. "L0") AFTER the "A1" option.

FILES (^KL,^KR,^KJ,^KF) - ^KL Loads new file(s) to edit, REPLACING the
current one. (If the file has been modified, you will be prompted to
confirm that you mean to abandon it. To save the file first, use ^KD
instead; to load file(s) in ADDITION to the current one, use AltL
instead.) You can enter any number of filenames, with optional line/page
numbers and modes (see SYNTAX).
^KR Reads in the contents of a single disk file, inserting the text
at the current cursor position as a marked block.
^KJ deletes any disk file you specify. (If you need more complex
file utilities, remember that you can run any DOS command with AltR.)

All these commands prompt for specific filenames. If you are unsure,
and want to pick a name from a directory listing, you can call up the
"file browser" display by pressing [Enter] alone for *.*, or typing any
filename with wildcards, like *.LTR. (Note: if you mean to load an
"untitled" work area, press ^[Enter] (or ^J), instead of [Enter], at the
^KL prompt. See PROMPTS for other control key usage.)
Files display alphabetically in uppercase, then directories in
lowercase (beginning with the parent directory ".."). If there are more
items than will fit on screen, you will see "..." at the top or bottom to
indicate this. Hidden or System files will not display and cannot be
edited with VDE. [Note: VINST can also specify several filetypes (like
unreadable .COM or .EXE files) to exclude; they will not display unless
specified explicitly, and cannot be edited.]
You can move the cursor through the list with the arrow keys,
[PgUp,Dn], or [Home,End]; additionally, a letter "A-Z" may be typed to go
to the next file beginning with that letter, or "\" to go to the next
subdirectory. When the cursor is on a subdirectory, pressing [Enter]
allows you to view its contents in turn; when it is on a file, pressing
[Enter] selects that file to complete your command.
If you are loading files, you can also press "+" to "tag" files,
marking them as a group, and then press [F4] to load them all at once.
Pressing "+" again will untag a file, or [Esc] will untag all.
You can quit by pressing ^[Break], or clear the display and return to
the directory prompt by pressing [Esc] or [Space].

^KF brings up the full-featured File browser; you may specify a
drive, directory, and/or filename mask, and the contents will be
alphabetically listed. (The default, if you just press [Enter], is the
directory shown at the ">dir" prompt, and all files *.*.) Below you will
see, in addition to the cursor motions already described, a full
complement of operations to apply to the file the cursor is on:
[F1] LOAD an additional file to edit;
[F2] replace the current file with a NEW one;
[F3] READ a file into the current file;
[Del] DELETE the file (be careful, deletion is immediate).
If the file you want to load or read requires a different file mode, you
can first press "/" and the correct mode letter (D,N, etc).
When the cursor is on a directory, you can press [Del] to REMOVE it
(if empty), or [Enter] to view its contents. (This returns you to the
">dir" prompt, where you can actually specify any new drive/directory.)
You can also press "+" to tag files, marking them as a group, and
then press [F4] to load them all at once. (Other operations cannot be
performed while tagging.) Pressing "+" again will untag a file, or [Esc]
will untag all.
You can quit by pressing ^[Break], or clear the display and return to
the directory prompt by pressing [Esc] or [Space].

FIND/REPLACE (^QF,^QA; ^L,^\) - ^QF is the command to FIND a string. (See
also "[_]" option, under SYNTAX.) The search normally proceeds from the
cursor position forward, and is case (upper-lower) sensitive. Some
control codes (like ^M) require the ^P prefix. Graphic characters can be
entered with AltG.
Special codes: ^_ (Ctrl-underline) functions as a wildcard, matching
any single character. Use the single code ^M (CR, or [Enter]) to match
the end of a line (CR,LF); in documents, a string STARTING with ^M will
match a HARD CR (without preceding space) only. Use the special code ^^
(Ctrl-caret) to find line overstrikes created by ^PM. Examples:
Find: ^MLABEL matches "LABEL" at start of line only;
Find: M^_. matches "Mr.", "Ms.", etc.
^QA is the REPLACE command. It asks for a string to find, as above,
then what to change it to. Normally, the cursor will move to each
occurrence of the string, and you will be asked ("Chg?") whether to change
it; answer "Y"es or "N"o, or "*" to change all the rest without asking
individually, or press [Esc] to quit.
There are several options for find/replace:
"B" = search Backward for the specified string;
"I" = Ignore upper/lower case (case insensitive search);
"W" = whole Word only (skip instances part of a larger word);
"G" = search Globally (from start or end of current file);
"M" = Multi-file search (continues through all files being edited);
"N" = No query: replace all instances without asking.
To skip the options prompt, finish entry of the find string (for ^QF) or
replace string (for ^QA) by typing ^[Enter] (or ^J) instead of [Enter].
^L instantly repeats the last find or replace (^QF/^QA) operation
once more; the "B,I,W,M" options remain as last specified. ^\ also
repeats, but in the reverse direction ("I,W,M" remain unchanged).
NOTES: Replacing will cause reformatting if auto format (^OM) is on.
(Be careful with this in a file with varying margins.) "N"o query is
assumed whenever ^QA is used in a macro. [VINST can set "I"gnore-case as
your default, in which case specifying "I" means case sensitive.]

