CD PORTAL is designed to create a special autorun program, which should be included on the CD ROM's you are designing.
CD PORTAL will generate all the needed files and help you to design your CD's in a proper and professional way.
The autorun program will create a special welcome-window, from which you can execute other programs and functions on your CD's.
Using CD PORTAL will make CD's start automatically when the CD is inserted to the CD ROM drive.
It's fun and very easy to manipulate the program to comply with your needs, and using the built-in test button will instantly give you the possibility to judge your settings.
CD PORTAL is mostly intended for users capable of making their own CD ROM's or in need of distributing programs, data etc by CD ROM's.
A little notice to this help: You may find the images inappropriate to your own computer because the CD PORTAL program project has been performed on a computer with danish settings.
I hope you will find the program useful.
10. April 2001
The CD PORTAL program package contains of more elements.
When burning your CD Rom you should copy all the files included in the project directory such as 'Autorun.exe' and 'Autorun.inf' and the subdirectory 'reg' including files as 'CDP3.cdp', the image file 'MustBeIn.jpg' and the file for mp3 playing 'mpegdll.dll'.
CD Portal v 3 Program helps you design your autorun project by allowing you to add different options to you autorun program and the program helps you to keep up with the placement of different files.
The file Autorun.exe is the real program to be executed and has to be placed on your finished CD.
This program works with information stored in the CDP3.cdp file,
but contains additional information like the in built slide show and mp3 player.
If the Autorun-program is executed without accessing the proper data, the program will give you an error message
and after clicking "OK" you will see a grey window and some useless text.
Notice: The program always will be saved as autorun.exe in the project directory regardless the name you type in the save dialog.
CDP3.cdp is a data file that contains all the information regarding the entries made in the settings program (i.e. information on language, color, font type and size, placement of files etc.).
In order to execute the program autorun.exe, the files CDP3.cdp and Autorun.exe must be placed in appropriate folders.
When saving your project the program automatically creates a subdirectory 'reg' in the project folder where the CDP3.cdp file is saved.
This directory also contains other resource files (such as icon, image and wave files) used by the executing program.
Warning: The program Autorun.exe can only be run, if a correct version of CDP3.cdp is available. The program will always create a new CDP3.cdp when saving your project. If you save your project in a former used folder, the CDP3.cdp file would be overwritten and the earlier project would be ruined!
The file autorun.inf has to be located in the root directory of the CD ROM in order for Windows autorun feature to work. This file contains information regarding the program to be executed, as well as programming text used to special items (Such as: run program or open text file) in the Context menu in Windows Explorer.
These items are useful if your user has disabled the CD autorun feature.
You can associate an icon to your CD ROM, that's to say a tiny picture as a symbol of your CD ROM shown in the Windows Explorer, when the CD is present in the CD drive.
You can find a number of special programs intended to design entirely new icons or to show or edit many icons already present in several files on your computer.
If you search for 'free icons' on the Internet you'll find lots of icons suitable for almost every purpose.
The name of your icon and its relative placement in the finished CD ROM will be written to the 'Autorun.inf' file.
The main task of the settings program is to get hold of all the different entries, that you want to use in your final executing autorun, inclusive
- The text and icon in your project's title bar
- Your project's screen type and size
- Button click sound or midi file for playing
- The background color and images
- Buttons and text
- Which programs, texts etc. you want to execute
- Font sizes, font colors, font names and placement on your screen
The settings program offers the possibility to try out instantly your current settings, i.e. making it possible to change your settings easily and compare the differences.
Finally the settings program helps you to design your entire CD ROM assuring that your resource files ends up in the right place!
Menus and buttons. The items in the menu 'Files' are identical to the buttons Open, New, Save and Exit on the tool bar.
The 'Language' menu gives you several languages to choose from.
You even can add your own language.
The Project menu gives you access to all the separate windows making your project.
You can also access these windows using the context menu (alternative click inside the panel figuring the screen size of your project).
You can hide the tool bar from the window menu. The other item in this menu is identical to the Try button
You'll find a link to the CD Portal web site in the 'Help' menu .
Find the file named CDP3.cdp in your project folder to open a saved project. The Open dialog only shows these CD PORTAL files, i.e. files with the extension '.cdp'
The dialog box will default open in the directory named C:\CDP_3\reg.
If your project is placed elsewhere you should find the subdirectory 'reg' in your chosen directory. Here is the CDP3.cdp file located.
When opening a saved project all the previous entries will be reread, including the Autorun.inf file, icons, images, sounds and midifile.
Activating the new button will clear almost all entries and values, e.g. text in title bar, file names and paths, image and icon files.
However the placement of the now empty objects will not be reset. If you need a complete reset you have to close and restart the program.
