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Topics - Martin Vieregg

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Programming / problems programming a new text window for cmd.exe/4os2.exe
« on: December 30, 2019, 01:02:08 am »
One year ago, I wrote about my desire to get a substitute for the limited VIO window when using cmd.exe or 4os2.exe without 8000 character limit and with all editor functionality.,1859.msg18588.html#msg18588

The last year, I was very busy with other things, but meanwhile I began to program. I am the author of ME Editor and other editors. The editor is an OOP (wdsibyl) project where I can easy manage modifications.

I managed now to excute the original cmd.exe with pipes for stdout, stdin and stderr. The basic input/output functionality works already. But  I need your help with some sophisticated problems.

The editor gets first executed, starts the pipes and executes cmd.exe in the background via
cmd.exe /K >outpipe 2>errorpipe <inpipe

For specific commands like mode, cls the commands will be interpretated by the editor and not cmd.exe, or gets interpretated by both. The current directory will be hold both in the editor and in cmd.exe. I will manage to turn the 4os2 escape codes into colors. All these things seem to make no problems to program (all not programmed yet).

But for three problems I have no solution yet:

(1) While cmd.exe is busy, the editor has to turn into read-only mode. The time period begins with an <ENTER> after typing the command, so the editor knows this moment. But when is the job finished and cmd.exe turns to idle state, the editor should turn to read/write and should accept the next command. I have no idea how the editor can get the information that cmd.exe is in idle state again.

A dirty solution would be to wait for [C:\] or a simular string. But this is not possible. And this is the next problem.

(CHANGED: Problem (2) is non-existant. It was a bug in my editor code.)
(2) A stdout output of cmd.exe waits until the line is finished with an carriagereturn. This has got a strange effect to my program: When starting the program, I do not see [C:\] at the moment. Then I type my command, e.g. "dir", press ENTER and the editor shows the "dir" output. But the last line with the command prompt [C:\] is not shown. It is only shown after entering the next command. Programs with an success indication with dots ...... are invisible while exeuting and waiting. So my question is: Is it possible to force stdout output in cmd.exe when the line is not terminated by a carriagereturn? Or do you have another idea how to sailing round the problem? The only idea for me at the moment is to simulate this output by adding a prompt and to swallow the first line output. Not a pretty solution. And the success dot problem is still not solved.

(3) Not all textmode programs do write into stdout, but there is text output shown nevertheless. This output gets shown in the hidden cmd.exe VIO window and not in my editor window. Can someone explain what this means and perhaps how to get this text in stdout nevertheless?

I have got a problem with a print preview function where the size of a font is calculated via the actual window size. Changing the window sizes makes ugly font size steps, because  the FATTRS. lAveCharWidth parameter for GpiCreateLogFont is a integer and not a floating point parameter. The typical values are about 10, so there are 10% steps which really looks ugly.

Other programs manage the problem, e.g. PDF viewers or OpenOffice. Is there a substitute for GpiCreateLogFont or how can I solve this problem?

Programming / WinQuerySwitchList Dead Entries
« on: November 28, 2019, 04:56:40 pm »
I am using the WDsibyl Delphi-like programming environment where I made already a lot of minor changes the last 15 years...

I have got a problem with dead entries in the window list when closing windows. In most cases, all works fine, but when closing the main window of a program without closing sub windows before, some specific sub windows do not disappear from the window list which is accessable via WinQuerySwitchList API call. In the OS/2 window list (Ctrl-ESC), they disappear. But e.g. in the MOLE list which is using the WinQuerySwitchList API function, they are still shown and since ArcaOS, shutdown faiis with a query "continue?".

If I understand the OS/2 API correct, the WinDestroyWindow (hwnd) API call should delete the Window from the list. The API call is executed twice, one for the form window and one for the frame. So it should disappear from the list, but it does not.

Any ideas?

Setup & Installation / RAM disk does not work anymore
« on: August 07, 2019, 09:00:43 am »
ArcaOS RAM disk does not work anymore. A hardware problem is possible, I had two other programs which does not run anymore (and I could fix it by re-copying the content of C). Four files are used:

c:\os2ldr.cfg (hidden)
file content:


Then there's a setup program with user interface:

Any ideas what is also needed ? How can I find out why it fails?

