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Screenshots - Defsel

Defsel atari screenshot
Defsel atari screenshot
Defsel atari screenshot
Defsel atari screenshot
Defsel atari screenshot

Information - Defsel

GenreTape / Disk / Cartridge UtilityYear1990
LanguageMachine LanguagePublisher[no publisher]
ControlsMouseCountryUnited Kingdom
Box / InstructionsEnglishSoftwareEnglish


LicensePD / Freeware / Shareware
SerialST TypeST / 0.5MB
ResolutionLow / Medium / HighNumber of Disks1 / Double-Sided / HD Installable
Dumpdownload atari Defsel Download / MSAMIDI

Instructions - Defsel

	    DEFSEL - The Definitive File Selector....
	    -----  - --- ---------- ---- ------------

 From Those Incredibly Fabulous Persons - Worlds Immarcescible.
 ---- ----- ---------- -------- ------- - ------ --------------

          Foreword by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II...
          -------- -- --- ------- ----- --------- -----

  It warms the very bottom of one's heart when one hears of  some 
of those hard-working chaps out there, like those which made this 
country  great.  Worlds  Immarcescible are no exception  to  this 
honoured  list  -  one finds them  to  be  two  industrious,  yet 
completely  wonderful persons.  I order everyone reading this  to 
follow  the bits about money later on, and take this  programming 
masterpiece right to the very ends of one's empire. Good Day.

                ------------- ---- --- ---------

  (  We strongly advise before we start that you print  out  this 
document.  For those of you without printers,  there is a  chance 
this  may present problems however,   so to simulate this,  get a 
friend to write down what appears on the screen,  while you press 
the keys,  and make the ubiquitous 'Szzczzhchh' sound of the  ol' 
printer. )

  By now,  you should have your small, furry, and loveable little 
DEFSEL  snug in the warm safety of your drive,  or  much  better, 
tucked away with a little bedding, food and something to drink in 
the leisure of your disk box. Such an enviroment should keep your 
DEFSEL in a healthy and functional state. This is really all that 
is physically required of DEFSEL - most of the time,  you  merely 
boot it up,  and off it scampers merrily round your machine until 
you need it.  But more about that later.  As for such  activities 
often associated with pets,  e.g.  washing, taking it for walks -
our  advice  is  don't  bother.  There  is  a  word  later  about 
maintaining your DEFSEL's well-being.

                      DEFSEL'S HISTORY....
                      -------- -----------

DEFSEL was conceived last July in the gold-plated rooms of Worlds 
Immarcescible Towers,   where  the  two  of  us  demi-gods  were 
pondering how to demonstrate our brilliance. By December, version 
1.0 had been written ( we take things easy, you understand ), and 
it struck us in the lounge of the Coach And Horses that the 
remaining bugs in DEFSEL could be eliminated, along with creating 
a host of extra features, by replacing the GEM  part of our 
program with our own code.
  As many of you computer boffins will know,  File Selectors  are 
really GEM object trees,  and to interact with GEM object  trees, 
one calls the GEM routine form_do.  However this piece of Digital 
Research's Code is quite bugged,  and quite slow. So we set about 
writing our own version. As a consequence, DEFSEL doesn't use GEM 
at all,  hardly.  All the mouse routines,  routines to print  the 
characters,  button routines, etc., are all our own code - GEM is 
called only to draw the objects. The reason for including this it 
of GEM is simple - that code isn't bugged,  and for us to include 
our version of it would merely add more K to the program's size.

                    A FEW TECHNICAL TERMS...
                    - --- --------- --------

   On reading this,  most of you will say 'Oh yeah,  learnt  this 
rubbish  YONKS ago.' If we knew all of you would say  that,  then 
there would be no need for this, but since we don't, here goes...

