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  • Yes, I’m still alive!

    I had planned on getting online and writing a short review of the Themer app by MyColorScreen as I received my beta code this morning. Alas, that’s not going to happen this morning although I will try and get it online by the end of the day.

    What I did find when I logged onto the site for the first time in months was that Google had decided my site was the home of malware and should be avoided. Dayum.

    Earlier this year I started using a couple of 3rd party plugins that would pull in my posts from Google+ and turn them into blog posts. Seemed like a pretty cool thing to do and as I currently spend what little time online I have on G+ that was very convenient. Anyway, what I found was that the Google+ Blog plugin had pulled in everything I had ever posted on G+ and duplicated each of them 16+ times. WTF? So I ended up having to delete 2500+ blog posts that were all duplicates. Since I wanted to keep one of each I just couldn’t go in and blindly delete them all. Fucking asshats.

    So I think I’ve gotten rid of all the duplicates now, if you notice any please let me know.

    I have also disabled almost all of the 3rd party plugins I was using here on the site and gone back to the stock commenting system (actually using Jetpack for this now).

     

    As far as the BBS, it’s still online and you should be able to get to it via telnet OR the applets linked to above. I haven’t even logged in in months or checked my netmail. That comes soon. It’s still hosted in a virtual machine on my desktop BUT I do have a laptop set up running Windows XP that I will be moving it to at some point soon. This will mean more resources for the BBS and more disk space as well for files. I’m still running Synchronet and will update it to the latest version as well.

    As always, if you have any feedback for the BBS or my blog please feel free to contact me at one of the above links.

  • Roger Shays has put up a Fastecho tutorial for those interested. Thanks Roger.

    You can find it here.

  • Synchronet 02.01.2013 No Comments

    *** I had to change one line in the prompt below. Where it says @SMB_LAST_MSG@ that should read @SMB_TOTAL_MSGS@. The last message @-Code gives a total number of messages in the sub including deleted, dupes, etc…which may not match what the system actually shows. I found that out in some of the message bases that have a lot of posts, such as new file listings.***

    A while back I explained how to replace the message header (two ways, easy and hard) but now my prompt doesn’t match so I replaced my message reading prompt before work this morning. Here are the directions along with a couple of pics:

    1. Create your ansi prompt. Here’s mine along with an explanation of the @-codes I used.

    readp

    The @SMB_GROUP@ tells SBBS to list the current message group (Local, Fidonet, etc…) @SMB_SUB@ is the current sub, or message area, within that group. @SMB_CURMSG@ is the current message number in that group and last of all @SMB_LAST_MSG@ is the last message number available. You’ll see what they do a little later on.

    Read more …

  • Synchronet 01.01.2013 No Comments

    So the next thing I decided to tackle on the board was the default user settings screen on my board.

    I initially attempted to change the text strings in my baja menu source by using the REPLACE_TEXT command in it. That apparently won’t work for whatever reason, so I had to edit the text.dat directly. Be very careful when you edit your text.dat file because you can royally screw things up here.

    What I did was to create the entire screen in Ansi and then save each line as a separate file at which point I replaced the text like so:

    shadow10

    Make sure to leave the line between prompt 493 and 494 as it is or you’ll mess things up.

    This is what it looks like now.

    shadow9

    I don’t have any plans to replace the header and footer strings at the moment although I might attempt to do that later. It was actually pretty easy, just a bit of copy and replace. Make sure to only use the string itself, don’t add the ending ESC[255D if your ansi editor inserts it at the end of the file.

  • So I’ve added a few more games and things to do on the BBS foryou to check out. I also managed to get Ftelnet working as well. Using that page (above) as my default log in now just because it’s much easier for this old man to see . Anyway, I am about 60% of the way through configuring everything the way I want. I still have a few menus to add and then it will be time to change most of the default strings. I’ve posted a few pics below of what it’s looking like now.

    shadow1

    The log in screen

    Read more …

  • EleBBS 12.12.2012 2 Comments

    Over at R&M Software Rick Parrish has several how-to’s posted I wanted to make sure and archive. This is one of them. You can visit the original here. All of this is from his site, I’ve just borrowed (stolen) it here.

