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Fixes/Improvements, 1 fix needed, 1 improvement sugest

imdisk fix improve

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#1 ZEE

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 07:25 PM

Hi ppl---

I want to suggest the creation of a thread for Fixes/Improvements and pin that to the top of the board...

I want to contribute with a request for a FIX...
In "Mount new virtual disk" dialog, in the "image file" text box, if you paste a "path+file.xxx" between commas the software gave a filename error... :eek:

And a suggestion for an IMPROVEMENT...
In "Mount new virtual disk" dialog, replace the drive letter text box with a drive letter combobox with the 26 possible cases... :victory:

Small things to make the experience great!!!
I'm a bit obsessive with interface quality in general :superstition: ... so don't be too much surprised!!! :whistling:

I hope this start a "great ideas" shower...

#2 pscEx

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 07:45 PM

I want to suggest the creation of a thread for Fixes/Improvements and pin that to the top of the board...

IMHO the author, and not a user, should decide, whether a request is pinned.

In "Mount new virtual disk" dialog, replace the drive letter text box with a drive letter combobox with the 26 possible cases... :victory:

IMHO ImDisk is optimized for this case. It always suggests an unused drive letter, which can be easily changed by the user.
If you have a list of all 26 drive letters from A: to Z:, the user easily can choose an used drive letter. And that causes an error.
Better than to have the selected drive letter?

In "Mount new virtual disk" dialog, in the "image file" text box, if you paste a "path+file.xxx" between commas the software gave a filename error... :eek:

From my 30 years experience as commercial programmer:
I sometimes got the bug report
"When I input the file name "§$§%&/)`(), the application crashes."
These are situatoins the programmer can avoid. But he has to spend several hours / days / weeks(?) to catch all the mistakes a user can do.
Usually only the "standard" mistakes are catched.
And why spend so much time to respect the wrong input of one from "million" users?

Peter :dubbio:

#3 Sha0

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:07 PM

And a suggestion for an IMPROVEMENT...
In "Mount new virtual disk" dialog, replace the drive letter text box with a drive letter combobox with the 26 possible cases... :victory:

There are more than 36 possible drive letters, actually.

subst ~: windows

~:notepad



#4 pscEx

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:14 PM

There are more than 36 possible drive letters, actually.


subst ~: windows

~:notepad

OffTopic: Sha0, can you explain? As DOS fool, I'm confused
Peter

#5 Olof Lagerkvist

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:18 PM

Hi ppl---

I want to suggest the creation of a thread for Fixes/Improvements and pin that to the top of the board...


That could be a good idea. Or some kind of list of suggestions that has been posted and discussed in other topics.

I want to contribute with a request for a FIX...
In "Mount new virtual disk" dialog, in the "image file" text box, if you paste a "path+file.xxx" between commas the software gave a filename error... :eek:


I don't follow, do you paste a path with path and filename surrounded by commas? Such as:
,C:diskimagesimage1.img,

Why would you expect that to work? It does not and should not. It is simply an invalid Win32 path.

#6 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:47 PM

I presume :unsure: :dubbio: that "commas" could have been translated by mistake (false pairs) from Portuguese, actually meaning quotes, namely double quotes.
In italian:
virgola=comma
virgolette=double quotes

:cheers:
Wonko

#7 Sha0

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:02 PM

OffTopic: Sha0, can you explain? As DOS fool, I'm confused

The Microsoft Windows XP (and presumably later) subst command accepts almost any single character as a "drive letter." A-Z and 0-9 make 36 combinations, but there are even more characters on your keyboard, beyond those. Whether or not particular batch files and particular other programs deal well with anything other than A-Z is another matter. If I recall correctly, H. Peter Anvin might have mentioned to me recently that even one or more versions of Microsoft DOS had similar behaviour; I never tried it back then.

#8 Olof Lagerkvist

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:36 PM

I presume :unsure: :dubbio: that "commas" could have been translated by mistake (false pairs) from Portuguese, actually meaning quotes, namely double quotes.
In italian:
virgola=comma
virgolette=double quotes


Aah, alright I see. I should have been able to guess that, especially since the example included quotes rather than commas.
:fool:

I wish I had managed to learn at least one of the languages with Romance origin, bcause it would have helped a lot in many situations. But sadly I have not.

Anyway, strictly speaking, a quoted path is also an invalid Win32 path. But I agree that it feels reasonably expected nowadays that applications are kind enough to automatically remove quotes around paths before sending the path down to Win32 API functions. Maybe I change this in the next version.