Setup & Installation / ArcaOS fix for Windows seamless problem ?
« on: April 07, 2019, 11:02:32 pm »
I am waiting for an ArcaOS fix to solve the Win16 seamless windows problem. Does anyone heared about any efforts? On my old computer, it did work with eCS 1.2 and SNAP. Not only the missing seamless functionality is a problem, the performance of the Win16-only drivers is extremeley bad.

Utilities / architecture/substitute of cmd.exe ?
« on: October 01, 2018, 12:22:32 pm »
The restrictions of the OS/2 commandline window are nervy. 4OS2 has the same restrictions. There's another command line program "take command", but it is no more supported yet and does not support basic cmd.exe commands like "dir /s".

I am the author of the ME Editor and of the DO.EXE commandline program. With ME.EXE, you can already import stdout:
dir /s | me in

I am thinking about a cmd.exe substitute. Basic functionality (dir, md, cd) has to be programmed in the new program, more complicated commands should be run via cmd.exe, while cmd.exe pipes it output to ME. That's because for every cmd command, cmd.exe has to be restarted and "forgets" old settings like the current directory or assign statements, so all functionality where the window has to remember something has to be reprogrammed.

I would like to ask: Is it right that the command line window (frame, fonts, buffer) is part of cmd.exe, so it is not possible to re-program the window only and not the commands? In 4os2, only the commands were reprogrammed, so I assume it is started via cmd.exe.

Utilities / DO.EXE new version commandline utility 1.99
« on: August 25, 2018, 12:31:36 am »
I have downloaded a new version of my DO.EXE commandline utility:

DO for OS/2 archive file
DO for Windows (32 bit) archive file

DO.EXE is a swiss army knife command line enhancement. Since the last published version 1.46, I have added a handful new functions.

- DO SHOWCLONE, KILLCLONE: find and delete clone files
- DO EVERY: time-related executing of batch files, .e.g. every 3 days

and, most important:

in variants. DO COPY shows the copied file names, DO PCOPY shows a progress bar. (With copy or xcopy, you won't get feedback for a long time when copying big files to slow drives like USB sticks.)
It is faster than XCOPY, because it can handle several file exensions simulateously. It collects all files before beginning with copying.
DO COPY can handle files larger than 4 GB on FAT32 drives. (There really seems to be no program which fits the problem.)

Please report bugs. 1.99 is a beta version, but it seems to work fine.
Please read the docu. DO.EXE can cause harm with only few input. By default, DO.EXE includes subdirectories.

A Linux and Macintosh version will follow. DO.EXE ist written with WDsibyl, and the other platforms with Freepascal-Lazarus.

I have got two CD/DVD drives installed, I have access with S: and T:

There's a third drive object U: shown in the drive folder. The command lines shows:

SYS0021: The drive is not ready.

There's no netdrive, no usb disk. Any ideas?

OS: ArcaOS 5.0.2, AM4 board with XHCI controller only. EHCI PCIe USB controller installed for USB 2.0 support. SATA connectors onboard used.

Martin Vieregg

Utilities / Problems with DragText
« on: June 06, 2018, 02:45:29 pm »
On my new computer with ArcaOS 5.0.2, I have installed the current DragText 3.9 version. It worked a few days, and then the functionalities disappeared. I cannot activate functionality in the DragText Settings. After pressing (german) "anwenden" (in english use, apply or something like that) and reopening the settings notebook, all settings do disappear. I have reinstalled it, it worked a few days again, and then I got the same problem again. Any ideas?

Hardware / Report installing ArcaOS on AM4 board with Ryzen 2200 G
« on: May 16, 2018, 12:10:13 am »
German see

After lots of queries and help support (thank to all here in the forum) to instal a new computer I can report success. I have ventured an actual new hardware, first to get a real fast computer, and second to be happy lots of years without having problems with outdated hardware. I have installed Win 10 32 bit, Win 10 64 bit, Ubuntu 18.04 and of course ArcaOS. I chose an Asus B350M-A AM4 motherboard, primary with an Bristol Ridge processor installed (this is the predecessor architecture of the current Ryzen). Meanwhile, I have changed the processor to a Ryzen 2200 G processor which has been available in Febrary 2018. Both processors are APUs, that means processor with integrated graphics. In opposite to Intel APUs, the AMD APUs are much more powerful in graphics and applicable for gaming. The main argument for the AM4 socket platform is the availability of new processors for the next 4 years. Main limitation for ArcaOS: Of course you have only Panorama VESA graphics. Windows seamless does not work (because of a known bug). Because processor and graphics unit is really fast, all works much faster than with SNAP and an very old graphics card. SSD makes me happy, too. SMP and ACPI works.

