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Tour of 95Buddy

Tour of 95Buddy

We start our tour of 95Buddy by opening FILER. The first thing we notice in the middle of the top line of the screen is the serial port indicator ("ser on" or "ser off"), telling us if the port is on or off. This feature will save battery life by telling us if a program or action left the serial port on by mistake.

 Cursor down to the bottom of the FILER screen and you'll notice something missing - the WK1 Lotus files. By default, 95Buddy will "blank out" those annoying files that we all have tried to delete at one point. The files are still there, as when we cursor down, each file shows up as it is highlighted.

Filer With Buddy: Graphic

Filer Without Buddy: Graphic

 There's one more feature of the FILER that will make loading files easier than ever. Before, you could view a TXT file by moving the cursor to it and pressing (ENTER). With 95Buddy installed, move the highlight bar to the filename, press (ENTER) to view the file. Press (MEMO) again and 95Buddy automatically starts MEMO with the highlighted file loaded. This is one of the more powerful features of 95Buddy. I use it quite often now.

Similarly, highlight a WK1, PBK, EQN, or ABK file, press (ENTER), and then press the appropriate application button ((LOTUS), (PHONE), (HPCALC), or (APPT)) and 95Buddy starts the application with the file loaded.

 Let's look at 95Buddy's effect on SET UP. First of all, you don't have to take the usual route to get to SET UP. Just press (FILER) again from within FILER (instead of pressing (<Shift>)-(FILER)). 95Buddy causes the FILER key to act as a toggle, switching back and forth between FILER and SET UP. You'll notice that the screen has more options than before.

Buddy Adds Battery and Usage Information: Graphic

 A new timer adjustment lets you increase ((F8)) and decrease ((F9)) the time before auto shut off. Also, the current voltage of both the main and backup batteries are now displayed to help you keep track of your battery life.

Press (F10) to display the keycode value of any single key or key combination -- a must for those who edit their APNAME.LST file to install system compliant applications.

 Too good to be true? Well, there's more. One of the most difficult tasks on the 95LX is saving MEMO files to, or retrieving them from any place other than the dreaded C:\_DAT default directory.

 95Buddy makes this task a whole lot easier! First of all, when in MEMO you can now press (MEMO) once more to pop up a list of files in the MEMO default directory. This will save you a few keystrokes when you're looking for files. More importantly, you can change MEMO's default directory. Let's say you want to get your files from, and save them to A:\TEXT (the TEXT subdirectory on your RAM card). Just change the 95BUDDY.SYS line in the CONFIG.SYS file above to read device=c:\95buddy.sys mdef=a:\text and reboot.

 A:\TEXT becomes the default directory and you save tons of keystrokes.

 There's a more direct way to specify a new default directory path and/or file name for MEMO; follow these steps:

  1. 1. Press (MEMO)(MEMO) to automatically take you to MEMO's file open menu.
  2. 2. Type in your new default directory and/or file name. You may use wildcards where appropriate. For example, try: C:\*.*
  3. 3. Press (<Shift>)-(<Tab>) to save your new specification.



You can still press (MENU) File Open to get the C:\_DAT directory of files. Pressing (MEMO)(MEMO) takes you to C:\.

95Buddy gives you a quick save option and exit keystroke. Press (MENU) @ to save your file and close the current application. This works great, unless you have another application open. If you want to exit all applications, press (MENU) (DEL).

This will save all open files and take you to the initial Topcard screen.

 There's also a similar function in FILER for the times you want to quickly exit all built-in applications and run a DOS program. When you try to start the DOS program by pressing (F4) you'll get the usual "Cannot launch file:" message, but with 95Buddy installed, there will be an option to press (F4) again to mass exit all programs and launch the DOS program. Graphic

 The list of improvements goes on. 95Buddy creates sticky CTRL and ALT keys (press and let go instead of holding down, just like the SHIFT key). When you open HP CALC, 95Buddy automatically selects the Math menu option and advances to the trigonometry functions. You can specify other menu options as the default.

 95Buddy will correct some of your mistakes. For example, to create one of the symbols imbedded in the numeric keypad, you have to press (<Shift>) first. If you accidentally press (MENU) and then one of the grey keys, 95Buddy "knows" what you really meant to press, and turns the (MENU) you entered into a (<Shift>).

95Buddy also adds features to 1-2-3 and DATACOMM, making them easier to use. It also adds an option to disable the Print Screen function ((<Shift>)-(ESC)) to avoid the temporary lockup when the 95LX is not connected to a printer.

 Most options can be turned on or off with command line arguments in the CONFIG.SYS, making 95Buddy even more flexible. The documentation that comes with 95Buddy is very informative and gives some examples of how you modify 95Buddy to work the way you want it to.

iPhone Life magazine

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