FOREIGN CHARACTERS - Characters in the upper ASCII range (80-FF or 128-255),
such as foreign letters and accents, can be entered directly into text
using either standard DOS method: one of the DOS KEYBxx keyboard map
utilities, or the [Alt] key and numeric keypad (hold down [Alt] while
pressing keypad 1,5,5 for character 155).
VDE treats these characters as "graphics": you are limited to a total
of 32 such codes at a time, and any that you have used may be found in the
menu brought up by the AltG command. See GRAPHICS.

GRAPHICS (AltG) - You can enter a PC graphic (or foreign) character into the
file either directly from the keyboard, via [Alt] and the numeric keypad,
or with the AltG command. You will be presented with a menu of up to 32
characters (labeled A-Z,1-6) to choose from; the default set contains some
useful box drawing parts, and has room free for other characters that
might be loaded. [It can also be modified with VINST.]
In addition, any individual menu entry can be redefined: type "=",
then the code (A-6) to change. (If a graphic definition is present in any
file being edited, you cannot change it.) You can then select the desired
character from the complete graphics set, by moving the cursor to it and
pressing [Enter]. Alternatively, if you press [Tab], you may enter the
extended ASCII code in either hex (2 digits 80-FF) or decimal (3 digits
128-255) format. Example: the Greek alpha can either be picked off the
menu, or entered as "E0" hex or "224" decimal. Once defined, the graphic
can be entered into the file by pressing its menu letter.
As a further convenience, you can type "-" to clear all entries not
needed for graphics already present in your files.
Graphics are stored in disk files in accord with the current file
mode. Printing of graphics depends on whether your printer driver is
designated [see PRINTER INSTALLATION] as PC graphics (PC8) or Roman8, or
neither, in which case VDE will "emulate" them, choosing standard ASCII
character overstrikes that come as close as possible. This usually works
well, especially for the foreign language characters.
NOTE: a few "control codes" in the ASCII range 00-1F,7F, if entered
into a file with ^P, will also appear in the graphics table, because of
the way VDE represents them internally.
CAUTION: If you load a file containing many graphics (or binary data
that will be interpreted as graphics), VDE will try to add each in turn to
the table. If the graphics table fills up, any further graphics will be
replaced by spaces. You will see the "Graphics overflow" error message,
and protected mode (R/O) will engage, to guard against saving to disk and
corrupting the file. (One common cause of this error is attempting to
read a word processor file in the wrong file mode.)

HEADER (^OQ) - The "header" at the top of the screen can be toggled on and
off with ^OQ. It provides useful information, but can be removed if you
prefer a screen showing nothing but your text. It looks like this:
+ VDE.DOC /A P 14 L 11 C 48 Ins vt hy AI DS J+ PS ! ^K_
or (NP,BZ) (WIn,R/O) (AF) (MR) (?,")
'+' = Multi-file flag indicates other file(s) are also being edited.
'VDE.DOC /A' = Current filename and mode. The full directory information,
along with other files being edited, can be displayed with the ^KI
command (see INFORMATION).
'P 14...' = Cursor position in file by page (in document modes), line,
column. If pagination is off (^OP0), you will see 'NP' instead of a
page number; in block zoom mode (^KZ) you will see 'BZ'.
'Ins','WIn' = Insert mode (^V) or Word Insert (^]) on.
'R/O' = Read/Only, protected mode (^KO) on.
'vt' = Variable Tab mode (^OV) on.
'hy' = Hyphenation (^OH) enabled. (Documents only)
'AI' = Auto Indent mode (^OA) on.
'AF' = Auto Format mode (^OM) on. (Documents only)
'DS' = Double spacing (^OS) on.
'J+','J-' = Right Justification mode (^OJ) on. (Documents only)
'MR' = Margins released (^OX). (Documents only)
'PS' = Proportional spacing (^OK) on.
'!','?','"' = Macro is executing, awaiting input, or being recorded.
'^K_' = Command key prefixes (and some prompts) display here.

In 40-column mode, an abbreviated header is shown:
+ VDE.DOC /A I! P 14 L 11 C 48 "I,W" = Insert, Word Insert
or (W,R)(?,") (^K_) "R" = Read/Only

HYPHENATION (^OH,^P-) - VDE can't hyphenate automatically, but it can
recognize hyphens that you type in the text, treating them as a legitimate
place to break a line. ^OH toggles hyphenation on and off. If off,
hyphens are not treated as wordbreaks. [The default can be changed.]
In addition to ordinary hyphens, "-", there are "soft hyphens", which
you can enter by typing ^P- (^P,hyphen), and which display in a different
color. Soft hyphens indicate optional places to break a long word: they
print as a hyphen when they fall at the end of the line, but not if they
wind up in mid-line. (Note: only file modes /D,W,S,P,F store soft hyphens
as such; when saving to disk in other modes, as in printing, they either
become hyphens or disappear, as appropriate.)