    This HOWTO is based on the following software:

    RedHat 7.3
    EleBBS 0.09g1

    First, the steps involved in installing EleBBS

    Read more …

  • BBSing 11.12.2012 No Comments

    I’ve added a few new doors to the eXternal menu. Check them out and let me know if anything isn’t working properly. Also in the eXternal menu (Main) I’ve added a link to Weather Underground. They actually still operate a telnet board you can log into to get your weather information.

  • BBSing, How to 10.12.2012 No Comments

    Here’s another how-to from zharvek over at Archaic Binary. The original post can be found at the link. Tribbs was the second BBS software I ran way back in the early ’90s. I probably used it for about a year or so before moving on to something I could modify a bit more.

    Ah what an adventure this is getting to be. As you may know I’m setting up my old Telnet BBS again, not just the door games, but the full system including File Areas, Message Bases, and yes the Door Games.

    I have all the games working so far, and file transfers are fine when you use a good client (mTelnet or SyncTerm).

    Read more …

  • BBSing 10.12.2012 No Comments

    I’ve added another page for those having problems with the web access. The old terminal is marked Shadowscope (Flashterm) and the new one is Shadowscope (Ftelnet) which is a much bigger screen size for those of us that ought to be wearing our glasses. If one doesn’t work well with the games try the other.

  • BBSing 07.12.2012 No Comments

    Updated – I found an easier way to do this (knew I would…) and it’s at the bottom of the post

    One of things I used in my Proboard and RG setups in the ’90s was custom message headers…i.e. OBV/2 style. I’m trying to get away from the stock setup and this is one of the things that bothered me most.

    Here’s what I ended up with:

    Click to Embiggen

    First off you need to find or create the header. Unfortunately even though I can come up with some decent stuff I completely SUCK at anything art related so I dug through several Ansi packs and BBS setups and found a few I wanted. This is the original I came up with:

    Open your ansi in TheDraw or whatever program you’re using to edit them. Make sure to select your foreground and background colors so that they match what you want the end result to be. You can find the current list of @-codes over at the Synchronet Wiki. Here’s about what the file should look like when you’re finished editing it in TheDraw.

    This is the part that had me stumped for more than an hour this afternoon trying to get to work correctly. The -L at the end of the code tells SBBS to align left and the #’s are how much padding you want. Otherwise you end up pushing the stuff to the right onto the next line and it looks like crap.

    Once you’ve got your file saved in TheDraw you need to exit out and navigate the DOS prompt to your menu directory, usually \sbbs\text\menu. That’s where you need to copy your file. By default Synchronet loads .asc files so I named mine msghdr.asc

    Type edit msghdr.asc so that you’ve got the ansi open in your DOS text editor.

    You see that line that ends with 255D? If you leave it there you’ll have several line feeds and you’ll never see your header or maybe just the bottom two lines. So what we need to do is move it up several lines as so…

    Do an alt-f s and save your file now. That should be all you need to do here. Now it’s on to the text.dat which is located in \sbbs\ctrl\

    Here’s what it looks like before making changes.

    The top few lines are the only ones we are concerned with. At first I thought I needed to replace all of the first 9 or so but once I started editing and playing around I realized I could just replace prompt #1.

    Here’s what I have after editing:

    The line that say TYPE tells SBBS to display a text file for that prompt. Save your text.dat and reload your configuration and you should be ready to go.

    There’s bound to be an easier method to do this but it’s working on my system. If you have any questions or better ideas please let me know.

    Updated. As I mentioned in the paragraph above, there IS an easier way to do this (duh). You can find it at http://wiki.synchro.net/custom:messageheader If you are using a custom you’ll still probably need to pad some of the strings as I mentioned above.

     

     

  • BBSing 07.12.2012 No Comments

    So I finally finished MOST of the menu screens. Still have a lot to do on the prompts, pauses and all of the other text strings but it’s getting there slowly but surely.

    Here’s the main menu. Using the default key codes for everything. Click on the picture to embiggen.

