I'm not going to pretend that anyone asked these questions other than myself. These are good questions and answers though. Really, this is just the text of the readme.txt file in the installer.
WHAT DOES FILEHOUND DO?
One thing. Downloads files from the Internet. That's it. It's designed to be extremely foolproof and requires absolutely no setup. If you are successfully running a web browser, FileHound will work out of the box (tech detail: any system that supports WinSock32 will run FileHound).
HOW DO I MAKE IT WORK?
You have to obtain a file's internet name, commonly referred to as its URL, and give it to FileHound. FileHound is not a plug-in, and it's not a web browser. You'll use your web browser as you always have, but when you come across a file you want to download, instead of clicking on the link in the browser, you'll instead COPY the link to the clipboard, then PASTE the link into FileHound's URL field. Then click on download, and away you go! And you'll never have to worry about another broken download.
WHAT DO I HAVE TO SET UP?
Nothing. The configuration screens, options, multiple tabs and so forth are merely auxiliary settings, archive listings, etc. to extend the basic "download a file" functionality far beyond what you are used to having in your web browser.
FileHound does not make any changes to your system, and it does not modify any system settings or move any files. Feel free, then, to experiment with FileHound and see what each feature does. You can't hurt anything just playing around with it.
HOW DO I UNINSTALL FILEHOUND?
To keep the download size of FileHound smaller, we decided to omit an uninstall program. To delete FileHound, do two things: Delete the \Program Files\FileHound directory. And, delete the \Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Hound Agents directory. Note that by default, FileHound puts downloaded files in a subdirectory called download within \Program Files\FileHound, so if you want to keep any of your downloads, move them before you uninstall FileHound.
EXPLAIN THE BANDWIDTH SETTINGS TO ME.
Usually when you select a file to be downloaded, your FTP program or web browser will retrieve the file as fast as possible. That's nice if you're in a big hurry, but the cost is that your further web browsing is slowed down, because your modem is very busy retrieving all the file data.
FileHound lets you "throttle" its downloading to only use a small part of your modem's capacity for retrieving files. By using slow downloads, you can keep surfing the web at near full speed while your downloads proceed in the background. They will take longer, yes, but you can keep working online.
FileHound has two speed modes, normal (or slow), and FAST. FAST mode is typically used when you want FileHound to soak up all of your bandwidth; for example when you're reading email or chatting, or away from your desk. Normal mode is used when you want to continue surfing the web without getting lagged by a download.
FAST mode is enabled when you push the GO FAST button. Other options, including telling FileHound how much data you want it to retrieve in each mode are available on the Bandwidth settings page.
WHAT ABOUT VIRUSES?
FileHound recognizes that files you retrieve from the Internet are by their nature unsafe. We have built in external virus- check support into FileHound. Although FileHound does not have a virus check program built in, it can work with any virus check program you have installed on your system. This will require a little bit of research and set-up on your part, but we've made it as easy as possible. The Virus Check settings page contains all the information you'll need to fill in to enable FileHound to start automatically checking your downloads for safety. We tested it with both McAfee VirusScan and Symantec's Norton Anti-Virus, and it works like a charm.
GOT ANY BELLS AND WHISTLES?
Oh my yes. FileHound can be very noisy if you wish! Open the Sound settings page and you can assign your own favorite windows WAV files to different circumstances in FileHound. It's very easy, and adds a lot of fun to your downloading!
HOW ABOUT A NIGHT-LIGHT?
FileHound has that, too. If you're like most people, you'll want to use FileHound to download multiple files when you're away from your desk or sleeping. By using the "Good Night" button, you tell FileHound to go ahead and shut down your Internet connection when all files have been transferred. This can save money if you pay by the hour for your connection. There's also an option on the Miscellaneous settings page to tell FileHound to actually shut down your PC when it's done downloading. (Both of these options give you a 60 second warning in case you decided to stay awake, and you can countermand the order any time.)
ARE THERE ANY MORE FEATURES?
Dozens, but it would be exhausting for both of us if we were to list them all out. FileHound has been honed over nearly half a year of interactive testing by hundreds of beta participants, and has many time-saving features and lots of behind-the-scenes magic to try and eliminate as much complexity as possible from downloading from the Internet. Odds are any request you might have or feature you'll need is built into the program already.
If you're into buzzwords, here are some of the things we've added to FileHound to make your life easier: HTTP Basic authentication, FTP and HTTP file resume, URL login/password decoding, filename defaulting, automatic HTTP redirection, per-server automatic login name and password for FTP connections, UNIX->MSDOS text file translation, overwrite protection, power-fail download resumption, full session logging, file launching, perpetual URL archive with a re-download feature, multiple simultaneous downloads (no built-in limit), very accurate estimated download timer, and on, and on, and on.
But remember, FileHound is first and foremost EASY TO USE. These features sit quietly in the background until you need them, and then they're right there by your side. So all of these options and settings work for you by making downloads easier and more reliable, instead of against you by adding confusion and hard to understand dialogs. In every case, FileHound will guess as best as it can in order to provide you with the perfect download settings.
