Tuesday, February 26, 2019

ASCII Code Tables

keyliner downloadable utility displaying ASCII codes 1-255.  Version 1.01.

If you are a programmer, put this utility on your computer for quick and easy ASCII chart reference. This is faster than looking on the web and works offline.

Download from keyliner's public GDrive:

Installation (there is none):

1.  Copy downloaded ASCII.exe to any drive, any folder.

Double-click copied .exe to run.* 
If desired, other-mouse-click the newly-copied .exe and "pin to StartMenu" to make a tile.

2.  Optionally, put the program in a directory, such as C:\program Files\Util  and add that directory to the Windows PATH statement (details not described here).  To run, click the Start Menu and type "ASCII".  You won't need an icon on the tile-menu.

First-page screenshot; click for larger image

Second-page screenshot, click for larger image

Page 2 displays old-style DOS ASCII codes in pale-yellow, and the newer unicode values in the blue column.  Notice the box-drawing ASCII characters, highlighted in green.

From a DOS prompt, or Powershell, both ASCII and unicode can be typed using the alt-key and the numeric-keypad.  For old-school DOS ASCII, use the three-digit decimal (Dec.).  For unicode, use a four-digit code with a leading zero.  The decimal column assumes a leading-zero when unicode.

Example:  At a DOS prompt, Alt-178, prints as a box-character in DOS and alt-0178 displays as a unicode superscript-2.  You must use the numeric-pad when typing these codes.  I do not know how this is done on a laptop-keyboard:

Old-style codes do not display in Windows programs.  Although unicode can be used anywhere, it  does not have the DOS box-drawing characters.  I found it interesting that letters, such as Ö, are stored at a completely different position than the original DOS values. 

Page 2 has six entries marked in red.  These entries are not displaying properly in Windows 10 DOS or the characters display differently, depending on the font selected.  ASCII 249 used to display as a small square bullet, now displays as a small round bullet, depending on the font.  In old-school DOS programs ASCII-167 displayed as an upper-circle (like a degree mark) but in Windows 10 DOS, it displays as a masculine ordinal (an upper circle with an underline).  This likely means the old DOS versions were flawed, but the old versions are documented here, as they displayed then.

This utility uses a graphic display and is not dependent on installed fonts.  In other words, the fonts display properly on any machine, any code-page, on any Windows operating system (Windows 7, Windows 10).  When running the program, admire the several hot-spots that display a popup-help as the mouse passes over the characters. 

Download Notes:

* Windows will warn this program was 'downloaded from the web and may not be trustworthy.'  If you trust keyliner, accept the program.  Sorry, but I cannot afford a public code-signing cert. 

You are welcome to use this program for commercial and personal use. 
No installation is required. 
No registration.
No spying.
There are no registry changes and no INI files. This program is truly just an executable.

The utility was written in Visual Studio C#, using dot-net 4.5 and it replaces a much older Visual Basic version, written when 800x600 screens were the norm.  Running that old version on a 4K monitor was comical - I needed a magnifying glass to see some of the characters.

Check back later; version 2 will have common html codes attached to each letter.

I hope you enjoy the program.

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