*** Chat - User's Guide ***    

1. Chatroom list

When starting the chat, you'll see the screen below that allows you to choose a room. Click on a line of the list to enter in the corresponding room.



- the button  REFRESH  allows to update the list to see if new rooms have been created.
- the buttons  <  and  >  allow to see the rooms in other languages than English.
- The symbol indicates a room with mandatory webcam : your webcam will be turned on automatically when entering. In the other rooms the webcam is not mandatory, you can turn it on when you feel like it.



PROBLEM : THE ROOM LIST IS EMPTY

If the room list is empty :

1) if you're chatting on a PC that is connected indirectly to the internet via another PC that must remain online (shared connection or proxy server), you must go chatting on the PC directly connected to the ADSL modem !

2) protection software like Norton and ZoneAlarm can cause problems : they must be configured to authorize the chat program to access the internet.

3) the Windows firewall, if disabled, does no longer notify the user when Programs are blocked, we advise you to keep it enabled.




2. The Chat Room



talk on the microphone (click and keep pressed , talk, then release button when you've finished talking)
no longer hear the other people talk on the microphone
no longer hear the sounds (enter room, leave cup, exclusion, whisper, disconnect)
turn your webcam on, or look at someone else's webcam (first click on a name in the list)
modify your profile or show someone else's profile
téléphone (whisper or accept a whisper) - see explanations in chapter below.
block someone's whisper
ignore someone (first select a nick).
toc (gold or brown); take/drop toc, or exclude a user (first select a nick).

write a line without ':' between nick and the text. Example: "Erika thinks it's good".
go/leave cup (away).
modify style and color of the font.
webcam properties (select a video source, brightness, contrast, sharpness, colors).
start Internet Explorer to surf on the group associated to the chatroom.
display list of emoticons.
exit - return to list of rooms.
follow more easily a user in a large room - you must first click a nick on the right-hand list, then click on this icon : a will then appear next to each line written by this nick.
give a temporary toc for 24h to a chatter, or take it back.

Keyboard:
F1 = decrease size of font.
F2 = increase size of font.
F3 = modify window size (press several times).

fast clics:
Profile : to see someone's profile, click on icon next to his nick in the list.
Webcam : to watch someone's webcam, click on icon next to his nick in the list.


3. User Profile

To change your user profile, click on your pseudo name then on icon below.
Users who are in the same chatroom as you will be able to see your profile.

Enter your nick name in the 'Pseudo' field.
The field 'Pseudo-Icon' can be used to specify a banner image (max 168 x 21) that will represent you.



The profile is also used to manage a list of friends you want to stay in contact with.

When you open another chatter's profile, you'll see a button "Add a friend". Pressing it will add the chatter in your friend's list. This button will not appear if this chatter is already in your list.

Friends that you add aren't automatically notified that you added them on your list. They will not be disturbed by any add demand. It's up to you to ask them in the chatroom to add you too, otherwise nothing will happen ..

If your friend opens your profile and adds you too, he/she can then call you anytime in a private chat window as long as you are in any room on the chat.

Once you have added at least one friend, a button "My friends" will appear on your profile and allows you to manage your list :



A friend that you added appears in DEMAND. He/she is however not notified that you added him/her : it's up to you to ask him/her in the chatroom to open your profile and to add you too as friend, your friend's state becomes then "FRIEND". If later your friend removes you from his/her list, the state will become again DEMAND.

You and your friends can be in 3 connection states :

: connected, chatting
: connected, but absent or away in cup
: not connected

The button "Call" opens a private window to talk to your friend.
The button "Block" allows you to prevent a friend from calling you, you appear to him/her as "not connected".
The button "Group" is used to create categories.


4. Emoticon list

In the chatroom, click on icon to see the emoticon list. If you can't see all emoticons on the screen, increase the windows screen resolution (right-clic on desktop, properties, parameters, screen resolution : 1024x768 or more).




5. Webcam


note: here I have hidden the people's faces because I didn't ask their authorization to show them here.

To turn on your webcam, don't select any nick in the list and click on bouton below. Your webcam image appears then in the upper left corner and anyone in the room can then see you. Click on icon to set the webcam properties : select a video source, select brightness, contrast, sharpness and colors.