INFORMATION (^KI,AltI) - ^KI displays an Information message telling you:
- The full name (including directory) of the current file;
- When it was last saved, and whether (Y/N) it has been changed since;
- Any unpaired print toggles (^B,^D,^S etc) in a document;
- A word count for document files;
- The current size of the file in bytes or k (1k = 1024 bytes);
- Bytes of memory used in this text segment, and percentage full;
- The amount of memory free to edit further files;
- The names of all other files being edited.
AltI displays the VDE version, date, and copyright. (An uninstalled
copy of VDE does this automatically on startup.)

INSERTING (^V,[Ins],^],^[Ins],^_,^N) - ^V or [Ins] toggles Insert mode
on/off, and ^] or ^[Ins] toggles Word Insert.
When both are OFF, VDE is in Overwrite mode: when you type a
character, it replaces the one the cursor is on; when you press [Enter],
the cursor advances to the beginning of the next line of text. With
Insert (^V) ON, when you type a character, it is inserted into the text,
while any characters that were already there are carried to the right;
when you press [Enter], a return is inserted into the text, causing the
beginning of a new line.
Word Insert is a hybrid of the two modes: mostly it behaves like
Overwrite mode, so you can replace an existing word; but when the cursor
reaches the end of the word, it starts to behave like Insert mode, so you
can continue typing without overwriting the next word. This is handy for
revising existing text.
The ^_ and ^N commands (insert space, insert CR) are most useful in
Overwrite mode (avoiding the need to turn Insert on and back off).

JUSTIFICATION (^OJ) - ^OJ controls right justification mode, cycling between
three states:
ADD. ("J+" in header.) Text paragraphs will be
formatted with an even right margin, by inserting extra
spaces between words as necessary.
REMOVE. ("J-" in header.) Formatting will undo
justification by removing any extra spaces between words,
leaving an uneven right margin again.
OFF. Formatting does not change spacing of text;
right margin is left uneven.
Thus the Reform (^B) command can justify or de-justify text as desired.
Right-justified text should not be saved to disk in file mode /U
(which has no margin structure) or in modes /X,/M,/P, or /F (because
XyWrite, MS Word, and WordPerfect will not recognize VDE's method of
Justification does not work with proportional spacing (^OK).

LINE SPACING (^OS) - ^OS toggles between single and double line spacing. In
double space mode, the following functions generate double carriage
returns: [Enter] (^M), Insert CR (^N), Reform (^B), Wordwrap. You can
easily mix single and double spacing; ^B can convert between the two.
Note: a single-spaced file can also be printed out double-spaced with
the "D" option of the ^KP command (see PRINTING).

MARGINS (^OR,^OL,^OX,^OC,^OF) - ^OR sets the Right margin, and enables text
formatting. At the prompt, enter the column number (up to 255), or just
press [Enter] for the current cursor column. (Note: in proportional mode
(^OK), the number is interpreted in 1/10" instead of characters.)
^OL similarly sets the Left margin column; the value must be less
than the right margin. (^OL is normally used for indenting selected
paragraphs. To leave blank space at the left of the page throughout when
PRINTING, see the "L" option of the ^KP command, or the left margin
"Wordwrap" is automatic in all document modes whenever the margins
are set: anything typed before the left margin will move up to it;
anything typed past the right margin will wrap over to the next line.
(See also REFORMAT and AUTO FORMAT.) Wordwrap and formatting are disabled
if the right margin is set to 1, or while margins are released (^OX).
(NOTES: Margins cannot be set in nondocument modes; a left margin
cannot be set in /X, /U, or /M mode. For page top/bottom margins see
^OX toggles margin release, allowing you to type outside the margins.
Use ^OX again to cancel.
^OC Centers the current line with respect to the margins; ^OF sets
the line Flush right. Afterward, the cursor advances to the next line.

MATCHING FILES (AltM) - This command can locate small differences between two
largely similar files (perhaps an earlier and a later revision of your
work). You must first load these two files (AltL), then split the screen
between them (AltW), and position the cursor in corresponding places in
both files (for example, the top).
Then press AltM. Starting from these positions, VDE searches for any
difference between the files. If there is one, VDE will stop on those
lines, showing the disagreeing passages side by side. If you want to
continue, press AltM again. (If the difference was significant you may
first need to reposition one cursor to match the other.) If the cursor
winds up at the end of both files, they match.
Note: in document modes, AltM compares word by word, ignoring mere
formatting differences (margins, spacing etc). In nondocument modes, it
is an exact character by character comparison.

