April 2000

by Louis Bookbinder





This month's Free Sample Shareware is no longer available. -------------------------------------------------

SMUG April '00 Disk of the Month

Assembled by Owen Saxton

3d Paddle Bash! v1.4
3d Paddle Bash! is a 3D version of Pong (you do remember Pong, don't you?) with customizable computer opponents. Although old, it is still fun. It requires:Color Quickdraw, System 6.0.5+ or greater, 68020 CPU or greater, and 1,000K free memory to run in 8-bit color (700K for 4-bit or less.) It will not run in 16- or 24-bit color. Freeware.

MacV is a simple slideshow utility. It takes as many JPEG or GIF files as you have memory for and displays them in a slideshow. Optionally they can be displayed in random order. Freeware.

MoonMenu v1.0
MoonMenu™ Extension adds a moon in the current lunar phase to your menubar. MoonMenu™ Application allows you to enter any date to see what the moon phase is, was, or will be. The MoonMenu, when selected, reveals a textual description of the moon phase, illumination percentage, the moon's age in days, and the current lunation number. Shareware fee $12.

More File Info CMM v2.2
The main feature of More File Info CMM Plug-in is to show detailed information on the selected file on the contextual menu. However, it also allow users change the following settings: Type and Creator, Creation and Modification dates, Lock status (ON/OFF) and Memory requirement for an application program. Additionally it can zap the resource fork. Shareware fee $10.

Pocket Album v1.1.2
Pocket Album is an application for the Macintosh which allows you to view picture files. In addition it also works as librarian and format converter. One window, i.e. one file, can hold 24 picture files and some comments for them, in album format. Pocket Album can read and write all the picture formats available via QuickTime. Shareware fee $10.

Program Switcher v5.0.1
Program Switcher is a convenient timesaving control panel that allows you to switch between the applications running on your System 7.1 or greater Macintosh via a simple two-key keystroke. It was inspired by the same function found in "Windows," but has been improved and transformed into a unique and fully configurable control panel that makes switching applications on the Macintosh as simple as pressing a couple of keys. Shareware fee $10.

Red Bird's Quick Scripts
This set of AppleScript files performs several useful functions. The scripts are Browser Chomper (removes annoying persistent info from Web browsers), Empty Trash, Simple Sync (synchronizes two folders), Random Desktop, Change Files (modifies file information), Make Password, Folder Password (makes a folder harder to access). Freeware.

Sherlock noBanners v1.0 & 2.0
Sherlock noBanners 1.0 is a simple ResCompare patch that removes all banners from Sherlock v. 2.0 (included with OS 8.6). The patch might work with earlier versions, but it has only been tested with Sherlock 2.0. Version 2.0 does the same thing for Sherlock 2 (v 3.0 included with OS 9.0). Freeware.

Sherlock Plugins v1.6
Use these plugin files to expand the internet abilities of Sherlock, the search facility in Mac OS 8.5 and higher. Freeware.

Smart Window v1.0 (PPC)
Smart Window is an application that helps the user to navigate the Finder's windows during a drag-and-drop operation. Moving a drag selection over a collapsed window's title bar, Smart Window will expand that window automatically, letting the user choose the drop location exactly. If the user moves the drag selection over a partially hidden Finder's window and the Finder is in the foreground, Smart Window will put that window in front, letting the user see its entire contents. Shareware fee $6.

SplitsVille v1.0.1
SplitsVille is an easy to use file splitter and joiner. It breaks large files into smaller pieces so you can transfer them to other Macs via floppy disk, email, or other means that can't support large files. SplitsVille also has an automatic reassemble feature in which the joiner application is embedded in the first segment of a split file. Shareware fee $10.

TaskMenuBar v1.1.0
TaskMenuBar is a control panel that uses the empty space on the menu bar to switch and launch applications, and drag and drop files on applications. Because it only uses the menu bar, unlike other utilities, it will never obscure or be obscured by other windows. Shareware fee $10.

TimeLabel v1.6
Ever wondered what you spend your time on? Well, as a matter of fact, this was exactly the question that arose in our company some time ago, and after evaluating some professional scheduling software we decided that we needed an easy-to-use utility that would fit our task. That's how TimeLabel was created, a simple "keep track of my projects" utility. Shareware fee $15.

USB Overdrive v1.3
The USB Overdrive is a universal USB driver that handles all USB mice, trackballs, joysticks and gamepads from any manufacturer and lets you configure them either globally or on an application-specific basis. It reads all kinds of wheels, buttons, switches and controls and supports scrolling, keyboard emulation, launching and complex macros as well as all the usual stuff like clicking, control-clicking and so forth. The USB Overdrive can easily handle several USB devices at once. I have two mice, one trackball, two joysticks and one gamepad connected to the same iMac, and each of them comes from a different manufacturer. Shareware fee $20. -------------------------------------------------

Security Alert!

From Your Shareware Team

There is a recent hoax called "Hey, you!". But confusing the issue is a REAL Trojan which sends infected Email to people with the "Hey, you!" title.

AGAIN, don't just pass on virus warnings to all your friends. Where did you hear it - from a distant acquaintence, or from a trusted, technically knowledgeable person? Does the message encourage you to pass it on? Did you check the warning against any of the anti-virus web sites?

Here is one:


Tip O' the Month

From Your Shareware Team

I thought I would not have a Tip this month, but Owen pointed something out. I needed the icons for this month's shareware pages. Owen was late so he offerred to do something for me to help - while I was at work. So I said, SURE, just collect all the icons in a scrapbook file and mail them to me. It worked!

