DiscTrak System

What's New!

Updated: March 2, 2000

Due to the dynamic nature of this program and my uncontrollable need to tinker, changes are always in the works. Because of these factors, it was necessary to devise an abridged list documenting the visual or functional differences from version to version. It goes back as far as I can possibly remember or try to reconstruct by looking at old source code. Feel free to pick the excuse you like better.

General Note: Version numbering changed after Version 1.71. There are no versions beginning with 2 thru 7.

Version HotLinks:
8.20a | 8.20 | 8.14 | 8.13 | 8.12 | 8.11 | 8.10 | 8.01 | 8.00a | 8.00
1.71 | 1.707 | 1.706 | 1.705 | 1.704 | 1.703 | 1.702 | 1.701 | 1.70
1.62 | 1.611 | 1.61 | 1.601 | 1.60
1.50 | 1.402 | 1.401 | 1.40
1.311 | 1.31
1.22b | 1.22 | 1.21 | 1.20a
1.19 | 1.18b | 1.17c | 1.06 | 0.90 | 0.10

Version 8.20a

Corrected a problem where the 'date of purchase' field would not properly record dates after December 31, 1999.

Version 8.20

Of major significance in this version is the addition of DVD to the programs abilities. At this time, there is not an independent mode for DVD discs. Rather, the LaserDisc mode has been enhanced to include questions specific to DVD. Future editions of DiscTrak System will likely bring out DVD (and the Album section) into their own modes of operation.
Increased Flexible Chapter assignments to allow for multiple sides to reset the chapter numbers to 1. For example, you can now correctly track for discs which begin with chapter 1 on sides 1, 3, 4, 6 and 8 if necessary.
Added HDCD support in the Compact Disc mode.
Added Country Date format switch to change between mm/dd/yy and dd/mm/yy.
Modified Blam Entertainment Group contact information in Program Information screen.
Corrected Surround Sound display on DTS films encoded with Dolby Digital soundtracks.
Corrected the asking of several questions in the Compact Disc mode when DTS encoded CDs are enabled.
Corrected several display problems on discs encoded with multi-audio tracks.
Added Chase Surround Sound encoding options to the Video Tape and LaserDisc modes.
Corrected Digital Video Transfer information error on non-THX LaserDiscs and videotapes.

Version 8.14

Digital Theatre Systems has changed the name of their home system twice since Version 8.13. The new name is DTS Digital Surround. Any data entered in previous versions of DiscTrak will be carried over to the new naming convention.
When entering a LaserDisc manufactured prior to 1986, (like my new collection of DiscoVision discs), you would not be presented with an option for Minute Only encoding correctly. This has been corrected.
A minor tweek has been made in the MultiAudio section when a LaserDisc is encoded with Dolby AC-3 Digital to allow a Multi-Audio setting.
If an existing LaserDisc or Video Tape record is edited, which is recorded in "dts Stereo" (as apposed to Dolby Stereo) and which should also have the Spectral Recording information tagged as ‘YES' would always have the SR flag reset to no before asking the question. While a wordy explanation was not avoidable, the trouble is and has been corrected.
The question for Format Deviation in the LaserDisc mode is no longer asked on programs which are single sided.
The options inside the Printer Configuration menu have been renamed slightly to avoid conflicts with single key selection. Their order and function have not changed.

Version 8.13

In the Compact Disc mode, an enhancement for the new Enhanced CDs has been added called CDPlus.
A menuing and display error has been corrected with regards to the Open Matte/Full Frame widescreen selection in LaserDisc and Video Tape modes.
A spelling error of DTS Coherent Acoustics has been fixed in the Compact Disc mode.
The report printing routine has been smartened up a bit. We now "detect" Windows 95 and will spool the print job to the printer rather than calling up on PRINT.EXE. Necessary screen and configuration changes have been made to allow for printing to various LPT/COM ports.
Some screen writing errors have been corrected in the Configuration Screens area.
An error in the conversion routine for the Compact Disc mode has caused CDs with Dolby Surround to be flagged as 5" Compact Disc singles. Simply re-edit the record to correct the offending data. The update routine has been corrected.

Version 8.12

A minor memory leak has been patched in the LaserDisc mode.
Windows 95 always returns a "True" when DiscTrak System tests for the presence of a printer. Because of this, a new printer option has been added which will force Record Prints to write to the hard disk if desired.
Pressing ESC while adding a record during summary was causing the add routine to abort. While this is by intent, I decided to change it in this one screen. Pressing ESC will skip Summary details and write the record. In all other screens ESC functions as before.
A nasty error has cropt up with unregistered copies of version 1.71 and older. The evaluation period will refuse to run due to an error in the update routine. It has been corrected.
If changing the number of sides on a LaserDisc which contains chapter stops could cause a crash if ESC was pressed. A slight deviation of this also occured in all other modes, including Compact Disc mode. This minor goof has been corrected.

