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The Psychedelic Screen Saver - FAQ

  1. How come the colors don't "shift and undulate in high/true color display modes?
  2. Once I have my registration code, what do I do with it?
  3. How can I capture the images that the screen savers generate so that I can use them for my wallpaper, WWW pages, etc...?
  4. Do you do custom screen saver development?
  5. Once I download the file, how do I set up the screen savers?
  6. Where can I find out more about how to write screen savers?
  7. What are *.PSY files?
  8. What does the "Effects" module do?
  9. How come you don't have documentation for the module controls?
  10. Can Psych 2.5 (or higher) run on 16 bit Windows?
  11. How come when I run the setup program I get a black screen for a second and nothing gets installed?
  12. I've noticed that each of the modules has a "Strength" setting -- what the heck does it do?
  13. How do I remove SS Runner (Runner.EXE) from my taskbar?
  14. How do I remove The Psychedelic Screen Saver from my system?
  15. What is your official upgrade policy?
  16. I'm seeing these strange boxes that stay around after the screen saver has exited -- do you know what's going on?
  17. My system locks up periodically after running the screen saver ? what's going on?
  18. I've activated the password protection on my Windows NT system but when I run the screen saver and then move the mouse I'm not prompted to enter my password. How come?

How come the colors don't "shift and undulate in" high/true color display modes?

While the screen savers should still work in high/true color modes, you will only get the palette animation effects in 256 color video modes. In order to get some of the effects that they use, the screen savers use a palletized video mode. This means that colors are referenced by index rather than by RGB value. By using a palletized video mode, the screen savers can change the RGB value that corresponds to a particular palette index and the result is that all of the colors on the screen that use that index are immediately updated. Neither high or true color modes use a palette, so it is not possible to achieve the effects without manually updating the entire display. 

You can use the "Video Mode" panel inside the Psychedelic Screen Saver configuration dialog to force the screen saver to run in a 256 color (8-bits-per-pixel) video mode.


Once I have my registration code, what do I do with it?

Once you've received your registration number you can enter it into the screen saver and remove the registration reminder messages by following these steps:

  1. From the start menu, select "Settings" then "Control Panel"
  2. Double click the "Display" icon
  3. Select the "Screen Saver" tab of the display dialog
  4. Press the "Settings" button
  5. Press the "REGISTER" button of the Psych configuration dialog. (It's in the lower left corner next to the "Help" button.)
  6. Press the "Enter Registration Number" button and then press "Next".
  7. Enter your registration number in registration dialog.
  8. Press the "Register" button

The next time the screen saver runs it should be fully registered!


How can I capture the images that the screen savers generate so that I can use them for my wallpaper, WWW pages, etc?

Well, on Windows 3.1 and Windows 95/98 you can just press the "Print Screen" key and this will copy the image to the clipboard. From here, you can paste the image into your favorite image processing application and save/edit it.

On Windows NT, after the screen saver time-out period, the OS switches over to a secure desktop and then runs the screen saver. Because of this, pressing the "Print Screen" key will terminate the screen saver rather than copying the image to the clipboard. In order to avoid this behavior, you can run the screen savers (*.SCR files are just *.EXE files that have been renamed) from the command line or create icons for them. When you run them this way, you run them on the application desktop and the "Print Screen" key works just fine.


Do you do custom screen saver development?

No.


Once I download the file, how do I set up the screen saver?

Run the exe file and it will initiate the setup process.


Where can I find out more about how to write screen savers?

There are samples in Microsoft's Platform SDK that demonstrate how to write a screen saver.   Take a look around on the MSDN site to find out more.


What are *.PSY files?

The PSY files are saved setting files that contain all of the control values that comprise a Display.  You can review, edit, and display them in the screen saver configuration dialog or launch them by double-clicking on them in the Windows Explorer.


What does the "Effects" module do?