#9 ady

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 07:35 AM

In "Mount new virtual disk" dialog, replace the drive letter text box with a drive letter combobox with the 26 possible cases...


As already mentioned, having a fixed list of options may be a bad idea for some users. I'm not sure someone would use characters other than English letters in the GUI applet (as mentioned by Shao), but even showing all English letters might be a problem when some of them are already in use. Having all letters listed might give the impression that any one of those is available.

If IMDisk is installed in a non-English Windows version, then non-English characters should be listed too?

Moreover, when the user inserts a letter that is already in use, IMDisk asks whether to use that letter anyway, and if the user really wants it, then he can go ahead and use it. So, which list would be more convenient? The one with "all" letters, or the one with "available" English letters, or the one with "anything that could be used", or...? The answer depends on each user.

Additionally, there are users that would rather use the keyboard for this option, even in the GUI applet, so whichever list might be provided, the possibility to type in the field should still be allowed. I'd like to have the possibility to use the mouse in this field, but having the "adequate" type of list is not trivial IMHO, and maintaining the option to use the keyboard is important too.


That could be a good idea. Or some kind of list of suggestions that has been posted and discussed in other topics.


Unless Olof can temporarily close the access to pinned topics, and temporarily re-open them so only Olof can add relevant information, and then close them again, I think the experience tells us this one could be a "bad" idea.

For example, the pinned FAQs topic should be used only by Olof, but was "invaded" with questions that should had been posted as regular topics. Only Olof should decide whether to add a question (asked in a regular topic) to the pinned FAQs topic with the relevant answer.

If that situation is repeated with some "requests" or "suggestions" pinned topic, then the pinned topic is useless to the general users, so why should be added? Just start a new regular topic and make your request / suggestion.

I don't follow, do you paste a path with path and filename surrounded by commas? Such as:

,C:\diskimages\image1.img,

Why would you expect that to work? It does not and should not. It is simply an invalid Win32 path.


The double quotation marks are added by Windows Explorer. For example, shift+right_click on an image file, then select "copy as path", and then paste it (in notepad, IMDisk or wherever else). The path is already pasted between double quotation marks, even when the path doesn't contain space characters.

When using programs that don't accept this type of notation (and IMDisk is not the only one), the user needs to "edit" the pasted path to remove the initial and final double quotation marks. Then the path is accepted in IMDisk.

I guess the request is for IMDisk to recognize these optional initial and ending double quotation marks if / when any one of them is present, so to understand they are not part of the path itself, so the user doesn't need to delete them manually if they are included in the pasted path.

#10 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 01:36 PM

Well, since double quotes cannot be used in directory or filenames, it is just a matter of replacing any occurrence of them to "nothing".

The "canonical" drive names are however A to Z in all languages.

@Sha0
I am not sure to understand your reference to SUBST. (as a matter of fact I am sure I cannot understand it).
In theory SUBST is a command that assigns to an already existing directory an "alternate" access by "mounting" it to an drive letter
http://ss64.com/nt/subst.html
the fact that it can accept drive letters different from A÷Z doesn't seemingly mean anything, in the sense of HOW do you assign a non-A÷Z character to a drive (not to a directory)?
Can you expand a bit on the latter?
Are you suggesting to use a directory as mountpoint (NTFS only) and then assign to it an "alternate" drive letter?
I just tested this (using your tilde ~: example) and there are a couple of issues (or possibly features :unsure:).
A non-A÷Z drive "letter" is not listed running subst.exe and it is not seen in explorer.
The drive/mountpoint can be accessed allright from command line, though.
The result is a lot like a "phantom" drive, DISKpart list volume sees the volume but it doesn't output it's "drive letter".
It seems to me like a nice finding :thumbsup: though most probably with a very limited practical use.
It seems I cannot find a way (if I know not that I made that SUBST) to find the "sheer existence" of that "drive letter" :dubbio:.

I also tried good ol' NTSUBST:
http://web.archive.o...om/ntsubst.html
quickly downloaded version 1.0 from here:
ftp://ftp.uni-rostock.de/pub/systems/windows/WinNT/Sys/ntsubst.exe
(I must have *somewhere* latest 1.2 version....)
which also can create the subst letter but doesn't list them.

Visualsubst:
http://www.ntwind.co...sual-subst.html
only works with A÷Z letters too.
(BTW it's drop down menu only lists non-used drive letters, including those connected to IMDISK mounted volumes)

There is anothe Vsuubsts here (much smaller :thumbsup:):
http://home.datacomm...bigler/s04.html
that however behaves like the above.

