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Shell-based file and directory manager UNIX
Demos Commander is a great shell utility for directory browsing and file management including viewing, copying, editing, and moving. This is a Unix app similar to Norton Commander for DOS. You can find the source for it at:

Mike Stolove
Toronto, Canada

[Editor's note: I downloaded and installed this package, and it does exactly what Mike claims - it brought back instant memories of working in the the Norton DOS Commander back in the early 1980's! If you dislike typing 'mv' and 'cp' commands in the shell, this is a great utility! Read the rest of the article for full installation instructions. You'll need to have the dev tools installed.]

[UPDATE: I've made a pre-compiled binary version available on my home page for those that don't have the dev tools or don't want to muck around with compiling. Read the rest of the article for the brief instructions to get the pre-compiled binary working.]

To compile from source
  1. Using the above link to the source FTP site, download the file to a directory of your choice, and then 'cd' into that directory.
  2. Expand the file by first typing gzip -d deco383.tgz followed by tar -xvf deco383.tar. This should create a new directory called deco383.
  3. Type cd deco383 to move into the new directory.
  4. Type sudo ./configure and enter your admin password.
  5. Type sudo make (you shouldn't need the password again). This will create a binary executable called deco.
  6. Move the deco executable to the /usr/local/bin directory by typing sudo mv deco /usr/local/bin/deco.
To install the pre-compiled binary
  1. Download the deco.tar binary and let Expander expand the file, which will create deco.
  2. Make sure the deco file is somewhere you can easily get at it from the terminal; I'll assume it's in your ~/Documents directory. Open a terminal and type cd ~/Documents.
  3. Type sudo mv deco /usr/local/bin/deco.
  4. Type cd /usr/local/bin.
  5. We'll now set the owner/group for the new program by typing sudo chown root deco and then sudo chgrp wheel deco.
Exit the shell and start a new one (or type rehash) and then type deco to run the program. Once you're certain it's working, you can go back to the source directory and delete all the files if you compiled from source.

Since Terminal doesn't emulate keyboard funtion keys very well, use ESC-N where N is the number of the funtion key you want. To exit the program, hit ESC twice. Aside from that it works like a charm.

[Editor's note: The only problem I had with it was that it seemed to change the virtual size of my SSH terminal window; simply resizing the window borders fixed the problem, though. This did NOT occur when I ran it locally, so it appears to be a bug in the SSH client I'm using from OS 9.]
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Shell-based file and directory manager | 2 comments | Create New Account
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Another way to get the esc-keys
Authored by: laurion on Jul 13, '01 10:00:37AM

Rather than having to tap escape and pick a number, you can also go into the terminal preferences and set your option key (alt in some locales) to generate escape sequences. thus you can press option-1 option-2, etc. Much more comfortable for people accustomed to command-1, command-2, et al.

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Having trouble
Authored by: soulproperty on Jul 15, '01 11:47:59PM

I'll begin by saying that I'm completely new to UNIX... I was proficient in DOS many years ago, but that's neither here nor there. That being said, here's my problem. I've followed the directions to use the pre-compiled program, but I can only get so far. I had no trouble when I entered "sudo mv deco /usr/local/bin/deco" However when I try to change directories in the next step I can't do it. It seems that on my computer "bin" is a file and not a directory so it won't allow me inside. I'm not quite sure what I could have done to turn a directory into a file, but it seems I've done something. Any help figuring this out would be great. Thanks!

Chris Zucker

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