The icon next to a nick indicates that this person turned on his/her webcam. To see someone else's webcam, click on icon next to his/her nick; his/her image will then appear above on the screen.
The counter below each image indicates the number of people (except the person himself) who look at this image.

You can zoom(2X) on a webcam picture by clicking on it, but there must be enough free space on the screen for this. If there is not enough space on the screen, you can enlarge the chat window. You can also increase the windows screen resolution (right-clic on desktop, properties, parameters, screen resolution : 1024x768 or more).

To prevent your webcam to be turned on automatically when entering a room with mandatory webcam, add the following in chat.ini :
# chat.ini

[cam]
start = manual      ; automatic (turns on itself) or manual (you have to click)

To use a wifi webcam that is not registered in Windows, you need to add its source in chat.ini as in the following example :
# chat.ini

[cam]
source = http://192.168.1.13:8080/image.jpg

If you have a toc, you will see a question mark on the cam icon of chatters that enter the room without toc. This question mark will disappear when at least one room manager has clicked on the chatter's cam to watch it. This allows the managers to distribute more easily the cam verification work of the incomers.


6. Whispers

"Savage" whispers are not possible on this chat : each whisper must first be accepted. The example below show how it works :



Samuro (left) want to whisper something to Isabelle (right) :

1. Samuro clicks on Isabelle's nick to color it in brown.

2. Samuro clicks on the yellow telephone below.

3. A yellow telephone appears next to Isabelle's nick.
4. Isabelle hears a bell and notices a green telephone with the word "DRING" next to Samuro's nick.

5. If she wants to answer, she clicks on Samuro's nick, then on the yellow telephone below. A private conversation window appear then.

6. If she does not want to answer and wants to block calls from Samuro, she clicks on Samuro's nick, then on the green telephone with red stripes below.


Whispers are not possible in rooms of category Ados.


7. sounds

The following sounds exist :
- arrive in room
- leave room
- leave cup
- whisper
- exclusion by kick
- network disconnect
- follow a chatter
- laser shoot (3D)
- wake up : after 3 minutes of inactivity in room, if someone new arrives or if someone talks are leaves his cup, then a toc-toc-toc will be heard by the other people.

Click on to no longer hear the sounds.


8. The Microphone

To talk on the microphone to all the room, press and keep pressed , talk, then release the button when you've finished.
If you have microphone problems, the following advice can help you:

1) if you don't hear anything, don't forget to unclick the red bar on the speaker icon .
2) if you still don't hear anything, to setup your mic in windows, click here : micro
3) for a quality setup, enter the chatroom twice : you will then be able to hear yourself and make adjustments.
4) on Windows 95/98, a single programm can access the microphone and speakers at the same time. Close all other programs that use sound, close the chat and reopen it.

You can block the micro button by clicking on it then by moving the mouse upwards; this allows listening to continuous music, if the connection speed allows it. Nevertheless, to avoid accidental blockings of the micro button, the button will unblock automatically after 5 minutes, unless you've set the following option in chat.ini :

[micro]
unblock = no


A room owner can avoid that the message 'xx talks on the micro' be displayed for golden tocs by adding the following option in chatserv.ini :

[settings]
radio = yes


In 3D rooms, the micro sound can't be heard if the chatters are more than 5000 pixels apart. This value can be changed in chatserv.ini :

[3D]
distance-micro = 5000



To make the microphone and speaker icons disappear, a room owner can add the following in chatserv.ini :

[settings]
micro = NO



If a room owner wants chatters to enter his/her room with an open speaker, he/she must add the following in chatserv.ini :

[settings]
speaker = ON


notes:
1) user preferences still have priority;
2) speaker of the bot is not modified;
3) the sound quality depends on the settings of the button 'max upload' on the chat server.



9. Macro Files

Each user can create a macro file that can be used to display prepared lines of text. For example:

you type :
&go eva

following text appears :
gooo eva, go find happiness


To obtain this result, you must create a file MACROS.TXT that you need to copy in the same directory as CHAT.EXE, that means in C:\CHAT.XXX\ (where XXX is your nick marked on your chat icon on your desktop).