MENUBARS (^[Esc]) - ^[Esc] is used to call up the MenuBar. (LeftShift-Esc
can also be used.) Press the hilighted letter to select a submenu, then
select again to perform a command. You can press [Esc] or [Space] to back
up to the main menu, or ^[Break] to abort.
The ^[Esc] command can also be used in a macro definition; if entered
at the Esc[ prompt, it displays as a hilighted "!", and should be followed
by one or two letters for menu selections. (This feature is used in the
WordPerfect compatibility macros contained in WP.VDF, to present menu

MULTIPLE FILES (AltL,AltB,AltN,AltX,AltQ,AltC,AltP) - VDE allows you to edit
up to 8 files simultaneously, if you have enough memory. This can be done
from the command line, by giving a list of several filenames.
Otherwise, to Load additional files, press AltL. You can enter any
number of filenames, with optional line/page numbers and modes (see
SYNTAX); for an "untitled" work area, press ^[Enter] (or ^J). You can
also access the file browser with [Enter] or wildcards (see FILES). (You
will get an error message if you run out of memory, or are already editing
the named file, or 8 files.)
Once multiple files are in use, AltB and AltN can be used to cycle
back and forth through the files being edited. If you Quit or Exit
(^KQ,^KX) from one file, you will be returned to the previous one.
For convenience, AltX exits ALL files immediately, saving any changes
made. AltQ quits ALL files immediately, without saving; if any of them
have been modified, you will be prompted (just once) to confirm this.
AltC Cuts a marked block of text, placing it in a buffer for later
recovery. [VINST lets you choose whether the block will also be deleted.]
AltP Pastes in the previously cut text at the cursor position, allowing
block copying and moving between files.
It is possible to view two files on screen at once (see WINDOWS).

PAGINATION (^OP,^PL) - The ^OP command sets the page length. Enter a value 0
to 255 lines, or just press [Enter] to restore the default.
A nonzero value determines the page and line shown in the document
header ("P xx L xx"), and all page functions in the Print routine
(pagination, headers, start/stop at page) are enabled. A formfeed will be
sent to eject each full page. [VDE does not send a formfeed before
printing; install one in your printer initialization if you want.]
When zero, pagination is off. The header will say "NP L xxxx",
showing you the absolute line number in the file; printing occurs with no
page breaks, though a formfeed is sent at the end of the file. (To skip
even this, use the block print option "B", which allows you to print
several small things on the same sheet or, in conjunction with the "*"
option, multiple copies of index cards, labels, etc. See PRINTING.)
The ^PL command embeds a formfeed (^L) in the text, to begin a new
page; the best place to put it is at the beginning of a line.

PARAGRAPH INDENT (^OG) - You can indent text simply by changing the left
margin (^OL), but there are times when you want only a temporary indent.
^OG gives a "paragraph indent"; each time you use it, the left margin is
reset to the next tab stop over (see TABS). The indentation lasts until
you type the [Enter] at the end of the paragraph (or use the ^B or ^OL
commands), at which time the original left margin is restored.

PLACE MARKERS (^KM,^QM) - You can set any number of temporary place markers
in the text with ^KM, when you want to return to a spot later. The marker
displays as a highlighted "!", and can be deleted if no longer needed.
The ^QM command moves the cursor to the next place marker in the file,
cycling back to the top of the file as needed. Place markers are NOT
saved to disk.

PRINT PREVIEW (^OD) - This command shows you a preview of the text as it
would print: with all non-printing codes (markers, ^P codes, etc) hidden,
and page breaks indicated by a row of dotted lines. This is handy for
making sure that text is aligned properly, and will help you avoid wasting
time and paper on unacceptable printouts. You can scroll through the file
in this mode with [PgUp,Dn] or ^R,^C; or move to the top or bottom, with
^[Home,End]. Press [Esc] to continue editing.

PRINT STYLES/CODES (^P) - This command prefix is used to enter various
"codes" in the ASCII range 00-1F into the text, usually for purposes of
printer control. Most codes are entered in a standard fashion: ^PA embeds
^A, etc. Those with defined functions in VDE documents display as
highlighted letters, and always insert; the rest (all, in nondocuments or
/A mode) display as graphics, and observe the current INSERT status.
(Warning: use ^PZ with caution, since many programs treat ^Z (hex 1A) as
an end of file mark.)
Several other common control codes produce special effects:
^P^I - hard (ASCII) tab - printers respond variously to this
^L - formfeed - will cause a page break
^H - backspace - overstrike previous character
^M - carriage return - enter a CR without a LF to overstrike line
(do NOT hit [Enter] again after this, just continue typing)
The further codes below do NOT operate in nondocuments or /A mode.
^P^G causes printing to pause immediately, until you press a key to
continue ([Esc] will cancel). This allows you to adjust the platen for
printing various forms. (Note: on many dot matrix printers, can only be
used at the start of a line.)
^P,Esc or ^P[ can be used to embed the "Escape" code (hex 1B) in a
file. But these are most commonly used for printer control, and VDE
offers a much easier way of doing this. In place of complex "escape
sequences" for print styles (underlining, etc), VDE lets you enter a
single marker, which will be translated into the proper codes during
printing. VDE supports a set of 13 codes for this purpose: seven toggles,
six switches. [See PRINTER INSTALLATION on how to install the proper
driver for your printer. Otherwise, only ^PS and ^PX will work.] The
conventional WordStar meanings of these codes are:
Toggles: ^P^B boldface Switches: ^P^Q (user def 1)
^D ("doublestrike") ^W (user 2)
^S underline ^E (user 3)
^Y italic ("ribbon") ^R (user 4)
^T superscript ^A alternate pitch
^V subscript ^N standard pitch
^X strikeout [with "-", "/", etc -- see USER OPTIONS]
But you can use them for anything you like. "Toggles" are good for
features like underlining that are turned on and off; enter them in pairs,
to mark the beginning and end of the desired text. "Switches" are better
for multi-valued parameters like character pitch or print quality.
If toggles are not properly paired, you will find print effects
continuing throughout the rest of your document. To save time and effort,
use the ^KI command to check for this before printing.

