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Ideas (forever under construction ;)

Some day I felt that number of ideas getting to my todo-list is noticeable greater than I can implement. Of course, some of them are already implemented, some are under development. And there are many projects I'd like to start, but have not enough time... (I think, this software would be useful not for me only).

That's why I decided to create something like development team (If you are interested in this idea - mail me Mail to alterX@alter.org.ua (remove X)   )
...and looks like a small team was created

Authors:

    /me aka Alter aka alterX@alter.org.ua (remove X)
    Axxie aka axxieX@mail.ru (remove X)
    Taras Nizhnik aka tarenX@el.ntu-kpi.kiev.ua (remove X)
    Vitaliy Vorobyov aka deathsoftX@yandex.ru (remove X)
    Anton Tykhyy aka parduxX@ukr.net (remove X)
    Mike aka Mike_GX@ufamts.ru (remove X)
    KtP
    nortonc@
    Alexei Chipovalov aka _alexei@

Our Ideas are here:


Global ideas:
  • WDM-Port for NT4, for running WDM-drivers (from w2k/XP/etc.) under NT4.

from Alter:
  • Rus+Ukr keyboard layout for NT4/w2k
  • Keyboard layout editor for NT4/w2k I've found such software here: http://www.klm.freeservers.com .
  • Personal Display Settings for Windows
  • Search queries history. I wish strange: utility which keeps history of my queries to search engines. Along with queries it must store search results and found pages. I need to be able to add marks/tags/comments (like Favorites). It must be able to perform search in stored results and queries. It must be browser-independent. There should be option to store results on external server and locally. Results must be available over internet. It would be nice to share info over PtP.
    There is Evernote. It is similar, but is not exactly what I want.
  • SSH FileSystem. I mean creation of a separate engine. And after that implement Far Plugin or File/Dir Access Redirector (see below) based on this engine.
    Such Far Plugin is already written. See http://plugring.farmanager.com/downld/files/scp_09_2.zip
    or http://www.geocities.com/farscp/ Unfortunately it is buggy (cd to parent directory works from the 2nd attempt).
    I've found still one - winscp. Is is available from http://plugring.farmanager.com. It is pretty, but doesn't work if remote unix machine reports file dates in russian.
    As soon as previous versions are removed from that site, I can give you direct links to my archives only (see below). Or you can use their search engine to find the latest version.
  • Universal ATA driver for Windows NT4/2000
  • File/Directory Access Redirector for NT4/w2k. - driver that allows redirection of requests to Files/Directories to 3rd party installable plugins. At least the following things may implemented using this tool: Symbolic Links, Mount Points (already implemented in w2k, but I found it to be designed not good enough) ,Archive Folders for arbitrary archive types that use external archivers (Far-like). Of course, we have ZipFolder, but AFAIK it understands .Zip files only.
  • File System Driver Interface - toolkit for effective FSD development. I'd like to see it in 2 variants:
    1. Ready to use implementation of kernel interaction mechanism for NT4/w2k and may be even for 9x (probably with full source code). In this case FSD developer is only required to design and implement FS engine. The interface that allows FSD sending requests to User Mode Application is also planned to be provided. These libraries are statically linked to FSD, this it would be an independent module.
    2. File System Class Driver - it provides the same services, but is compiled as standalone driver. There is only one FS Class Driver in the system. All FSD modules those use it just imports library routines. FSD designed to use this Class Driver are expected to be rether compact. (but, of course, they will depend on Class Driver presence).
    In both cases it would be useful to have FS-Driver and FS-Filter versions (but not such ugly as AVP antiviral FS-Filter)
    AFAIK, something like this was developed by osr.com, but it is not free ;). Also, I couldn't find at their web site how to buy this software. Also, there are some implementetation for Win 2000 and newer OSes

