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
* Have a look at the Have You Tried...? page for lots of features

Questions & Answers

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

Q: When I run DemoBaseST.exe I get a dialog box saying that the path is too long!?
A: This is a minor inconvenience with DBST in that the path to your DBST directory has to be hacked into STeem memory snapshots by DBST to get them to read the TOS images in your DBST folder correctly. There is a 40-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 demoscreen from a megademo 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 STeem's virtual disk 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 credited for their hard work.

Q: Can I use a different emulator with DBST, such as PacifiST, SainT, WinSTon, 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 now?
A: DBST temporarily creates a separate copy of STeem when you run a demoscreen, but this copy is deleted once you have finished with DBST. This copy of STeem has its own settings and so will not interfere with your original installation(s) 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, and this setting is switched on by default. It can be found in the Preferences window of DBST (F7).

Q: What do the bombs and bees mean on some of the entries in the big list?
A: Following on from the above point, some screens don't work at all (bomb) or are glitched in some way (bee) when using a newer version of STeem. All screenshots were taken with the last version of STeem written by the original developers (3.2), however as mentioned above, DBST will use the best version of STeem automatically.

Q: I currently have DemoBaseST v1.03 installed but when I try to update to the latest version, the download completes but then nothing happens.
A: Unfortunately there's a bug in the update code for v1.03. Please redownload DBST from the front page. Your preferences and favourites will not be lost.

Q: There was an update for DBST but something went wrong and now DBST is broken.
A: If you are using v1.04 or later, you can use the Recovery.exe program to attempt to resynchronise your files. This file should be sitting next to DemoBaseST.exe. Another option is to redownload the full installation from the DemoBaseST website. Neither of these options will cause you to lose your favourites, jukebox or preferences as these are stored in your My Documents folder.

Q: Can I backup my favourites, jukebox and preferences?
A: Sure, simply go to your My Documents folder and look for the DemoBaseST folder. Copy the User.sqlite file somewhere safe. To restore your favourites, close DBST and copy the file back.

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

Have You Tried...?