Our friend alter's psubst doesn't list subst drives at all :(:
http://alter.org.ua/soft/win/psubst/


OT, but not much, remember that drive letters assigned to IMDISK mounted volumes are not listed in MOUNTVOL.


:cheers:
Wonko

#11 ZEE

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 01:59 AM

There are more than 36 possible drive letters, actually.


subst ~: windows

~:notepad


Cool... ?are there more or just "~"

#12 ZEE

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 02:05 AM

That could be a good idea. Or some kind of list of suggestions that has been posted and discussed in other topics.



I don't follow, do you paste a path with path and filename surrounded by commas? Such as:

,C:diskimagesimage1.img,

Why would you expect that to work? It does not and should not. It is simply an invalid Win32 path.


Sorry... mistake.... not "commas" but "double quotes"... like "c:vmdisk1.vhd"...
I usualy get paths to my files with auxiliary tools... and some send paths enclosed in double quotes...
because of the use of spaces in the path...

#13 Olof Lagerkvist

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 02:09 AM

Sorry... mistake.... not "commas" but "double quotes"... like "c:\vm\disk1.vhd"...


Yes, I realised that after Wonkos post. I refer to what I wrote after that: http://reboot.pro/to...st/#entry163583

#14 ZEE

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 02:13 AM

I presume :unsure: :dubbio: that "commas" could have been translated by mistake (false pairs) from Portuguese, actually meaning quotes, namely double quotes.
In italian:
virgola=comma
virgolette=double quotes

:cheers:
Wonko


You're right sir!!!! a Beer to you!!! :yahoo: :yahoo: I'll drink one too!!!

#15 ZEE

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 02:20 AM

Cool... ?are there more or just "~"


OK,,, just tested... if you use just 1 char followed by a colon... like c: you can even use chars > 127 ascii...
you can test with π (03C0) for instance...
subst π: f:aFolder

to remove the drive mapping
subst /d π:

Cool,,,

#16 Sha0

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 04:05 AM

I am not sure to understand your reference to SUBST. (as a matter of fact I am sure I cannot understand it).

What it boils down to for modern Windows versions is that the drive letters are symbolic links in the object namespace (not to be confused with any filesystem). You can use WinObj to peruse these. Global ones correspond to those that you see with that tool under the GLOBAL?? area. Session-specific ones are those under the Sessions area's sub-areas.

In theory SUBST is a command that assigns to an already existing directory an "alternate" access by "mounting" it to an drive letter
http://ss64.com/nt/subst.html
the fact that it can accept drive letters different from A÷Z doesn't seemingly mean anything, in the sense of HOW do you assign a non-A÷Z character to a drive (not to a directory)?

The symbolic links in the object namespace can refer to other items in the object namespace, beyond mere filesystem items (such as a directory). I should probably share a simple link-making tool in another thread where it wouldn't derail ImDisk discussion. :)

Can you expand a bit on the latter?

Above.

Are you suggesting to use a directory as mountpoint (NTFS only) and then assign to it an "alternate" drive letter?

No.

I just tested this (using your tilde ~: example) and there are a couple of issues (or possibly features :unsure:).
A non-A÷Z drive "letter" is not listed running subst.exe and it is not seen in explorer.
The drive/mountpoint can be accessed allright from command line, though.
The result is a lot like a "phantom" drive, DISKpart list volume sees the volume but it doesn't output it's "drive letter".
It seems to me like a nice finding :thumbsup: though most probably with a very limited practical use.

Whether or not particular batch files and particular other programs deal well with anything other than A-Z is another matter.

Right.

OK,,, just tested... if you use just 1 char followed by a colon... like c: you can even use chars > 127 ascii...
you can test with π (03C0) for instance...
subst π: f:aFolder

to remove the drive mapping
subst /d π:

Cool,,,

Sure.

#17 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 10:19 AM

The symbolic links in the object namespace can refer to other items in the object namespace, beyond mere filesystem items (such as a directory). I should probably share a simple link-making tool in another thread where it wouldn't derail ImDisk discussion. :)

Will wait for it :).
And, just to actually de-rail a bit the topic :w00t: and before I forget about this :doh7: , a link to "malformed" directory names (another "queer" thing):
http://www.msfn.org/...can-be-omitted/

:cheers:
Wonko




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