Original Computer Programs and Databases

To a rational being only the irrational is unendurable, but the rational is endurable.
(Epictetus)



The following programs have been written by Michael McGoodwin (the "developer"), using Visual Basic 6 (VB6), VC++  6.0, Access 97, or Access 2007 as indicated, and were tested in Windows XP Professional and Windows 7.  These programs are copyrighted "freeware" available for downloading and running without charge, provided that they are not resold and that their origin is acknowledged.  While they are believed to be reliable and to perform as advertised, and have been extensively used on the developer's computers, they are provided "as is" with no guarantees as to their performance or any assurances that they will not damage your computer files or otherwise perform in an unexpected manner.  The prefix "VG" signifies "Vitrine Gardens", a company name applied by Michael McGoodwin to technical creations such as software.  The developer acknowledges that some of these programs were begun in the mid- and late-1990s and are getting a little long in the tooth, in that they do not use VB.NET and do not make much use of Unicode, XML, etc.  However, the developer continues to use each program listed to good advantage in his own computing environment.

Access files with extension "ACCDB" designate Access 2007 files.  Access database files with extension "MD3" designate 32-bit Access 97 files.  Access database files developed prior to Access 2007 are more commonly given the extension MDB.

To install any of the programs listed below and that download as .exe files, your system temp folder must be on the same drive as your Windows NT operating system.  The downloadable programs are large because of the setup files they include— the actual application files are much smaller.

The graphical logos Windows XP graphic and Windows 7signify that the program has been tested in and performs satisfactorily in Windows XP and Windows 7, respectively.

Program Package Description

Computers Database

v. 4.5
7 September 2009
Size 500 KB



Windows 7
Computers DB is an integrated Access 2007 application program that facilitates storage and management of information about installed software, hardware, and external technical services.  For example, program locations, configurations, versions, command line switches, bugs, special techniques, communications and inquiries, etc. may be documented for one or more computers.  All source code and table and form properties (such as allowed field lengths) are viewable and potentially editable.  It is downloadable as a .ZIP archive file.  Instructions for use may be viewed in the Program Manual—this file includes screen shots. This database supercedes an earlier version for Access 97.

VG32 DLL 
(setup file vg32dll.exe)

20 April 2005
Size: 1.5 MB

Package includes:

VG32.DLL
v. 2.5, 17 Nov 2000
45 KB

TestVG32DLL.exe
v. 2.5, 17 Nov 2000
66 KB



Windows 7
VG32.DLL is a general purpose Windows Dynamic Link Library (DLL) containing useful procedures for bit manipulation, integer manipulation, string manipulation, file time stamp, and miscellaneous other procedures that are hard to do in Visual Basic or that provide speed advantages or other benefits.  The procedures are callable as Function and Sub procedures from 32-Bit versions of VB, VBA, or MS Access.  This DLL a standard (non-OLE) DLL written in C and compiled most recently with VC++  6.0.  All functions and subroutines contained in VG32.DLL are fully documented in the Basic Declarations Listing (this is an HTML version of the .BAS file vg32decl.bas which is installed with TestVG32DLL.exe). 

The installation package also includes TestVG32DLL.exe, a test program that demonstrates the functions and procedures of VG32.DLL by creating a file showing the results of testing each of its procedures. 

The DLL and test program are downloadable as a self-extracting ZIP exe file and installed with a Setup program.  Additional instructions are in Readme.txt.  This DLL file is used by several of the programs on this page.

VG Archive Directory
v. 2.4
20 April 2005
Size 1.5 MB



Windows 7
This utility program (VGArchDir.EXE) can be invoked within File Manager, Windows Explorer, or at a Command Prompt  to create a .ZIP archive file of the current directory (or some other user-specified directory) and which is placed in a subdirectory named "Archives".   It preserves the last 5 ZIP files so created per directory to provide multiple recent backups of a directory's contents.  It can recurse subdirectories below the directory requested.  It requires  WinZip32.exe (version 6.3 or later, not included).  VGArchDir is downloadable as a self-extracting ZIP exe file and installed with a Setup program.  Instructions for use are in the Program Manual webpage.

VG Clean

v. 5.6
7 April 2010
Size 2.0 MB



Windows 7
VGClean aids in cleaning out excess or junk files and data from your computer hard drives.  Specifically, it "cleanses" the user's hard drives of undesired files, folders, registry keys, registry values, INI file values, and other stored information which are placed there by various programs such as your web browser and which, at least in my opinion, can be deleted without undue harm.  This includes removing privacy- and security-related information that you would rather not leave behind for others to view.  This might be especially important to you when multiple users have access to the same computer, such as in a library setting.  The user may specify additional files, directories, registry keys, INI file values, and registry key values that he/she wishes to delete or purge as listed in a specific text file.  All actions that may be performed are displayed on the main screen or in the user-configurable INI file, and the user may choose to proceed or cancel.  If VGClean is unable to delete certain files or values because they are locked, the user is given the option to allow VGClean to run in non-interactive mode at the next computer bootup (when file locking is less likely to be a problem).  VGClean is downloadable as a self-extracting ZIP exe file and installed with a Setup program.  Instructions for use and programs and versions for which VGClean is designed are provided in the Program Manual webpage.