I began last autumn with unsuccessful trials. Here is a report of my lots of problems and their solutions.

First, I failed booting from DVD. Some bootable CD and DVD were not recognized anymore. For a lot of CDs, I could solve the problem with a PCIe card with two SATA connectors. (Reading is no problem, only booting.) But the ArcaOS 5.0.1 DVD still refused work, all other (even older ones) worked fine. Via Bugtracker, I got the recommendation to wait for the bootable USB Stick. In February 2018, I got a beta version of 5.0.2, but first this did not work, too. The problem was: All AM4 boards do not have an USB 2.0 Controller (UHCI/EHCI) anymore, only XHCI (USB 3.0). On the rear side, there are green 2.0 and blue 3.0 connectors - a keyboard has to be plugged into the green ones, otherwise the BIOS does not recognize the keyboard. Nevertheless, the green ones are also controlled via the one XHCI controller which is not supported by ArcaOS at the moment. ArcaNoae told me to get the USB 3.0 support very soon (we are still waiting), but I decided to buy a PCIe USB 2.0 controller (StarTech). Now I could start the ArcaOS installation program the first time.

At the moment, there's a problem in the ArcaOS installation program (DOS memory problem) which occurs with Ryzen G, but not occurs with Bristol Ridge. So installation has to be made with Bristol Ridge processor which is also used to update the BIOS for the new Ryzen G processor.

The next subject was the problem, to get several OS into Coexistance. This was a hard work where I needed to instal the OS several times to find out the problems... The main problem was my assumption, that placing ArcaOS into a primary partition would be the easiest way which was completely false, because Windows changes all primary partitions, especially the OS/2 partitions with JFS format, because JFS has got the same partition id number (07) as Windows NTFS. But if you put ArcaOS into a logical volume, Windows does not matter.

Windows 10 64 bit could be installed without any problems.

The hardest problems I got with Windows 10 32 bit. Fist all worked fine, I could use it for some days, but after updating the BIOS I got massive malfunctions. Installing it new via DVD ends at the beginning in a Windows Bluescreen aspi.sys. I could not solve the problem yet. I hope that a future BIOS and/or Windows update fixes the problem.

On April 26 2018, LTS Ubuntu 18.04 has been available. I was quite sure that Ryzen and Vega graphics which is available now for one year gets supported without problems. But the first installation trial ended with corrupted screen output. The setting named "modern hardware, safe mode" in ArcaOS is the parameter "nomodeset" in Ubuntu. With this boot setting, I could install Ubutu in VESA mode. Then it was not difficult to load and install a new binary kernel. But temporary the computer freezes, it seems to be Alpha Software.

Conclusion: We are thinking that only with ArcaOS there are problems with new hardware. My experience with current hardware is quite different: Only the mainstram OS Windows 10 64 bit is really good supported, all other OS needs lot of manual work. The hardware manufacturers are thinking that they are only responsible for Windows 10 64 bit, for all other OS third party solutions are required.


The computer is really silent in idle state. The air stream from the power supply feels cold. The main noise source is now the additional HDD. I set a ticket for an idle functionality for OS2AHCI.ADD:

The difference between Bristol Ridge and Ryzen is distinctable in daily use, for example opening complex PDFs. Starting Firefox 38 1,5 seconds. Device driver worked all. Restrictions: Installation only with "modern hardware, safe mode". Behind Uniaud32.sys a parameter /A:1 is necessary. SMP and ACPI has to be installed after OS installation.

PANORAMA Graphics performance is really good: I can run 720p Videos with 25% processor load (1 processor) with good frame rate.

