Setting up [] Win 98

Update 3/31/00 -- the odd punctuation on sentences is Unix preferred. It keeps periods and commas from entering quoted command line snippets.

Some of this info is also found in HW6.htm.

Jump index...
[Setup for file browsing]
[Exit shortcut]
[Rescue diskette]
[Send-to upgrade]
[Printing when you cant]

Setup for file browsing

You will see a lot more information if you drop the use of icons in the Windows Explorer (what used to be known as "File Manager") menus. You can set all of the menus from one place, as follows, and still have icons in selected menus.

Close whatever Explorer windows you have open. Open the window for My Computer (renamed "Yoni" above) and open up View.



Personally I like to have icons in the Control Panel window, so when it comes up as a list of files, just reset it to "large icons". Control Panel will remember.

Exit shortcut

Normally to get out of the DOS box, you need to type "exit" to get back to Windows -- unless you have set it up to close automatically. If you are using DOS full screen, however, you do. Since I hate typing, I have a batchfile which can be executed to exit from DOS by simply typing "x".

A batch file is any text file with a name ending in the extension "bat" with a series of commands which can be executed by, one per line.

What I want, therefore, is a file which is called "x.bat" and which contains the text "exit" so that when I type "x" (the extension does not need to be typed), the command processor will read the first line and execute exit which will close the DOS box, and return control to Windows.

There are a number of ways to make this batch file. It could be done in Windows with a plain-text editor. But here are two DOS methods (short, cheap, fast)...

Normally copy a b copies file a to file b, but here we copy from the console, (CON:), in other words, the keyboard, to file "x.bat". You can type line after line. End it with a Cont-Z.

Is the file there? Type dir x.bat to find out..

Volume in drive C is YONI Volume Serial Number is 0721-07DA Directory of C:\WINDOWS\COMMAND X BAT 6 03-24-00 6:50a 1 file(s) 6 bytes 0 dir(s) 1,460,846,592 bytes free

And what is on the inside? Type type x.bat to find out


Here is a shorter method..

In a DOS box, in the "\Windows\Command" directory type echo exit > x.bat

Echo normally "echos" anything after the command to the console (screen), but here it is redirected to the file "x.bat".

Rescue diskette

Win98's rescue diskette contains a horrendous amount of stuff, most of which will seem very arcane. Much of it, in fact deals with second guessing what you are trying to do.

Included in the startup / rescue diskette are the following files. The first line of notes is from MS, I have added some notes to some of these following a dash...

Attrib.exe Add or remove file attributes
Chkdsk.exe A simpler and smaller disk status tool -- and probaly more reliable than ...
Debug.exe Debugging utility -- won't need, really Real-mode emergency text editor -- an editor which was always terribly slow in DOS, but acceptable now that CPUs are running at 200 mHz.
Ext.exe New, simple file extract utility -- won't need Disk format tool -- absolutely need
Mscdex.exe Microsoft CD-ROM file extension for MS-DOS -- need only if you need to boot up a CDROM (used in Autoexec.bat) see the * files, below
Scandisk.exe Disk status tool -- leary of this one
Scandisk.ini Disk status tool configuration file Transfers system files and make disk bootable -- absolutely need
Uninstal.exe A tool to remove Windows 98 from the system and return the system to its previous state -- won't need
Aspi2dos.sys Real-Mode Adaptec CD-ROM driver -- *
Aspi4dos.sys Real-Mode Adaptec CD-ROM driver -- *
Aspi8dos.sys Real-Mode Adaptec CD-ROM driver -- *
Aspi8u2.sys Real-Mode Adaptec CD-ROM driver -- *
Aspicd.sys Real-Mode Adaptec CD-ROM driver -- *
Autoexec.bat Startup batch file -- can skip
Btcdrom.sys Mylex/BusLogic CD-ROM driver -- *
Btdosm.sys Mylex/BusLogic CD-ROM driver -- * Command interpreter -- absolutely need
Config.sys Loads the device drivers -- use (this version) if you need to load a CDROM
Drvspace.bin Microsoft DriveSpace compression driver -- bad Cab file containing extract utilities -- waste of time
Ebd.sys File identifying the ESD -- don't need
Extract.exe File to expand the file -- may need if you need to get files from the CDROM
Fdisk.exe Disk partition tool -- absolutely need
Findramd.exe Utility to find the RAMDrive during startup -- nope
Flashpt.sys Mylex/BusLogic CD-ROM driver -- *
Himem.sys XMS Memory Manager -- won't need
Io.sys System boot file -- need as part of the "sys" function of the floppy
Msdos.sys Boot option information (paths, multiboot, and so on) -- need as part of the "sys" function of the floppy
Oakcdrom.sys Generic device driver for ATAPI CD-ROM drives -- *
Ramdrive.sys Creates a Ramdrive during startup -- won't need
Setramd.bat Searches for first available drive to be a Ramdrive -- won't need

What I recommend is to format and "sys" a 3 1/2" floppy. This will write the files io.sys, msdos.sys, and to the diskette.

Then add the following (from "\windows\command")..

Chkdsk.exe checks a hard drive for written errrors Real-mode emergency text editor Disk format tool -- absolutely need Transfers system files and make disk bootable --
Fdisk.exe Disk partition tool -- absolutely need Will make commandline use a lot easier May want this to speed up the keyboard

There is plenty of room left over to add a file lister, your favorite editor, the correct CDROM driver for config.sys, and Mscdex.exe.

Also add any form of an autoexec.bat and config.sys file.. but for basics, you can do without.

Note that you will need a DOS8 command processor and other files, for a DOS6.22 or DOS7a will not even recognize a harddrive with a FAT32 partition table.


Send-to upgrade

When you right-click on a file name while using your directory browser (called "Windows Explorer"), you get a number of choices, one of which is a list of "Send To" items, most of which are next to useless (like, send it to, send it to "docs", etc). You can freely add or delete items from this list. Here is how...

Find the directory "\Windows\SendTo". Add links (Windows calls them "shortcuts") to any executable programs you wish. As links you can change the name to something less arcane also. Delete anything you find useless, like a link to the "Docs" directory (What did Windows call this originally? Something like "My Documents" probably).


As an example, right click on the "Recycle Bin" icon, and click on "Create Shortcut". The link (shortcut) will end up on the desktop. Just move it into the "\Windows\SendTo" directory, and perhaps rename it "garbage can".

You can also add links to text readers or file listers, DOS text editors, remote printers, local printer commands. This last, especially is useful since Windows does not allow printing a document whose extension has not been associated with an application program. See below.

Printing when you can't

Windows will not let you print files which are not associated or which have strange filename extensions.

Add the following file to "\Windows\Command", called "print.bat"

type %1 > PRN: echo " " > PRN:

The second line sends a form-feed, which you may or may not want. The glyph between the quotes (probably shows as garbage on your screen, but should be a "venus" sign) is Alt-12 on the keypad.

For a networked printer use...

type %1 > \\ginger\epson echo " " > \\ginger\epson

Add a link to the "\Windows\SendTo" directory, and you will be able to print any text file (including html files), no matter what the name is, in a fast line-printer format. Don't try to print binary files, some of the codes can make your printer spit out endless blank pages.