Folders And The Hierarchal Folder System:

  Pretty impressive words, eh? As you have undoubtedly found out, 
GEMDOS allows to have not only files on a disk,  but folders,  in 
which  can be more files,  or more folders.  You can have  up  to 
eight folders 'nested',  or a folder in a folder in a folder in a 
folder  in  a  folder in a folder in a folder in a  folder  in  a 

The Pathname/Path String:

  It's all very well having such an easy-to-use system,  but  how 
does  the computer know where to find the file  'HAMSTER.DOC'  in 
MYFOLDER.DOC  on drive B ?  That is solved by this clever bit  of 
writing (called a 'string'),  namely the pathname.  On it, is all 
the information the computer needs. Let's take the above example. 
It's pathname could be:


   In a pathstring,  the drive letter always comes first,  then a 
colon,  to seperate.  Normally,  a '\' or a backslash comes next, 
although  this  isn't necessary (but we do  encourage  it,  since 
on  most  other  computers it  is  compulsory.  In  fact,  DEFSEL 
automatically  inserts  one if you forget.) Then comes  a  folder 
name, if any. After the foldername, comes another backslash, this 
time compulsory, then as many folder names as you like (seperated 
by backslashes), as long as there are less than eight. E.g: 


   The  bit  at  the end is  called  the  extender.  It  is  very 
important,  and  serves to mask files.  Let's take the  imaginary 
disk listing:


     The extender tells the computer to ignore  some  files,  and 
acknowledge  others.  The  only  way  to  explain  this  is  with 
   The symbol '*' means 'any group of letters will be  accepted.' 
So '*.*' means accept any eight letters for the filename and  any 
three letters for the extension, i.e. any file at all !
  However 'H*.*' would mean 'acknowledge any files with the first 
letter 'H',  then any other 7 letters, then any three letters for 
the extension, which would here give:


    As you should be beginning to see,  you can have letters  and 
asterisks to get lots of combinations, e.g.

  'HAM*.F*'  meaning any filename with the  first  three  letters 
being 'HAM' and the first letter of the extension being 'F'.  The 
only other symbol allowed in extenders is the question  mark,  or 
the 'wildcard'. This allows any letter to be in its place, e.g.

 'H?M*.*' would mean all files with first letter 'H',  any second 
letter,  third letter 'M',  and any other five letters,  and  any 
three  for  the extension.  ( Don't get  extender  and  extension 
confused ! )

  Finally, would these all amount to the same thing ?


   Yes !

                      INSTALLING DEFSEL...
                      ---------- ---------

   DEFSEL is very easy to install.  On the disk that you boot  up 
with,  create  an AUTO folder,  if you don't have one,  and  then 
simply put DEFSEL.PRG inside it.  When you switch on,  you should 
see  at some point before the Desktop,  a message to  the  effect 
that DEFSEL has been installed. If you see an 'error' message, or 
it  crashes,  or something dreadful appears to happen,  then  get 
hold us through the address at the end,  and we will clear things 
   Some people have lots of programs in the AUTO folder, and some 
must  be  run first when you switch on for  various  reasons,  as 
those of you concerned will know. DEFSEL isn't particularly fussy 
as to whether it is run first in the AUTO folder,  or last -  the 
only  exception  is  that it must be run  before  any   of  those 
programs  which  speed up the mouse,  because they use  the  same 
vector that our mouse does, but some of them have a piece of code 
which  continually  checks  to  see  whether   they   have   been 
'eradicated' from that vector,  as would our program do,  and  if 
so,  to  reinstall themselves.  The consequence of this that  you 
won't get a mouse when you use DEFSEL. Although all functions are 
availiable from the keyboard, this is still a bit of pain, and it 
may crash.
  If there is ever a time, and we hope there isn't where you want 
to boot up and not load DEFSEL,  e.g.  if memory is  tight,  then 
simply hold both shift keys down as it loads up,  and it won't be 
activated (you should get a nice message informing you so.)

                -------- ---------- ------------

  Now we come to the most important bit - DEFSEL in action. If it 
is working properly,  DEFSEL should appear wherever the old  file 
selector  did without any hassle.  So we shall now  explain  each 

                   The Pathname Entry Line...

