Author Topic: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP  (Read 6662 times)

george

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DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« on: February 23, 2007, 06:21:54 PM »
I have a user that was using Wordstar Professional ver 4, a DOS program in WIN98.  I installed a new pc with XP Pro and am unable to get a complete directory listings.  I have tried using a 'DOS box' and Virtual PC 2007 (with WIN98) and get the same results.

The directory has 850 entries and displayed all 800+ in WIN98 just fine.  Using XP as the host operating system it will display a complete listing from a DOS prompt, but only about 300 within the Wordstar program.

WHY?  HELP!

Thanks
George


Admin: 23 Feb 07 Removed extra line breaks
« Last Edit: February 23, 2007, 06:25:47 PM by Forum Admin »

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Re: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2007, 06:29:44 PM »
Are you sure it used to display 800+ entries? I think you'll find that the WordStar file list display is limited to around 255 - the biggest number you can get with 8 bits.

The file list is also filtered by WordStar to optionally hide certain file extensions; the intention being to hide WordStar's own files. This is configurable.

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george

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Re: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2007, 10:47:02 PM »
Here is an update and more info:

Original 98 computer had 830 some files in the C:\WS subdirectory.  WS worked perfectly, it would print and list all files A-Z.

When I moved the user to a new pc with XP.  I copyed his C:\WS subdirectory to the XP box.  If I opened a command box I could do a dir and list all 800+ files.  I then exicuted the WS.exe file. the program runs but when you go to D - open a file or P - print a file and scroll down through the directory it only list A-G or appox 300 files. 

I then loaded VirtualPC 2007 with a WIN98 operating system - in hopes of
duplicating his old pc.  I used the same config.sys and autoexec.bat setting with the same results as XP.  at dos prompt all 800+ list - within the WS program only 300 list???

I have tried all the tricks I can think of - config.sys (files, buffers, emm386, himem.sys, dos=high)

Am I fighting an XP problem?

Thanks for helping

George


Admin: 24 Feb Removed extra line breaks
« Last Edit: February 24, 2007, 10:55:47 PM by Forum Admin »

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Re: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2007, 05:37:35 AM »
George,

I've just counted the number of files I can get WordStar 4 to display, and it's only 152 plus ... to indicate that there are more than that in the directory. This is less than I thought possible - I had thought it could show just under 255.

This test was done with WordStar running under Windows XP. You get 72 lines of files displayed with four files and the file sizes per line. The 73rd line only has three files and file sizes listed, plus the ... under the final file size entry on the 72nd line.

I think this is a WordStar limitation - not an operating system issue.

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george

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Re: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2007, 03:36:17 AM »
Mike

then how does the WIN98 box list A-z files while the XP box will only list the A-G??

George

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Re: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2007, 03:45:48 AM »
Hi George,

I'd have to say that I don't know. Are you 100% sure that the old PC did actually display 800+ files, or is there a chance that the new PC has more files in the directory than the old one did. That would be the only explanation I can think of.

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Martin

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Re: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2007, 09:44:29 PM »
I duplicated George's problem. Had to construct a new directory, since none of mine contained enough files to trigger the problem.

The result? Yes, WordStar will only display approximately 300 files when running under Windows XP. (I counted 310, but I could be wrong. One begins to nod after 250.) And yes, at the end, you get dots in the bottom right-hand column.

The solution? This computer dumbell advises breaking down your files into subdirectories that contain 300 or fewer files. For example, if you have a "Business" directory, break it down into (for example) "Taxes," "Auto," "House," etc.


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Mike_Newcomb

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Re: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2007, 07:42:51 AM »
I have experienced the same. Unfortunately this is a problem, in that old programs may *NOT* be forward compatible.

a) if one uses windows to look at the folder, the files are there.

b) if one uses wordstar, its directory display may be missing some files.
Possibly the difference in total number of files displayed is related to working memory or similar.

The way around this is to have fewer files in the directory.

Another problem I have found is that there is limit with Wordstar in the number of sub-directory levels it can handle, when you want to open a file.

Windows allows many more levels than wordstar.
The way around this is when in windows, right click on the file and use 'open with'.
 

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Re: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2007, 06:14:45 PM »
Another problem I have found is that there is limit with Wordstar in the number of sub-directory levels it can handle, when you want to open a file.

Windows allows many more levels than wordstar.

You could well be running into the Path length problem of DOS here. DOS versions before 6.0 allowed a path, e.g., disk_name:\directory_name1\directory_name2\file_name, of 128 characters. There are a few of these taken by the operating system, so you actually get slightly less than this to use (I can't remember the exact number).

MS DOS version 6.0 got rid of this limit, but in general you still only got 255 characters (Windows 95 - Me should fit in this category too as they ran on DOS 6-7) - you can get around that limit, but then other issues come into play.

Windows XP allows for 1024 characters, and if SP2 is installed 2048.

However, WordStar for DOS seems to drop out at around 60 characters, so if you're list of directories including the file name is longer than this you may start to run into trouble. In Windows versions with long filename support, this limit is on the short DOS compatable directory names, for example C:\DOCUME~1\USERNA~1\MYDOCU~1\MYFILE.TXT (41 characters - there's a null terminator) rather than C:\Documents and Settings\User Name\My Documents\My File.txt (61 characters) on a recent Windows system.
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Mike_Newcomb

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Re: DOS ver 4 - Partial directory listing in XP
« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2007, 11:22:28 AM »
Thanks for replying - you are most likely correct.

a) if I run wordstar in its own window there is no problem with opening files in its sub-directories presumably it looks downward.

b) when I try to open a file, from a list produced by the W2000 search function, on occasions wordstar cannot find.
One can see it is attempting to open from the root directory downwards and there are many sub-directories.

c) If one goes to the sub-directory and file concerned , 'right clicks' and 'open with' wordstar, it then opens without problem.

Regards - Mike