RISC World

Configuring RISC OS Adjust

David Bradforth concludes his look at the RISC OS Adjust Configuration system.

Over the last few issues we've taken you through the different elements of the RISC OS Adjust configuration system. The operating system has never been so customisable, and what this means in practise is that RISC OS allows the user to set up their computer pretty much just how they want it.

While Windows XP and Mac OS X have similar functionality, it's not so easily available or supported by plugins from users to expand what it does. RISC OS has an open standard for its configuration interface, and you can add to it - if you wish - with a BASIC program. Can you say that of Windows XP or Mac OS X?

We've got two sections left - Logging and Network. We'll start with the former.

The Logging section provides control over a number of different aspects of the systems logging behaviour. This is most useful for tracking the boot sequence and system errors; and the resulting a text file can be sent via email to anybody offering help or assistance with a problem.

Clicking the Logging icon opens this window.

The Logging window is one of the few within RISC OS Adjust that is relatively self-contained, in that each aspect of the feature is controllable from within the one window. We'll deal with this by working our way from the top of the window down.

Clicking in the menu field next to Log opens a drop-down menu allowing you to view the logs currently available on the system. You can switch between log files by selecting the one you wish to use from the menu.

If the Enabled field is ticked it means that that particular log is active. Deactivating a log will disable logging to that log, but will not affect any other system settings.

The Delete field, when selected, will delete the configuration from the system (and hence disable future logging to that file) but will leave the file in tact on your hard disc.

The New Log button allows you to create a new log based upon the default settings. Clicking the New Log button opens this window.

Enter a name into the space provided then click Create to close the window. If you change your mind click Cancel and the window closes without any further action.

The Rename Log button opens this window.

To rename the current log change the name within the Log window and click Rename. If you change your mind click Cancel and the window closes without any further action.

Show displays the log entries for the current log in a new window; if nothing happens when the button is clicked this means that there is nothing to display.

The Status button opens an Edit window displaying status information about the current log. If you click with Adjust, details are provided on all currently active logs. If no window appears, the log has not yet been defined and you should first click Set or Save.

The Logging Destination section determines whether logging information should be stored locally or sent to another machine, whether on a local network or an FTP site. Select Log to local machine to store the log locally. If you're sharing the file with a UNIX-based server, select Log to remote machinethen the appropriate facility from the drop-down menu. The facility setting tells the server where to place the file.

The Reports section determines the amount of information provided in a log, and whether duplicate files should be counted or listed individually.

The Maximum Size of Log setting determines whether logs should be allowed to grow to any size, or whether an upper memory limit should be put into place.

Finally, the Log storage options determine whether logs should be held in memory or saved to disc, and whether a disc cache should be used in the latter case. With a disc cache enabled the disc write process is that little bit quicker, which can make all the difference on a busy machine.

At the bottom of the window are four buttons.

  • Show Files opens a directory display showing the log files stored on disc. These can be deleted if you do not require them. Note that if you delete a log from the settings window you can also remove the files from the disc, as they will no longer be updated by the configuration utility.
  • Set allows you to apply the current selection. With Select you can apply it to the log file displayed in the window, while Adjust applies appropriate settings to all log files known to the SysLog setup.
  • Cancel performs two functions. If you click it with Select you can close the window without configuring the selections. With Adjust you can reset the selections to the displayed log to their previous settings.
  • Save allows you to accept the settings for all log files and save them to disc. If you click on it with Select the window is then closed; with Adjust the window stays open.

If you click with Menu above the System Logging Configuration a menu opens with a sub-menu Re-Scan Logs. The window looks like this:

Whichever option you select the log files are re-scanned into memory. Any changes you make but have not saved may be lost in the process.


If you wish to use your computer as a part of any network, the Network section of RISC OS Adjust will prove to be one of the most important within RISC OS. Whether it's to use your computer on the Internet or as a part of a local network (via a network interface card (NIC)) everything you need to configure is located within here.

What follows are very brief, simple, explanations for each window. If you are not familiar with computer networking there are various publications and web sites that can guide you through the process properly or your dealer/software supplier should be in a position to help.

If you click on the Network icon the following window appears:

Whereas RISC OS 4 had three sections to configure AUN, Access and Internet, RISC OS Adjust has ten different sections corresponding to different aspects of your systems setup. Working from left to right, then top to bottom they are:

  • AUN if your computer is part of an Acorn server-based network, using the AUN protocol allows you to login to, and download files from, the server. AUN stands for Acorn Universal Networking, and essentially handles Ethernet connections driven by Acorns Level 4 Fileserver software.
  • Firewall if RISC OS computers had taken over the world, it wouldn't be PCs being hacked for personal data, it'd be our Risc PC 4: Monicas. As such RISC OS Adjust includes a firewall; for the moment to enable it you have to read through and edit the contents of a script. Given the chance of your RISC OS computer being hacked by somebody who'd actually be able to anything with it is slim you can probably forget this element of Adjust.
  • Hosts provides control over the hosts RISC OS recognises.
  • Interfaces allows you to configure any hardware network interfaces built into the computer.
  • MimeMap opens a window allowing you to configure the different types of mime encoded files that may come into your system and to set suitable RISC OS aliases for them. Examples include Word documents, that could load into TechWriter. Do not change this file if you are unsure as of the result. It is used by applications such as Messenger Pro and FTP and could stop them working correctly.
  • NetFS allows you to control the NetFS filing system. Can mostly be ignored.
  • OmniClient if you have OmniClient installed, RISC OS can connect to a PC network; and given recent additions to Mac OS X it can also connect to Mac computers on the same network. If such facilities had existed a few years ago, producing Acorn magazines would have been somewhat easier¦
  • Resolver provides control over the domain name system on your network.
  • Routing allows you to specify the routing of the Internet connection.
  • ShareFS provides control over the Access+ ShareFS system.

One of the few confinements of Virtual Acorn is that the whole of the Network section is pretty much irrelevant. As such, I'm limited in the explanation that can be provided as to how to configure it accurately. I would however say that if you're looking to connect your RISC OS computer to other RISC OS computers, buy two network cards on eBay and plug them into each other, then enter:

*SHARE ADFS::HardDisc4.$ MyDisc
*SHARE ADFS::HardDisc4.$.MyOtherDisc

Once on each machine. You'll then find each hard disc available to the other computer through the Discs icon.

So far as configuring an Internet connection, use an all in one connection kit such as that provided by R-Comp or contact a dedicated RISC OS-aware ISP (such as Orpheus) and you' ll have all the help and assistance required to connect your computer to the Internet.

R-Comp are at, and Orpheus are at

David Bradforth