  This  is the long editable line at the top,  as  you  may  have 
guessed. There is little to comment on initially about it, but it 
is removed from the standard by the two arrows to its bottom left 
and right respectively. These scroll the pathname left and right, 
allowing you to have a 150 letter pathname !

                     The 16 Drive Buttons...

  Painfully obvious really,  but all 16 drives are  shown;  those 
that are inactive are in faint print and cannot be clicked  upon. 
Clicking  on  the  drive buttons does just what  you'd  expect  - 
change drive.

                       The File Window...

   The  file window is the box on the left centre,  taking  up  a 
large  chunk of the file selector.  In it are seven files,  which  
can   be scrolled up and down via the up and down arrows  or  the 
scroll bar on the side (no, really ?). Clicking on a file puts it 
on  the selection line,   and double-clicking simulates selecting 
the files then pressing 'Ok.'.  If you click on a folder,  you go 
'into' it. At the bottom  are a left and right arrow  plus scroll 
bar.  Scrolling   along  shows all the info.   on a file  -  it's  
size   in bytes,   date and time of creation and all  its  system 
flags.  Since these are only any use to those who know about them 
anyway,  it  is only necessary to say that if the Archive bit  is 
set  you will see an 'A' on the far right,  if the Hidden bit  is 
set, an 'H', and if the System bit is set, an 'S'.
    On the far left,  just left of the filenames,  there will  be 
normally two spaces. A diamond there means that the file is not a 
file but a folder, and an 'R' means the file is 'Read-Only'.

   When you click on a drive button,  or an extender button  (see 
later),  the  pathname  is  changed,  and  the  disk  is  re-read 
automatically.  However,  if you manually edit the pathname,  the 
program  has no way of knowing you've made a  change.  To  report 
this change, you click on the fuzzy bar with the current extender 
in it,  just above the list of files. This has the sole action of 
reading  the disk with the current pathname.  Since it  resembles 
the  'Move  Window' bar on windows,  we shall call it  the  'Move 

   The  final  two symbols to do with the  file  window  are  the 
'Diamond'  shape and the 'Cross' shape,  more commonly  found  on 
windows,  here  found on the top right and top left of  the  file 
window  respectively.   The  latter takes you up a level  from  a  
directory,   and  the former goes from whatever level of  folders 
you're  in  right  up  to  the  root  directory  (e.g.  A:\*.PRG, 

   Finally,  a note about the scroll bars. When you drag a scroll 
box,  the mouse will disappear,  and reappear when you let go  of 
the button. Do not be alarmed - it is simply having a quick kip.

                          SORT MODES...
                          ---- --------

   Another (do they ever end ?) bonus of this marvellous  program 
is  the  nine ways it allows you to sort your  files.  To  select 
them,  you click on one of the 'U','N','S','D','T' buttons  below 
the selection line.

U  - Unsorted Mode.  This reads the files in in the way they  are 
ordered on the disk.
N - Sort By Name.
S - Sort By Size.
D - Sort By Date.
T - Sort by the extension of a filename.

  There  is  more  about the sort modes  in  the  Options  Screen 

                     The Extender Buttons...
                     --- -------- ----------

   The ten buttons in the bottom right are the extender  buttons. 
Clicking on them tacks on that extender onto the  pathname.  Four 
of them are 'full' extenders,  e.g.  you can have 'HAM*.P?Z', but 
six are the shorter,  and more used extenders, where the extender 
for the filename part is always '*',  and you change the extender 
for the extension.  To edit 'em,  double click on 'em.  When  you 
have edited the extender, press 'Return' to enter it.

                         Delete Mode...
                         ------ -------

   Clicking on Delete has NO immediate effect,  except to  toggle 
the mouse pointer between an arrow and a 'D'. When the 'D' is the 
pointer, you are in Delete Mode. From this, all functions work as 
normally,  except that when you click on a file or folder,  it is 
deleted.  Use  With Care,  as we cannot be held  responsible  for 
accidental deletions !!


