4DOS 7.5 Ctrl-P BUG :=)

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Jul 2, 2017
4
0
#1
Hello everybody ! I'm aware 4DOS is no longer developed, can we still discuss a bug/regression (it was not present in old 4DOS versions, including Norton licensed NDOS; but is present is the newest 4DOS 7.50 and its "freed" successor 8.0,) and ask if the bug was discussed earlier, if there is a known fix or workaround ?

The bug is when using "Ctrl-P" (or Ctrl-"Prtcreen" ) at the 4DOS command line; il there is an error (such as NO printer attached...) it is IMPOSSIBLE to escape the perpetual asking for "Retry ? Abort ?" prompts, except by "Ctrl-Alt-Del" or reset...

The normal escape from this infernal loop is by the user typing "Ctrl-P" again (to toggle the 'echoing to PRN' status) then answering 'A' for abort.

It works OK when using MS-Command.com (or, indeed, old 4DOS versions) but NOT with current versions (JPSoft's or "free") - the "Ctrl-P" which should toggle the invalid "printing" status" does NOT toggle, instead it is swallowed like any other character and sent to the (not existing or in error) printer !!! :=(

I'll note that the "SETDOS /Lx" state has no effect on the reported bug.

Apologies if 4DOS is off-topic on this forum (I assumed everything is ON-topic on THIS subforum at least...) and thanks in advance to anybody willing to help with, or discuss this sorry matter.
 
Jul 2, 2017
4
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#3
Hi, Joe Caverly, sir ! Thanks for caring...

> 4DOS is the command processor for vDOS.
> Although, I just tried Ctrl-P under vDOS (4DOS), and do not get an error message, probably because 4DOS has been modified for vDOS.

Well, no, I don't think so : it is because vDOS is NOT DOS. It's a Windows (64 bit only, even) program, I'm talking about using 4DOS on real "iron", under (real mode) DOS (MS-DOS, PC-DOS, DRDOS or compatible...). ...

> If you are comfortable doing so, you could download the 4DOS source code, and make modifications > yourself to solve your Ctrl-P issue.

It's not this user's "problem", it's 4DOS serious "bug", and regression ! Perhaps in its "critical error" (aka "int 24h") handler. Clearly, testing missed it while the program was in active development :=( I'm certainly not going to "solve" it myself, though I could "work around" it in certain ways. Is there absolutely no chance the program's vendor would pride himself of issuing a patch for this issue ? Who better than him could quick-fix this, as this is a regression from older versions, so he could certainly identify the probem by comparing sources ?

Otherwise, do you all know whether the authorised developper of newer versions of 4DOS for FreeDOS ("Lucho") could be contacted thru the internet and how ?
 
Jul 2, 2017
4
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#5
...there was a utility package for 4DOS called InkUtils.
It has a utility called "Critical Error" that may or may not help your Ctrl-P issue.
Joe
Thanks again. That may help (or, indeed, it may not) with the (not mine) Ctrl-P/Ctrl-PrScreen issue. The satisfactory workaround I have been using is one of professor Salmo gathered "Garbo" set of freeware/shareware DOS utilities, viz; "VPRINT.COM" - a TSR that hooks all (DOS/BIOS) accesses to the PRN, redirecting character output to a disk file. [There are several similar utilities out there,] VPRINT is good - and indeed with VPRINT loaded and active, control-P does not lock the computer any more :=)

Any idea how to contact Luczezar Georgiev (Lucho) ?
 
Jul 2, 2017
4
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#7
Looking back through PC Magazine articles, I found an article on how to create the program NOPRINT.COM
Yep, that would work (with caveat it's for an old style PC/XT keyboard controller, not fully correct for a modern PCAT/MF2 type. It should work as is, in practice.Edit: assuming an ATcompatible-BIOS, I would rather intercept int 15/4F of course) This said I like to have VPrint resident anyway (I keep it in the UMBs) so I can "print" to a file from almost any DOS program, as well as from the command line....
 
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