  • BBSing 05.12.2012 No Comments

    I finally managed to get Lunatix running on my SBBS system tonight. Originally I was trying to use it with Synchronet’s built-in fossil support but it was so fucking slow as to be unusable so I set it up with Netfoss and kept getting errors that netfoss.dll couldn’t be found. As with anything one I walked away from it for a day I was able to figure out what the configuration needed to be so here’s my setup:

    The first one’s just a screenshot of the games I currently have running.

    Make sure that you set “Native Executable” to yes so that Synchronet doesn’t attempt to use it’s fossil driver.

    The /N%# tells both Netfoss and Lunatix what node number it’s being run from and the /H tells Netfoss the socket handle.

    Set up Lunatix to use whatever drop file you are most comfortable with that both support. I’m using Dorinfo1.def in the example above.

    Now it’s running MUCH more smoothly than before.

  • BBSing 02.12.2012 No Comments
    This is about 10 years old but it's still valid information.
    
    
    DOSEMU Synchronet DOORS HOWTO
    
    Author: Michael Capp <laffer(at)exeonline(dot)com>
    
    07 February 2003
    
    Complete installation guide on configuring DOSEMU and Synchronet
    to run DOS doors under Linux utilizing DOSEMU.
    
    Copyright (c) 2003 Michael Capp
    
    Permission  is  granted  to copy, distribute  and/or  modify  this
    document  under  the terms of the GNU Free Documentation  License,
    Version  1.2  or any later version published by the Free  Software
    Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts,  and
    no  Back-Cover  Texts.  A copy of the license is included  in  the
    section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".

    Read more …

  • BBSing 29.11.2012 No Comments

    Ok, so as I ended up sticking with the Synchronet setup due to the fact network and internet integration is so much better/easier to set up than using EleBBS. It does have a greater learning curve as far as configuring and modding so for a while the menus will probably look entirely fucked up as I make changes.

    I’ve added several new door games and a bunch of message areas. I still intend on linking the games so that we can play interBBS games as well.

    As always, if you have any questions or comments please feel free to shoot me an email/netmail, note to sysop or leave a message in one of the local bases.

    Don’t forget, you can access the BBS from my website here without any type of special client.

  • BBSing 24.11.2012 No Comments

    This article was originally written by Nick in 2009 and in keeping with what I wanted to do in archiving all of these difficult to find how-to’s I figured I would post it here. If you find it helpful please go visit him and let him know!

    Setting up Renegade with

    NetFoss for Telnet under

    XP

    Posted on May 20, 2009 by Nick

    Back in the day I ran a BBS using Renegade BBS software.  I’ve been trying over time to  get this running again.  There are quite a few updated BBSs out there that support Linux and telnet services out of the box; however, I want to get my original BBS running again.  I also have a soft spot for Renegade.

    After numerous attempts using dosemu under Linux, WINE, VMware running FreeDOS and implementing my own virtual modem service written in Perl but I just couldn’t get things working right.  As it turns out there’s this nifty set of programs that are part of NetFoss.  NetFoss itself is a fossil driver (communication driver talks between BBS software and modem) but also includes a complete telnet server as well for handling telnet communication with the BBS.  However, this is designed for Windows XP.  So I decided to throw a quick XP install in to a VM and fire this all up.

    Read more …

  • BBSing 23.11.2012 No Comments

    Originally I wasn’t going to have any file areas. I changed my mind and while I don’t have the menu complete I have started adding file areas.

    I also put in a couple more local doors now we are up to LORD, Usurper, Falcon’s Eye, BRE, Global Wars and Darkness. I intend on going interBBS eventually and will also add on a few more games as well.

    You can access the BBS-Scene IRC server from the eXternal menu now.

    A few more Fidonet echoes have become available and I will also be adding on more networks as time permits. If you don’t feel like messaging online I have installed the Bluewave QWK download door.

    As always, if you have any problems or something isn’t working right feel free to contact me here. Leaving me a message on the board is OK but email is much faster and I will get it wherever I am.

    I will have a couple more tutorials to post soon as well, of course specific to my system.

