MR/2 ICE Major Information

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MR/2 ICE Major Feature List

Some of the more obscure of these are OS/2-only features, never ported because no one has ever asked for them.

  • Supports both POP3 and SMTP for reading and sending mail. Other protocols are available via the Custom Mail Driver option ("plug-in" code accessed via simple REXX interface).
  • Auto configures itself to existing IAK setup, when available.
  • Use of pop-up or "context" menus abound. Try the right mouse button in index lists, on toolbar buttons and in address fields.
  • Very friendly to US and non-US users alike. Uses the OS/2 Country Settings to determine date/time formats. Supports 47 different CodePages with an option to override the default OS/2 System setting.
  • Comprehensive support for MIME character set specifications including support for translations to and from ISO-8859-1 through 10 and KOI8-R (Russian). Message text conversions are automatically supported, as are Quoted-Printable header fields. Configurable to send outgoing hi-end ASCII data in 8bit or Quoted-Printable modes.
  • Filter support includes "simple" search criteria OR more powerful free-form criteria allowing the testing of various message areas (including specific header lines) with full boolean logic. Mix and match search criteria with AND/OR/NOT and nested parenthesis. Includes soundex capabilities and case sensitivity options. You may even invoke a REXX script to determine if a message "matches" the filter's criteria if special needs are required.
  • POP3 server "Manual" Mode (header preview).
  • "PreFetch" filters that can be used to control the retrieval of headers-only and/or full message bodies, automatically, depending on certian criteria.
  • User-programmable "Custom Mail Drivers" can bu plugged into MR/2 ICE allowing for interfaces with mail transports other than SMTP and POP3. For example, a UUPC/UUCP driver already exists.
  • Auto-backup feature. MR/2 ICE will recover most/all of any open editor sessions if an application *or FULL SYSTEM* crash occur. This includes lock-ups where a manual reboot has to be performed.
  • Phrases: Store commonly used text as a phrase. Phrases can be inserted into messages via selection list, picked from a menu or quickly referenced by a "tag". Insert paragraphs of text with a minimum of 4 keystrokes! You may create phrases by swiping text from any existing message, or by using the simple maintenance routine (add, modify, delete)
  • Clipboard History Manager: Maintains a history of text copied to the clipboard. This provides easy menu-driver access to the last 6 clipboard changes since MR/2 ICE was started.
  • Fax-by-email Interface. Thanks to MR/2 ICE's great ability to interface with external programs, applications like Keller Group's PMFax can use MR/2 ICE for transporting faxes (sending and receiving) via EMAIL!
  • Persistently sizable windows almost everwhere. Multiple message windows can each have different positions.
  • Toolbars w/bubble hints ("tooltips"), status bars, progression indicators. Optional whenever possible. Hint bubble display and/or delay configurable. A RMB click will always display hints, if they are turned on.
  • Font and color selection dialogs, as well as drag/drop support from OS/2 pallets for message viewer windows.
  • Powerful message viewer and editor. Things like a split screen editor. Spelling checker and thesaurus available (as separate files, get the MR/2 QWK-reader files via www/ftp). Simple things like Rot13 support and case conversions supported. Mono/PS font toggle (you can configure the font for each mode). Single button selective quoting.
  • Formated *and* draft printing. A host of options including paper size selection and default typeface and size for text.
  • Selectable reply "templates" allow you to boiler-plate needed replies. Powerful set of reply-time variables available.
  • Auto-checking for new messages via configurable time period. Beeping when mail arrives, and (optional) periodic beeping when new mail has arrived and MR/2 has not acquired focus. Minimized icon and task list show new mail count.
  • Links to external utilities like WebExplorer and Ftp ... simply click, RMB, click to load or ftp any URL embedded within a message.
  • MIME support with many configurable options. Makes full use of ALL defined WPS associations for "viewing" an attachment.
  • UUEncoding/decoding. Multiple files-per-message supported.
  • Address book with description, email address, notes and "tags". Group addresses to with unlimitted address listings, including nested groups/address book entries and lists from external files.
  • Powerful built-in text editor. Call this up at any time to edit any text file (does not have to be assocciated with the creation of a message).
  • Pop up calendar (will be enhanced to provide to-do list/appointments).
  • Pop up calculator.
  • Multiple account support.
  • Sort message indexes to 3 levels (many options).
  • Find text in the message list or search all messages for text on demand. Powerful boolean (AND/OR) logic available.
  • Navigate through messages in a host of ways. In most cases, you can select the disposition of a message and specify "next" or "previous" message with one menu item or keystroke.
  • Dynamic window index ... easily find any open window and/or messages index.
  • Many configurable options. For example, turn on/off various warnings and prompts.
  • Clipboard access enhanced to include APPENDING to clipboard and pasting *with* quote string.

