Quick Overview

Welcome, and thanks for trying out DemoBaseST :) DBST is a Windows front-end, allowing you to quickly and easily access Atari ST demoscreens without having to download disc images, set up emulators, and find your way around main menus to get to the screens you want. It also includes a search and filter facility, and has some other nice features to hopefully make your demo browsing experience even more enjoyable.
I won't bore you with how to use the front-end, I'll let you experiment, but to get you started:

* Double-click a demoscreen from the main list on the left, or click the large screenshot on the right
* Once you've finished watching the demo, press forward-slash on the keyboard to quit the emulator
* You can hold down right-CTRL to fast-forward the emulator if you wish
* You can use the autoplay controls near the bottom to play through each screen in the list in order

Questions & Answers

Q: What is STeem, what is DBST?
A: DemoBaseST (DBST) consists of two parts - one part is the front-end and library, and lets you browse the demoscreens, STeem is an Atari ST emulator which allows you to see these demoscreens on a PC and was written by Anthony & Russell Hayward, and further upgraded by "Steven Seagal".

Q: When I try to run DemoBaseST.exe, Windows throws an error about not finding the .NET libraries, or that the application failed to initialise properly.
A: Please ensure you have updated your version of Windows .NET to at least 4.7.1. Unfortunately DBST doesn't have a fancy installer which would do that for you. Sorry, I've not got around to it yet :(

Q: When I run DemoBaseST.exe I get a dialog box saying that the path is too long!?
A: This is currently a minor inconvenience with DBST in that the path to your DBST directory is hacked into memory snapshots by DBST to get them to read the TOS images on your HDD correctly. There is a 43-character limit to how large the path and filename to the TOSes can be, and therefore there must be a limit to the location of your DBST installation. Paths like these would be fine:
C:\DemoBaseST, C:\Program Files\DBST, c:\Atari\DemoBaseST, etc.

Q: The demoscreen loads ok, but there is a glitch, like flickering or corrupted graphics.
A: Unfortunately a few screens will not work properly under emulation, and to make matters worse different versions of STeem have different success rates.

Q: I press SPACE to exit a demoscreen, or select a screen from a main menu but something weird happens.
A: Because DBST primarily uses memory snapshots and not disc images, in most cases no disc image is inserted into the emulator's virtual drive, and therefore no loading can occur. This is by design, as DBST is intended to allow instant access to demoscreens from a front-end, and not by the usual 'main menu' approach of the megademo. When you have finished viewing a demoscreen, simply quit out of STeem and back to DBST with the forward-slash key.

Q: The wrong coder/group has been credited in the DBST front-end!
A: Please contact me and let me know! There is nothing worse than crediting the wrong person. Unfortunately some of the demoscreens don't make it clear who needs to be creditted for the hard work.

Q: Can I use a different emulator with DBST, such as PacifiST, SainT, etc.?
A: Unfortunately not. DBST uses STeem memory snapshots, which are incompatible with other emulators. I chose to use STeem simply because I was the most familiar with it at the time I was creating DBST.

Q: I had STeem already - have I got two copies now?
A: In a way. DBST temporarily creates a separate copy of STeem when you select a demoscreen, but this copy is deleted once you have finished with DBST. The copy of STeem has its own settings and so will not interfere with your original installation of STeem.

Q: Why have different versions of STeem?
A: 3.2 was the last version to be released by the original STeem authors. Since then, STeem has been improved and expanded with new features however this has caused slight compatibility issues with some of the demoscreens, because all memory snapshots were created with 3.2 to maintain consistency. You have the choice of using 3.2 for 100% compatibility, or a newer version for better features but at the risk of some screens not working. DBST does have the option of automatically rolling back to 3.2 for demoscreens which are incompatible with newer versions of STeem.

Q: What do the bombs and bees mean on some of the entries in the big list?
A: Unfortunately some screens don't work at all (bomb) or are glitched in some way (bee) when using a newer version of STeem (see above point). All screenshots were taken with the latest version of STeem written by the original developers (3.2). I will pursue solutions to fix this if possible, however there is an option under the Preferences window to automatically use 3.2 for broken/glitched screens, and this is switched on by default.

Q: There was an update for DBST (I followed the sparkle!) but it didn't work properly and now DBST is broken.
A: Sorry about this :( I haven't yet put in much stability for DBST but it's on my job list. Redownloading the full installation from the DemoBaseST website may be the best option. You won't however lose your favourites, jukebox or preferences as they are stored in your My Documents folder.

Q: The STeem volume control doesn't work!
A: It does, but only when a new STeem window is opened.