Clicking on the try button (or F9) gives you the ability to instantly judge your entries. In fact the real autorun program will be executed with the current settings.
You must be aware of too, that the testing will take place accordingly to the file paths, files etc. on your hard disk and NOT from the "view" of the finished CD ROM. Look about this in placement of files and programs.
The CD Portal automatically tries to generate a special directory on the C:\ drive of your hard disk named CDP_3 (C:\CDP_3). The idea of creating this directory is to segregate the files that must be in the root of your CD-ROM.
If the program fails to create this directory (if you for instance don't have the rights to write to the C: root), you should see a warning "remember where you save your project" before the save dialog opens.
Of course you should copy the file you want to run to this directory, e.g. the index.html and make a subdirectories to put all the other of your resources.
The CD Portal will copy these files to the directory:
- Autorun.exe, placed in the root (C:\CDP_3\Autorun.exe)
- Autorun.inf, placed in the root (C:\CDP_3\Autorun.inf)
- CDP3.cdp, placed in the 'reg' folder (C:\CDP_3\reg\CDP3.cdp)
- MustBeIn.jpg, placed in the 'reg' folder (C:\CDP_3\reg\MustBeIn.jpg)
- Mpegdll.dll, placed in the 'reg' folder (C:\CDP_3\reg\Mpegdll.dll)
- YourIcons.ico, placed in the 'reg' folder (C:\CDP_3\reg\YourIcons.ico)
- Sounds.wav, placed in the 'reg' folder (C:\CDP_3\reg\Sounds.wav)
- Music.mid, placed in the 'reg' folder (C:\CDP_3\reg\Music.mid)
- YourImages.*, placed in the 'reg' folder (C:\CDP_3\reg\YourImages.*)
You are of course entitled to create completely new directories using your own titles. However you must be aware of, that each time you're saving a project you're creating at least 5 new files and copying the chosen icons, images and sound files to this new directory.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: The file CDP3.cdp contains information about the entries, you have done. If you save a new project in the same directory, the new CDP3.cdp file will overwrite the former! If you want to save your previous projects, you'll have to create a unique directory for each of your projects, or move those files to another (archival) directory.
You can change language of the CD Portal program in the language menu.
You even can add your own language: Open the file "user.lng" using a common text editor as Notepad.exe and translate the text to right of the equal signs. Save the file and choose the language "User" in the CD Portal program.
The User.lng file is placed in the directory where the CD Portal program is installed (default C:\Program Files\CD Portal V3.1)
Please mail me your translated file if you want me to share your translations to other users of CD Portal making the file accessible from the official web site.
The Screen & Panel window is available from the Project menu, shortcut F1 or the context menu.
The Screen can either be set to full size or have a fixed size in pixels.
You don't usually know which computerscreensize your users uses, but to my experience most computers is set to screensize 1064 x 768 or 800 x 600.
To determine which size to use you could try out your project with different computer screensizes. The screensize of your computer can be changed in the Windows Settings. (Context menu on your desktop should give you access to preferences for your computerscreen. Choose settings).
You can give your project window a normal border, a thin border or no border at all. When choosing normal border, you can add an icon to the title bar.
If you choose normal or thin border, you can edit the text that you want to appear in the titlebar of the project.
Special characters can be inserted by simultaneously holding down the Alt-key and typing the character number on the numeric keyboard (The right side of the keyboard).
For instance (danish character set)
© = Alt+184
® = Alt+169
° = Alt+248
The Screen color is the background color in your project window.
The Panel is the active area in your project window where you will have your "Active labels", Text etc
You can pick two colors and choose a graduated pattern. Selecting the same first and second color of course will result in a solid color.
The size of the panel can easyly be adjusted when the Screen & Panel window is closed after click on the OK button:
You have hold down the Shift key and simultaneously repeat pushing one of the function keys: Shift+F1...F8:
Shift+F1 = Move to left
Shift+F2 = Move to right
Shift+F3 = Move up
Shift+F4 = Move down
Shift+F5 = Decrease from right to left
Shift+F6 = Increase from left to right
Shift+F7 = Decrease from down to up
Shift+F8 = Increase from up to down
HINT: The movement is default set to 3 pixels. You can change the setting to 1, 3 or 5 pixels pushing
Ctrl+F1, Ctrl+F3 or Ctrl+F5. This setting is not saved when you close the program.
The panel can be centered within the Screen using the context menu or the shortcut F7.
The Images window is available from the Project menu, shortcut F2 or the context menu.
You can add 3 different images to your project. The files can be the most common computer image files including animated gif's.
Just load the images using a open file dialog box giving you the opportunity to view your computer or network.