  This  is  desperately obvious - click on it to  show  the  free 
space,  used space,  etc.  on the current drive. To exit from it, 
press any key.

                        Create Folder...
                        ------ ---------

 Let's have a guess at what this one does,  eh?  Yes,  you in the 
blue sweater......  ? Correct! It creates a folder of your choice 
with respect to the current pathstring.


  Clicking on this brings up a whole new screen with about  three 
trillion (okay six or seven, then) options.


  Yet  another 'mazin' feature of DEFSEL  is its  dynamic  memory 
requirements,  i.e. you can change the amount of memory it needs. 
Remarakbly,  40-50 % of DEFSEL is storage for the filenames, etc, 
and  the  more files it can 'hold',  the more  memory  it  needs. 
Maxfiles determines how many files maximum DEFSEL can hold. It is 
between 150 and 999, and you can edit it.
   There is a slight twitch to this though:  memory is  'grabbed' 
when you boot up,  so changing Maxfiles from within DEFSEL has no 
immediate  effect.  What  you must do is change it and  save  it, 
using the Save Button (see later).


  Very simple - when it's on, the mouse's speed is doubled. Apart 
from  the  obvious reason for putting it in - some  people  might 
dislike a fast mouse,  it is there in case you have a quick mouse 
program installed already,  in which case the mouse's speed  will 
not be doubled but quadruped.

                        Sort First Box...

 Those of you with keen memories will surely remember that when I 
talked about sorting files earlier,  I said there were nine  ways 
of  sorting the files but only listed five.  Well all can now  be 
revealed.  When  you say 'Sort By Name',  you can sort the  files 
with 'A' coming first,  'Z' last, like normal, e.g. the telephone 
directory  lists names in this way.  But you can sort 'Z'  first, 
i.e.  in reverse order,  and similarly the 'Newest' File first or 
the 'Oldest'.  The selected items in this box determine the order 
things are to be sorted.

                       Security Delete...

 When deleting a file under GEMDOS,  you don't really 'Delete' at 
all,  you  simply  erase the bit on the disk which says  that  it 
exists,  and  where to find it - the actual data remains  intact. 
'Recovery' Programs use this fact to their advantage,  and it can 
be  quite  a  bonus.  But if you have a file  that  you  want  to 
physically erase,  there aren't many simple roads upon unless you 
format  the  disk  or marinate it lamb's blood  for  three  hours 
before  throwing  it into the lions cage at your  local  zoo.  By 
turning  Security Delete on,  whenever you delete a file,  it  is 
first  filled  with rubbish.  A Sec.  Delete will take  a  little 
longer than an ordinary one.


  This line is not self-explanatory,  and belies a quite  complex 
topic.  When your program calls DEFSEL,  it passes it two bits of 
information - what it wants on the pathstring line,  and what  it 
wants on the filename line. However there are circumstances where 
you want to ignore this,  e.g. say you have an assembler on drive 
C and your source code on drive D,  and whenever you load a  file 
into your assembler, it always throws up the pathstring 'C:\*.*', 
so you have to change your drive every time you load a  file.  If 
you select (i.e.  invert) either the 'Path' or the 'Filename'  or 
both,  it means that bit of Data will not be taken from the  host 
program, but rather the pathname/filename that was there when you 
exited last time will re-appear.


  Simply an aesthetic option - when writing this, I liked filling 
everything with shading, Ben, my accomplice didn't like fills, so 
this option turns them on or off.


   Clicking on save saves a file 'DEFSEL.DAT' to the AUTO  folder 
on drive A,  so make sure you have your boot disk with DEFSEL  on 
it in at the time. This file is loaded in (if it exists) when the 
program is loaded up, so you can have customised options.

                       Ok And Cancel.....

 Do I really need to wear my fingers down over these ?