The scrapbook file is just a nifty way of storing text, picts, and sounds. It comes with the MacOS, and the application resides in the Apple Menu. The file itself is elsewhere in the System File. Just look for Scrapbook File. But what you can do is drag that file out into another folder, then start the scrapbook application again, and it creates another (empty) one. Put what you want in it. Drag it elsewhere or mail it to a friend. Put your original back into the System file. You can actually have dozens of these files. They can be renamed to anything you prefer. Then just click on the file icon and it opens the scrapbook app and you are in business.

And.... As asked at the last meeting: (From TidBITs)

Zapping the PRAM is a relatively obscure trick that many Macintosh users don't know, but it works on every Macintosh and can be useful for solving strange problems ranging from an inability to start up at all to the Mac displaying the wrong font in places like the Get Info windows. To zap the PRAM, make sure Caps Lock is turned off, then restart the Mac and hold down Command-Option-P-R at startup, making sure to hold the keys down until your Mac restarts itself twice. Be aware that zapping the PRAM on the PowerBook 190, 1400, 2400, 3400, 5300, and original G3 also resets the Power Manager. On PCI Power Macs, hold down Command-Option-P-R as soon as you press the Power key to turn on the Mac to clear the Non-volatile RAM (NVRAM) that stores display information on those Macs. Finally, if you were wondering, the keystroke for zapping the PRAM remains the same on the iMac and other new Macs that use USB keyboards.

A number of people in TidBITS Talk recommended MicroMat's free TechTool or commercial TechTool Pro as an alternative method of resetting the PRAM. These programs offer three advantages over the standard method. First, they clear all the information from PRAM, more than the standard method does. Second, they enable you to save the contents of PRAM and, if the PRAM doesn't turn out to be the problem, restore it rather than reset all your settings. Third and finally, they can automatically save and restore your Mac's manufacture date and hours of use, both of which are stored in the PRAM and are lost with the standard method.


Keep in mind that zapping the PRAM does reset some settings, including those below, so you will need to use various control panels to turn on AppleTalk, change your mouse speed, reset your beep sound, and more.

* AppleTalk status
* Serial port configuration and port definition
* Alarm clock setting
* Application font
* Serial printer location
* Key repeat rate
* Key repeat delay
* Speaker volume
* Alert sound
* Double-click time
* Insertion point blink rate
* Mouse speed
* Startup disk
* Menu blink count
* Monitor depth
* 32-bit addressing
* Virtual memory* RAM Disk
* Disk cache

You might find these articles from Apple's Tech Info Library of interest - for more information, search the Tech Info Library on "PRAM."

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Mac basics we sometimes forget

I love trash!

In February I mentioned that the desktop is actually the manefestation of all the desktop files on all volumes. That is why if you just drag an item from a disk main folder to the desktop, it is still on that disk! It just appears separately. You can check this easily: Insert a floppy. Drag an item from the floppy to the desktop. Now eject the floppy. The item disappears! If you insert the floppy again, the item re-appears.

The same is true for the Trash. Each volume has a trash, and if you open the trash, you will see the trash contents of all volumes.

This can cause confusion. For instance, drag something from a floppy to the trash and it is still on the floppy, naturally. If the trash indicated empty before, and now indicates something (the lid is off), and you eject the floppy, the trash indicates empty again. Clearly to empty an item trashed from a floppy, you have to use the Empty Trash command - which also empties trash from every other volume, too. Rather confusing. Sometimes I want to put things in the trash but don't want to remove them right away - I may want them back later. But I can't wipe the items trashed from a floppy unless I empty ALL the trash. So I have to take all the stuff out of the trash, then trash the floppy item, THEN empty the trash, then put those other items back in the trash.

Another confusion: to eject a floppy, you can drag its icon to the trash. (Who knows why the macintosh team created this convention! Pretty crazy!). Fortunately, there has always been another way to eject a floppy - select the icon, then do Put Away (command-Y). And with MacOS 8, you now have an Eject command (command-E). Get out of the habit of dragging the floppy icon to the trash.

A shortcut to putting items in the trash (MacOS 8 or later) is command-delete. And someday I must show you how to create a shortcut for Empty Trash.



My choices, only, out of hundreds of items every month. Drop me a note for YOUR favorite. Links below are either info about or actual downloads, and include commercial products, as well as shareware. These do NOT include demos or beta releases. You might check out Version Tracker for more.
® means update to recently released DOM item. Wish we could catch them all....

APPLEapple icon

AppleWorks 6.0 - now shipping the combined word processor, spreadsheet, database, drawing tools...

Netscape Communicator 4.72 - update for the popular browser

Macromedia Director 8.0 - multimedia authoring application

Eudora Pro 4.3.1 - update for the commercial version of the email client

EarthBrowser 1.0.5 - dynamic 3D Earth model shows current weather, earthquakes, volcanoes, clouds

Macromedia FreeHand 9.0 - popular illustration tool, downloadable version now available

GraphicConverter 3.8 - view, edit, and convert most any graphic file format

IomegaWare 2.2.1 - Zip and Jaz driver v6.07 & software tools

Symantec NAV virus defs Mar - virus definition files for Norton AntiVirus 5 & 6

RealPC 1.1 - PC emulator to run DOS on your PowerMac

Dantz Retrospect Express 4.2 - easy-to-use personal backup software

SoftWindows 98 5.1 - pre-order the PC emulator to run DOS & Windows apps, includes Win98

C&G SpellCatcher 8.1.1 - multilingual spell checker, dictionary, thesaurus...

Tex-Edit Plus 2.9 - excellent text editor with all the features for most text file needs

Timbuktu Pro 5.2.3 - remote control & file exchange system, OS 9 fix & more

Virex 6.1 - virus detection/repair tool

SMUG Navigation Bar

Andromeda Galaxy


©copyright 2000, Louis Bookbinder -
other sources credited where known. Trademark credits, where omitted, remain with their owners  -   updated 18 March 2000


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