msx4ever header

Menu Program 1

This website assumes someone with little or no knowledge of computers and MSX.
In this way it will benefit a novice, but undoubtedly it will help the advanced at times.

I have always tried to make computers and also MSX accessible to the common man and even children.
That's why I love RuMSX so much.
Since RuMSX is as easy to use as an MSX, it is by far the best MSX emulator.
You can just use floppies as if you were working on the MSX.
First as an MSX enthusiast and later as a Microsoft specialist.
Customers liked it when I explained in plain language what was going on with their PC and what the possible solutions were.
Other specialists simply did what seemed best to them, without explanation and choice to the customer.

Also with MSX I try to explain it in such a way and make it so that everyone can work with it.
That's why I already made a menu program in the eighties.
If you boot with a non-booting floppy, you have to do a lot before you can get started.
Often a lot of typing ... I hate typing.
You then have to figure out what's on that floppy and how to start it.
You already had many menu programs in the eighties, but if you change something on the diskette, you have to adjust the menu.
This is impossible with tens and later hundreds of diskettes.

That is why I made a menu that looks at which programs are on a diskette and what type of program that is.
Is it a program in machine language or in basic?
With a push of the letter A, it reads a new floppy disk from drive A:
And press the letter B in the B: drive if you have one.
I made more and more choices to make commands in basic unnecessary and to make the use of the MSX easier.

In 1995 the MSX was on the decline.
The menu program I made had gotten better and better over the years and had proven its usefulness to dozens of colleagues, neighbors, family and friends.
I got the guts to send my menu program to the largest MSX magazine in the Netherlands ... MCCM
MSX Computer and Club Magazine.
And they loved it and they published it as ... Hoogeveense Menu's "
I then lived in Hoogeveen in the Netherlands.

In 2000 I had to change these menus because I assumed 19 to be the start of the year number.
In 2016 MSX flared up briefly with, but I got very busy with other websites and study.
Now in 2020 the MSX fire is back and I started in English.
So I had to translate the menu program from Dutch into English.
It was made in the eighties and nineties, so that was a bit of a puzzle.
I hope that with the translation everything still works correctly.
I will probably find out now in the discussion of it.
On this website I prefer dsk files over rom files.
After all, dsk files can be written 1 on 1 to a physical floppy disk and it works on an MSX and of course on a PC with an internal disk drive with RuMSX.
You can also change programs in a dsk file and write back to that dsk file.
Small basic programs are often converted into a rom file and then you cannot change them as you should be able to with basic.
ROM files should be files from large machine language programs that come off a cartridge, not from small basic programs.

The diskettes with multiple games contain this menu.

Everything works exactly as with RuMSX as with a real MSX
Everything works exactly as with images, dsk files or as with real floppies in the pc floppy drive or in the MSX drive.

A menu with a lot of data.
Not typed in the menu program which often happened and happens, but from the MSX or the diskette itself.
At the top left you read 29KB free, so much space is still free on this diskette.
MENU.BAS is the program name of this menu
9 NOV 2020 is the date.
20 Prog. means that there are 20 executable programs on this diskette.
SS means Single Sided and 1SS is the name of this diskette and then it says the time.
Below that it says PREVIOUS and NEXT to browse.
Below that the names of the programs.
The last program is always MSX chooses. (not shown here on this picture)
Then MSX will choose which game you will play.
At the bottom is Choices, which brings you to the choices.
_SYSTEM will take you to MSX Dos, if present on this diskette.
BASIC will take you to MSX basic, but MENU.BAS is still loaded.
You can control the blue bar with the cursor keys.
If you are on a program and you press Return or the spacebar will start the program.
If you want a different game a little later, press the red dot with RuMSX and choose ... soft-boot or hard-boot and you will return to this menu.
Just as if you were on a regular MSX.

The choices in this menu.

- Can now - means that you can now make those choices with the blue bar.
- In menu - means that this choice can only be made in the menu itself with the corresponding letter.
A reads the floppy disk in the A drive
B reads the floppy disk in the B drive
F reads all files or otherwise all programs on that diskette.
N give this disk a name for this menu program.
Q is quit this program and reboot.
S is sort
W is writing this menu to the floppy disk in the drive.
? is to print the contents of this diskette.
C is Copy the file to the floppy disk in the other drive.
R is renaming the file you are standing on with the bar.
K is killing the file on which you stand with the bar.
L is loading the file, only works with files in basic.
M gives the machine language addresses of a binary file
P assumes that the multiple files of a program have the same three initial letters.
For example they all start with nem and then P gives the type and length of all files starting with nem ... nem*. *
With this option you can see if all files belonging to a program would fit on another diskette.
Or just to see how big the program is in total.
T is the type and length of the files in the column where you are with the blue bar.
Esc = MENU

Just try it and I don't have to explain everything.
In the process you will discover the possibilities and then you will also remember it.

Anyway some explanation.
With A or B or with F you can therefore also view floppies with no menu at all.
You can then view one diskette after another.
But the other choices also work afterwards on that diskette without a menu.
With W you can put this menu on that disk if you want.
You can even start games or programs with this menu from that diskette without a menu.

If you are above the files or programs you can also kill or copy multiple files with K or C.
C - copying with multiple files does not work if you only have the programs in the menu.
You should then receive a warning. I have to look into that.

Menu.bas can also show pictures and after that you will return to the menu.
Of course, menu.bas is somewhat dependent on the file naming of others.
Menu.bas sees that a file with the extension bas is not a basic program if it is actually a file in machine language.
But if a program consists of four parts, one basic and three binary, but those three all have .bin as extensions, menu.bas sees them all as executable programs.
For everyone and not just menu.bas it is convenient if .bin is used for an executable binary file, .bas for a basic executable program and .ldr for a loader that loads multiple files.