MR/2 ICE Competitive Feature List

Here are some (as far as I know) unique features that MR/2 ICE offers. This does not include items which seem to me standard across all emailers. Just the "competitive advantages".

  • Lowest registration price of all OS/2 emailers. Lowest and most flexible site license pricing.
  • Absolutely nothing crippled in unregistered version. No xx day timeouts. A simple, once-per-invocation nag after 60-90 days.
  • Newsreader will be integrated as a single unit (in development, very close).
  • Conversion utilities to aid in converting FROM most of the more popular OS/2 and Windows mailers.
  • Two mailing lists set up to aid in end-user support of the product, both powered by MR/2 ICE itself (and its mailing list add-on).
  • Remote control from the command line. Command line invoked options that can control the startup of MR/2 ICE and/or an existing, running copy. Use MR/2 ICE as the mail server (sendmail replacement) when sending email from other applications.
  • Phrases: Store commonly used text as a phrase. Phrases can be inserted into messages via selection list, picked from a menu or quickly referenced by a "tag". Insert paragraphs of text with a minimum of 4 keystrokes! You may create phrases by swiping text from any existing message, or by using the simple maintenance routine (add, modify, delete)
  • Filters: Boolean logic, parenthesis for nesting expressions, soundexing, examine values by ANY header field, ability to use external utilities to determine if a message should be filtered.
  • Prefetch Filters: Use filters to determine if a message should be fetched immediately in full, saved for later (header is available for reference) or to skip. Use any header data and/or message SIZE in the filter.
  • Clipboard History Manager: Maintains a history of text copied to the clipboard. This provides easy menu-driver access to the last 6 clipboard changes since MR/2 ICE was started.
  • WPS Viewers and Associations: truely an OS/2-specific features, but MIME and other attachments can be made to open using specific viewers, or simply to let OS/2's predefined viewers handle them.
  • Customization: Fine-tuning control of MIME settings, including character se conversion options that NON-US users demand. Self-adjusts to country specific settings (date formats, for example). Control of if/where th toolbar(s) display, notebook tab sizes and positions, etc. Customizable to an extreme.
  • Automatic recovery capabilities. If OS/2 crashes in the middle of a 1 hour message composition, your work will be there when you restart MR/2 ICE. MR/2 ICE auto-saves your work every 30 seconds and you can't tell that it does (unless you crash :). None of the other OS/2 mailers do this, and I believe it to be extremely important.
  • Comprehensive support for third party add-ons. Case in point is William Geiger's E-Secure PGP add on product. This is an excellent stand-alone PGP front end, which integrates seamlessly with MR/2 ICE. Why? Because MR/2 offers the hooks that were necessary and features were added as needed to facilitate third party interfaces.
  • User-programmable functions available via REXX. This includes automatic invocation via filters and/or "on demand" for any message via function key. For example, a sturdy REXX-based mailing list system exists using MR/2 ICE and it's filters as the engine.
  • Reply Templates with an extensive list of available "reply-time" variables. This let's you build complex reply forms selectable when you decide to reply to a message, or by an auto-reply filter.
  • UUCP Support
  • Custom Mail Driver. Users/third parties may code their own MAIL drivers to me used with MR/2 ICE. That's how the UUCP support was added.
  • An (optional) split screen editor with one click or keystroke selective quoting. No other OS/2 emailer has this.
  • A separate on-demand text editor. Open ANY file in another window (or several files in several windows) while composing a message. Great for referencing external information!
  • Spelling checker. Sure, many mailers do. MR/2 ICE boast a thesaurus. Spelling checker is smart enough to skip quoted material. Includes options for checking a single word, a block of works, from the current cursor position, or the entire file.
  • Text search (with boolean logic) through ALL messages in a folder. View each message, one at a time, and/or work with the whole list of matches in bulk (move, copy, delete ...).
  • Flexible Address Groups that can be used for large bulk mailings. Access lists of addresses stored in text files, if desired.
  • The message viewer/editor alone is loaded with features: two-click access to ftp and www URL's, paste w/quotes, run external utilities against the current message (via single function key press), open any file in a separate text-editor window (oh, I said that already :), single click toggle between mono and proportional fonts, split the screen and view original and reply, ROT13, there's so much more.
  • Smaller items: append to clipboard, save messages to text files (appending *or* overwriting, and/or with divider lines); save singularly or in batches.

