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Thread: ZDE text editor question

  1. #1

    Default ZDE text editor question

    Does anyone have experience with the ZDE text editor - if so then help would be most appreciated.

    The N8VEM single board computer is now at the stage where it can write and compile programs on itself. Three text editors are vying to be the one that is chosen (any other suggestions would be appreciated) - they are Wordstar, Vedit and ZDE.

    Wordstar works but it is the slowest and takes up the most space.
    Vedit is great but has non wordstar commands (eg hit esc twice to quit)
    ZDE (ZDE16) is great but ^K does not work. (esc is the alternative)

    I found this in the ZDE help file:

    " NOTE: the installation of arrow keys affects ZDE's command
    behavior. If the keys ^J, ^K, or ^L are in use as arrow keys, as
    in many of the CP/M defaults, they will not function as Wordstar

    But I am not sure what that means. What I do know is that 1) ^K is not trapped by CP/M because I have the source code and I can't see CNTRLK listed in the equ's and 2) ^K does work on Wordstar - but not on ZDE.

    It isn't a big deal problem but if anyone knows the answer it would be most appreciated!

  2. Default


    I had a bit of trouble when I wrote my article: Installing ZDE 1.6 a programmers editor for CP/M.

    From what I found, on some installations when the arrow keys are pressed then the key codes for ^k ^j ^l etc are returned.

    For zde you can use ESCAPE instead of ^k as the main command key, I also remember something in the documentation for zde mentioning patching it to have the correct keycode for ^k to allow it to work, can't remember on this last point.

    As far as which editor to use I would definitely recommend zde, it's nice that it uses the wordstar combinations and that it is fairly small and quick. It is also quite expandable.
    TechTinkering : Website / YouTube (Retro computers, VIC-20, CP/M, Programming)
    Latest Video: The Mouse Programming Language on CP/M

  3. #3


    Thanks for the reply. That link and the info is extremely helpful and just what I needed.

    I've just finished writing a little driver for a 20x4 LCD display, and now working on the code for a PS/2 keyboard. The up and down arrows and a number of other buttons on a keyboard have no real meaning in CP/M and the scan codes don't do anything. So why not use them as wordstar commands? It is pretty easy to map the scan codes over to wordstar commands. I've no idea why ^k doesn't work, but if esc does then use that. Maybe even program some of the F1-F12 keys to do things too, though I must say the wordstar commands are fairly deeply engrained in the old memory banks.

    It looks like ZDE is going to get a permanent place on the drive!

    James Moxham


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