Here now the instruction for all who want to install comparible hardware:

Mainboard ASUS B350-M-A
Processor AMD A8-A6-9500 (Bristol Ridge only for instal), Ryzen 2200 G
SSD Samsung EVO 850 500 GB
then I have a 2TB HDD and two DVD drives.
(ebay) Startech USB controller 7x USB 2.0, PCI-E x1 (note: there are two different plates for default and flat PC cases)
Power supply (low noise in idle state) not too much Watts because of less efficiency

(1) Plug Bristol Ridge processor. Put ArcaOS 5.0.2 stick into PCIe card. Do not plug in a second HD. Select "Modern hardware, safe mode" in the pre-instal menu. Start management console and Minilvm. Install Airboot later. Create 1 or 2 primary partitions for Windows (50 GB is useful). Place the logical partitions (ArcaOS, Linux, Data) at the end of the SSD. To be absolutely sure that Windows does not matter other partitions, generate only the primary Windows partitions.

(2) Install your Windows versions (I have one 32 and one 64 bit version of Windows 10). Do not install yet drivers for chipset and graphics!

(3) Make the BIOS update. This is needed for Ryzen G support. I bought a board where the BIOS is one year old.

(4) Make two logical partitions for ArcaOS (I have chosen 8 GB). Install ArcaOS twice, so you won't need the USB stick anymore for maintainance. Make the drive letters visible for both ArcaOS installations. (One C:, the other another letter). So you can maintain the one installation from the other. Select "Modern hardware, safe mode" in the pre-instal menu. Install Airboot now.

(5) Change the processor from Bristol Ridge to Ryzen G. (Oops, it is connected under the mainboard, do only fix the mainboard before with few screws.)

(6) Install Linux, also in a logical volume generated by Minilvm.

(7) Install Windows chipset / graphics driver after installing the Ryzen G processor.

(8 ) Install ArcaOS SMP kernel,1759.0.html and newest ACPI driver (currently 3.23.09)

If you know exactly how to do it, you can make the work in 1/2 or at least 1 day.

One problem has been left: Minilvm shows a defective partition table after installing Ubuntu Linux. I will find a solution with DFSEE, I have already contact with the DFSEE author. I will report later - I have to backup the whole SSD before.

Hardware / APM (Power management) settings optimization ACPID.CFG
« on: May 15, 2018, 10:01:01 am »
I managed to install the SMP kernel and ACPI (see thread     
How to deinstal ACPI driver?),1759.0.html.

But now the CPU fan makes much more noise than before. It seems that the halt functionality (Pulse CPU load 0,0%) works fine, but if the CPU load increases over 0,0%, the processor energy consumption goes to maximum when pulse shows values only little higher than 0,0%.

There is a file c:\mptn\etc\acpid.cfg.sample which I have copied to c:\acpid.cfg and I have added this filename behind RUN=C:\OS2\ACPIDAEMON.EXE in the config.sys.

There are different settings described in the file c:\sys\doc\acpi\psd_en.inf, page "Power Manager Settings".

I have tried these settings:

Code: [Select]
; MinPower is the minimum power level for energy saving (13 - 100), default=25
MinPower = 13

; IncIfAbove is the CPU load above which CPU power is increased (1-100), default=25
IncIfAbove = 75

; DecIfBelow is the CPU load below which CPU power is decreased (1-100), default=15
DecIfBelow = 65

But this makes no remarkable effect. I assume that my problem ist that the CPU can only distinguish between HALT and Maximum. Any ideas?

Hardware / How to deinstal ACPI driver?
« on: May 14, 2018, 09:45:04 am »
At the moment, I am runniny my computer in "modern hardware, safe mode" (without ACPI driver). Now a new ACPI version has been shipped as a WPI file. In the case of failure, I cannot boot anymore and cannot start the WPI file again to deinstal. I could not found a deinstallation documentation how to deinstal from another ArcaOS boot drive (I have not exeuted the WPI file yet.) Is it sufficient to restore the old CONFIG.SYS ?

Setup & Installation / dead "VDM" entry in process list
« on: May 11, 2018, 03:35:05 pm »
in the TOP process list, I always have got a dead "VDM" entry (virtual DOS machine), a DOS or a Win16 session. I have not started it. I have got a new ArcaOS 5.0.2 instalation. Any ideas? Is there an ArcaOS user with or with not this entry?

