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The OS that just won't die
(thankfully) By Wayne Bickell

As a continuation of my December 2001 article on installing the VAR version of OS/2 4.51 from Serenity Systems International called eComStation (eCS for short) I thought I'd tell you about the applications and utilities that I use on a daily basis. Before that I thought I'd mention that since its release there have been two FixPaks which bring eComStation 1.0 up to the 1.01 level. This is equal to the recently released Merlin Convenience Package 2 which is part of the IBM Software Choice programme. MCP2 is all the latest fixes and drivers rolled into a new set of installation CDs. Version 1.1 of eComStation is due for release which will also include all these fixes without having to apply them manually as well as other updates to the VAR part of the package.

Since I'm writing this article in a word processor I may as well tell you it is being written in Lotus SmartSuite 1.6 for OS/2 Warp. As of the time of writing version 1.7 is available as an upgrade with eComStation Upgrade Protection ($89 for one year) or if a user purchases eComStation 1.1 (or 1.1 upgrade from 1.01) which should be available before the end of July. Of course, it's available directly from Lotus or one of its distributors. Lotus SmartSuite for OS/2 contains Lotus WordPro, Lotus 1-2-3, Lotus Organiser, Lotus Approach and Lotus Freelance Graphics. As far as functions go I believe they are up to par with their Windows counterparts. Version 1.6 imports many flavours of MS files (Word 2000 seems to be the latest in 1.6) and version 1.7 contains more and updated import filters as well as bug fixes. Earlier versions could be a bit temperamental although I never had any problems with version 1.0. Version 1.6 has been solid here. I mainly use only WordPro and Organiser and during install you are given the choice of only installing those components you require.

For news I use a program called PMINews. This was published by a company called Stardock Systems, who unfortunately no longer support OS/2. I believe the package is still available for purchase if you look around for it but without support. It has two main windows. On the left it has a tree view of all the servers you are connected to with a list of subscribed groups with the number of unread messages in brackets. The right hand pane lists the messages in each group as you highlight them. Multiple servers are easily supported and the layout is very uncluttered. You can use the internal editor to compose or read messages or use a third party editor of your choice. It has a very good filtering system for removing killfiled articles or authors or to highlight specific messages or inform you of replies to your postings. There are other supported newsreaders but many users seem to be using the mail and newsreader that comes with Netscape Navigator for OS/2 or WarpZilla, the OS/2 version of Mozilla.

PMMail/2 is my favourite mailer, which is still being actively developed along with its Windows counterpart (PMMail 2000). If you look carefully you can see similarities to PMINews. This is because they were originally written by the same authors. The development of PMMail/2 was taken over by one of it distributors and is now being worked on by the person who writes Pmview 2000, a graphics viewer and manipulator similar to IrFanView on windows. PMMail/2 has three panes, the left hand one shows your accounts (you can have multiple accounts) the second shows messages in each folder and the third is a preview pane. As you can see I have several custom folders for mail that I receive for work or from friends. Using filters this mail goes into its own mailbox and unfiltered mail goes directly into the inbox. Because of their common heritage PMINews and PMIMail can both share the same dictionary files for their spell checkers and the same address books. Attachments can be drag and dropped to a pane on the compose window and incoming attachments can be dragged off the mail read window.

Lotus: http://www.lotus.com/products/smartsuiteos2
eComStation: http://www.ecomstation.com/
PMMail/2: http://www.pmmail2000.com/
PMView: http://www.pmview.com/
Mensys: http://os2.mensys.nl/indexuk.html
BMT Micro: http://www.bmtmicro.com



Word Pro
Word Pro

PMI News
PMI News

PMI Mail
PMI Mail


© Algorithmica Japonica Copyright Notice: Copyright of material rests with the individual author. Articles may be reprinted by other user groups if the author and original publication are credited. Any other reproduction or use of material herein is prohibited without prior written permission from TPC. The mention of names of products without indication of Trademark or Registered Trademark status in no way implies that these products are not so protected by law.

Algorithmica Japonica

July , 2002

The Newsletter of the Tokyo PC Users Group

Submissions : Editor


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