MR/2 ICE Frequently Asked Questions

You haven't answered my email. Did you get it or are you just ignoring me?

This really hasn't been as issue yet, but it may become one. As I expected, much of my time is now spent replying to email. This takes away from coding time and slows down the whole process. At the same time, you can't ignore your users. I try to respond to everyone in a timely fashion, but often this can't be done. Right now I'm swamped and may not have time to respond to everyone point-4-point, BUT I am listening. I hope to use this WEB page to address most points in a more general fashion using the "shotgun" method.

UPDATE: Things are a LITTLE better, despite constant increases in email volume. This, thanks to the MR/2 ICE Mailing List, where questions and answers are posed in more of a "group discussion" manner. How do you subscribe? Send a message to <mr2ice.list@mr2ice.com> with the subject of SUBSCRIBE. Keep in mind that there is alot of traffic passing through this list.

Additionally, the later versions of MR/2 ICE have web-based entries in the HELP menu. One of these is a link to the "Ask-The-Experts(tm)" list. You can quickly and easily pose support and general "How do I ..." type questions to a collection of veteran (volunteer) MR/2 ICE users!

How does one install a new version of MR/2 ICE over previous "working" version without losing settings and information?

I always unzip the recent version into its own subdirectory so as not to mix the files and then have to reset all the options and signature files. The MR/2 ICE distribution zip file has been carefully designed so as NOT to overwrite your existing setup data when unzipping a new version. The risk for data loss if very low. To protect yourself from any unusaul circumstances, simply ZIP up the MR/2 ICE software directory before unzipping the new version. In most cases, this won't be necessary, but backups are always a good idea.

The distribution zip contains several files ending with an "org" extension. These are the original versions of things like the SIG file, the address book and templates. When MR/2 ICE starts up for the first time, it tries to copy these files to their "real" names. It will not overwrite existing files. So, if you've modified your templates and address book, they will not be overwritten my unzipping a new version of ICE.

The only exceptions to this rule are the printer template files (printer.tf and draft.tf). Since I haven't really "officially" documented these, I do not take precautions to save custom versions. I'll make a note to consider this.

How do I register my copy of MR/2 ICE?

The distribution/installation has two files that are pertainent. The file "read.me" contains a brief explanation of policies, pricing, site licensing and lists ways of registering. The file "Register.Doc" can be filled out and snail-mailed with a check or money order (or even cash, if you wish). The mailing address is on the form.

Credit Cards are happily accepted via Paypal. This is the absolute fastest way to register MR/2 ICE. If you do not yet have a Paypal account, signup is simple and can all be done online. Use the Paypal Registration Form to pay for your registration this way. It's quick, easy and painless!

If you'd prefer to deal with a registration service:

BMT Micro provides toll-free voice, fax and email registration services. Call toll free at 1-800-414-4268, or visit their MR/2 Order Page at https://secure.bmtmicro.com/ECommerce-OnSite/15707.html or email to orders@bmtmicro.com. You can also fax an order to them TOLL FREE at 800-346-1672. BMT's "contact" page is at http://www.bmtmicro.com/BMTInfo_ContactBMT.html.

