4EyesVPLauncher (Front-End)

VP8 VP9 VPX Support File FP 4EyesVPLauncher (Front-End) v1.5

No permission to download
My simple VP/FP launcher. The zip file includes a help file.
The latest versions of 4EyesVPLauncher with all known bugs fixed and latest version of ExtractTableInfo with new options.
Enjoy,

4Eyes

Installation
------------
Well, it's not necessary. There are just a few files that are required, namely 4EyesVPL10.exe, 4EyesVPL.csv and 4EyesVPL.ini. Put these into any folder you like then create a ScreenShots folder under that.

The exe file - the program is written in AutoIT. To say this is a great language is an understatement. If you don't know it check it out. Quite some time ago, an idiot wrote a keylogger with it. For this reason only some junk anti-virus programs declare any AutoIT program malware. If you wish, check the exe file with VirusTotal.

4EyesVPL.csv - this is the database that holds the data for each table. It is completely up to you which tables you want to be able to launch. I've supplied my file as an example. You can edit it directly if you like but I've found that not a dependable way to go, to the point that at startup the csv file is checked for inconsistencies. 10 fields per table are required, and it is very easy to miss 1 when adding a record by hand.

IF you don't want a table that is currently in the csv file, just delete the line.

4EyesVPL.ini - this file has the paths to the various versions of VP and FP. It also holds the paths to the tables. 1 last thing is that this file is used to remember the last table played. Yes, I could have used the registry, but I leave that alone when I can. I could waffle about the Blue Ringed Octopus, but I won't. You can research it if you desire.

The main screen - actually, there is only 1 screen. Of the 10 fields that are available, only 3 are necessary to have entries, the table name, the table path, and the version of VP (or FP) that the table runs under.

The GUI can show the following info about each table:
Table name - I'd suggest that you don't vary too far from the author wants to call it, else there may be some confusion in future.

Manufacturer - pretty obvious

Released - I think year is enough but it's up to you

Author - I find this quite useful as some authors are brilliant and everything they release is good.

VP release - date it was released as a VP/FP table. Not important.

Original/Recreation radio buttons - obvious I think.

Open with - select the verion of VP or FP that is appropriate.

Table path - the CSV file keeps these fields enclosed in " but doesn't display them. This is a real PITA and I may change this.

Picture path - this allows displaying a screen grab of the table in action.

... - beside each of Table path and Picture path is a button with the legend '...'. These pop a file selection dialog where you specify the relevant paths.

Comments - this is a large field where you can put any text you like. I generally put a short comment about how I feel about the table.

Now, down to the New, Edit, Save and Launch buttons.
Launch - is quite straightforward. It will attempt to load the table into the appropriate program. Special discussion relating to VP8 can be found below.

New - create a new table. If you create a table with a name that already exists, simply delete 1 from the CSV file. When new is clicked some of the buttons change to suit.

Edit - this allows you to change any data relating to the current table. You may encounter issues if you change the name. This is possibly better done by editing the CSV file directly. Again, I will look into this.

Save - is disabled until you click either New or Edit and does what you would expect.

Table pictures
--------------
There is a very useful archive of 2151 table pics at: http://www.vpforums.org/index.php?app=downloads&showfile=1356
If you download this 131MB file can I suggest that you donate a little to the forums?
Unzip this and put into your Screenshots folder.

While 2151 table screenshots is a lot it is far from complete. I've found a simple procedure to make my own is to start the table, press ctrl and print scrn (or whatever suits your keyboard) to make a copy of the table, then copy that (ctrl-c) into paint. Higher resolution playfield shots are better but at the cost of much bigger filesizes, but with multi-terrabytes drives in our computers it is of little concern. I 'may' set up a dropbox account to allow easy transfer of these images.

Creating or editing a table entry
---------------------------------
This is quite straightforward. When creating a new table, the field names like 'Table name?' etc, can either be removed or left with the appropriate text entered beside it. I'm of 2 minds on this. It's handy when entering the text but a little painful too. Your choice again.

Remember to save your changes.

VP8 support
-----------
VP8 does not have a mechanism to pass a tablename that I could find. To work around this I use a little AutoIT magic to simulate mouse movements and button presses.

Feedback/bug reports
--------------------
I don't think there are any bugs but in 800 lines of code I suspect there may be. If you find an issue, have a feature request or other feedback please advise via a post in the release thread.

Finally, if you don't like my launcher then don't use it. If you do like it, excellent.

Catchya later,

4Eyes

21/Jan/2018

G'day y'all,

This file is a bit of a heads up about the contents of the rest of the archive. It has the current version of 4EyesVPLauncher, rev 14a.

Also within this archive is the latest version of ExtractTableInfo.exe, rev 3. This program will scan your table collection and extract a range of data from the table files. It will build a text file (4EyesVPLauncher.csv.txt) with a most of the data that is required to build the database (4EyesVPLauncher.csv). Open this program from any folder and it will allow you to pick a folder to scan. It will create a file named 4EyesVPL.csv.txt with the data it has collected. NB The pic path field is almost certainly going to be wrong but an edit is will save you time over typing the whole thing. Having spent a lot of hours tidying a large collection (400+ is large to me) of tables, I've run ETI over it and have included it's output file in the archive too. It may save you some time. Finally, I've added VPLauncher.csv which is a massaged version of the VP Launcher database. It may have some data of interest while building your database.

This program will try to process zips and rars that have .vpt etc in the filename but not achieve a lot. I'd suggest to move these to an archive folder before this program although it will do no harm if you leave them.

I hope you find this stuff useful.

4Eyes

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