  • BBSing 18.11.2012 8 Comments

    So I finally managed to get EleBBS working together with Fastecho and Radius! Very happy about it. Synchronet seems pretty cool and I’ll continue playing with it in a VM but my “production” board will continue to be ELE. I will eventually post my setup for anyone who is interested. Not that there are more than a handful of BBSes left but still…

    I’ve also gotten a Fido node number. If you need to reach me that way you can send netmail to 1:3634/24. It’s up 24/7 and accepts crash.

  • After doing a lot of hunting I finally came across this guide and am putting it here for posterity. I did switch from Argus to Radius (an Argus Clone) and went through this guide exactly as spelled out and it’s working perfectly. Waiting now for a message back from the NC with a node number. The original guide can be found here

    Updated 12/29/12 – I have also updated the bottom of the post a couple of items if you are in a multi-network situation.

     

    Synchronet Setup For FidoNet

    (Windows XP)

     

     

    By Dantin Hart of Rat’s Nest BBS 9/22/05
    Updated by Lord Time of Time Warp of the Future BBS 12/15/08 (on the links and e-mail)

    Also Updated by Richard Miles of Shadowscope on 11/14/12

    Okay heres the deal, you need to download 2 files required to get your Synchronet
    BBS running with FidoNet and they can be obtained through your Hub’s Coordinator,

    File names are BACKBONE and nodelist. As was explained to me by Rob Swindel the

    author of Synchronet BBS. BACKBONE.NA is the North American BACKBONE FILE.

    Make sure to contact your coordinator for the appropriate File Extension and or File.

    Also you may talk to your coordinator about getting the current nodelist.%%% <- extension

    is a number which changes with every release.

    Read more …

  • BBSing, How to 14.11.2012 No Comments

    The directions over at the SBBS wiki didn’t seem to work for me so I did some hunting and found the following instructions which allowed it to work using Netfoss:

    Synchronet BBS 3.1x USAGE
    ————————–

    Synchronet already has its own FOSSIL support, but using NetFoss in place
    of the internal FOSSIL can allow DOS doors to run considerably faster,
    often by a factor of 2 or more times faster then the internal speed, with
    lower CPU usage. You can use NetFoss to run all or just some or all of
    your door programs, and run others using the internal FOSSIL.

    Synchronet can create a DOOR32.SYS file, but we do not suggest running
    NetFoss in DOOR32.SYS mode because Synchronet is unable to create both a
    DOOR32.SYS and a standard drop file at the same time. For this reason the
    DOOR32.SYS mode should not be used at the time this guide was written.

    Here is how to configure the “Legend Of The Red Dragon” door in Synchronet
    3.10j using the Non-DOOR32.SYS mode:

    Name LORD
    Internal Code LORD
    Start-up Directory C:\SBBS\XTRN\LORD
    Command Line c:\sbbs\nf.bat /N%# /H%H start.bat %#
    Clean-up Command Line
    Execution Cost None
    Access Requirements
    Execution Requirements
    Multiple Concurrent Users Yes
    Intercept Standard I/O No
    Native (32-bit) Executable Yes
    Use Shell to Execute No
    Modify User Data No
    Execute on Event No
    Pause After Execution No
    BBS Drop File Type GAP DOOR.SYS
    Place Drop File In Node Directory
    Time Options…

    Notice that the Native (32-Bit) Executable option is enabled. This needs
    to be turned on in order for Synchronet to not enable its own internal
    FOSSIL driver. REPEAT – even though you are not using DOOR32.SYS as your
    dropfile, Native (32-Bit) Executable must be enabled. Additionally, make
    sure to change the command line to reflect the directory that you
    installed NetFoss and the Start-up directory should either reflect where
    your door is located if you don’t use a batch file to start the door, or
    could have the startup directory point to your current node directory
    where the dropfiles are created. (If you do the later, you should launch
    the door with a batch file that first uses the CD\ command to Change the
    Directory to where the door is located.

    When using the Non-DOOR32.SYS mode, you must edit your NF.BAT file to add
    the ” %1″ at the end of the second line, as explained earlier in this
    document. Instructions can also be found in the NF.BAT.