Scandinavian/European Registration Site: You can now register MR/2 ICE via Berggreen Service, Denmark with payment in Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, German Currency and in EURO. Berggreen Service accepts checks or payment to Giro- and Bank- accounts in Copenhagen, Stockholm, Oslo, Helsinki and Flensburg. Write to info@berggreen.dk or order online at http://www.berggreen.dk

Can my company purchase a site license for MR/2 ICE?

MR/2 ICE offers the best site license pricing in the business. Current pricing is as follows (text extracted from the distribution file "read.me"): These prices are for licenses of MR/2 ICE running at a single location (usually a company or other organization).

5 User - $145 10 User - $250 25 User - $485 50 User - $625 ($4 per additional user)

For each user above 50 add $4 (e.g., 200 user = $625+(150*4) = $1225)

All pricing is subject to change without notice. We can interpolate for in-between counts (e.g., 30 users at $415). I'm basing these prices on a product I once purchased in this manner. I want to be reasonable, but still make a profit. Email me for more detailed discussion.

INCREMENTAL SITE LICENSES. Those purchasing a site license may increase the license count at some later date in time by submitting the difference between the two licenses (based on what was originally paid vs. what the current total site license would cost), plus a flat modification fee of $10.

For example, a company purchases a 50 user site license at $425 under old pricing. A year later they wish to increase the license count to 100 users. They would sumbit a check or purchase order for 50 incremental licenses at a cost of $235. With the price increase to $500 for 50 users (where 100 users would be $650), the amount due would be $235. It's an easy calculation:

What you'd have to pay today for the total licenses desired - What you've already paid + $10.

Can I access more than one Service Provider/mailbox with MR/2 ICE?

Certainly. You can access as many unique ISP/mailbox combinations as you want. From the main notebook (inbox screen), use Options->Add User Profile to set up a name for a new "profile" (specific mailbox settings) and a password, if desired. NOTE that this account name and password can be anything you want; they do not have to match or relate in any way to your service provider's name nor to your POP3 user name/password. Once you have added a new profile, MR/2 will provide you with a completely new settings notebook. Fill these out and close the notebook. You are now logged into the new "account" or "profile".

To log back into the original "default" account, the user/password is simply Mail/Mail.

To subsequently log into one of your secondary accounts, use Options->Login. NOTE that you do not have to logoff first.

It is possible to have multiple copies of MR/2 ICE running, each monitoring a separate account/profile. The same technique can be used to set up different desktop icons for each unique mail account. You simply start MR/2 ICE and specify the profile to use. For example, assuming a profile has been setup for with a name of "work", you can start MR/2 ICE with that mailbox being active by using the command:

MR2I /Mwork.cfg
I sometimes get a message "Pop3 service unavailable" from MR/2 ICE, even though it worked the last time I was connected to my ISP. I have to exit MR/2 and go back in before more mail comes in. Why?

This was brilliantly summed up in a recent post by Brandon Allbery <bsa@kf8nh.apk.net>. He explains:

OS/2 TCP/IP, in common with most other implementations, only loads resolver information (the information used to convert an Internet host name such as humans use to the x.y.z.w numeric format that actually goes out over the wire) the first time the program tries to convert a hostname to an Internet address; subsequent attempts continue to use the original information. If you don't have a permanent ?:\MPTN\ETC\RESOLV2 (or ?:\MPTN\ETC\RESOLV) file then it will find *no* resolver information when it starts up, and never get it right until you exit and restart it while dialed out (the dialer program creates a RESOLV file while you're connected and removes it afterward, restoring any original RESOLV file).

Workarounds (choose one):

(1) Use Internet addresses (x.y.z.w) instead of hostnames for your POP3 and SMTP servers;

(2) Add the line

SET USE_HOSTS_FIRST=1

to your CONFIG.SYS and then create a ?:\MPTN\ETC\HOSTS file containing the addresses of your POP3 and SMTP servers, like the following (fictitious) example:

107.23.5.223 mail.foo.net 107.23.5.226 pop.foo.net

(You can also use the TCP/IP Configuration Notebook to do this; select the Hostnames tab, then go to page 2.)

