SuperPro 3.7 Chess Expert & Database System
Copyright László Lovass. All rights reserved
Communication Interface for SuperPro
Special Thanks for:
Dr Ervin Nagy IM
István Almási IM
... for their help in developing and testing SuperPro
Welcome to SuperPro 3.7 Chess Expert & Database System, this advanced
information system and service. This program (written in assembly language
and optimized for speed) was designed for extending your knowledge of chess
in the quickest and most effective way comparing to anything else. Therefore
it is not a multimedia showpiece, but a useful tool and service with updated
program versions and databases.
Keep in mind that SuperPro hasn’t been developed only for Grandmasters, but for those enthusiasts, amateurs as well who has other profession and has just a little time to concentrate on chess! Its search methods are unique and can handle other databases (files of .CBF and .PGN text types) as well. SuperPro controls Genius chess program versions to analyse, can calculate ELO average and expectation and can be used for searching and playing through remote modem control (TeleChess). These are just some examples from the capabilities of SuperPro.
The developer of SuperPro is a chessplayer himself, too, so he took the measure of the requirements - on the experiences of his own and his chessfriends’ - this program must meet.
Nota bene: the real chess-knowledge cannot be replaced or conpensated by any kind of computer system (‘... the power is not in the sword but in the arm ...’). The SuperPro, however, as a ‘computer map’ can help you to find the right way in the modern information jungle.
What kind of advantages do you have using this program?
You can study the chess literature in its depth without books, notes, code systems, in ‘paperless’ manner. You can spare a lot of time either in studying, building of opening repertoire or in personal preparation.
In the traditional mode of chess studies the attention jumps back and forth between the move notes on the paper (especially at complex analysis) and the chessboard; starting positions must be taken back, therefore the efficiency of learning chess is degraded in great measure. Using SuperPro however, all the information can be watched on the screen at the same time. By practical experiences, using this program the time needed for preparation could be reduced at least to one third! This system - comparing to other computer databases - can be used without opening keys. All alternative moves made at any position appear together with statistical information and changes as you make moves. The games and analyses are handled similarly (this manual refers also to analysis as ‘game’).
The principle of the chess data processing is very simple: all games and analyses are stored in a huge (Encyclopedia-like) ‘tree’ structure. Each game, analysis can be accessed through move-branches. Evaluating symbols can be added to the moves as well as text header/ comment to the end of the game/ analysis.
These symbols and headers can be freely modified, games and sub-lines can be expanded, deleted, marked and rearranged. The games and sub-lines of a database are either in small, linked files (.SCG extension) by openings or in one big read-only file (with .SCD extension, for CD-ROM). Loading ChessBaseTM type file (.CBF extension), all games with their headers, analyses and annotations are converted to SCG database.
DOS: always enter into the directory where SuperPro has been installed. Put program diskette and CD-ROM into their drives!
Windows: Click on one of the three icons, or Start menu ... Run ... c:\superpro\sup
Whenever the program starts, it will always check the existence of the original program diskette or CD-ROM.
You can start SuperPro by any of the next commands (+Enter):
SUP For driving Genius chess program (or click on Superp3 icon)
SUPCOM For using TeleChess communication interface and driving Genius chess program
SP2 Never calls Genius, use it only if you don’t have enough DOS memory for SUP (or click on Sp3 icon, or Sp3dos icon to start in DOS mode)
Starting parameters (for using in batch file [.BAT extension] as well):
SUP [database name .SCG | .SCD] [path] [/User command to execute]
If DOS has booted up without any memory manager (e.g. EMM386,
HIMEM, etc. in config.sys file), then the called Genius program will use
all available memory (the ‘/X’ command switch of it) to accelerate analysis.
Generally the commands of SuperPro are assorted in menus. For example, File menu must be selected from the top line in order to use the New command. Using mouse, at first you have to aim on File by the mouse arrow and press the left mouse button, then repeat this operation on New in File menu's panel.
Or if you prefer keyboard, press the underlined letter of the command while holding down the Alt key (e.g. Alt and N for New). to the main screen. E.g. the Demo command from Help menu (ALT H, ALT D) explains the main screen. Pressing Esc key or click on its symbol (in the upper left corner of the screen) or pressing the right mouse button you can exit from any menus or commands to the main screen.
Settings are indicated by 'empty' or 'filled' circle buttons. The 'filled' circle means the 'switch on' setting and vice versa.
At the first program start the Main screen and the User menu are introduced. After the first start it is suggested to set the following sub-directories:
CM .. directory of ChessMaster program (ALT 3, if you have any)
Genius .. directory of Genius 1..3 chess program for DOS (ALT 4, if you have any)
Enter into File (ALT F) menu, change to the desired directory
to set, then use path (ALT P) and select the appropriate
chess program path (press ALT 3 or ALT 4). Confirm the correct
Genius program file (e.g. CG3.EXE) setting after the relevant question.
All the other sub-directories are created and set automatically at installation
or program start: the \SELECT (all collections made by search go
to this directory), the \MASKS (stored search masks, index, etc.),
the \CLIPBRD (for clipboard and TeleChess work files) and the
\TEXT (exported text target directory). The \MAIN is the special directory
of the ‘big’ database on the hard disk or the directory of the complete
database on the CD-ROM. The database in this directory is the default source
of search and always loaded by the Main command, therefore it’s
very important to set to the actual complete database. To set it: File,
choosing directory, path, ALT 1.
When you exit from SuperPro, directories, User commands and all settings of menus will be saved. Starting SuperPro again, the last database and position saved at exit is loaded. If it’s not found, the database in the MAIN directory or the first database from the CD-ROM will be loaded instead. If neither of them is available, you can choose file (SCG, SCD, CBF extensions) to load from the File menu. This manual can be accessed from Help menu with hipertext search feature.
File types used by the program:
SCG .. (SuperPro Chess Games) chess data file in SuperPro format, where different moves belong to branches after the common ones (like ECO). This storage method requires less space, allows better overview and is free of doubles. An SCG file is up to 64 kbytes long, but adding more data multiplies it by division. The new file inherits and modifies its parent file's name, this can be observed in chain reference (*File>...). It's useful to use more databases: one complete (set as Main) and more selected: e.g. games of the nineties, players above 2550 ELO, etc. as the structure of the SuperPro CD-ROM.
SCD .. (SuperPro on Compact Disk) read only chess data file,
primary for CD-ROM
MSK .. (SuperPro Mask) a file containing a complete search mask set (header, position, .., etc.)
CBF .. ChessBase format chess data file (together with CBI), SuperPro can read and search it.
PGN .. (Portable Game Notation) text file with standard game header and notation for reading and data exchange between chess programs and databases (InterNet!). A SuperPro can read and write it.
DBF .. Dbase (3) format text- numerical database file (e.g. ELO-list). SuperPro can read it.
TXT .. Text file (generally without formatting). SuperPro can write (in its own format) and read it.
DOC .. Document (mainly formatted text) file. SuperPro can read it.
PCX .. Standard picture file format, SuperPro uses it to create diagrams on disk
1. Check file allocation on your hard disk by the command, e.g.:
CHKDSK C: /F
Always reply with 'y' (yes) to confirm possible questions. If you have more drive letters, you can also check 'D:', etc. First of all, check the target of SuperPro's installation. This command also displays allocation data of the selected drive.
2. If the program asks the original program diskette from your other floppy drive, check the state of 'Swap floppy drive' line in BIOS FEATURES of BIOS Setup. To access BIOS Setup, press Del key after resetting your computer. The correct setting is 'Disabled' for 'Swap floppy drives' to use SuperPro.
3. SuperPro program diskette doesn't work in non-standard, special high capacity (120 Mbytes) 'a:drive' diskette drive.
4. The program wouldn't start in DOS mode (real DOS) if the DOS driver
(e.g. sbeinit.com) of SB Live! soundcard is loaded.
Disable it in autoexec.bat by entering a 'REM ' statement at the start of its line or start SuperPro from Windows.
5. Check viruses on your computer by the newest version of a virus scanner (e.g. F-PROT, Scan, TBAV, etc.) Resident virus checkers may interfere with SuperPro, so it's better to unload (switch off) any of them.
6. From time to time clean your CD-ROM (and floppy disk) drive by cleaner disk(ette).
7. Although SuperPro was tested under various local networks, it may not work properly on all. Experiencing problems, use SuperPro without logging in.
Setup (and use) under Windows
1st method, under Windows: Start menu ... Run ... type: A:SETUP.PIF then press OK. Install to C:\SUPERPRO folder.
Download mouse and CD-ROM support for DOS if you don't have any. At first, start the WIN95DOS.EXE file in an empty sub-directory. Then start DOSFIX.EXE.
2nd method, under DOS: You can also make a shortcut to DOS by a menu before loading Windows 98. In DOS modify the attributes from MSDOS.SYS:
ATTRIB C:\MSDOS.SYS -R -S -H
then EDIT MSDOS.SYS, and add to [Options] paragraph:
Restart computer after finishing edit to effect changes. A menu will be displayed at each bootup with a choice to load only the DOS ("Command line only"). You may also choose to load Windows 98 or type "win" at DOS prompt.
Then install SuperPro with 'SETUP' command from the program diskette.
If you have any major parts in your computer replaced, or if SuperPro seems to be damaged, update SuperPro by the 'SETUP' command from the program diskette. Before doing this, always save your own game and search mask, etc. collections. After setup procedure copy back your own files to the appropriate directories. If you have further problems, call tech support.
Using ChessBase (.CBF) files
If the CBF file to load is damaged, SuperPro tries to recover these errors ('Data error' games) move by move. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. Anyway, it is advised to use Verify command (in Games menu) after Loading or Importing from CBF type chess data.
Setting of Norton Commander's file viewer to SuperPro
Commands menu; Extension file edit..; Insert; to File extension: (.SCG or .SCD); Command for this extension: (e.g.:) C:\SUPERPRO\SUP !.! !:!\
Explanation of the so-called compatibility:
A computer or a software environment is called compatible with its standard version if all programs and data can be used on them in identical way. So 'IBM compatible computer' means that all programs written to the standard IBM computer must work on it. Generally, the more advanced systems are 'backward' compatible, so all programs written to the older ones will operate on them but it's not true vice versa (e.g. a program that requires at least 386-class processor won't work on a 286 system, but will on a 486 computer). The above-mentioned sentences are the theory. In fact, a 386 and a 486 processor don't work identically, not talking about the various VGA/SVGA display systems. This difference is even larger between operating systems e.g.: often a program written for a certain version of Windows won't work on another version, so Windows 3.1, Windows 95 and Windows NT can hardly be called compatible with each other! Practically compatibility has a less strict meaning: programmers follow the most general standards and take care of the differences in details. They don't trust blindly in 'compatibility' and test their products on different systems. So it happened to SuperPro, too.
- Shift Alt Ctrl
F1 turns board +=
all marks inserts
F2 quick move finder =+ reverts marks replay commands
F3 game mark off - under + deletes game previous branch
F4 game mark on + under - finds next sac
F5 paste games unclear finds next (>N) sac User loop
F6 next file with compensation finds next active sac User pause
F7 swaps bookmark with counterplay branch swap end of User recording
F8 next diagram with the idea sorts by subline number starts replaying game
F9 start of database only move sorts by marked number stops replaying game
F10 lists marked games would be better sound on/off screen on/off
Description of prepared search masks (\MASKS sub-directory): (...so what can be searched with them)
1990_99 MSK...Games of the nineties
1996 MSK ........Games in 1996
1997 MSK ........Games in 1997
1998 MSK ........Games in 1998
END_2P1P MSK (2 pawns against 1 pawn. Continued in the same manner)
END_BBO MSK B:B (opposite color)
END_BBS MSK B:B (same color)
ENG MSK ............Top English players
FRA MSK............ Top French players
GER MSK ............Top German players
HUN MSK........... Top Hungarian players
ITA MSK .............Top Italian players
RUS MSK ............Top Russian players
UKR MSK ...........Top Ukranian players
USA MSK ............Top USA players
FIDE1 MSK .........Best players of world ranking (84 players)
FIDE_W MSK .....Best female players
NAJD_QB6 MSK Sicilian Najdorf with Qb6
SH_DRAW MSK .Short draws
SH_WINS MSK ...Miniatures