Stefan's Host Utilities


On this page, you find my host utilities. I wrote them when special needs arised in our games, so there's no warranty that you need them, but trying can't hurt. So here they are:


Game Host Shell

GH is a tool for games that exchange turns via diskettes, not over a network. This can be fun e.g. at school, or at work, where the players meet each day in person. But, when playing this way, time is often critical. We had only a 45 minute lunch break, and needed each single minute to manage our hosting.

GH wants to simplify hosting of these games. It's main function is that it can copy TRN and RST files automatically, that is, it doesn't require user interaction while doing this. You just sit in front of your floppy drive and change disks.

GH includes a shell from which you can launch all host programs with a single keystroke, and an integrated viewer for the log files. It also supports alternate scoring systems, such as VGAScore.

Since version 1.4, this program also includes a comfortable, built-in SENDMESS replacement with word-wrap, insert mode etc., based on the one in my client program PCC. The current version is v1.41 with some minor changes. Even if you don't use diskettes, the SENDMESS module might be useful.

gh.zip (35k) (MS-DOS application)

Exp - Crew Experience Reports

Well, I don't really know whether this program is useful or not... It makes experience reports about ship crews, that is, it creates a log file for each player, containing this player's ship IDs, names and the experience value of the crew.

exp.zip (7751 bytes) (MS-DOS application)

ViewShip - A quick ships viewer

ViewShip is a quick and easy program to view the starships file. I sorted it under "Host utilities" because it can be used to look into the Host ships database, but it also works with player's files. It simply uses every ships file it can find.

The program may be useful to check cheat reports, but it may also be a convenient method to print data sheets - the screen layout is a good candidate for the PrintScreen key, it uses no "funny characters".

New March/2003: This program now can actually do something useful :-) I have added the ability to edit PHost 4.0's ship-specific hull functions. Just run it in a host directory, and use ENTER to edit the functions. It also supports 999 ships now.

New May/2003: ViewShip can now also display hull functions from hullfunc.dat.

viewship.zip (22k) (MS-DOS application, source included)

KillRace - Yet another KillRace Utility

I wrote this KillRace when we had no access to the already existing utilities of this kind. Like the other utilities on this page, it is quick and easy to use, but supports all data file formats up to Host 3.22.020, the latest one at the time I wrote this tool. To my knowledge, newer Hosts don't add file format changes. Version 1.2 (November 2000)

Well, try to find a similar utility at this size...

killrace.zip (8819 bytes) (MS-DOS application)

Peng - A Portable Shiplist Compiler

Peng (for lack of a better name) is a portable replacement for Penguin: a program to compile and decompile ship lists. It is 100% compatible to Penguin 1.x (and 90% to 2.x), and comes with C source code so it runs on all platforms that have a C compiler.

New in version 0.2: support Penguin v2.x file format.

New in version 0.3: XML output format, single-file mode.

New in version 0.31: Bugfix for 16-bit DOS version, long options, new XSLT stylesheet for ship-list documentation. For an example how this could look like, follow this link. This output was generated using the command

     ./peng -Xs dir | xsltproc --param NAME "'Standard Ship List'" summary.xsl -

on a Debian 3.0 installation.

peng-0.32.zip (37k) (Source code and documentation)
peng-0.32-dos.zip (15k) (MS-DOS 16-bit executable)
Documentation (read online)

Note that the DOS executable does not include documentation.


C-Sanitise - C version of Sanitise

Tim's Master marks homeworlds in xyplan.dat. Sanitise (for example, on http://vgaplanets.htk.fi/ftp/host-utils/sanitise.zip) is a small tool which strips this information. Unfortunately, it is written in an obscure programming language, C--. Here's a version in C. It includes source and a DOS executable.

c-sanitise.zip (5023 bytes)

Go to
[ My VGA Planets Page | My Home Page ]

Stefan Reuther
If you wish to redistribute stuff from these pages, please play by the rules: Copyright information.

Last Modified: 31 May 2015