Version 8.11

The spelling of "Matte" has been corrected in the Widescreen displays.
A capitalization error on Panavision widescreen films has been corrected.
The Multi Audio question has been trimmed up slightly.
The Widescreen option has been enhanced, slightly. "Total Video Frame" has been renamed to "Full Frame/Open Matte" for use on those titles like "Sword in the Stone" and "Dick Tracy". A new entry of "Super35" has been added to account for those films, which were shot in Super35 and shown 2.35 in the theatre and transfered to video in Full Frame. Prime examples of this are the non-widescreen editions of "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" and "The Abyss".
The option for THX Digital Master has been added to the Video Tape mode. This is to account for the new Star Wars Trilogy which has been released on VHS tape.
The option for THX LaserDisc / THX Digital Master now force Digital Video Transfer to on in both the Laserdisc and Video Tape modes. The Digital Video Transfer question will be skipped in these cases.
If a configuration switch was specified when launching DiscTrak, that switch would remain in-force. This would cause what might seem as random mode shifts when coming out of a DOS shell. This has been corrected.
A share violation has been corrected in the File Sort routine. The error would not cause a program crash, but the sort routine was throwing away the sorted information. No data was lost due to this error.
A problem with sorting titles which began with 'He', such as "He Said, She Said", has been corrected.

Version 8.10

LaserDisc Mode
The option for the new AC-3 Digital Surround audio system has been added. The option for DTS Coherent Acoustics is also present. These options are enhancements of the Digital Sound question.
The Multi-Audio option has been rebuilt. This allows for the modifications of AC-3 Digital and DTS Coherent Acoustics, and for the option of Stereo commentary tracks. This is now accessed through a 'Yes/No' question.
The Multi-Audio section now has an option for Running Audio Commentary
LaserDisc & Video Tape Modes
The Subtitles option has been moved to immediately after the Closed Caption selection.
The option for Sepia Tone has been moved to after Color Selection.
There has been minor tweaking on the view screens.
The presence of Magnetic Audio Masters and CDS Digital audio have been discovered. While we always tracked for both, it never occurred to us that they might exist together. This has been fixed.
The Widescreen naming conventions have been modified slightly. While the supported ratios are the same, the names have been changed. For example, Normal Pan & Scan' has been changed to just 'Pan & Scan'. It was brought to my attention that there is, indeed, nothing NORMAL about Pan & Scan. As a result, Panavision has been changed to 'CinemaScope/Panavision'. The entries stating 'Standard' have been changed to 'Matt'. (ie, American Matt, Foreign Matt.)
The Special Features Fields Generator options have been regrouped to be better categorized. All Disc specific things have been grouped together, with all Audio topics are together. You'll get the idea.
Compact Disc Mode
A new field has been added for DTS Coherent Acoustics CDS.
A new field has been added for 24k Gold CDS.
All Modes
Detailed information on Record printouts has been moved down the page by one line. This includes Episode Information (LD & VT modes), Chapter Indexes (LD Mode), Story Summary (LD & VT Modes) and Track Listings (CD & Tape Modes).
When editing a record, pressing ESC no longer jumps to the next set questions or screens. It will exit you to the EDIT MENU.
When adding a record, if ESC is pressed in any of the screens, you will be allowed to abort the record. A question will pop up.
The Add question has been removed. If you enter the ADD section on accident (and who hasn't?), leave the line blank to abort adding the record. If any data is in the line, the add routine will continue. Of course, you can still abort by pressing ESC.
The name shifting routine has been tweaked to correct a problem where a title contained 'and' which isn't part of a name.
A minor (program crashing) anomaly has been corrected. If, for some unknown reason, you backup and change the number of sides/discs (depending on mode) and then progressed on through the record, the program would crash, spitting out little pieces of IC chips through the slot on the floppy drive. This has been corrected. (Just kidding about that spit thing.)
In version 8.00 the flexible scan ability was removed. I kicked myself for that. We've added it back in, but this time, it's a selectable option which can be configured in the configuration menu. It also is more flexible and will search for proper names within titles.
In the EDIT MENU, if the title of a LaserDisc or Video Tape used the full 80 characters, it would line wrap the last character to the next line. We've changed this to trim off the last two characters for the Edit Menu screen. The title remains unchanged, however.
General
We are now specifying the length of the evaluation period. See the main system documentation for full details.
The DT.EXE has been tweaked. You cannot use previous versions of DT.EXE with 8.10 and you cannot use this DT.EXE with older version of DiscTrak.
All printer related options have been moved into a new sub-menu off the Configuration screen.
A new option is available. EJECT PAGE is designed to suppress the blank page which is present at the end of reports which are printed on Laser or Ink Jet printers. It defaults to off and is in the Printer Setup Menu. Please note that some printers perform a page eject as part of a command reset. You will still get a blank page if this is the case with your printer.
The option for Perforation skip has been modified. It now reduces lines per page by 3 to compensate for printers which force specific margins, namely HP LaserJet printers.
A new option for Currency marks has been added. It will toggle between the $ (US) and £(UK). If there are other options required, let us know. This option IS NOT documented in the user manual as it was added at the last moment.
An error installing the serial number has been corrected. The program would remember the number correctly and install it correctly on the next execution.
To avoid potential troubles with the Update and Install routines failing, the .DAT files have been renamed to .BEG.