The "Effects" module differs from the other modules in the way it works. Instead of producing a pattern, "Effects" modifies whatever pattern is currently on the screen. For this reason, the effects module will produce the best results when it is used with one of the other modules.


How come you don't have documentation for the module controls?

As you've noticed, I have provided documentation for everything but the module controls. The best way to discover what the module controls do is to experiment with them.


Can Psych 2.5 (or higher) run on 16 bit Windows?

Psych 2.5 (and higher) will run *only* under Windows 95/98 or Windows NT. It is multi-threaded so it won't run under Win32s.


How come when I run the setup program I get a black screen for a second and nothing gets installed?

You are trying to install the 32 bit version (Psych 2.5 or later) on Windows 3.1. Psych 2.5 is for Windows 95/98 and Windows NT only. Fortunately there are 16 bit versions that should work just fine on your system. You can download them from our download page at http://www.synthesoft.com/


I've noticed that each of the modules has a "Strength" setting -- what the heck does it do?

The "Strength" setting is a weighting that controls how much one module is favored compared to another. For example, if you made "Pattern" as strong as possible and "Stain" as weak as possible then the "Pattern" module would draw quickly while the "Stain" module would lag behind. Strength only has an effect when there is more than one module selected.


How do I remove SS Runner (Runner.EXE) from my taskbar?

To remove SS Runner from your task bar you need to follow the following steps:

1) Right click the SS Runner icon on the taskbar and select close from the popup menu.
2) Right click on the taskbar itself and select "Properties" from the popup menu.
3) Select the "Start Menu Programs" tab in the "Taskbar Properties" dialog.
4) Press the "Remove" button.
5) Double click on the "Startup" folder in the tree view in order to see its contents.
6) Select "Runner.EXE" (or "Runner") and press the "Remove" button.
7) Confirm the removal by pressing the "Yes" button.

At this point, SS Runner has been removed from your taskbar and will no longer be run when your system is started.


How do I remove The Psychedelic Screen Saver from my system?

From the Windows Control Panel using, depending on your Operating System, the "Programs & Features" or "Add/Remove Programs" applet.


What is your official upgrade policy?

My policy on upgrades is that, by registering a particular version, you are entitled to use any and all versions up to but not including the next major version.

For example, if you register version 2.1 you are automatically registered for all 1.x and 2.x versions but not for 3.x versions. Basically, you get updates to the version you registered and a discount to upgrade to a new version if there is an upgrade fee.


I'm seeing these strange boxes that stay around after the screen saver has exited -- do you know what's going on?

This problem is probably due either to a problem in your video driver or to the way the driver is configured. There are several things you can try that may resolve the problem.

  • Your graphics performance setting may be set to too high a value. To change the setting, right click on "My Computer" and select "Properties" from the popup menu. Now, select the "Performance" tab and then press the "Graphics" button. This should bring up a slider that will let you control how much the acceleration options for your video driver. Try setting the slider all the way to the "None" side and see if you still get the problem. If you don't, try setting it to the next higher value. Keep doing this until you find the fastest setting that doesn't exhibit the problem.
  • Your video driver may have a bug in it. To see if this is the case, try using a another driver and/or a different resolution and see if the problem persists. (The standard VGA driver that ships with the OS is a good one to test with.) If the problem does not occur with a different driver you may want to check with the folks who made the video card to see if they have a new version that fixes the problem. You can probably find their WWW site on the internet.
  • If the previous suggestions don't fix the problem, please follow the instructions on our technical support page to obtain further help. This will give me more information about your system and drivers.

My system locks up periodically after running the screen saver ? what's going on?

See the answer to the previous question (above) since this is probably due to a video driver problem.


I've activated the password protection on my Windows NT system but when I run the screen saver and then move the mouse I'm not prompted to enter my password. How come?

When you run the screen saver on a Windows NT system the screen saver has to run for about seven seconds before the operating system will prompt you for a password. This has nothing to do with the screen saver, this is a (very useful) feature of Windows NT.

 

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