(3) Create a permanent ?:\MPTN\ETC\RESOLV2 file containing the same nameserver information you get when you dial up. The easiest way to get this information is simply to copy the file created by DOIP while you're connected. You should then copy it back to ?:\MPTN\ETC\RESOLV2 with a command in ?:\TCPIP\BIN\TCPEXIT.CMD (create this file if it doesn't exist). It is *not* sufficient to create this file once, as Warp 4 (and possibly Warp Connect) wipe it out at boot time when they call TOGGLE.EXE to make sure LAN Distance has switched back to local mode. (You could remove this call from ?:\TCPIP\BIN\TCPSTART.CMD, but the TCP/IP Configuration Notebook might not like it and/or might put it back. You might try renaming ?:\TCPIP\BIN\TOGGLE.EXE instead, since the script checks for its existence.)

All of these schemes have problems, although (3) is probably the safest because moving nameservers requires coordinating with InterNIC and they *can't* be specified by hostname, only by IP address (chicken and egg problem); the problem with using static addresses of any kind for your POP3 and SMTP servers is that your ISP can change those addresses without warning.

I'm still trying to locate appropriate tools for an option (4): patch TCP32DLL.DLL and TCPIPDLL.DLL (16-bit version) to always reread the resolver configuration. I already know the correct execution address to patch in TCP32DLL.DLL, but figuring out which *byte* to patch has so far stumped me. (I don't do much OS/2 programming, barring visual REXX.)

How to I access these BinHex/MIME files someone just sent me?

Seamless UUEncoding, MIME and incoming BinHex support is built into MR/2 ICE. To detach an attachment, simply use the menu option Message->Detach. This will detach ALL attachments contained within the current message. You may also, optionally, click on one of the attachment marker-lines, then use the Right Mouse Button (RMB) and Detach to detach individual parts. Alternately, the RMB->View option often allows the attachment to be loaded in an associated viewer.

Is MR/2 ICE Capable of Using Direct SMTP Delivery?

You bet. SMTP is built right into the default distribution ZIP file. A special "Local Delivery Agent" (LDA) to use with sendmail.exe if needed, but it has been proven that MR/2 ICE's SMTP delivery mode works great with the freeware DELIVER.EXE and also will "plug right in" to any existing LaMail setup.

I open up a message but nothing displays. I try to create a new message, and I can't enter text in the window! What's wrong?

Same thing as below, there's some problem with ICE and the System Proportional font being depended upon as the "default". See the next note ... this temporary solution will also solve this problem.

MR/2 ICE runs OK, but I get tiny no-text bubble hints, no text inside the calendar and the settings tabs are squashed. What's wrong?

This is actually a problem with certain Cirrus Logic (and a few other) video cards. On these systems, the system proportional font fails when used as the "default". I have a system in-house that exhibits this problem, so I'm in search of "the answer". The initial invocation of MR/2 ICE will ask you if your screen displays any of these symptoms and will set itself up accordingly. If this fails to work correctly, you can specify a "default font override" command line parameter:

Mr2i /F9

Where a zero is used to denote the System Proportional Font, and a number 1-30 can be used to override this setting (for the problematic windows ONLY). Using /F9 will cause the text to show up and make the application functional. For those that are more particular about their fonts, you can select one of these following numbers:

 0 - SystemProp	  16 - HelvOLB 
 1 - Courier8		  17 - HelvOLBI 
 2 - Courier10		  18 - TmsRmn8 
 3 - Courier12		  19 - TmsRmn10 
 4 - CourierOL		  20 - TmsRmn12 
 5 - CourierOLI	  21 - TmsRmn14 
 6 - CourierOLB	  22 - TmsRmn18 
 7 - CourierOLBI 	  23 - TmsRmn24 
 8 - Helv8		  24 - TmsRmnOL 
 9 - Helv10		  25 - TmsRmnOLI 
10 - Helv12 		  26 - TmsRmnOLB 
11 - Helv14 		  27 - TmsRmnOLBI 
12 - Helv18 		  28 - SysMono10 
13 - Helv24 		  29 - SysMono12 
14 - HelvOL 		  30 - SymbolOL
15 - HelvOLI 

Text seems to get corrupted in message windows and strange video problems occur frequently. Is this normal? Absolutely not. However, MR/2 ICE excercises PM quite extensively with alot of technically sophisticated code (from the support libraries, ObjectPM and the related Custom Control Pack). If there is a problem in the system, this application is bound to make it appear!