Version 8.01

An error in the scanning routine which skipped the testing of the last record on a disc, if the total records were 5 based (ie, 5-10-15), has been fixed.
Blam Entertainment Group has moved again. The program has been updated.

Version 8.00a

A nasty little quirk with the Automatic Registration Transferal has been fixed. This update will REPLACE Version 8.00 on your hard drive.

Version 8.00

LaserDisc Mode
With the introduction of THX LaserDisc program, a flag has been added in the Special Fields Generator.
Side/Chapter orientation has been added. This will include side numbers when displaying chapter information. The menu contains several options to compensate for chapter numbering schemes which vary from studio to studio.
When editing/viewing chapter information, you can now PAGE-UP beyond the first page to the previous screen.
The Replication method (IE, Cold Casting/Injection Molding), which was displayed in the view screens, has been removed.
All references to SuperLaser have been removed. This format never materialized, so tracking for it was kinda ridiculous.
If updating a LaserDisc record due to a new issue of the disc becoming available, it was possible for some of the data from the previous disc to get locked. For example, the Minute Only Encoding and Manual CX Encoding could become stuck on. This has been fixed. This fix was included in v1.706.
Added MegaLD-LaserActive flag to Disc Type in the Special Feature Fields Generator.
Enhanced side identification with Short Side CAV. If multiple sides are CAV, leave out the side number and the program will simply display both CLV & CAV without any side information.
Simplified Short Side CAV / Long Side Extended Play question to Recording Format Deviation.
Reformatted the Minute Only Encoding and Manual CX view data.
Changed display of Multi-Channel information to Multi-Audio to conform with standard LaserDisc naming conventions.
In the reports, LaserDiscs which had no chapter stops were displaying '0' chapters. This has been changed back to show nothing.
LaserDisc & Video Tape Modes
There has been a general face lift on the view screens. This was necessary to facilitate specific wording and to try and minimize screen crowding.
Dolby Labs new digital sound format, SR*D does not necessarily have to be SR*D. The use of Dolby Digital audio in motion picture film does not necessarily mandate Spectral Recording on the optical soundtrack. In most applications of Dolby Digital however, the optical audio is SR. For this reason, the Spectral Recording question has been changed back to a YES/NO question.
The Dolby Digital option has been moved to the SPECIAL FIELD GENERATOR and has been combined with the existing Cinema Digital Sound flag. In addition, entries for Digital Theatre Systems (DTS), Sony Dynamic Digital Sound (SDDS) and combinations of the three battling systems have been included.
The widescreen option for Scanned Panavision 1.85:1 has been removed. Any titles which were marked as Scanned Panavision in previous versions of the database will be updated to American Ratio Widescreen 1.85:1.
The Episode field has been added to the VIEW screens.
While scanning the Special Features area in the Scan Records routine, it was possible to tag invalid records and display them as being valid. While this was originally fixed in v1.62, we've managed to break it again. With this release, it has been corrected.
The episodes data would mysteriously vanish after editing or entering a record. This trouble was experienced in all versions starting with v1.703. This has been corrected. This fix was also included in v1.706.
The sort key are now larger to better sort similar titles.
In the Special Feature Fields Generator, the question for "Brown Tint" has been given its proper name...Sepia Tone.
Program Summary has been added. This is a 'free-form' text editor for storing program notes, story summaries and other handy information. I also use it to list out episode specific information on those great Star Trek® discs.
The Episode viewer/editor now allows PAGE-UP beyond the first entry.
The length of the STARS fields, the CREDITS fields and the DISC FORMAT fields have been increased, slightly.
A spelling mistake of the word THEATRICAL has been corrected.
A spelling mistake of the word MONAURAL has been corrected. This fix also included in v1.706.
Compact Disc Mode
Disc/Track orientation has been added. This will include disc numbers when displaying track information.
Fields are now included for individual run times of each disc. This information can be added up and put into the total time field if desired.
A new question has been added to track for CD-Singles (CD-5's) which are standard CD sized.
Useless text in the header at the beginning of each report page has been removed.
Cassette Tape/Record Album Mode
Side/Track orientation has been added. This will include side numbers when displaying track information.
Fields are now included for individual run times of each side of a tape/album. This information can be added up and put into the total time field if desired.
Added option for 45's, 12" singles & EP's.
Compact Disc & Cassette Tape/Record Album Modes
The basic engine is new, sorta. It now resembles the old LaserDisc/Videotape engine in screen presentation. See the program documentation for full information.
The ability to store artist information for various artist discs has been added. Refer to the system documentation for details on using this feature.