VG Quotes Database

3 April 2010
Size 639 KB



Windows 7
The VG Quotes Database (file VGQuotes.MD3) contains over 1200 aphorisms, maxims, proverbs,  phrases, quotations, poems, speeches, noble (and a few ignoble)  sentiments, prose selections, and other influential or noteworthy texts from our intellectual, literary, philosophical, political, historical, religious, and scientific heritage.  A substantial selection from Shakespeare's complete works is included.  The VG Screen Saver (see below) can display these "quotes" if desired or the VG Quotes database may be used independently.  Quotes in The VG Quotes Database can be up to about  32,000 characters each — for comparison, The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam is 15,402 characters long in this database.  The emphasis on older citations is partly due to copyright restrictions as well as  the personal tastes of the developer and Internet availability.  The VG Quotes Database is downloadable as a freeware self-extracting ZIP exe file and, once extracted, VGQuotes.MD3 can be edited in Access 97 (it is a standard Access 97 database file).  Editing of quotes is facilitated by using VGSSEdit.MD3 in Access 97 or the free-standing program VGSSView.EXE (both of which are provided with the VG Screen Saver, below). This database is convertible to Access 2000.

Citations contained in the VG Quotes Database are believed to be uncopyrighted, to have expired copyrights, or to fall within allowable "fair use" limits.  In some cases, the copyright status is not known to me and there is therefore a slight possibility of unintentional inclusion of copyrighted material.  If you have responsibility for copyrighted material which you believe  to have been inappropriately included or quoted at excessive length  in the VG Quotes Database, please send email  to the address below and the citation in question will be modified or removed. The VG Quotes Database is made freely available without charge and is not for commercial use.    Many of its quotes have been compiled from the public domain and through the generosity of other Internet sources.  It is not to be redistributed for profit.

VG Screen Saver Install Package
Updated 
3 April 2010
Size 3.7 MB

Install Package includes:

VGScrSvr.SCR
v. 6.0
3 April 2010

VGScrSvr.MD3
3 April 2010

VGSSVIew.EXE
v. 3.2.33
3 April 2010

VGSSEdit.MD3
v. 2.0
3 April 2010

The VG Screen Saver program is a literate/literary screen saver for people who cherish the written word.  It was written to celebrate the great writings of the world, and intentionally contains no non-textual graphics that would distract from the text itself.  It can display quotes from the VG Quotes Database described above or alternatively any textual materials supplied by the user.   The VG Screen Saver displays these "quotes" in a variety of routines (such as vertical and horizontal scrolling), fonts, font sizes, and colors, much of which is configurable by the user.   Each quote may be up to about  32,000 characters in length. 

The VG Screen Saver, written in VB6, is designed to run in Windows XP and NT 4.0—it has not been tested in other operating systems but probably does fine in Windows 2000.  VG Screen Saver is copyrighted 1997-2010 by Michael McGoodwin and is freeware.  This program previously had a built-in expiration date, but no longer does.  Instructions for use may be viewed in the Program Manual webpage—this page also includes instructions for how to substitute the VGQuotes database (above) for use with the VG Screen Saver after installing the program. The user may add to, edit, or delete any quotes in the quotes database used by the VG Screen Saver (VGScrSvr.MD3).  You may do so by opening VGSSEdit.MD3 (supplied with the installation) in Access 97.   If you do not have Access 97, you still have substantial editing capability of the VG Screen Saver quotes database (including modify, add, or delete quotes) using VGSSView.exe (also supplied with the installation.)   VGSSView.exe is a free-standing application program (written in VB6) which does not require Access 97 to run.

While the screen saver is displaying quotes, you may press F1 for a summary of the many hot-keys available.  For example, you may press C to revise the configuration settings, or <Space Bar> to start a new quote, etc.  By design, the screen saver does not terminate by any key press  except <Esc> or <Alt> — however, any mouse movement or click will terminate it.  This is to allow you to restart a quote, show the quote title, etc. 

The install package is downloadable as a self-extracting ZIP .exe file and installed with a Setup program. 


VGShowFQFS

v. 1.1 
20 April 2005
Size 1.4 MB



Windows 7
A compact but very useful utility that displays the Win32 (long file/directory format) and the short DOS 8.3 format for the fully qualified file specification or directory specification passed to it on the command line.  Use this program in a Send To shortcut or a File Manager script file to drag to in order to display a fully qualified file or directory specification in both long and short formats.  This information may be copied to the clipboard in order to be pasted for documentation, etc.  

VGShowFQFS is downloadable as a ZIP archive file containing a setup.exe file.

This program has been tested and performs successfully in Windows NT 4.0 and XP Professional.  Full instructions for use are in the Program Manual webpage.

VGXCopy

v. 4.7
8 August 2008
Size 1.7 MB

VGXCopy is a file-oriented utility program that mirrors (reproduces or backs up) one directory to another.  Specifically, it can copy all files and subdirectories (including their contents) from a specified starting source directory and drive to a specified corresponding starting target directory.  It can also optionally delete unmatched (unique) target files and directories, and can copy a single file to a specified destination.  Advantages over XCopy include the following:

  • VGXCopy can do batch processing, whereas XCopy performs a single copy set at a time.
  • VGXCopy informs the user of progress and outcomes in much greater detail through the creation of a detailed log report and through display of the main form window rather than by means of console output.
  • VGXCopy can prevent redundant copying of identical files that match closely but not precisely in time stamp.
  • VGXCopy can create multiple persisting successive target backup sets using numbered subdirectories of the specified target directory.

A full description of this program may be found in the Program Manual webpage.  VGXCopy is downloadable as a ZIP archive file containing a setup.exe file.  For Windows 7, I have found that Robocopy offers greater utility.

If you experience difficulties and believe that there is an unrecognized bug in any of these programs or wish to provide feedback including positive comments or suggestions, you may contact Michael McGoodwin at

MCM at McGoodwin period NET
   (please convert this spam-averse address to standard format before using)