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August 2000


Where In The World Is...

by Gary Granat

One of the products featured in the series New Millennium, New Desktop is the excellent file manager, FM/2 published by Barebones Software (the alter ego of Mark Kimes). FM/2 has been a fixture in the OS/2 world for a number of years, and was, in fact, one of the file managers I reviewed in an OS/2 For You review series published in 1994.

Over the years, I have periodically updated my copy of FM/2. For the past three or four years, I have found it convenient to download my update copy form BMT Micro. The latest update I have shows a date of 10/01/98 on the archive file and internal dates of 08/30/98 and 09/01/98 for updated files in the archive.

When I knew that FM/2 would be an integral part of the solution I discuss in the desktop series, I went to the BMT Micro site to be sure I had the "latest and greatest" version. To my dismay, FM/2 was not listed in the BMT Micro catalog. So, I sent this note to BMT Micro Customer Service:

"Hi, I'm looking for FM/2 (Barebones Software) but I can't find it on your site. I would appreciate any information you can provide about where I can find a current release."

I received this reply from BMT Micro Customer Service:

"We have been unable to contact Mark Kimes in months now, so we have pulled the product. I do not have any contact details for you, sorry."

In addition, I have tried sending e-mail to Mark's last know address, but it was returned with an error code indicating a delivery failure, probably because the account no longer exists.

For anyone "following along" with this article series, this situation poses a bit of a dilemma. The release of FM/2 that my article addresses is Version 3.01. A back-level version of FM/2 (Version 2.67) can be found on Hobbes, and it should provide the described services. However, registration may be a problem. The last time I checked, FM/2 ran in "full service" mode and without any "nag-ware" features, even if it wasn't registered, but I'm not sure that is still the case. Even if it is, there are still the ethical issues surrounding the use of shareware software without registering.

A possible alternative might be FileStar/2, although I do not have a copy and have not attempted to evaluate it. A quick survey of its feature list suggests that it could be used, effectively, in lieu of FM/2 to provide some of the required services to satisfy my New Desktop requirements. Only a complete review would, however, reveal whether it could fulfill all of the desired additional functions.

And none of the foregoing does anything to answer the question of Mr. Kimes' current status as an OS/2 developer.


If you have pertinent information to share, you can reach the author at ggranat@earthlink.net.