HOW CAN I MAKE USING FILEHOUND EVEN EASIER?
In version 1.2, FTP and HTML URL extraction was added, and support for downloading FTP directories was added. When you use the Extract URLs command against a web page or FTP directory, FileHound will create a list of all files in that page or directory, and add them to the Clipboard/Extract listing. From there, you can sort them and schedule downloads of ones you want.
New to version 1.1a is drag and drop support. Using Internet Explorer or Netscape, you can simply drag a highlighted URL from a browser page to FileHound's window and release it, and that URL will be automatically queued up.
Another way to easily get URLs into FileHound without typing is to enable clipboard sniffing. In the miscellaneous settings page, there is an option you can turn on that will make FileHound monitor your clipboard for URLs.
When you copy one, FileHound will ask right away if you'd like to download it. There's even an option to just automatically say "yes" to that question, so starting downloads in FileHound is actually easier than in your web browser -- you don't even have to hit OK, just right click on the file link and copy the link/shortcut to the clipboard.
WHAT IF SOMETHING GOES WRONG?
Even though this release has undergone a very long testing cycle and there are no remaining outstanding issues, there may yet be problems. Your comments and feedback are very much desired, particularly on these points:
- Bugs, crashes, erratic behavior. To report a bug, please list the steps required to reproduce it. Be specific!
- Downloads that break but shouldn't. The goal is to make FileHound be able to download all URLs that Netscape and Internet Explorer can using these protocols: ftp:// http:// and file:// If you can't download a URL you think you ought to be able to, please forward both the URL and the session log from the failure. I'll fix it.
WHAT HAVE YOU GOT PLANNED FOR FUTURE RELEASES OF FILEHOUND?
If any of these options are something you want or need, please write in and express your support. Also, if there are any other ideas you have for FileHound, let us know!
WHAT IS FILEHOUND'S COMMERCIAL STATUS?
FileHound is truly a "shareware" program instead of crippleware/trialware. You have full functionality without any time limit, and it is left to your personal sense of honor whether or not to remunerate us for our efforts. If you honestly cannot afford $15 for FileHound--remembering that if you use it all the time, you're certainly getting a lot of value for it--or simply cannot obtain the necessary currency for payment, please continue to use it in good health. Send us a note, let us know you're out there!
HOW MUCH IS IT TO REGISTER?
FileHound is $15US to register, and you can register with check or money order via the mail, or with credit cards online. You will receive your registration key within two business days. The registration key will remove the very occasional reminder screens and put your name on the title bar of FileHound to give you a "warm fuzzy" feeling about having registered!
Remember there's no RUSH to get that registration key in there, as FileHound is very gentle about registration reminders, so don't let the delay stop you from registering when you feel it's time.
WHAT DOES THE LICENSE GRANT ME?
Your license will entitle you, and only you, to use FileHound on as many computers as you like. Once registered, your name will appear in the title bar of the application. So, if you are using FileHound and someone else's name appears in the title bar, you should register FileHound immediately in your own name. We do NOT sell blanket licenses to businesses. Each user must be registered individually. Discounts are available for bulk purchases (inquire).
HOW DO I CONTACT YOU?
Mail: Albino Frog Software, Inc.
13067 157 Court N.
Jupiter, FL 33478 USA
Note: Use EMAIL for all communications.
HOW DO I ORDER?
FileHound is $15 US for a single user license. When you register, you will NOT receive a disk. Keep up with the latest version of FileHound by downloading it from our website. You will receive a set of registration keys to unlock your personal copy of FileHound. No disk. No manual. Just keys!
You may order by Check or Money order through the mail, to the above address. Payment must be in US funds drawn on a US bank. For this reason, we recommend that non US orders use a credit card. If you don't have a credit card and are feeling lucky, place US currency in a sturdy, opaque envelope and mail that instead of a check. We're honest, but can't guarantee the same of the postal service! Include your email address on all mailed orders so we can email you registration keys as soon as your funds clear our bank.
Our credit card and checking account debit ordering is handled by PayPal. If you do not have a PayPal account, you'll need to create one; this is simple and free, and a lot more convenient for both of us. Please go to the Albino Frog Software website to begin the order process by clicking on the BUY IT WITH PAYPAL button on the FileHound page.
You will receive a registration key for FileHound when your order has been processed. If you supply an email address, your registration key will be sent via email with a note confirming your order. Keep up with the latest version of FileHound by downloading from our website. Upgrades are free within the current major revision (1.x), and can be downloaded at any time.
IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE?
Spread the word about FileHound! Tell your friends, your co-workers, your neighbors. Put a link to it on your website, and recommend your users try it for downloading your own files. Upload it to shareware BBSs. Mention it in Usenet posts. Get the word out: There's no need to ever suffer broken download again.