Most strange video problems reported to-date have been caused by FixPak #12. This was a very buggy kit, and should be replaced with FixPak #17. Run, don't walk!

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Hey!! [pick from list below] seems to be missing or doesn't work! There are many items that are not yet included with MR/2 ICE, or that I have not yet hooked up. I'm working as fast as I can to remedy this, but it will take some time.

PGP Support - available via third party support, see the MR/2 ICE Home Page. Drag and Drop

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MR/2 ICE just crashed on me. There's a screen full of info. Which part of this info do you need? Many of you have been sending me all of the register values, and some are typing this in by hand. It's a very rare occasion when I even pay most of that stuff any attention at all. What is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT is the information outlined below:

SYS3175 A program generated an access violation at 00270721. C2151MT.DLL

This is all I ever really use. I would also need as detailed a description as possible about what it was you were doing with ICE, and if possible, what the status boxes at the bottom of the main window say at the time of the crash. Thanks!

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Can MR/2 ICE be used as an "Offline" email reader? Certainly! I do this all of the time when working at home. I do see where this capability isn't that obvious, though. MR/2 ICE will poll whether connected to your provider or not. The status bar indicates the status, and "POP3 service unavailable" is displayed when not connected. Once you dial in, you can wait for a poll, or force one via keystroke, menu or toolbar. Once all mail is read, simply disconnect from your provider. Reply to messages at your leisure. Press "SEND" to save them, and I understand this isn't intuitive at all. I'll try to clear this up. You will get an "SMTP service unavailable" status message, but the reply will be saved in the outbox. Once you've replied to all desired message and you want to actually post them, dial your provider again. Move to the MR/2 ICE outbox and select each new outgoing message. NOTE that unsent messages are tagged with a mailbox icon, while sent message get an envelope. Once all outgoing items are marked, use the RMB to popup the menu. Select Resend. You can watch as MR/2 ICE sends each one. Successful sends will turn the mailbox icon into a letter, as you watch.

Selecting message items can be performed by dragging the cursor over a group or CTRL+Clicking on individual items.

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There is a LONG delay opening the message viewer window after clicking to open a message. Much slower than I would expect. MR/2 ICE has many GUI features that can tend to slow down on a heavily used system, or one with a slow video card. Fortunately, most of these GUI options are configurable. For example, you can run MR/2 ICE with the /T switch and have no toolbars available. I don't recommend this, but it does make the system much faster. Are hint bubbles turned on for the viewer screen? That's *very* slow (and I'm still trying to figure out why). Set them OFF for the viewer and try again. Play with the options with regards to video settings. Much improvement in performance can result. Still, on my systems and the systems used internally at Secant, there really is no problem with performance. I would expect this with the machines we pick to use, though.

UPDATE!!! The bubble hint speed problem has been fixed and will be included in version 0.99E. NOTE that adding hint bubbles is still slower than running with them off, but the difference is now undetectable in most cases.

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MR/2 is slow compared to [other mailer name here] I've taken the "middle" path, where I've decided to go more fancy-GUI than some of the lighter-weight competition, but not as heavy-weight as Ultimail "Lite". You can, however, configure MR/2 to work "lite". Run it with /T for no toolbars. I bet it's faster now? Turn off all hint bubbles, that will help if you opt to keep the toolbar. Otherwise, on a relatively fast machine, the program performs nicely. I can only improve on this so much, and I will try when all work is complete.

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I resized my message window, but sometimes a window opens with a different size. Why isn't my chosen window size/position being preserved? The size of each window is configurable by order and in/out state. For example, there is a window Inbox1, Inbox2, Inbox3 and so on, each remembers its own size. Outboxes work the same way, although a folder window *is* an outbox. So, you may have to set window #2's size, too, but only once. Same with #3.