You can move all the pictures when the Images window is closed after click on the OK button:
Place the mouse on the image you want to move and then simultaneously press the Left Mouse button and move the mouse in the project window.
The 1.st front Image can be centered within the panel using the context menu or the shortcut F8.
The Labels window is available from the Project menu, shortcut F3 or the context menu and gives you up to 30 active labels to include in your project.
The active labels is the text your user can click on to run a program, to show a file and so on.
Start choosing a label (Number 1 to 30) from the drop down list "Label Number:"
Write the text your user can click on in the "LabelText" field.
The "Font" button gives you a default font dialog. You also have the ability to choose color from a color dialog and you can even add a shadow to the text. Your typing will be shown on the center panel.
Please consider that you have the option to choose all the font types installed on your own computer, but maybe your specified font type is not available from your users computer. In this case they will see a default font type (MS Sans Serif) and they may experience a displacement.
HINT: Use common font types like Times New Roman, Verdana, MS Sans Serif or Arial on CD's made for distribution.
You must specify both the path and the program or file you want the CD Portal autorun and menu program to execute.
It is important that the path to the file is correctly entered in your project. Note that the pathname to be used from the CD, in the finished project, will be different to that specified for use with the "Try Out" button in the CD Portal program.
When running programs or files from the CD you must specify the file and path (placement) relative to the root of the CD ROM-drive.
If you have created your CD ROM-master with a file (e. g. setup.exe) on this absolute placement: C:\CDP_3\Games\Setup.exe, you only have to write Games\setup.exe in the "Path and file name of project file" editbox, because the directory 'CDP_3' should be the root of your CD-ROM.
Please read more above about Save.
You can run executables and different types of files from your project created with Splash Run.
Are recognized by their extension (*.exe). You must specify the relative path and the file name in the editbox, e.g. Program Files/Install.exe
Type of files
If you specify another type of file in the editbox, Windows will try to run or open the file with the default program associated to this specific type of file.
To run these kind of files, the user must have an associated program in the Windows registry, and capable of handling the specified file, i.e. that the program runs the file when you double-click on its icon. If you for instance try to run index.htm or default.html these files should open in your default Internet browser.
If the user of your project hasn't installed a default program associated to the specified type of files nothing will happen when your user click on the active label.
If you are going to design a CD ROM with the ability to run or open several files, e.g. Acrobat Reader (*.pdf), Powerpoint shows (*.ppt) or the like, it is recommended that you include a special program on your CD intended for the specified files. Then you can be sure that your user in fact immediately can use the CD.
Please notice that CD Portal comes with an inbuild program for showing images and playing mp3's. Read more about this under Buttons.
HINT: If you don't provide a path and a file name then your project will open the Windows Explorer showing the directory, from where your project is run. This can be used to make a label "Explore this CD" where this is the only text needed typed in the LabelText field.
Some programs accept or need a parameter to run as intended.
For instance you can use the path and file name of a Word document as parameter to the Word program, when you want Word to open the specific document, e.g. write Winword.exe in the 'Path and File name of project file' editbox and MyDirectory\MyDocument.doc in the 'File Parameters (if any)' editbox.
In the same way you can open PowerPoint shows or view Acrobat Reader files.
You can also run Explorer.exe and use one of the parameters /e or /n or /e,/root,D:
If you check the box "Close project after click" then the CD Portal autorun menu will close just after the chosen program or the desired file has been started.
This can be useful if a program should be installed from the CD and you want other programs to shut down or if you want to run more CD Portal autorun projects from the same CD.
HINT: You can make a label which will close your project if you check the "Close project after click" box and type NULL in the "Path and File name of project file" editbox.
There's not any default sound to be played when the mouse is moved over a label or a web link, but you can attach a sound of your own. The sound file has to be a wave file (*.wav).
It is recommended to use a fairly quick sound. It can be annoying if you have many labels or links on your screen and the sound hasn't stopped before it starts over again.
You can load the wave file using a open file dialog box giving you the opportunity to view your computer or network.
You can only add one label at the time. Choose your label number and fill in the editboxes. Then click on the insert button to bring you back to the project window. Hit F3 to add another label.
You can move the label when the Labels window is closed after click on the Insert button:
Place the mouse on the label you want to move and then simultaneously press the Left Mouse button and move the mouse in the project window.
The Buttons and Links window is available from the Project menu, shortcut F4 or the context menu and gives you up to 10 buttons and 4 Internet links to include in your project.
Two of the buttons is reserved for the inbuilt mp3 player and the slideshow though.
