Protection de DBASE III


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Copy protection dBASE III, III PLUS


Copy protection was dropped on all single users versions starting with III PLUS v1.1. If you have an earlier version of dBASE III or dBASE III PLUS then it is copy protected.

dBASE III PLUS was never ever tested on anything past DOS 3.x. If you have old software then it will work great on a machine that it was made for. Otherwise you will run into quite a few problems with newer machines and software and old copy protected software.

The copy protection won't install on any machine running faster then 8mhz. Which means just about every new machine. If you can slow down the machine with a TRUE hardware switch ( programs that claim to slow down machines often use a trick of putting a dummy NUL command in a loop, this slows down the execution, but not the machine ) you can get it installed and then bump the speed back up. Whether the machine is actually being slowed down can usually be checked by using a utility such as Norton SI.
The single user version of dBASE copy protection would copied 3 hidden files to precious locations off of the root on the drive. Compressed drives can cause a problem here.
Before DOS 4 you were limited to a hard disk partition size of 32 megs. If you want to keep using this version and install it on a hard drive, your ONLY option is to reformat the hard drive so that dBASE III+ v1.0 resides on a <= 32meg partition, that isn't compressed. Large drives also cause problems with the integrity of your files, so even if you got it running it's not recommended.
To avoid strange problems, it is also recommended that you don't use any new feature in later versions of DOS, such as loading DOS high.

Besides upgrading, the only somewhat viable options to get up and running with copy protected software:

  1. dBASE III PLUS v1.0 was shipped with two copies, an original and a backup. Once installed it must be uninstalled to put back the count. It cannot be backuped and restored nor lap linked, etc. If you have the original backup disk that shipped with the product, that's an option. If you have the network disks (dBASE Network Administrator) you can try installing that. It will work the same as a stand-alone version excepted that you type DBA instead of DBASE to start it. And it will copy some extra network files (\DBNETCTL.300 dir) to the disk.
  2. Run dBASE from the floppy.
  3. Copy system 1 and 2 disk to a directory. When starting dBASE put system disk 1 in the A: drive. When starting up dBASE looks for hidden copy protect files, if it can't find then it then checks drive A: for disk 1. Once dBASE starts you can then remove the disk. This is know as "Key" method. Disk 1 being the Key to start it. Just keep in mind that at some point your KEY disk will probably go bad ( just plain wear and tear on a old floppy ) and you are out of business again.

In most cases the best solution is to upgrade to dBASE III PLUS v1.1 or dBASE IV/5 to avoid problems with copy protection. dBASE III PLUS code should work in dBASE IV\5 with little to no modification necessary. See Q3_4.ZIP in Library 10 for more on moving files from III PLUS to IV.

To check on upgrading information contact Customer Service by leaving a message in section 2, entering GO BORCS, or calling 408/461-9000.



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