Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 59 / APRIL 1985 / PAGE 82


EasyPath For PC & PCjr

Richard Mansfield, Senior Editor

Requirements: IBM PC or PCjr with at least one disk drive and DOS 2.0 or higher.

IBM DOS 2.0 and above are powerful, impressive operating systems, but they do have a few kinks. One of their strengths is that you can define subdirectories to conveniently store related groups of files. However, because of a quirk of the PATH command, you can access only program files within subdirectories, not data files.
    Also, many popular programs cannot access subdirectories. If you are word processing, for example, and you want to work on a particular letter, it must be in your current directory. It's more logical to organize letters in a directory called LETTERS and notes in NOTES, etc. However, DOS forces you to copy all such data files into the current directory if you want to access them with your word processor. Some people have solved this by putting a copy of their programs-database managers, spreadsheets, and so on-into each relevant subdirectory. Not only does that waste disk space, it still doesn't solve the problem of switching between letters and notes in different directories.

An Easy Solution
All this is solved with Polygon Software's EasyPath program. You are given great freedom to define locations and to SET pathlike arguments which will permit any of your programs to access data from anywhere on your floppy or hard disks. EasyPath also solves similar problems with RAM disks and piping.
    Of particular interest to hard disk users is the EPFILES command, which quickly locates any file or file specification anywhere on the disk. You see a display of all matches and locations, whether hidden, system, read-only, subdirectory, or altered since previous backup. This wealth of information has a variety of uses. For example, you can quickly determine if you have duplicate files hidden away in forgotten zones within the megabytes of storage. EasyPath makes it easier to manage the generous amounts of storage offered by a hard disk.
    This product has only one flaw, and it's a flaw that's hard to complain about seriously. EasyPath is one of those programs with so many options and features that you're initially stunned by an embarras de richesses.
    There are so very many ways to use EasyPath that at first you can get lost trying to figure out what is essentially a new language. However, the program comes with many prewritten batch files for popular software; a clear, if dense, user guide; and plenty of examples. It's well-supported with help and error screens. It doesn't take long to start solving problems with EasyPath. And there seem to be no untoward interactions with other popular background utilities, such as ProKey, RAM disks, and Sidekick.

Polygon Software Corp.
363 Seventh Avenue
New York, NY 10001