    Make sure to change the Command line in NF.BAT to reflect the directory
    that you installed NetFoss in, and the Start-up directory should reflect
    where your door is installed.

    In the LORD door example above, the start.bat is the batch file located
    in the Start-up Directory which actually runs this door game.

  • BBSing, How to 14.11.2012 No Comments

    I mentioned yesterday that I needed a bit of help setting some things up. I still do but as I’ve searched I’ve found a wealth of information out there. Unfortunately there seems to be less and less as time goes by so I am going to try and repost some of it here and save for posterity. This site’s been up for almost 13 years now and I don’t plan on taking it down any time soon.  I’ve come across this tutorial in several places but I think it needs to be updated and also kept with setups for other stuff as well.

    Graphical Setup Tutorial for Argus

    by David Moufarrege HTML version of this document and low.res. images are made by Max Masyutin
    Original version of this document is available in http://www.filegate.net/ipfn/i-util/ATUTHLP.ZIP

     

    Modified slightly to remove dead links by Janis Kracht 03/17/03

    Further modified by Richard Miles 11/14/2012 – I’ve hosted all of the images on my system here and linked to them rather than the original site. Argus is no longer supported or updated but most of the information below is still valid.

    Read more …

  • BBSing 13.11.2012 No Comments

    So as I mentioned in an earlier post, the BBS is back online. You can access it through the links above and to the right OR via telnet at rmiles.myhomeseer.com

    I am in the process of trying to get netmail back up and running in addition to echomail but seem to be having problems. Right now I’ve got EleBBS and Fastecho setup and can use either Radius or Argus as the mailer. I need someone who can help me troubleshoot.

    From the board I can write a netmail (although EleBBS won’t let me access the nodelist for some reason). Exit the BBS and I run FASTECHO SCAN. It detects the netmail and pulls out a ?.msg leaving it in the EleBBS message base directory. FASTECHO PACK seems to do nothing.

    It’s been 16 years or more since I had a BBS/Mailer/Tosser up and running and back then I used Renegade/Gecho/FrontDoor and ended up going to Proboard/Fastecho/Allfix/Maindoor. I have no frigging idea how I had it set up and don’t think I have access to the files anymore so that I could look at my config.

    Any help would be appreciated.

  • BBSing 11.11.2012 No Comments

    I mentioned last week that I was going to put my Electronic Bulletin Board System (BBS) back online and I have done so. BBSes are old school, how we connected to each other BEFORE the web. Back in the day I ran a dial in system but today it’s telnet only. There are TWO ways you can get to the board to check it out. There are links to it on top of the page as well as over to the right. You can get to it there using a flash applet. The other way, if you are familiar with telnet is to get to it at telnet://rmiles.myhomeseer.com Port:23

    I’ve still got a bunch of work to do on it but here are the details.

    WinXP running in a virtual machine.
    5-Nodes running EleBBS v0.09.g1 under Telsrv. If need be I may add nodes later. If it looks like something I will permanently keep on line I’ll also build a dedicated server for it.

    No nets yet, a couple of local message bases. I will correct that very soon.
    Two games for now, LORD and Usurper. I may add Falcon’s Eye later and will certainly take requests but I have found that it’s a lot more fun only hosting one or two games than having 100 of them with one person on each.

    I will also NOT have any file areas. I may put some of the old BBS files back online via ftp but if so I will also be putting ads on there ti recoup the cost I will incur from the bandwidth. The BBS is hosted from my home but the webserver is NOT and I have to pay if I go over my bandwidth quota. As a matter of fact even though I hate them I may go ahead and add one to the top of the BBS page as well.

    It’s been about 15 years since I had a board up and running so I’m a bit rusty. If something’s not working correctly, PLEASE let me know and I’ll get it fixed.

  • BBSing 05.11.2012 No Comments

    I mentioned something in my post the other day about how this web site got started as an electronic bulletin board system and started getting all sentimental so I am in the process of setting up a telnet/web bbs site. LOL.

    It’ll take me a few days but I’ll have it online, door games and all, very soon. I’ll post links for all you old farts that remember how we used to connect…

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