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August 2005

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FotoGet/2: Camera software for eComstation

By Menno Tillema © August 2005

Some time ago I read an article by Gerrit Schoenmaker, chairman of the Dutch OS/2 user group, about installing an external USB hard disk. This inspired me to see if I could find a solution to enable me to use my digital camera (a Nikon 775) with eComstation. After solving a problem with shared interrupts (I had to move a number of expansion cards to different slots) I finally got my USB hardware working. USBRES is a simple utility to see if USB works and to detect what kind of equipment is connected. And yes (!), the memory cards turned out to be MSD-compatible too, so at the very least I would be able to use the camera as a mass storage device.

FotoGet/2 installation

FotoGet/2 main windowNikon ships nice software with the camera, but alas, only for the Windows and Apple platforms. One of the programs I had been using most -after booting to Windows- was a simple file transfer utility. Fortunately, I discovered that similar software exists for OS/2. Herwig Bauernfeind has developed FotoGet/2, camera software for use with MSD-compatible devices. I found it on Hobbes and because it is a Warpin package, installation was simple. The setup screen is very straightforward. Once you have set up the software, you can connect the camera to your PC, let the system detect a new device, and start the data transfer by pressing the Start button (isn't computing simple? ;-)).

The program is still being actively developed. Although previous versions required USBMOUNT, this version detects the camera by itself. Latest enhancements are the use of EXIF information for filenames, a preview option during file transfer, and Dutch, French, German and Swedish language support. Version 1.06 had a minor glitch in that scanning large drives took ages to complete. Version 1.08 solves this issue with an extra parameter. Another useful feature is a history drop-down list for the camera directory, so if the first directory that is found to contain images is not the one you want, you can easily select a different one.

A short tutorial

Since the program is so straightforward, a tutorial is not really necessary. The main window offers all the features you need. The Camera area contains the different settings for your camera. First of all, the drive letter that eComstation uses to connect to the removable device. Then there are two buttons, one to refresh the contents of the drive and one to eject the device (this is necessary for removable devices). The First folder with pictures indicates the folder on your camera's memory card where the camera stores the pictures you have taken. The three check boxes let you indicate whether you want to erase the pictures on the camera after transfer has completed, whether you want to use the EXIF information of the pictures as part of their filenames, and whether you want to see a preview during transfer (this slows down the process somewhat).

The next section of the screen is the Storage place area, which specifies where the pictures should go. First of all, you can choose a base folder, which is basically the 'root' of your picture collection. The second option lets you indicate whether you want to use the current date as a subfolder name, or a name you can select or specify yourself. If a directory does not exist, it will be created prior to the transfer process. A nice feature is the option to have a Light folder created, with a shadow on your desktop that makes it very easy to view the photos afterwards.

The Go button probably needs no explanation. Don't forget to press the Eject button after completing all tasks to make sure the device is properly stopped and safe to disconnect.


Developer: Herwig Bauernfeind
Price: Free

USB drivers:

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