Here's an example of a line of this file :

&go : gooo %1, go find \001\255\000\000\002\009\000\000happiness(f):p

Explanations:

&gokeyword to start the macro (must start with '&' and be followed by letters and digits)
:colon (this is a separator)
%1macro parameter that will be replaced when you type your text; up to 9 parameters (%1 to %9) are allowed.
\001\255\000\000text color change; must begin with \001 followed by 3 values for the amounts of red, green and blue of the desired color (each value must be between \000 and \255).
\002\009\000\000text font change; must begin with \002 followed by a value between \000 and \016 for the font number, followed by \000\000.

You can create any color; here are some with their codes :

\001\000\000\000black
\001\255\000\000red
\001\192\000\000red carmin
\001\255\255\000yellow
\001\255\000\255violet
\001\255\128\000orange
\001\000\128\128dark green
\001\000\200\000light green
\001\000\000\255dark blue
\001\000\210\255light blue
\001\160\160\160grey

here's the font list with their codes :

\002\000\000\000 Tahoma
\002\001\000\000 Times New Roman
\002\002\000\000 Arial
\002\003\000\000 Arial Black
\002\004\000\000 Comic Sans MS
\002\005\000\000 Courier New
\002\006\000\000 Franklin Gothic Medium
\002\007\000\000 Georgia
\002\008\000\000 Impact
\002\009\000\000 Lucida Console
\002\010\000\000 Microsoft Sans Serif
\002\011\000\000 Palatino Linotype
\002\012\000\000 Sylfaen
\002\013\000\000 Trebuchet MS
\002\014\000\000 Verdana
\002\015\000\000 Kartika
\002\016\000\000 Vrinda

Attributes : the attributs are at the end of the font codes. Instead of \000\000 you can have:
\000\000normal
\001\000underlined
\002\000italic
\003\000underlined+italic
\004\000bold
\005\000underlined+bold
\006\000italic+bold
\007\000underlined+italic+bold


An macro example is available here.

If it doesn't work, try to rename your file in "MACROS" instead of "MACROS.TXT" (notepad adds the hidden extension .TXT automatically, for more details click here)


10. Personnalised sounds

The following sounds exist :

name of sounduse
arrivee arrive in room
quitter normal leaving of room
deconn someone has disconnected
toquer kick
tasse leave cup
knock toc-toc-toc - wakeup after 3 minutes of inactivity
pv1 ask for whisper
pv2 whisper ringing
discon you have been disconnected
tag a chatter followed with writes a line
shoot laser shoot (3D)

Each user can modify the chat sounds on his own PC only. To do this, he/she must modify the chat.ini file that can be found the same directory as CHAT.EXE, this means in C:\CHAT.XXX\ (where XXX is your nick written on the yellow chat icon on your desktop).

This file will have to contain the following line :

example:
# chat.ini file

[sound]
arrivee = ding.wav
toquer = fouet.wav

The user must obtain his/her own audio files (with extension .WAV) and put them in the same directory as chat.exe

These modifications have no effect on the other PCs that keep the standard sounds.


11. Add your own icons

Each user can add his/her own icons if he/she thinks the standard emoticons aren't enough varied.

For that, he/she needs to start Internet Explorer/Chrome/Safari, to surf on the internet to select a picture or an animated icon, to click on the picture with the mouse then to move the mouse over the chat window while keeping the mouse button pressed : a special code for the picture will then appear on the chat text line.
Remark: this method does not work on images that are links in Internet Explorer, thus on 'clickable' images.

Besides this simple but volatile method (you don't keep the images), it's also possible to add pictures and icons permanently, but it's slighly more complicated. Here's how to do :

  1. configurate windows explorer by following the explanations at this link

  2. open the file chat.ini of your chat directory.

    Here's how : if your yellow chat icon you start the chat with is called CHAT_SAMU (, see the picture on the right, you must type the text c:\chat.samu in the red area (1), then click on (2), (3) and (4) :

    Here's a example file chat.ini when it's open :

    # chat.ini

    [icons]
    heriss = c:\mes documents\herisson.gif
    soleil = soleil_rouge.jpg
    fille2 = fille125.bmp

  3. If you're drawing your pictures using a program (for example Paint or Photoshop) make sure you're always saving your original creations in format .BMP 24-bits because this uncompressed format is the only one that garantees the full richness of the 24 million colors available with these programs.