PRINTER DRIVERS (AltV,AltU) - Since many people use more than one kind of
printer, VDE accomodates two different printer drivers, a primary and an
alternate. Before printing a file, you can select which one is active
using AltV. [You can install different drivers with VINST.]
AltU gives you access to an unlimited number of further printer
drivers in the form of .VDP disk files; select "L"oad, then type the file
name. [See PRINTER INSTALLATION for instructions on how to create such
files.] The new driver will replace the previous primary.

PRINTING (^KP) - The ^KP command Prints the file you are editing. The page
format is determined by several factors: the current page length (^OP)
determines the number of lines of text per page. The top and left margins
can be varied with options below. Other options produce either a centered
page number at the bottom of the page, or a header, consisting of a page
number in the corner and/or a string of text; the spacing of these is
controlled by settings in the printer driver. Various printers position
paper differently, but can typically put at least 60 lines of text on a
standard 11-inch page.
You will be asked for a set of "Options:", at which point you may
enter one or more of the following, in any order:

@nn begins printing AT page nn of the document.
=nn RENUMBERS the printout so first page is numbered nn.
#nn prints only (up to) a TOTAL of nn pages.
O,E prints only Odd or Even pages (print one, then run the paper
back through and print the other, for double-sided printing).
F prints FACING pages (header/number reversed on even pages).
*nn prints the entire job out nn TIMES (nn=1...255).

N NUMBERS pages sequentially, at top right.
C numbers pages at bottom CENTER.
"..." uses the quoted string as a HEADER. The string will print at
the top right next to the page number unless it begins with a "<"
character, in which case it prints at the left edge.
Note: you can include the current Filename, Time or Date in the
header simply by entering ^F, ^T, or ^D, respectively. To enter a
quote mark, double it ("").
S SUPPRESSES the header/page number on the first page of output.
Tnn sets a TOP MARGIN skip of nn lines. [The default margins can
Lnn sets a LEFT MARGIN skip of nn columns. be set with VINST.]

B prints only the currently marked BLOCK. Pagination is disabled,
and no final formfeed is sent; you may have to eject the page.
(FILENAME) redirects printer output to a disk file. All print control
codes will go into the file just as they would have been sent to
your printer. If you want to append the output to an existing
file, type a "+" before the name: (+FILENAME).
A ADDRESSES an envelope; see ENVELOPES.
P PAUSES for your keystroke before each page prints (sheet feed).
^ FILTERS control codes (like ^X) so they print out as text "^X".
D DOUBLESPACES the printout.
'...' sends an additional string of printer initialization commands
before printing begins.

EXAMPLE 1: Options: " will put a header like "STATUS REPORT: 10/19/90" at the top left of each
page, and the page number at the top right (vice versa on even pages).
EXAMPLE 2: Options: L12 #1
will print one page only, with an added left margin of 12. (Printing a
single page is a good check of page layout before going ahead to print a
long file. To continue at page two, use Options: @2.)
will append the print output of the current marked Block, double spaced,
to the disk file SCRATCH.

ABOUT PAGINATION: If you set the page length to 0 (see ^OP) or
select the 'B' option to print only a block, the output will NOT be
paginated by VDE -- that is, data will be sent to the printer in a
continuous stream, and the printer will break pages when it considers them
full. No headers or page numbers will be printed; in fact, none of the
options @,=,#,O,E,F,N,C,S,T,P,"...", which involve page numbering, are
allowed with 'B'. If for some reason you do want paginated printing of a
block only, you must cut and paste it to a new file (see AltC,P), and
print it as a separate file.

ABOUT MARGINS: A left margin that is part of a document's format (via
^OL, etc) affects the file text but not placement of headers or page
numbers. Left margin settings external to the text ("Lnn", or printer
driver default) shift the entire printout to the right, including headers
and page numbers. Because these settings are also in columns, their
physical width will vary according to the font in use; you will get more
consistent results if you use your printer's absolute left margin setting

ABOUT INITIALIZATION: Codes '...' must be entered as actual
characters or control codes, not digits. If the command is "Esc A" (1B 41
hex), press quote, ^P, [Esc], A, quote. To enter a quote mark (27 hex),
double it (''). (Some control codes, including Esc, must be entered with
the ^P prefix; see PROMPTS. Codes 00-1F are entered as ^A, ^B, etc. You
may find an ASCII table helpful; see VINST.REF.) An empty string ('') can
be used to skip the driver's usual initialization, and can be followed
(after a space) by another string '...' to use instead.

OTHER NOTES: Options 'C' and 'N' cannot be used together.
If you are in /W or /S file mode, any WordStar dot commands in the
file (lines beginning with ".") will not be printed.
You can cancel printing at any time by pressing [Esc], or pause by
pressing any other key (press a key again to resume).