    Dokan
    FUSE
  • UFS Driver for NT4/w2k/XP (project have already started) and may be 9x.
  • Archive Folders with plugins. I'd like to implement file caching system. I think it would be useful for huge solid archives and inclusive archives. Probably it is worth making these plugins Far-compatible.
  • Symbolic Links & Mount Points for NT4
  • ATX (and may be ACPI) support for NT4
  • In general, Dell Phoenix APM Utility exists. But it uses NOP CPU instruction instead of commonly used HLT in idle loops. As result we have hot CPU even if without application activity.
    http://ftp.euro.dell.com/utility/R44506.EXE
  • Virtual Directory for Removable Media - utility that is capapable of storing (if you want, of course) CD directory tree on non-removeable media (your HDD) and representing this knowledge as a File System (or as virtual FS for Far). Each virtual directory may represent
    1. contents of 1 CD
    2. a set of other directories of type 1 or 2
    When file is accessed for read/write operation, utility checks if the media containing this file is immediately available (for example in local or network CD-Drive or may be even in Cache on HDD). If it is there - all right, we can safely open this file. Otherwise - ask user to insert disk.
    Imho, it is rather useful thing when you have a great number of CDs with documentation, software, backups, etc.
  • Floppy driver patch for NT4/w2k/XP, that allows reading non-standardly formatted floppies (e.g. 1.76Mb)
  • Patch for cdrom.sys (NT4), that fixes bugs with Video-CD and other CD-types with a little unusual sector size (greater then 2048 bytes) - multimedia sectors. Really, such thing already exists, but it is a part of one commertial project. Thus, I want to take some parts of code from it those are not secret.
    Already done ;)
  • HW Profile management tools for NT4/w2k - library, that allows us to copy/remove/rename HW Profiles, change their load order (it is already done in current version). I'd like to implement enable/disable of services and drivers in specified HW Profile (or in s set of HW Profiles)
    This library can deal even with mounted hives. It makes much more easy to recover failed NT OS and manage shut downed copies from active OS.
  • Fast reboot w2k/XP - utility that allows to (re)boot w2k/XP almost immediately (like in NT4 on Ctrl-Alt-Shift-Delete)
    PS. In NT4 this feature can be enabled in Registry. In latest OS'es it seems to be unavailable.
  • Bad block recovery tools
    Utility number ONE: restores file from multiple damaged copies (if these copies have unreadable blocks in different places ;). It simply copies blocks of physycal sector size and if one cannot be read, just skips it in both source and destination.
    Second utility: Creates additional file with EDC/ECC that allows data recovery. In general, such things already exist (for ex. DataShield).
    Third utility: creates additional file with EDC/ECC like previous one, but works with physical sectors of the media. Can be implemented as kernel mode driver.
  • Display Control for Windows - utility that allows set and list all display modes supported by driver (including those are not shown in standard control panel) for NT4/w2k/XP from command prompt
  • NT/w2k/XP Buffered Console - special environment for running console applications, that buffers console output. This utility is intended to improve system performance. Usually such operations with console windows like redraw/scroll takes up to 99% CPU. We can see this phenomenon in Far, console Rar and other archivers, etc.
  • USB and IEEE-1394 (FireWire) support for NT4 - to represent FlashDisks & HDD/CDROM devices with corresponding interfaces as SCSI devices (because NT4 assumes that storage devices should be represented in such a way). I also want to represent Scaners and Printers as SCSI devices. Among this it is possible to add support for serial devices (USB Keyboard & Mouse).
    I get to know (Mike sent me URL), that similar thing for USB Flash-disks already exists: http://www.geocities.com/mypublic99/
    And still one link (KtP sent me the URL) to full-functional USB stack implementation. It supports even USB mice. In general, I would recommend you attend Using USB under NT4 page and look for the latest version.
    Note: When using these drivers you should sync disk cache before USB Flash hot removal with dsync.exe.
  • Extended copy with Unicode and wildcard support - utility for file copying with separate wildcards for files and sub-folders (for recursive copy). File-names and wildcards can also be taken from config-file. Full Unicode support is also planned.
  • Hibernate for NT4
    Why ? Look:
    I have a computer with UPS. Computer makes some work, for ex. it repacks huge Video- or Audio-file or makes some calculations. There is no operator near this machine. Some moment power supply goes off. In this case computer will be able to save application context and shutdown before discharge of USP battery. Later it will be turned on and continue data processing.
  • APM support for NT4 - to be able to shutdown and power off the computer programmatically (like it is possible under w2k+ and under NT4 with specific HAL from 3rd-party vendor), for ATX power button support and power-saving modes, etc.
  • Debugging over IEEE-1394 (FireWire) support for NT4/w2k - this would make debugging with WinDbg much more quick and convenient :)
  • Network traffic shaping tool for Windows - for people who suffer from performance degrade when someone downloads films over MS Netword from their machines.
  • Keyboard Control tool for Windows - utility that allows tuning keyboard speed and other options under NT4/w2k/XP from command line or via hot-keys.
    As result appeared more common and powerful thing:
    User Interface Control for Windows

from Axxie:

  • Clean 'New': Cleaning of 'New' point of menu, that appears in Windows Explorer on right click (New Folder, New Briefcase, New some_other_file_of_some_old_unused_application). Already implemented (by me) and looks like it works. And now about the ill side: it become short, but is still slow. Probably, we should delete obsolete/unused registered types of documents. And now the next idea comes to the mind:
  • 'New' Tracker: Completely includes Clean 'New'. On load locates new classes of files. If the class is in White List, we have no questions and does nothing. If it is in Black List, removes it (also silently). If the class is unknown, prompts user.
  • Keyboard macros
    for example
    1. CD-Eject/Close
    2. Switch to default resolution
    I think, point 2 can be included in video-mode switcher by Alter.
  • Multiple clipboards for NT4
    There are a lot of such tools. But I had never seen any convenient. I'd like to have something like this: on Ctrl+Insert+4 data comes to 4-th clipboard.
  • Events/Triggers for Windows - for example on application execution
    1. Priority setting (for WinCom, Diablo)
    2. Disabling of Screen Saver - for viewing films
  • Digital Grab SB Output
    Have already seen at some place. Purely piracy tool, that allows grabbing Real Audio.
  • Separate audio streams (like for 2K, but for 9x, NT 4)
  • Indexed search for FAR
    FAR plugin, that allows to perform indexing of content of some folder on HDD, like various internet search servers do. After indexing it is possible to perform very quick search for files containing specified keywords. It is very useful, when you have a lot of text files or MBytes of other's sources.
  • File/folder comparison utility There are many file comparison utilities. The most interesting for me, as for programmer, is source comparison. I worked with many utilities (such as Windiff, CSDiff, Windows Commander, Beyond Compare, Visual Comparer, WinMerge, Araxis Merge) and make sure, that all have some weaknesses.
  • Advanced installer Consists of 3 utilities: First one makes snapshot of the system and allows to compare previously created snapshots. On comparison it reports changes. The second looks through results obtained from the 1st utility and locates data changes (such as paths for soft installation) and according to this information builds installation file. Third utility allows to install software in clean system according to installation file. The goal is to perform installation without user intervention (something like scenario). Thus, user checks which software should be installed on the very beginning, then installer automatically copies all files and updates registry.
    For now you can use rconf utility. It simplifies moving settings across OS'es.

from Taren:

  • IP Firewall for Windows, of course, with all main capabilities (allow, deny, count, pipe, fwd).
    It seems (08.02.2005), some people do this: http://wipfw.sourceforge.net/
    But there is a problem: it requires IPFILTER driver, that appeared in w2k. So we have no NT4 support :(
  • Unix-like ifconfig utility for Windows,

from KtP:


from DeathSoft@

  • omf format support for ld linker. omf is standard Borlad format. It is used by Borland compilers and most DOS mode compilers (except MS). It was developed by Intel in 8086 epoch. Supports 16-bit and 32-bit models. Can be generated by any DOS assembly compiler. Is useful for creating BIOSes and OS kernel images. You can write programm in 'c' and link it not to 'exe' but to BIOS or OS Kernel image.
  • Support for formatting floppy disks with non-standard geometry and proper geometry detection in the case when we have no valid descriptor in boot-sector (now geometry information is read from there) in Floppy driver patch for NT4/w2k/XP

from nortonc@:


from Alexei Chipovalov

  • UniATA INT 13 extension: add access to HDD via BIOS Int 13h (AH=42h / 43h). As a result, it would become possible even to install NT on USB (if BIOS supports USB-HDD boot). Of course, it may be slow, but later it may be possible to make it "switchable" to using USB drivers when they loaded.
  • "Hardware Over Net" server/client driver, which can delegate any hardware to another PC over net (both directions). It's hard to implment, but it would open outsdanding perspectives.

Mail to alterX@alter.org.ua (remove X)  
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