Start choosing a button (Number 3 to 10) from the drop down list "Button Number:" and
fill in the 3 edit fields (Text on Button, Path and file name on project file and File parameters (if any)) as described above for the similar fields using Active Labels and if necessary mark the "Close project after click" checkbox.
To the far right you will see a sample of your button in default size.
If you push the button "Image on Button" you can insert a bitmap as image on the button, just like the button in the CD Portal editor.
The button size and placement can be changed using left and right mouse button as descibed above under The Panel.
Start choosing a link (Number 1 to 4) from the drop down list "Link Number:", choose your font and write the text yoy want the link to show, eg "Visit my website" or "E-mail me".
You have to mark in the checkbox, if your link is an e-mail address.
In the edit field "Web or e-mail address" you must specify the actual web or e-mail address, eg. www.domain.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Please NOTICE: You may NOT type "http://" in front of the webaddresses (it has already been done by the program).
The first button from the drop down list "Button Number:" is named MP3 and is used to activate the MP3 player. The only thing for you to do is to type the button text. In the final project the button will appear with a blue play icon, which will turn red when pushed.
The size and placement of the button can be changed as described above.
When pushing the button in the finished project you will see this player:
The buttons of the player is (from left to right): Play, Pause, Stop, Previous track, Next track, Open directory, Remove Player and you can adjust the volume using the lower bar.
The player can be moved all over the screen (Pull with the mouse on the upper edge) and can also play when the slide show is active. When the mp3 player is activated it will continiously play the mp3 files available in the selected directory. The player even will continue to play after pushing the "close" (x) button on the player. To stop playing you must use the stop playing button (the red square) or close th CD Portal menu program.
The second button from the drop down list "Button Number:" is named Slide Show and is used to activate the picture viewer. Type the text for the button in the field "Text on Button". You will see another edit field to the right where you can type in the placement of image files on your CD; eg. if you have made a sub directory on your CD named "photo" then just write photo in the field.
Further to the right a new button with a brush has appeared. When pushing this button you will find a color picker giving you the ability to choose the background color for the Slide Show in the finished project.
The Slide Show will appear like this for your users (using default background color):
As you can see, the button bar gives you some options: Automatically changing pictures or changing when double clickung inside the frame. With the 3 radio buttons you can adjust how to pass from one picture to the next. There are more than 120 different transitions and you can see the actual transition number in the yellow field.
Of course you can open different directories on the computer system and with the shooter you can set how long each picture is shown. If you push the button with the computer icon, the lower bar will disappear and the Slide Show will fill out the screen.
You can only add one button and one link at the time. Choose your button/link number and fill in the editboxes. Then click on the insert button to bring you back to the project window. Hit F4 to add another button or link.
Start choosing a text (Number 1 to 10) from the drop down list "Text Number:"
Type in the static text you want to be shown in your project in the "Text" edit field.
The "Font" button gives you a default font dialog. You also have the ability to choose color from a color dialog and you can even add a shadow to the text. Your typing will be shown on the center panel.
You can only add one text at the time. Choose your text number and fill in the editbox. Then click on the insert button to bring you back to the project window. Hit F5 to add another text.
You'll find some different options choosing "Info file" in the Preject menu (F6), spread out on 4 panels:
In the upper panel you can type in informations, which will be a part of the file
In the blue field "CD ROM Label" you can write a name which Windows Explorer will use as the CD Label, when the finished CD is inserted in a cd rom drive, eg. "MyCD".
The other 4 fields is used for a potential activation of both a program and/or a textfile from the context menu (right clickon the CD Rom Drive in Windows Explorer). This function is available for you users having the autorun feature on their CD drives turned off!
In the yellow field you for instance could write Install my program and in the greeen field beneath you would add the relative path and filename for the program to get installed or run, eg. programs\install.exe.
In the same way with the next two fields, giving you the option to get a textfile opened in the default computer text editor. You could write How to install in the yellow field and point to the belonging file program\ReadMe.txt in the green field.
Please read further above on Path and file name
You can add your own Click Sound to be used, when a button or active label is pushed in the finished project. Click on the button with the folder and you can browse your computer to find your favorite (but not to long) wave file (*.wav).
You can of course attach an icon to your CD Rom. This will be the image used by Windows Explorer to show that your CD Rom is inserted in a CD Rom drive. This icon can be identical with the icon you may have used for the title bar in your project (Look above Screen & Panel)
Finally you can add one midi sound file (*.mid) in your project to be played once immediately after the CD Rom has been inserted to the CD Rom drive and the autorun starts up. You may choose if your user should have the ability to stop, pause or replay the midi file.
Please OBSERVE: The program is made to disable the playing of the midi file if you additionally apply the mp3 button and this button is activated. In this case the midi file only can be listened to when the autorun program completely is restarted.