PROPORTIONAL SPACING (^OK) - Normally VDE assumes a fixed pitch font: one
character equals one print column. Yet if your printer has a proportional
font, you can get VDE to use it, and to format text so that it will print
with more appropriate margins. Use ^OK to toggle proportional mode on and
off. When on, you will see "PS" in the header; all wordwrap and
reformatting (^B,^OC,^OF) will take advantage of a table of varying
character widths, for a better aligned printout, though line lengths may
look uneven on screen; and when you print, a proportional font will be
In proportional mode, the right margin needs to be interpreted in
inches rather than characters, based on a conversion of 10 cpi, so that a
right margin (^OR) of 70 means 7.0". (Note: characters may extend well
beyond the 70th column.)
Mixing proportional and fixed print in the same document is a little
tricky. You must install and use a print (^P) toggle or switch to
alternate between the two fonts, type or format the fixed pitch parts with
^OK off, the proportional parts with ^OK on (and appropriately altered
margins), and then print with ^OK off.
[See PRINTER INSTALLATION to install codes for proportional mode on
your printer, and CHARACTER WIDTHS to adjust the width table.]

PROTECTED MODE (^KO) - When you want to view a file without accidentally
modifying it, you can engage protected mode with ^KO: the flag "R/O" (for
Read/Only) shows in the header, and any command that would modify the file
will be rejected as an "Invalid Key". To disengage, use ^KO again.
If you load a file with the DOS R/O attribute, protected mode will
engage automatically, and the ^KO command will not be able to disengage
it. The text cannot be modified with VDE, unless you first rename it
(^KE) to a new filename.

REFORMAT ([Enter],^B;^OB) - In documents, pressing [Enter] creates a
permanent or "hard" Carriage Return marking the end of a paragraph. (This
is a CR without a preceding space; wordwrap creates a removable "soft CR",
preceded by a space. See TEXT FORMATTING.)
^B reformats the paragraph the cursor is in according to the
current margin settings and line spacing. (Thus ^B is used not only to
reshape a paragraph after editing, but also to change its format in
various ways: see MARGINS, JUSTIFICATION, LINE SPACING.) If the top line
is indented relative to the next one, VDE preserves that as paragraph
indentation. To reformat an entire file use the MACRO command (Esc[) to
repeat ^B. (See also AUTO FORMAT.)
^OB toggles hard CR/TAB display. In document modes, these are
normally marked by left-arrow or double-arrow characters, to distinguish
them from soft CRs and spaces; but if you find this distracting, you can
turn them off.

RULER LINE (^OT) - To help you align text properly, ^OT displays a "ruler
line" above the text. Type ^OT again to remove it. A moving pointer
indicates the current column.
In each column you will see one of several symbols: the arrow "v" is
the cursor column; "L,R" designate the current margins; "." indicates
areas outside the current margins, "-" within them. Also, tab stops are
marked by either "!" (Variable) or ":" (Hard). Examples:
(/D mode) L-----!---!----------v--!--------------R........
(/N mode) :.......:.......:....v..:.......:.......:.......

RUN COMMAND/SHELL (AltR) - AltR lets you run DOS commands without leaving
VDE. An imitation DOS prompt is produced (e.g., "C:\WORK>"); you can copy
or rename files, or run any other program you like, and afterwards VDE
will prompt you to "Press [Esc]", which will return you to your undis-
turbed VDE editing session.
In addition, you may simply hit [Enter], which lets you out into what
is known as a Command Shell: you are actually back IN DOS, and can use any
number of commands or move around as you like; when through, you need to
type the DOS command EXIT to return to VDE.
Caution: don't load new memory-resident utilities from within the
AltR command; this fouls up the DOS memory allocation.
To use AltR, you must have enough free memory to load and run the
chosen program; and VDE must be able to find COMMAND.COM in order to
execute it, via the COMSPEC environment variable. Be sure either that
your AUTOEXEC.BAT file includes a line like
or that your CONFIG.SYS file includes a line like
(In either case replace "C:\" with the appropriate directory.)

SAVE/EXIT (^KE,^KS,^KX,^KD,^KQ) - ^KE renames your work, allowing you to
change the filename (including directory) to which it will be saved,
and/or the filemode governing its format. At the prompt you can enter a
new filename, a new directory, a new mode, or any combination of these.
You can make your work "untitled" by pressing ^[Enter] (or ^J) at the
prompt. (See PROMPTS for other control key usage.)
^KS Saves your work so far, writing the file to disk under the
filename in the header. (If it's "untitled", a new name will be
requested.) If the file has not been modified, you will be prompted to
confirm that you meant to save it again anyway. For safety, when you save
changes to an existing file, a copy of the previous version is preserved
as a BACKUP FILE (with the same name, but extension ".BAK"). If you
decide to abandon your latest changes, you can recover the old version
from the BAK file. [You can choose not to maintain BAK files, if you
prefer; see VINST, OPTIONS.]
There are several different commands for finishing up:
^KX eXits, saving your work (if modified).
^KD (Done) saves your work, then loads a new file to edit.
^KQ just Quits, without saving to disk. If the file has been modified,
you will be prompted to confirm that you meant to do this!