Artist searches are now available. This search is similar to the song search routine. This routine will locate all artist matches for entire albums and also matches within the new various artist fields as well. See system documentation for full details.
The length of Record Label & Distributor information has been increased to 35 characters each.
Manufacturing facility field is has been added.
When the Track Time Calculator is run, it will automatically stuff the calculated total into the time field if the field was left blank.
Activation of the Time Calculator has been modified. It will now run when ever the total number of tracks is altered, regardless of the setting of TIME CALCULATE in the configuration menu.
When editing/viewing track information, you can now PAGE-UP beyond the first page to the previous screen.
Adding a record will now bring up a record generator screen similar to that of the LaserDisc mode. You must enter the Artist information here.
Record Label display has been added to the EDIT MENU.
A spacing error in reports created by the REPORT MENU has been corrected.
If trying to delete a record, putting a lowercase 'd' in the library field would not delete the record unless the record was deleted twice (Doesn't that sound silly to you, too?). This has been corrected. This fix was also included in v1.707.
All Modes (except as noted)
Something we call Name Shifting has been added. In its previous incarnations, it simply compensated for THE, AN & A at the beginning of a title. It now will make a great effort to compensate for proper names like Phil Collins and possessive names such as Steven King's IT.
When adding a record, the default year will now be the current year, regardless of the date. In past versions, if the current computer date was after July 1st, the default release year would be the current year + 1. This was too confusing and a general pain in the neck.
A new report format has been added. The Tiny report is a standard 80 column report. No printer codes will be output for this report.
When running reports, and the title/artist requires a line wrap, the next line is now indented by 2 spaces to properly isolate the titles when looking at the printed page.
There was a problem with changes to a specific record getting lost when altering the number of Chapters / Episodes / Tracks (depending on the active mode). This error has also caused loss of data while adding records to the database. This loss occurred if the key is used to back up to before the editing of the Chapters, Episodes or Track Titles. A simple modification has corrected this problem.
If there was a deep burning desire to leave the catalog field empty, the program WOULD lock up. The program now will put some record specific data into the catalog number field to prevent undesired program crashes. This fix is also included in v1.707.
There was a mistake in the SCAN MENU. If the ESC button was pushed, the FIND TITLE prompt would execute. Only problem is that FIND TITLE isn't an option from that screen. This has been corrected.
The search variable size in the EDIT MENU has been increased.
The flexible match locator functionality in the FIND section of the EDIT MENU has been removed.
When adding a record, the routine is proceeded by a confirmation question. I hate it when I hit the wrong keys.
General
DT.EXE is new. It is no longer just a compiled batch file. (In case you had figured out that it was a compiled batch file.) It no longer sets any environment variables, therefore you should not experience any loading errors due to insufficient environment memory. In addition, it is expected that this DT.EXE file will be compatible with all future releases of DiscTrak System. Here's hoping.
The install program has been replaced. The new version is a much more user friendly.
The Automatic Registration Transferal now will bring the serial number from all previous loads. Bug fixes loads are now included in this general statement.
The Update routine will no longer request your approval before running, it will just simply do the deed. It is also much more intelligent in its determination of which updates need to be applied to your database.
There are 4 new indexes which are created. This speeds up some areas of the program which use catalog numbers.
Registration now includes registered name display on the Program Information screen. Users of previous versions will be allowed to enter their name as desired.
The references to Master/Slave databases have been removed. For the sake of political correctness and actual relational jargon, the references have been changed to Parent/Child.
When upgrading from version 1.61, the CFG file converter worked great, provided there was a CFG file. If the file was missing, the program would crash. This has been corrected.
The keyboard buffer is now cleared after each option in the Edit/Match menu has run.
The UTILITY MENU has a new option. This option, CLEAR DELETED will purge all records marked for deletion and return to the main menu.
The UTILITY MENU has another new option. The VERIFY LINKING option will scan all children databases for valid parent files. If there are no parent matches for a child, the child data will be purged. Any affected indexes will be rebuilt.
SHARE.EXE users were experiencing a crash during the SCAN MENU routine. Turns out an illegal access was occurring while validating matches. This has been corrected.
A new configuration option is available. PERFORATION SKIP reduces the number of lines included in each report page by 2 to compensate for printers which cannot have perforation skipping disabled.
Pressing ESC now will exit all menus EXCEPT the MAIN MENU.


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