Tips and Tricks 1

By: Walter Metcalf
Date: 07/28/99

This week I want to share a couple of tips that I hope will make your computing experience more productive, and maybe even save a little money in the process. As it happens, both of these deal with InJoy.

  1. Transferring Files between Computers.

Granted there are many ways to do this, but most of them have problems all their own: diskettes are slow and very limited in size, SCSI hardware allows bigger files, but the hardware is quite expensive, and networks are tricky to set up and once again the hardware is often fairly expensive.

I recently needed to transfer 6 files with a total length of 1.8 GB from my Desktop to my laptop. I used a null modem cable, three inexpensive shareware programs, and a couple of other odds and ends. A couple of small changes in the system configuration were also required. The result was not quite as fast as I would like (due mostly to hardware problems), but the transfer was rock solid and error-free. Not even a couple of lightening storms disrupted the transfers!

Here's the set up:

  1. On each computer, find an unused serial port and connect them using the null modem cable. Designate your larger computer as the host.

  2. Download nullserv.cmd on to the host. (With Netscape, right-click and then left-click on "Save link as...".)

  3. Instead of using HyperAccess Pro, a commercial program which I found didn't work very well for some reason, I suggest setting up a simple FTP server using the Hethmon Brothers shareware product FTPd. Here's what to do:

    1. On the Host:

      1. Start the TCP/IP Configuration (LAN) program (TCPCFG.EXE).¹

      2. On the "Network" tab, select "LAN Interface 0", "Enable Interface", and "Manually..."

      3. Enter the IP address assigned to the Host, e.g. (This is the first of the two 32-bit numbers on the PPP.EXE statement in NullServ.cmd.)

      4. Enter into the Submask field.

      5. Click on the "Routing tab, and make sure the "IP Routing" box is deselected.

      6. Shutdown and restart the computer.

    2. On the Second Computer, the steps are the same except:

      1. Enter the IP address assigned to the Second Computer, namely the second of the two 32-bit numbers on the PPP.EXE statement in the NullServ.cmd.

      2. Make sure the "IP Routing" box is selected.

      3. Shutdown and restart the computer as before.

  4. On the host computer, start NullServ.cmd, specifying the number of the COM port to which the null modem cable is connected in the Parameter Field.

  5. On the Second Computer start InJoy in direct connect mode to the host. For complete details on how to do this, see my article, InJoy - The Modern Way to the Internet, Part 3, under the heading Special Configurations.

  6. On the Host, install and start the Hethmon Brothers Ftpd Server.² Add an 'anonymous' user with any email address as a password. Use the "Directories" tab on the "Users" menu to configure whatever directories you want to be able to transfer files to or from.

    Basically your setup is complete. You have a general purpose TCP/IP connection between two computers, with one computer running a general purpose FTP Server. The TCP/IP protocol is one of the most reliable methods of communication in the world. This can be seen in the billions of dollars in e-commerce annually being entrusted to it. The simple FTP Server being used produces little overhead and allows speeds approaching hardware capacity.

    Almost any FTP client can be now be used to download files. You could use FTP-PM, the one that comes free with OS/2. I chose to use FTP Browser because in my experience it is more rugged and handles large files better.³

    To configure either one, just set the host to the same IP address you used in step 3.a above (i.e., set the username to 'anonymous', and password to your email address. Open the host, and select the remote (host) drive and directory containing the file you want to download. Obviously, uploading is also easily accomplished.

  • Copying InJoy Init Strings

    In my article, InJoy - The Modern Way to the Internet, Part 2, I commented on InJoy's lack of a straight-forward way of copying sometimes complex modem init strings between Hosts. I saw a workaround for this probem on the InJoy Discussion list, and since it's the best one I've seen, I'll pass it along:

    1. Open InJoy and select the Host containing the Init string you wish to copy.

    2. Click on "Dial" to begin the dial process.

    3. As soon you hear the modem start dialing, press the Esc key to cancel. You'll see the modem init string on the Terminal Mode window.

    4. Drag your mouse over it to select it and press <Ctrl><Insert> or click on the top left corner and click on the Copy menu item. Now you can paste it wherever you want.

      I hope you find these tips helpful as you use your computer.

    ¹This program is normally located in the System Setup folder. If you cannot find it anywhere on your system, then you will have to install TCP/IP for LAN. You can do so by running the program INSTALL.CMD on the root directory of your OS/2 CD.

    ²The current version of Ftpd Server is 1.0, which the author told me does not support restart in case of a disconnection. However I found the connections to be so stable, it was not a big problem. The author made available to me a beta version of v2.0, which does support this feature, but I was unable to test it sufficiently in time to use for this feature.

    ³If you are unable to get file lists with Ftp Browser, try changing the Site Properties Type from "Auto Detect" to "DOS".

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