Re: disassembly

From: Marko Mäkelä (
Date: 1998-03-16 01:11:27

On Sun, 15 Mar 1998, Andrew Vardy wrote:

> As for the UNIX enviornment, or gosh, IBM, what for there?

What's the difference between IBM and UNIX?  IBM manufactures its own Unix
variant, AIX.  And I hope that you knew that there are free Unix variants
that run on IBM PC compatible hardware.  One of the best is Linux, which
works on 80386 compatible processors (and 68000 and others).  On Unix, I
think that GNU Emacs is the most powerful editor.  Starting with version
19, there is hexl-mode for editing binary files, but you can also edit
binary files normally, as if it was text.  Very useful for combining
tokenized BASIC programs (yes, I've done it with Emacs!) and similar

> For browsing a text file, if you got assembly in text, what is out there? 

If browsing is the only what you need, then also a program called "less"
will do.  It, like all reasonable Unix text tools, has regular expression
search, which is very useful if you want to search e.g. for a STA, STX or
STY instruction for a certain address range.  For instance,
/ST[AXY] \$D02[0-3]$
would search for STA, STX or STY $D020, $D021, $D022 or $D023.  Regular
expressions are very powerful, you should learn them.

> A MUST for any editor IMO would be an on screen display of line and
> column position. 

You can get that display by pressing C-g (Control-G) in vi, or by setting
certain variables in Emacs.  Specifically, put the following lines to your
.emacs file:

(line-number-mode t)
(column-number-mode t)

> Bizarrely, stuff that comes with Win95 won't even do that basic thing. 

Yeah, those M$ products make one feel as if you had five left-hand thumbs
in your hand.  Once you are familiar with the powerful features of Unix
programs, you won't want to return to those "user-friendly" programs.  I
wonder how Windows NT will be around.  VMS, which was supposed to kill
Unix, lasted only about 10 years. 


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