  4. When your picture is finished, you can reduce its size on the disk by saving it in one of the following compression formats :

    • GIF : choose this format if your creation contains no more than 256 colors - you must know that if your picture contains a lot of colors, a conversion to GIF will reduce stronly the richness and luminosity of the picture's colors - compare with the original BMP picture before selecting this format.

    • JPG : if you save your picture in format JPG, you must know that many programs allow you to specify a compression rate from 0 to 100. A too small value will produce fuzzy pictures; a too large value will produce a large file on the disk - be aware that a compression to JPG will always reduce the quality and sharpness of your image - compare with the original BMP picture before selecting this format.

    • BMP : you can also keep your original BMP picture to be sure not to loose any quality, but on the condition that your image does not exceed 63K on the disk.

    • PNG : this format compresses your original picture without any loss of quality. A good choice.

  5. Copy your image files (.GIF, .JPG, .BMP or .PNG) in the same directory as chat.ini - next to the red circle (4), not on it.

  6. Then, for each image, write a line in chat.ini under the line [icons] (look at the example that already contains 3 lines). For each line, you must give a 6-character-name to your icon (no less, no more than 6 characters otherwise it won't work !), followed by an equal sign '=', followed by the image filename on the disk with its extension (.GIF, .JPG, .BMP or .PNG).

    Then you must close the chat.ini window and save the changes.

  7. When this is done, click on the chat window (where you chat) and press the F5 key. You'll see a line 'system info: loading chat.ini : ok' which indicates that the chat has reloaded your new chat.ini file.

  8. Type now on the chat : {heriss} {soleil} {fille2}

    You should then see your icons.

Instead of an image, you could see one of the following error messages :
sign meaning
{.ini??} chat.ini or chatserv.ini not found
{icons?} paragraph [icons] not found in file .ini
{name??} name of icon not found (before sign =)
{found?} image or sound file not found (after sign =)
{big???} file size exceeds 63K
{wav???} sound icon not authorized here
{size??} image dimensions (width, height) exceed limit
limitvalue
icons used for pseudos max dimensions: 168 x 21 pixels
icons used for text max dimensions: 320 x 240 pixels
icons used for the emoticons (see chapter J. Style) max dimensions: 21 x 21 pixels
icons used for the borders around chat text (see chapter J. Style) max dimensions: 2048 x 2048 pixels
icons used for 3D textures max dimensions: 2048 x 2048 pixels
{illeg?} illegal file format

Correct then the problem and retry (don't forget to press F5).

It is recommanded, to avoid "lag" and slow scrolling, to select a small image, to cut it well using MsPaint at minimal dimensions. A transparent background for GIF images is recommended.

Here are some more special cases :

  1. Instead of an image file, it is also possible to use an audio file with extension .WAV, which will make this sound heard in the room by all other chatters. Such a "sound" icon does not work if placed in a nick, but works as text or in an exclusion message.

  2. In the room, when an image is followed immediately by an url link :

    example: {image1}http://www.here.com

    then the link is not displayed on the screen but when you click on the image, the internet explorer is started with this link.

  3. If animated icons make you sick, use the following option in chat.ini to freeze them :

    # chat.ini

    [settings]
    animated-gifs = no

    or use the following option to allow only animated images, but no animated pseudos :

    # chat.ini

    [settings]
    animated-gifs = after




12. How to change the chat's starting screen color

To change the color of the chat's starting page (on your own PC only), use the option :

# chat.ini

[settings]
screen-color = 1CBBF0 ; screen color
field-color  = FFFFFF ; field color
room_description_font_color = 808080 ; room description color

The first two options are also available in chatserv.ini to change the chat server's color.


13. How to move in a 3D room

In a 3D room, you can move using the keyboard arrows :

-> forward, backward, turn left or right.
-> using control-left and control-right : move sidewards left or right without turning.

You can also move using the mouse :

-> to turn, click on a point of the upper half of the screen and roll the mouse left or right.
-> to move, click on a point of the lower half of the screen (where you want to go), and while leaving the mouse button pushed, roll the mouse towards you.
-> with the mouse wheel you can look up and down.
-> if you have ammunition, shoot with the right mouse button.



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