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VR Program Arguments

PHOENICS VR is launched by the satellite program, satexe.exe. It has a number of optional arguments to enable certain actions to be made on start up. These were introduced to ease the demonstration of the capabilities of the interface. They may also prove useful in launching VR from the PHOENICS Commander.

To launch the VR-Editor the options are:

satexe vre [/lib=libname] [/case=casename] [/find[=true|false]] [/silent] [/dir=directoryname] [/quit] 
[/last] [/fullscreen] [/display] [/watch[=filename]] [/reload] [/pq1] [/nogui]

To launch VR-Viewer the options are:

satexe vrv [/case=casename] [/macro=macroname] [/find=true|false] [/silent] [/dir=directoryname] [/quit] [/last] [/fullscreen]

/lib=libname (VR editor only): Load specified libname from the PHOENICS library on start-up. User is prompted on whether to overwrite the current case unless /silent argument is also used.

/case=casename (VR editor and Viewer): Load specified user case into VR on start-up. User is prompted on whether to overwrite the current case unless /silent argument is also used.

/dir=directoryname (VR editor and viewer): Start VR in specified directory

/find[=true|false] (VR editor and viewer): If set true (also the default when /find specified), VR will open in an existing VR window if available.

/last (VR editor and viewer): Starts VR in same folder as on last exit.

/silent (VR editor and viewer): Optional argument when opening specified user or library case. Indicates not to prompt user before overwriting any existing files. When used in combination with /quit doesn't prompt for confirmation before quitting VR.

/macro=macroname (VR viewer only): Load specified viewer macro on program start-up. When used in combination with /quit, quits viewer after macro finishes.

/quit (VR editor and viewer): When used in combination with /find will close an existing VR window open on the desktop. In VR viewer when used in combination with /macro will quit the VR viewer after completing the macro. If /silent used in combination with /quit then VR will terminate without further prompts.

/fullscreen (VR editor and viewer): Starts VR with the main graphics window filling the whole of the screen.

/display (VR editor and viewer): Starts VR in "read only" display mode. The menu bar, control panel and movement panel are not available in this mode.

/watch[=filename] (VR editor only): VR Editor watches for saved changes to filename and when it detects changes will reload the current Q1. If no filename specified, then /watch will watch for changes in Q1.

/reload (VR editor only): Causes an immediate reload of the current Q1 file into VR editor. [Equivalent to /find /silent /case=q1]

/pq1: Causes the Satellite, whether in VR editor, VR viewer or text mode, to start with VREDIT=F.This is required when a Parameterised Q1 is being used, and it is desired to preserve the original Q1 with no changes.

/nogui: Causes the satellite to run with no graphical interface or command prompt. This mode is useful in combination with the 'f' argument (equivalent to TALK=F in Q1) to completely hide the operation of the pre-processor.

Examples of use

As an example of how the use of these arguments may be used: in the PHOENICS Commander, consider the library search facility. The user has made his search and is faced with a list of library cases. Currently, when a case is loaded a small Q1 is written and a new instance of the VR Editor is launched. This is all very well if the user chooses to close the existing instance but if they do not, then after the second instance of the VR Editor the program will fail to launch without any visible error message. However, if VRE is launched with the command

satexe vre /find /silent /lib=i104

Then it will find any existing instance of the VR environment and proceed to load library case i104. The silent tag indicates that the user is not prompted before the exisiting case in the editor is overwritten. When trying a succession of library cases it is probably not necessary to confirm overwrite at each instance.

The /case argument performs a similar role for prepared user cases. It may also be used to load a case directly into the viewer.

The /directory argument enables the program to be launched from one location and then run in another. Please note that the program will change the working directory before attempting to load a case or run a macro.

During a VR Viewer session, prepared views may be saved to a macro file to playback at a later date. The /macro argument allows such a macro to be run at start-up. This is not actually a new feature, there is currently an equivalent to the /macro argument:

satexe vrv auto filename

But this requires that the arguments be in the set order. With the additional options present, it could easily lead to confusion. So, while we retain the above for backward compatibility the preferred method would be:

satexe vrv /macro=filename

One could add the /quit argument to this if the user wishes to quit the viewer after the macro has completed.

satexe vre /display /find /watch=frommenu.htm 

This will start the VR editor in an existing window if there is one, with all user input disabled. Whenever the date-stamp of the file frommenu.htm changes, the entire Q1 will be automatically reloaded.

satexe f /nogui /pq1

This will start the Satellite in silent mode, and will produce no visible screen display. The Q1 will be read and all files for the Earth run will be created in VREDIT=F mode.