This is a beta release of Archive Viewer version 2.
The Archive Viewer is a very simple GUI tool for viewing and extracting
archive files of various types. It cannot create archives, nor is this
ever planned as a feature. (This program is not intended to compete with
WarpZip, ZipControl, et al.)
The Archive Viewer can handle the following types of archive file:
* ZIP archives (*.zip)
* Unix-style tape archives (*.tar), including those which have been compressed
with 'compress' (*.tar.Z, *.tz), 'gzip' (*.tar.gz, *.tgz) or 'bzip2' (*.tar.bz2)
* RAR archives (*.rar)
* ARJ archives (*.arj)
NEW FEATURES (V2.0)
Version 2 boasts a number of new features. First of all, the entire program has
been rewritten from scratch. Version 1 was one of my first REXX programming
efforts, and I've learned a lot since then.
Most significantly, the program is now multi-threaded. Listing and extracting
archive contents are both now done in separate threads. This should prevent
the Workplace Shell from going unresponsive when opening a very large archive.
(I do NOT guarantee that your system won't slow to a crawl; it still might,
since reading archive files can be quite CPU intensive. But at least it won't
block your input queue while doing so.)
The file extraction dialog is much improved. You can now select a directory
from a list, and browse through your drives.
Encrypted RAR and ARJ files are now supported.
* eComStation 1.1 or higher, or OS/2 Warp (any version) with VROBJ.DLL
* The following programs available somewhere in your PATH:
+ InfoZip UNZIP.EXE : required for ZIP support !
+ GNU TAR.EXE : required for TAR, TAR.GZ and TAR.BZ2 support !
+ GNU GZIP.EXE : required for TAR.GZ support !
+ GNU BZIP2.EXE : required for TAR.BZ2 support
+ GNU COMPRESS.EXE : required for TAR.Z support
+ ARJ.EXE : required for ARJ support
+ UNRAR.EXE or
RAR32.EXE : required for RAR support
! already included with eCS 1.1 and higher
All of these should be available on Hobbes.
If some of these programs are not present, you will still be able to use
the Archive Viewer, but not for the corresponding type of archive file.
* A Pentium processor or higher is recommended.
* 16 MB or more of RAM is strongly recommended.
INSTALLING ARCHIVE VIEWER
To install the Archive Viewer, copy ARCVIEW.EXE onto your PATH and ARCVIEW.HLP
onto your HELP path. To replace earlier versions of the Archive Viewer which
are included with eComStation, replace the existing \ECS\BIN\ARCVIEW.EXE and
\ECS\HELP\ARCVIEW.HLP on your system drive.
If you don't already have a program object for ARCVIEW.EXE, you may want to
create one, and associate it with *ZIP, *TAR.*, and *.TGZ file filters; also
*.RAR and *.ARJ if you have the correct programs installed (see above).
* Files with the same name that already exist in the destination path will be
* The Archive Viewer _only_ supports 'gzip' and 'bzip2' compression when it's
been used to compress TAR archives. Single non-archive files which have been
compressed with either program are not supported.
(Neither GZIP nor BZIP2 support a table of contents; they're simple
compression programs, not archivers per se.)
* The programs used to handle archives (unzip.exe, tar.exe, etc.) and their
parameters are hard-coded. There is no way for the user to add support for
new archive types (sorry!).
* Some versions of bzip2.exe are incompatible with ArcView because they do
not properly support piping. Specifically, versions which are statically
linked with the EMX libraries appear to exhibit this problem. Versions
which are dynamically linked against EMX should be fine, as are those
compiled with VisualAge.
This is a beta release, not a final product. The following limitations still
* No internationalization support. Only English is available at present.
Proper message-file support will be implemented for GA release.
* EXE files are presently assumed to be self-extracting ZIP archives.
More intelligent file-type detection may be implemented in the future.
Planned future features:
* An option to open the target directory in the WPS when extraction is
* Support for .Z, .GZ and .BZIP2 files without TAR.
I'm looking tentatively at adding support for additional archive types, such
as WPI, LZH/LHA, PACK, and JAR. But I make no promises and give no timetables.
See ARCVIEW.HLP for license terms. Basically, you're asked not to distribute
this beta version to other people, at least not without permission. I don't
want to end up fielding support requests for incomplete software from the whole
The final released product will be freely distributable under liberal license
terms. It may even be open source, who knows? :)
Alex Taylor, January 2005