SCREEN CONTROLS (^W,^Z; Alt[^,v,<,>]; ^OE,^OZ) - VDE provides a number of
commands to control the display screen:
^W and ^Z scroll the screen up and down a line at a time, without
moving the cursor in the text (unless necessary).
Used with [Alt], any arrow key also causes the screen to scroll:
up/down by 1/3 screen, or right/left 32 columns. Again, the cursor is not
moved unless necessary. (The screen cannot shift rightward past the end
of the current line.)
^OE makes the current line the top of the screen.
^OZ temporarily blanks the entire screen: for avoiding CRT burn-in,
or just protecting work from prying eyes or fingers. Restore the screen
by pressing [Esc]. This is also useful if some other software (like a
memory-resident utility) has messed up the screen: type ^OZ,Esc and VDE
will completely restore it.

SCREEN SIZE (AltA,AltE) - VDE automatically adapts to any size text screen
currently in use (minimum: 40 columns, 8 lines). This means that VDE
supports nonstandard screen sizes (like 96 or 132 columns) provided by
some PC video systems; it will run on laptop/palmtop computers with
smaller displays; and visually impaired users can use the DOS command MODE
40 to edit with a 40 column large-type screen. When running with fewer
than 80 columns, VDE omits most toggle indicators from the header, and
truncates the function key labels; also, some menus remain in 80-column
format, and can be scrolled horizontally by pressing the [<,>] keys while
they are on screen.
You can use your own software (like the popular UltraVision program,
or any utilities that may have come with your video adapter card) to
change the font or screen size (lines,columns) before running VDE, or even
while editing (via the AltR command). VDE also offers two internal
commands to vary screen size:
AltA changes the screen width, toggling between normal (80-column)
mode and wide (132-column) mode. It can be used alone, or in combination
with AltE. This command works ONLY with certain brands of video cards
which offer 132 column displays [see INSTALLATION to specify yours], or if
you are running UltraVision with a card that supports its 132 column mode.
AltE changes the screen length (number of text lines displayed). In
standard 132-column modes it simply toggles between the normal 25-line and
50-line (VGA; 43 for EGA) text. But when possible, it displays a prompt
offering a wider range of sizes:
Standard VGA - 20,25,28,33,40,50,57 lines (80 cols)
EGA - 17,25,29,35,43,50
with UltraVision VGA - 25,34/36,50/53,60/63 lines (80/132 cols)
EGA - 25,34,43,60
You can select a letter code A-G, or [Enter] for your default value [which
can be changed with VINST]. Larger characters are easy on the eyes;
smaller ones can pack more text into one screen.
NOTE: Under DESQview, you must use its "Rearrange:Video" menu
selection to change text sizes; VDE's own commands will not work.

SPELLING CHECK (AltH,AltJ) - For registered users who have the spelling
checker, AltH will check spelling of the word at the cursor, and AltJ will
go through the document beginning at the word after the cursor. See the
VDESPELL.DOC file that comes with the speller for complete instructions.

SPLITTING FILES (AltS) - If you encounter a text file that is too large for
VDE to load and edit, you can divide it into manageable chunks with the
Split command. You will be prompted for the name of the file to split;
VDE will divide it in pieces whose names have a number added at the end of
the file name. Example: BIG.DOC will split into BIG1.DOC, BIG2.DOC, etc,
each of which you can edit separately. After 9, the numbers continue with
letters A..Z. (The original file also remains on disk.)
If necessary, the files can later be reassembled into one with the
DOS COPY command, for example: COPY BIG1.DOC+BIG2.DOC BIG.DOC.

TABS ([Tab],Shft[Tab]; ^OV,^OI,^ON; ^PI,Alt[Tab]) - There are two tab modes,
Variable and Hard; ^OV toggles between them.
In Hard Tab mode (the default for nondocuments), the [Tab] key
produces an actual ^I (ASCII 09) character, which will overwrite the
character at the cursor or, if Insert is on, insert before it. Hard Tabs
produce indents at fixed intervals [normally 8 columns; optionally 4 or
16], and display as a bidirectional arrow in document modes.
In Variable Tab mode (the default for documents), the [Tab] key moves
to the next tab stop set. In Overwrite mode, the cursor moves over any
existing text; in Insert mode, spaces are inserted into the text. In
either case, spaces are added at the end of a line if needed.
Up to sixteen tab stops may be set with ^OI, or cleared with ^ON; the
defaults are in columns 6, 15, 35, and 55. [These can be changed.] Both
commands prompt for a list of column numbers, or you can press [Enter] for
the cursor column. The Set command ^OI also accepts two options, both of
which replace all previous tab settings:
@nn Set tabs every "nn" columns
#n1,n2,... Set tabs to columns "n1,n2,..." ONLY
You can simply clear all variable tabs by typing ^ON followed by "*".
The Shft[Tab] command tabs backwards (left to the previous stop),
useful for moving around in tables, etc.
You can always get a Hard Tab with ^PI, or a Variable Tab with
Alt[Tab], no matter which tab mode you are in.