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I'm a programmer new to OS/2 and am interested in knowing more about the development system and tools you use to create MR/2 ICE. MR/2 ICE is compiled with Borland C++ v2.0. It benefits greatly from being based on Secant Technologies' ObjectPM Application Framework, a set of C++ class libraries designed specifically around OS/2's kernel and windowing API's. In addition to using ObjectPM, MR/2 ICE is supplemented by the ObjectPM Control Pack ... a set of custom controls for OS/2 (e.g., the progress indicator on sends, the RTF printing engine, calendar, etc.,.). The bubble hints and Win95-style tab folder used for Settings configuration are prototypes of coming Secant controls.

In addition to the commercially available tools, this product has inherited many features from its QWK-oriented cousins and utilites, MR/2 Classic, MR/2 PM and the ME/2 editor.

More information on Secant's product line can be obtained from their home page at http://www.secant.com.

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I'd like to import my address book and folders from [your mailer here]. Do you have anything available that will do this? Absolutely! MR/2 ICE has an impressive set of conversion utilities. To see if a converter exists to fit your needs, see the list of conversions available via direct ftp.

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The spell checker and thesaurus don't seem to be functioning. Are these active yet? These tools are indeed active and available from within the message editor. The supporting word databases are not distributed with the beta zip files, but are available as separate files. If the word bases are found by MR/2 ICE, the tools will function properly. You can ftp the appropriate files right here by clicking here for the large dictionary support files, or here for the thesaurus database.

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Is there any way to suppress the Copyright/Banner form that ICE displays when loading? I could offer this as an option, but it really would be meaningless at this time. This form is not time delayed or anything of that nature, it is merely displayed as soon as MR/2 ICE starts to execute, and disappears the minute it is ready to run. So, if it wasn't displayed, there would still be some "dead time" where you would wonder what was happenning. I've tried to play tricks with program load and free up the system while this was processing, but I've had little luck to-date. I believe I now know how to do it correctly, and will attempt again during the v1.0 cleanup phase.

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Why does MR/2 ICE seem to get stuck on "Sending close..." (when sending mail via SMTP)?

This isn't really MR/2 ICE getting "stuck". Here's what happens. MR/2 ICE starts exchanging FROM/TO address information with sendmail. You see that flash by. Then the message itself. That's the progression meter stage. Then it tells sendmail "I'm done", which is the close. From here, ICE waits for a simple "OK" (For those that like to be technical, it's actually a line starting with a numeric status code) to be sent back from sendmail. During this time, you see the "Sending close ..." message.

Sendmail can be set up different ways, but default OS/2 setup calls for it to actually DELIVER the message on close. It must deliver the message before returning an "OK". There are ways to tell it to "deliver at your leisure", although I forget what flags to set, and I didn't like this mode.

So, your SMTP Host is probably timing out waiting to deliver the message. That can be for a number of reasons. You *could* try using your provider's SMTP server. Alternatively, try using the IBM Advantis SMTP host: smtp-gw01.ny.us.ibm.net

Why is it timing out? Well, usually mail goes through from here. Occassionally a remote site will have trouble and delivery will fail. If a site isn't running at the time of the send, you get an unsuccessful send (and often a mailer daemon message that "service is not available".

Another possibility, if ALL messages are failing, is that the DNS lookup for your mail service is broken, and/or you're not connected to your provider. Anything that would keep the message from being delivered, or slows it down considerably.

How do I use the GROUP feature?

Groups are lists of email address used to mass-distribute email notices. When you send a note to a GROUP, each menber is sent the identical email message.

At this time, the group function does not work well with POP3 sends. It works perfectly with SMTP sends. To test, set Options->Settings to send via SMTP and set your SMTP host to be the generic: smtp-gw01.ny.us.ibm.net

Groups are meant to handle extremely large lists, and hence, MR/2 does NOT spell all target addresses out on the TO line . I will rework this soon and have an "option". In the meantime, I do have around 1000 addresses in an announcement list, and it works well. You just can't send via POP3.

On the other hand, the Address Book entries will hold medium size lists of people, WILL include all names on the TO line and hence are POP3 compatible.The limit is around 4K of addresses, which averages 100-150 people. Just separate each address with comma's.