My software

Since 1989 I have been writing software, first of all just silly scripts for the BBC Micro model B, then writing DOS scripts and programs, then GW-BASIC, then QBASIC when I had access to my old Pater's 486-SX 25 at weekends. Normally, I only had access to an Amstrad 1640. In these early days, I wrote undelete programs but they weren't very advanced, useful though because people I knew were still using DR-DOS or MS-DOS 3.0/3.2. Finally, somebody gave me a copy of Microsoft Visual Basic 3 for Windows 3.0 and I started writing most of my code for that.

In 1997 I was tired of BASIC and I decided to move on to another language. My uncle gave me a copy of The Programming Primer . After reading this book, I was pretty much convinced that C++ had the edge over Pascal and I ordered a copy of Borland C++Builder. When this arrived, I was very excited and I started to read the book which came with it straight away and put the large VCL class chart on my wall. The next year, when I decided I wanted to backport some code to DOS and to Windows 3.1, I decided to order Borland C++ 5.02 development suite with design tools, which came with Borland C++ 4.5. This was probably the greatest utility I ever laid my eyes on. It came in a very large box full of books and trial add-on software, which I still have. With the help of both of these tools, I built the Telcom project in 1998 when I was 16. By my standards today, this software was not great but it solved an immediate problem I had. Not having internet access and not being able to get internet access, despite my best efforts, I had no software with which to keep my names and addresses. My good mate Bob gave me a book to keep names, addresses and telephone numbers in. With all due respect, I used it but I only ever thought of it as a transitional stage until the completion of the software.

Once the software was completed, I attempted to get other people to use it but they were more interested in playing the Hangman for Windows 3.1 game I had written for the other kids in the foster home who had access to a 386 computer. I was using a P120 at the time, with Windows 95 on it. Eventually I started using Windows NT 4.0 instead.

Later in 1998, I submitted the 'Telcom Project' as my A-level computer science project. I only got a C for this and I didn't bother to do any revision and apparently it was the documentation which let it down. The documentation was very complete but it detailed how the program worked internally, with nothing written down about how to use it! Weighing in at 17,000 lines of code, it was the largest project source ever handed in for the course.

After this point, getting rather annoyed with Windows NT 4.0 blue-screening me, I looked into using FreeBSD. This was at first a disaster, I failed over and over again to get wvdial or kppp to work. I then looked into Linux and got it working. After a year or so using Linux, I then switched back to version 4.8 of FreeBSD and was very pleased with it indeed.

Having done a lot of porting work between operating systems and sometimes, for some libraries, even supporting DOS users, I now write software mainly for UNIX. That is, FreeBSD, Linux, NetBSD, OpenBSD etc. I maintain an array of servers for testing the software on and I rarely write code for Windows. I try to make sure code will port to Windows but I mainly supply source code and not binaries now as there are too many different ways of building binaries for different architectures and different platforms.

So please feel free to browse through my software in the menu and download what you're interested in. Feel free also to submit me patches and changesets!