TIME/DATE (AltT,AltD) - VDE can read the DOS system clock and insert the
current time and date in your file automatically. Just press AltT for the
Time, or AltD for the Date. The string will appear at the current cursor
location, as though you had typed it in yourself: for example,
1:21 PM [or 13:21 -- VINST selects the format]
January 15, 1988 [or 1/15/88, 15 January 1988, 15.1.88]

UNDELETING (^U) - The undelete function can be used to recover accidentally
deleted text or overstruck characters. The lost text will be replaced at
the current cursor location. ^U may be used repeatedly to undo a sequence
of deletions, recovering each character, word, or line in order. (Once
all deleted text is restored, ^U does nothing.)
Exception: block deletions cannot be recovered sequentially, they
must be undeleted immediately (before any other deletion occurs).
Undeletion can also be used as a sort of quick-and-dirty block move.
For example, if the cursor is at the start of a word, the commands ^T^F^U
(which of course can be assigned to a function key) will swap that word
with the one following it. Similarly, ^Y^X^U will swap two lines.

UPPER/LOWER CASE (^^; ^K",^K',^K^) - ^^ (Ctrl-caret or 6) reverses the case
of the character at the cursor, if it was a letter, and moves to the next.
The ^K^ (^K-caret) command reverses all text in a marked block (see
BLOCK COMMANDS); ^K" makes all text in the block uppercase, ^K' lowercase.

WINDOWS (^OW; AltW,AltF; ^[PgUp,PgDn]) - VDE can split the screen into two
windows, showing either two parts of the same file or two different files.
In either case, AltF moves the cursor back and forth between the two
windows. ^[PgUp] and ^[PgDn] scroll BOTH windows in synchronization.
^OW is used within a SINGLE file; it creates a second window
(originally a duplicate of the first, of course) in which you can move to
and view or edit another location in the file at the same time. (Note:
any modifications made to the file will not be reflected in the inactive
window until you return to it.) Type ^OW again to undo windowing.
AltW splits the screen Window between two DIFFERENT files being
edited, showing you both at once (note the different filename in the
second window). Type AltW again to undo.

===================== 7. REVIEWS / ABOUT THE AUTHOR ========================

A sampling of recent comments about VDE:

"VDE is a word-processing program for people who like their
programs lean, mean and simple... executes all the standard
operations necessary for writing articles, books or screenplays...
blazingly fast... Even the loading and storing of files is speedy."
- Paul Ciotti, Los Angeles Times Magazine (18 March 1990)

"This may be the finest piece of word processing code ever
written. I have never been as impressed with anything as I have with
VDE 1.5... writing software in 100 percent assembly language still
pays off in performance and reduced code size. It's an astonishing
product, believe me. It's more than the perfect laptop word
processor. Actually, it's something that corporations should
consider if they want to save tens of thousands of dollars... I
cannot give a higher recommendation for any product that I have seen
in ten years than I can for VDE 1.5. Top recommendation."
- John Dvorak, PC Magazine (24 April 1990)

"What fascinated Dvorak was not just the astonishing functionality
achieved with very little programming code, but also the attitude --
and implications -- of the author who circulated it freely asking
only for a modest sum for site licenses... VDE is an amazing word-
processor, offering almost everything except the layout and document
processing features found in far fatter programs... it supports the
old WordStar command set... ergonomically the most efficient I've
ever learned."
- Colin Brace, Language Technology/Electric Word (July/Aug 1990)

"I've used various versions of WordStar, WordPerfect, and Wang
IWP. I wouldn't trade my copy of VDE for shrink-wrapped sets of the
latest versions of all of these. I congratulate you both on the
quality of your program and on your policy in making it available..."
- K.N., registered VDE user (August 1991)

As of Spring 1992, VDE can be found in "Dvorak's Top 30", a boxed
collection of shareware applications published by Interplay Productions,
available in retail stores. It is also included on-disk with the book
"Dvorak's Inside Track to DOS and PC Performance" by John Dvorak and Nick
Anis, published by Osborne/McGraw-Hill.


Eric Meyer has also written the shareware ZIP serial file transfer
program and a number of free utilities for IBM PC compatibles. He holds an
A.B. in physics and a Ph.D. in history and philosophy of science, and has
taught at the Universities of Indiana, Oklahoma, and Colorado. A longtime
advocate of microcomputers, he has done programming in HP-41, Z80 assembler,
BASIC, FORTRAN, LISP, C, and APL; lately he has been working mostly in 8086
assembler. In a period of escalating software complexity and prices, he still
believes that useful, inexpensive software should remain available to computer
users worldwide.

================================[end VDE.REF]=================================

  3 Responses to “Category : Word Processors
Archive   : VDE173.ZIP
Filename : VDE.REF

  1. Very nice! Thank you for this wonderful archive. I wonder why I found it only now. Long live the BBS file archives!

  2. This is so awesome! 😀 I’d be cool if you could download an entire archive of this at once, though.

  3. But one thing that puzzles me is the “mtswslnkmcjklsdlsbdmMICROSOFT” string. There is an article about it here. It is definitely worth a read: