The Old Novell Menu Translator

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One nice bonus with Novell networks is that MarxMenu can translate your Novell menus to MarxMenu. This saves you the time of having to recode your system. What you do is type:

 MARXMENU NOVTRANS <menu>   <- Right Way
 MARX NOVTRANS <menu>       <- Wrong Way

This translates your Novell MNU file to a MarxMenu file. Your MNU file is renamed with an NOV extension.

Once the menu is translated you run it by typing MARX <menu> instead of MENU <menu>. MarxMenu can run Novell's menu better than Novell runs their own.

Sometimes the translator isn't perfect and it takes a little tweaking of the original menu file for the translator to work properly. If you have problems translating a menu and can't make it fly, upload a copy to our BBS system and let us take a look at it. You might discover something that we should use to enhance the translator menu itself.

One problem some users experience is translating Novell menus with greater than 20 menu options. The Novell menus scroll when there are more options than can be displayed on a single screen. NovTrans translated menus do not support this. When we get calls on this issue, we recommend users to break up their menus into logical groupings, putting applications in one window, utilities in another, etc. If you should experience this problem, use logical groupings to work around it. If you get a "Window Out Of Bounds" error it is probably because you have more choices than will fit on the screen.

After you are satisfied with the translation you can then start enhancing your menus by editing the new translated menus. You might want to run QUICKNOV and look at it's features. If you like what you see you can use your editor to cut and paste code from QUICKNOV.MNU into your menus.

You can also start adding InGroup commands to create conditional menus. Under MarxMenu you can have one single smart menu for everybody instead of a lot of individual menus.

if InGroup('ACCOUNTING') AddChoice('Payroll',10) endif

The translated menu is set up with a lot of features that you can add that the original Novell menu wouldn't do. These features include software metering and usage logging (See METER.INC for details). You can also control screen blanking and add password security for unblanking the screen. MarxMenu can be set up to log you off the network after a period of inactivity (See CUSTOM.INC for details).

The translated menu also allows you to select various look and feel options by selecting NOVELL.INC, BLOCK.INC or GRID.INC. These three files are similar and you can edit them to change the colors of your menu interface.

One thing to remember is that when you change an Include file you need to force MarxMenu to recompile the menu. It doesn't automatically recompile like it does when you change the .MNU file. To force MarxMenu to recompile you just type MARXCOMP <menu> or delete the MRX file. (The MRX file is the compiled file that MarxMenu uses to actually run your menus.)

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