                          The Title...
                          --- --------

 Back to the main screen now.  The Title at the top, when clicked 
upon reveals a simple dialog box, which allows you to 'deinstall' 
DEFSEL,  back to the normal system one.  It will say press 'R' to 
deinstall.  Deinstallation  doesn't take place instantly  -  only 
when  you  exit  the  file selector  after  having  requested  to 
deinstall it.


  Almost every function in the file selector is  availiable  from 
the  keyboard.  This function is integral with the  program,  and 
does not occupy any interrupts. Here is a list of them:

Alt-A to Alt-P simulate clicking on drives A-P.
Alt-Q = The Cancel button.
Alt-R = The 'Full' button, taking you to the root directory.
Alt-S = The Size Sort button.
Alt-T = The Sort By Type button.
Alt-U = The Unsort Mode button.
Alt-V = The 'Move Bar', to accept a new pathname.
Alt-W  = The 'Out' button,  taking you up a level from  a  folder 
Alt-X = Enter/Exit Delete Mode.
Alt-Y = The Sort By Date button.
Alt-Z = The Sort By Name button.
Alt  and  +  (on main keypad or calculator pad)  =  pressing  the 
shaded part under the vertical drag box.
Alt  and  -   (as above) = pressing the  shaded  part  above  the 
vertical drag box.

The numbers 1-10 ( the ten is represented by the zero key )  with 
the  Alternate  Key  simulate the pressing of  one  the  extender 
buttons. The numbers must be those above the row 'QWERT ... P[]', 
i.e.  on  the  main keyboard for this to work,  as  pressing  the 
numbers on the keypad have a different function.

          *.EX5  *.EX6
          *.EX7  *.EX8
          *.EX8  *.EX0

 Use the above grid,  which is like the grid on the file selector 
to help you remember which number accesses which extender.

Alt-( on the calculator pad simulates the pressing of the shaded part 
  to the left of the horizontal drag box.
Alt-) has a similar effect to the above,  except it is for the shaded 
  part to the right. It must be the keypad ')' also.

  The numbers 1-7 on the calculator keypad simulate  the  double-
clicking  of the filenames/folders in the window with the  Alter-
nate Key.

Note:  for  keys such as the '+' which normally need 'Shift' to  be 
pressed before they can be accessed, there is no need.

                        Technical Bit...
                        --------- ------

   Not really too technical at all; just an explanation  of  the 
mouse  /  dialog  box / critical error handlers  (if  these  mean 
nothing to you,  don't worry) and a bit for programmers wondering 
whether it'll cock up their progs. The mouse is completely inde-
pendant of GEM,  so it shouldn't upset any of your programs, but 
it does of  course hijack the mouse vector accessible through the 
XBIOS kbdvbase  function  (34).  All the locating of  vectors is 
done through the XBIOS, simply for compatibility. Atari guarantee 
that the  arrangement of vectors in under address $800 (or some-
thing) are fixed (this includes sys. variables and vector lists), 
so direct reading/modification occurs here. Any trouble let us 
(We have had this program tested on a 520,1040 and a Stacy in all 
resolutions, and it has worked so far.)
     Because  the mouse is independant,  it can't work  with  GEM 
dialog boxes,  like the ones you get when there is no disk in the 
drive.  Because  of this,  we have trapped all  these  'critical' 
error,  and  replaced  them with our own dialog  boxes.  All  our 
dialog boxes are merely informative,  not interactive, and to get 
rid of them, you hit any key (the mouse doesn't do anything.)

   This program shouldn't really conflict with  anything.  If  it 
does, drop us a line (see below).