My interest is the question that I cannot start windowed DOS or seamless Win16. (That's a documented problem a lot of users have.) Perhaps there's a connection between these two effects.

I cannot kill the "VDM" entry. I cannot see this in the GO or MOLE process list, and of course not in the OS/2 window list.

After installing Windows, ArcaOS and Ubuntu Linux on a new computer - meanwhile all works fine - minilvm shows a warning at beginning:
"Disk 1 reports a corrupt partition table."  The extended partition/logial drives are not shown anymore.

The problem seemed to happen after installing the last OS.  The order of Installation was Windows-Windows-ArcaOS-ArcaOS-Ubuntu Linux. I have no other malfunction, Airboot and all OS work fine.

DFSEE shows the following:

Code: [Select]
DFSee OS/2   15.1 : executing: fdisk -r- -w-                                   
│ID │ux│Dr│Type, description│Format  │Related │VolumeLabel│OS2-LVM/│  Size MiB │
├──</dev/sda     MBR disk  1>────────┼────────┼───────────<[ D1 ]>─┼───────────┤
│01>│ 2│  │Prim 07 Inst-FSys│NTFS    │Win NT  │           │Windows │    52007.3│
│02 │ 3│  │Prim 07 Inst-FSys│NTFS    │Win NT  │           │Windows │    50007.0│
│03 │  │  │FreeSpace Pri/Log│-- -- --│-- -- --│- - - - - -│        │    68519.5│
│03 │ 5│  │Log  83 LinuxNatv│EXT4    │GRUB    │           │-       │    30004.2│
│04 │ 6│C:│Log  07 Inst-FSys│JFS     │IBM 4.50│ARCAOS     │ARCAOS-C│     8197.2│
│05 │ 7│F:│Log  07 Inst-FSys│JFS     │IBM 4.50│ARCAOS     │ARCAOS-F│     8197.2│
│06 │ 8│D:│Log  0c FAT32-Ext│FAT32   │DFSe12.x│FAT32 D    │FAT32 Da│    60000.5│
│07 │ 9│H:│Log  35 Warp-LVM │JFS     │IBM 4.50│H JFS Daten│JFS Date│   200004.5│
│09 │  │  │Partial Cylinder │-- -- --│-- -- --│- - - - - -│        │        2.5│
├──</dev/sdb     MBR disk  2>────────┼────────┼───────────<PAE_RAM_DISK>───────┤
│08>│ 1│Z:│Prim 07 Inst-FSys│HPFS    │IBM 4.50│           │RAMDISK,│     4588.8│
   > = Active/Startable * = Bootable r = Removable R = Removable+Active/Bootable
DFSee OS/2   15.1 : executing: part -t-                                         
 EBR03=   WARNING : Extended does not start on  Head-0/Sector-1 (cyl boundary) 
 Pid03=   WARNING : Start partition overlaps DLAT, incompatible with OS/2 LVM! 
                    Use the ALIGNEXT command to align its extended container, or
                    Mode=FDISK->Part-table cleanup/repair->Align EXT container,
 Pid08=Z: WARNING : Bootable JFS or HPFS driveletter mismatch BPB versus LVM!   
At least 5 non-trivial minor warnings were not shown. Use 'part -w:t -t-' for de

Can I repair this so I can use minilvm at the future or should I use dfsee in the future instead?

I have switched on an AM4 board from Bristol Ridge processor to the newest Ryzen with Graphics processor Ryzen 2200G and tried to start from ArcaOS USB stick. I got this error message:

Code: [Select]
MemDisk 2011.05.01
Startup drive is floppy or hard disk (80).
Detecting extended memory size ... using INT 15 EAX=E820 'SMAP'
  63 MB starting at 1 MB
Not enough memory

I failed before getting the pre-install menu.
It seems to be an incompatiblity for DOS programs (I assume the first steps on the ArcaOS USB Stick is in DOS).

I have tested it on two different AM4 boards (Asrock and Asus), same effect. Bristol Ridge works, Ryzen G fails.

Any ideas?

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