Simple driver for Russian keyboard

I've developed this tiny virtual device driver(VxD) for my own use, but I think it may be useful for somebody else. Feel free to download it. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

About the driver

This driver allows an user to enter Russian text by using any windows application, that has a feature to select font (WRITE, WORDPAD, MS WORD, MS ACCESS, PAINT, NETSCAPE MAIL etc.). The driver works either with Windows 3.x or Windows95/98/NT (but does not work with Windows 2000) and requires Windows font of KOI-8 format. A lot of such fonts are available through the Internet(Some Russian fonts).

All you need to install the driver is to download this VxD to your 'windows\system' directory, to insert the following line in [386Enh] section of system.ini file
DEVICE=VKRUSD.EXE
and to restart Windows. After this you are ready to enter Russian text. Just start a Windows application of your choice, select an appropriate font and go ahead to type. Use SCROLL LOCK key to toggle Russian and English modes of keyboard (SCROLL LOCK is On for Russian mode). Layout of Russian keys(see the figure below) is not a standard layout of Russian keyboard. It was more convenient for me to assign the Russian letters to English keys with the similar (where possible) sound. For example, and so on. It should be also convenient for people who usually used English letters for Russian messages.

Please remember: if current font has other than KOI-8 format and SCROLL LOCK is ON, you will see on screen characters different from those you enter. Don't forget to turn SCROLL LOCK key OFF after you've finished entering Russian text. It is no harm otherwise, but you will be surprised seeing characters other than you are entering.

Known problems:

This VxD does not work properly with MS WORD and some other programs:
1. It works only if NUMLOCK key is ON.
2. It does not work to capitalize Russian letters using SHIFT KEY, use CAPS LOCK instead.
I do not have time to redevelop this driver and still use it. In spite of these problems, the driver has the following merits: - small size (just 5K)
- easy installation
- no extra user interface (just Scroll Lock key)
- convenient keyboard layout (in my opinion)
- works under any Windows operating system starting with 3.0 (excluding Windows 2000)
Download VxD(KOI-8)
Download VxD(1251)

Note: Actually this driver is not an executable file, its extension should be '386', but I've put 'exe' to simplify downloading. The driver works anyway, but for the sake of naming convention you can change 'exe' to '386'.




gregoryo@primary.net

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