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DialUp, R-Comp's net connectivity package, is put to the test as Michael Stubbs reviews

By Chris Williams. Published: 12th Feb 23:29:16 | Permalink | Printable

In an effort to get RISC OS computers on the net easier, software company R-Comp have developed DialUp and below Michael Stubbs puts the connectivity software through its paces.

A major complaint against RISC OS computers in the last few months (or more) has been how difficult it has been to get online. It wasn't too long ago that I rejoined the fold after selling my Windows machine. The proceeds from this went towards a new Castle RiscPC 233T, which came supplied with the excellent Oregano browser. On installing Oregano, I chose to install a full Internet suite, which included the browser itself, email, news and connection software. Email, news and other programs all tend to be feature rich and excellent to use. However, actually setting up software like Socketeer and connecting to the Internet has been cause for many a complaint and lost RISC OS user.

Enter RComp with their DialUp program. This software is designed to make connecting to the Internet with RISC OS as easy as, if not easier, than with Windows 98. RComp claim that the software will automatically setup ISP details on your machine using a Windows .INS file, as supplied by most ISPs. The software is also supplied with DialUp scripts for around 21 different UK ISPs.

After installing the software (simple as can be), I set about setting my machine up with LineOne, my ISP at the time. As I had written down the information from my Windows days, I decided to setup my account manually. After opening up the Add New Account dialogue box, I clicked on manual. Then it was simply a case of entering username, email address, DNS servers and a few other items. After finishing this, I was delighted to be able to click on the DialUp icon and connect successfully to LineOne.

That's great, but the main selling point of the program is the automatic features. After some ISP problems, I decided to sign up to UK Gateway as a backup ISP. I went to their Web site and, after going through the signup routine, I was presented with option of setting up my PC. Instead, I was able to save the .INS file to my harddisc. I then opened DialUp's Add New Account dialogue, dropped the .INS script into the window and Hey Presto! - my backup account was created. Select UK Gateway from the menu, click to connect and success first time!

I have quite a complex setup now, with around ten email addresses (I'm a busy man!) and three ISPs setup. The email from these addresses goes to various usernames on my MessengerPro database. DialUp copes without batting an eyelid. I can quite honestly say that setting up the Internet on your RISC OS machine with DialUp is possibly easier than on a Windows machine. At the very least, it matches it for ease of use, but scores browny points by integrating all your email and news details in the DialUp software so you only have one program to worry about. DialUp, to quote a well know TV ad, does exactly what it says on the tin.

R-Comp DialUp software starts from 10 and is available from www.r-comp.co.uk.
Thanks also go to Andrew of R-Comp for checking the article and also pointing out that LineOne is now supplied as a standard ISP.
Michael Stubbs also coordinates the riscos.org.uk domain list, offering free urls to software writers and user groups.

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Would !DialUp work on an old A3000, and can it be supplied on 800K Disks? -- Rachael MacGregor, Glasgow

 is a RISC OS Userrachmac on 25/7/01 7:27PM
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I've tried it on my A4 (normally use it on a RISC PC) and found that memory is a bit of a problem and you will need to load the CallASWI module. On a 4MB computer, you can't really do any web browsing but I've found that I could easily transfer email (using a Nokia 6210 plugged into the serial port which I think is pretty cool) -- Gary Hughes, Canberra

 is a RISC OS Usergary_hughes_fp on 7/8/01 3:50AM
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