*  Free Tenner !! Free Tenner !! Free Tenner !! Free Tenner !!  *

   Right,  now  that  I've  got  your  attention,  a  word  about 
Copyright.  This program is Shareware,  which means you can share 
it  around,  and you pay a ridiculously small fee  for  upgrades/ 
info/  new stuff etc.,  but you cannot in any sense of  the  word 
hack up the code in any way.  It is not like Public Domain, where 
you  give  up  the rights to it completely.  We  still  have  the 
copyright,  and  since there are about ten lawyers/solicitors  in 
our familes combined,  we'll have anyone who tries anything up in 
the dock faster than you know.
   Copyright  all  sounds a  little  pathetic,  rather  like  the 
paranoic  whines  of jealous authors,  but until  you've  written 
something you're proud of, that has taken you a long time, with a 
lot  of effort,  it is difficult to appreciate.  Then  think  how 
leeked off you'd be if someone stole it,  copied and made a  nice 
little packet on it with out any work at all. Believe us, it does 
happen, not just in computers, very regularly.
    Note: when we say 'share it around', we mean for personal use 
- there must be no commercial use,  no profit through copying, no 
selling,  releasing it on a disk with some of your own programs - 
it is NOT public domain.

   As you will agree,  the more complicated a program  gets,  the 
more chances there are for it to break down.  We have  eliminated 
all  the  bugs we know of,  but there may be some,  as  with  ANY 
program, lying unseen. In keeping with any other program as well, 
then,  we have to say that you use DEFSEL with your will - if  it 
cocks up a disk,  we cannot be held responsible at all. It hasn't 
got  any hidden viruses to infect your disk - we aren't  terribly 
keen on them at all.


  We want to hear from you!  Which can be quite difficult with  a 
written letter (blimey we're funny) ! You know what I mean.
   Any comments you have, any recommendations, any critiscms, any 
programs you would like to see written,  drop us a line,  to tell 
  It would be nice to know that some people do appreciate  DEFSEL 
out there,  and since it is shareware,  the gift of a mere  fiver 
(or more, if you have a generous heart ) for our efforts would be 
well-received,   and  if it comes with a disk (formatted  please,  
and  no viruses - they're all checked anyway.),   we'll give  you  
upgrades  (there   is  already a version 3.0  of  DEFSEL   almost  
ready),   free programs,   and  for our first fifty customers,  a 
rare  and  very special  DEFSEL  condom  -  smooth,   sleek   and  
compatible  with machines of all sizes.
   Send us an envelope with a disk,  a fiver,  and a letter  with 
your address and you'll be swiftly put on our mailing  list,  and 
be  sent upgrades,  et al.  If you feel you want  to,  enclose  a 
'phone number, where we can buzz you over delays, etc. Of course, 
this  is  totally  voluntary,  and if you  don't,  we  will  only 
correspond with you through letters.
  Do remember though - a fiver isn't much, and it is a marvellous 
incentive for us to output upgrades, etc.

  Send your profferings to:

  Arch-Deity Matthew 'Delusions of Grandure' Carmody And
     Water-Nymph Ben 'Just Deluded' Cosh

          44 St. John's Rd.,
               BS8 2HJ.

P.S.   If  anyone  has  an original copy  of  'A  Wonderful  Day'  
by  the WonderStuff,   they will be greeted with open arms,  free  
drinks, free upgrades, etc. Get scribbling.


   The  version  of Defsel you are now  using  is  version  2.01. 
Version  3.00  is well under development.  It  isn't  a  complete 
revision of this version, but there are a number of bits and bobs 
being added, e.g. a program to redefine the Hot-Keys. Also we are 
trying to 'shrink' the code size slightly, and speed it up at the 
same  time.  So  send off right now,  and get in  line  for  this 
upgrade,  complete with some freebies as well.  For anyone else a 
tenner, but for you, guv, a mere fiver. I must be mad.

    Hope your DEFSEL works well and doesn't wet the  carpet.  Any 
hassles, you know where to send it.

  Finally a few thankyou's:

Thankyou Thankyou Thankyou Thankyou Thankyou.

  But Seriously Though:

  Ta And Cheers to:

    David Lynx At HiSoft
    Andy Pennell.
    HiSoft  for  the  Utterly  Fab  DevPac  (on  which  this  was 
    Revolver Records, Bristol, for musical support.
    Peppermint Corner.
    Cappella (my Hamster)

    and  You,  for sending us a fiver (we don't half hammer  this 
one home, do we ??? )    

   Mat + Ben,

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