working with checksum's UNIX-like preferences file..

Living in these post-operating-system cold-war days of ours, it's great to see that we've finally learned how to pluck the best bits from each other, mainly from UNIX. And one of the most beautiful things about the UNIX OS, I think, is plain text configuration files..

For most people, checksum will just do the job, without you ever having to look at checksum.ini, and if you need something unusual, holding the <SHIFT> key at checksum's launch brings up the one-shot options, where you can probably tweak what you need.

However, some people will want more specific behaviour from checksum, and this page aims to help you make the most of checksum's many permanent preferences.

Why an ini file?

Setting preferences is a task; work that you don't want to do again. This is true of most all software. So the first thing you want to be able to do with preferences, is make a backup. checksum.ini is a plain text file, so backup is trivially easy. checksum does NOT use, nor rely upon the Windows registry, so it's no problem to move your settings to a different machine, or use them after a system reinstallation. Being plain text, they are also easy to read and understand.

Importantly, plain text preferences enable the developer - the guy most likely to understand the settings - to leave copiuous notage and comments right there above the preference itself. Plain text offers complete freedom to do lots of explaining, drop URLs, make diagrams, whatever, right where you need it, when you need it.

It also means the developer (me) can freely add new features and settings without messing up any preference GUI you may or may not have gotten used to using, and it's trivial to upgrade your existing ini file whilst keeping all your old settings intact.

Also, as it's work, and possibly you'll spend a few minutes doing it; you want to be in an environment you find comfortable, that is; your regular text editor.

Like all my Windows tools, you can also drop the ini file right next to the program to instatly switch to portable mode. Handy.

So there we have it, perhaps not the most "user-friendly" preference system, but maybe the best for the kinds of users that will want to alter checksum's prefences, behaviours, inner workings, and so on. There is a lot that can be set.

If you are a gamer, at least one that likes to tweak settings, you will probably be familiar with ini files; it's how most decent games store their configuration data.

Get a Text Editor..

The only possible barrier to your working with checksum's permanent preferences is lack of a decent text editor. You don't need anything fancy, so long as it works with plain text, and does Syntax Highlighting. Notepad would work, technically, but without syntax highlighting, it will be almost impossible to distinguish comments from actual preferences, and not only will viewing be choreful, you are quite likely to make errors.

Most modern text editors can do syntax highlighting which simply colours the text by what it is; comments are usually grey or light green. Syntax highlighting is the difference between this..

# Text Editor
# This is notes, see

and this..

# Text Editor
# This is notes, see

That's it!

Everything else you need to know is inside checksum.ini - drop it into your text editor!
If you used checksum's installer, you can find checksum.ini here..

C:\Documents and Settings\<Username>\Application Data\corz\checksum

On Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1, as well as the modern Windows Server versions, it is here..


If you are running in portable mode, it will be sitting right next to checksum.exe.

You can also access checksum.ini by right-clicking checksum's Progress ToolTip or System Tray icon.

For in-depth information about some of checksum's trickier preferences, see here.

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If something isn't working, I'm probably improving it, try again in a minute. If it's still not working, please mail me!