PROBE2 1.4.042 - FAQ

Ok, ok - I admit it. Since, at present, there aren't that many users of PROBE2, we have to confess that we made these "Frequently Asked Questions" up. Perhaps they should be called, "Questions What Eddie And ChAoS Think Would be Frequently Asked If Their Users Had Half A Chance." It seems to us, that "FAQ" will do just fine...



When I run P2 under Windows, why won't it always open the serial ports?

If another program has the required comms port, then P2 may very well just "hang". Make sure that no other program has the port open. Note, too, that when Windows has run an MS-DOS program that has accessed a serial port, it only appears to relinquish that port when the MS-DOS box is closed, not when the offending program is closed...

Sometimes, when I re-size a P2 comms channel window, I get all sorts of rubbish displayed in it. Why?

If the window in question is "frozen", then P2 will not update that windows contents at all. Select the window and note the state of the "frozen" indicator at the bottom of the screen. If the window is frozen, that may very well be the cause of your trouble.

I open a comms channel and it immediately starts sending the contents of a data file to the channel just opened. Why?

When a channel is closed, that is, the window to that channel is dismissed, if any logging actions were being carried out, those actions are not terminated until either (a) P2 is terminated or (b) you close them explicitly. To check for this, re-open the window and look at the file I/O indicators on the status bar.

Why do funny things happen when I try to run P2 on an MDA (old "mono") screen.

For some time now, P2 has changed video mode, twice, at start up. This switching from 25-line mode to 43-line mode and back again has the beneficial effect of speeding up screen updates. (No, I don't know why this has this effect...) However, this causes Bad Things to happen when run on an MDA monitor. In order to cure this trouble, use Configs / All to deselect the "screen bliping" box and save the configuration settings.

When I run P2 under Windows, why does the heart-beat speed up?

Versions of P2 prior to 1.2 had rather flaky timer code. As a result, if any program made "creative" use of the PC speaker, the P2 timer facilities would run wild. Later versions of P2 employ a more reliable timer strategy and, as a result of these changes, it will now also run happily under WinNT. In addition, one can now select an improved Windows-based timer strategy if one is running under Win95 or Win98. (This new scheme does not work under WinNT.) In order to tell P2 which operating system one is using, invoke P2 using something like "P2 OS=WIN95".

P2 crashes when I use OS=WIN95 under WinNT. Why?

If one invokes P2 under WinNT but uses the wrong O/S parameter (for example, "P2 OS=WIN98"), P2 may invoke Windows-based timer code that fails under WinNT. The solution is simple: use the correct O/S parameter that corresponds to the operating-system that you are using.

When I run my P2 script, P2 "hangs".

P2 relies upon it's own "co-operative" multi-tasker to be able to run user tasks while still updating all of the opened windows. Thus, when a menu is open, when a dialogue box is on-screen or when some comms channels windows are open, these are still updated even when a script is running. However, in order to do this, the script must, on a frequent basis, relinquish control back to P2. This is done via the PAUSE word. If you never invoke PAUSE, then P2 won't, for example, be able to execute key-board requests. Take a look at the SYS.FTH file for examples of the use of PAUSE.