June 2, 1999
Window-Eyes version 3.1
GW Micro, Inc.
725 Airport North Office Park
Fort Wayne, IN 46825
voice: (219) 489-3671
fax: (219) 489-2608
Web Page: www.gwmicro.com
FTP Site: ftp.gwmicro.com
Changes from version 2.1 to 3.1 are listed at the end of this
README. You can jump quickly to the next section by searching for
*** (three asterisks in a row).
*** Installing Window-Eyes 3.1
The installation of Window-Eyes 3.1 is extremely simple. If you
are installing on a Windows 9x system, simply inserting the
Window-Eyes CD will initiate the install. If however your 9x system
has the autorun feature disabled for the CD ROM or you are installing
on Windows 3.1x or after waiting 30 seconds from inserting the CD
nothing happens, you can manually initiate the install by doing the
Manually starting the install from Windows 9x:
1) Press Control-Escape to bring up the start menu
2) Select the "Run" option
3) At the Run dialog type "d:wesetup" and press ENTER. This
assumes your CD ROM is configured for drive D. If this is not the
case, supply your drive letter instead.
Manually starting the install from Windows 3.1x:
1) From the Program Manager press the ALT key to activate the menu
2) Press "F" for the File menu
3) Press "R" for the Run dialog
4) At the Run dialog type "d:wesetup" and press ENTER. This
assumes your CD ROM is configured for drive D. If this is not the
case, supply your drive letter instead.
Whether the install started automatically or you started it
manually makes no difference. If you are using Windows 9x and have
a compatible sound card, Microsoft's SAPI text-to-speech will be
loaded along with a temporary copy of Window-Eyes. This will allow
the installation of 3.1 to be completed with speech.
If your system is Windows 3.1x or you do not have a compatible
sound card, the install program will not speak unless you have a
screen reader already running.
You may wish to refer to the Window-Eyes tutorial cassette tape for
instruction on the actual install.
For your convenience, the entire manual has been supplied on disk.
With version 3.1. We recommend that you use the disk-based manual
for the most up-to-date information or to expand on topics
discussed in this readme file. Each section can be found in its
own standard ASCII text file. The following files constitute the
**** Windows 98 users
For those of you using Windows 98 you need to do the following to
configure Windows 98 to work with Window-Eyes. If you don't do all
of these things Window-Eyes will not function correctly and we
don't support Windows 98 if these things haven't been done.
A detailed description of how to make these changes to your copy of
Windows 98 can be found in the Window-Eyes manual at section 1.8.
** Changes from 3.0 to 3.1
-) Many enhancements have been made to Internet Explorer 5.0. The
following items describe many of those changes. Please read
appendix F for a complete description of MSAA mode.
a) We now allow you to access the information in our MSAA buffer
as we are loading it. Window-Eyes will now say "loading page" when
a page starts loading and allow you to issue MSAA commands as the
page loads. The control-shift-s key will add the words "loading
page" to the end of the report of lines and frames if the page is
still loading. If you attempt to use commands to access the MSAA
buffer before Window-Eyes says "loading page" it will beep and say
"downloading page." If you attempt to access information on the
page that hasn't yet been loaded in to the MSAA buffer Window-Eyes
will alert you to this by saying "loading page." Finally the
feature that allows Window-Eyes to return to your last location on
a page depends upon the entire page being loaded so if you want to
be left where you were last you have to wait until Window-Eyes says
load done before accessing the MSAA buffer.
Also, when a new page comes up on the screen there are potentially
three locations you may want to start from. The first line of the
web page, the first visible line on the screen or the last location
you were on when you last visited this page. Window-Eyes now gives
you the ability to go to all of them. After the page has finished
downloading, Window-Eyes will say "loading page" and your pointer
will be on the first line of the web page. If the first line of
the web page is not visible on the screen Window-Eyes will then say
"looking for visible line." Once the first visible line is found
Window-Eyes will say "visible line found" and your pointer will be
on that line of the web page. If after loading the entire page
Window-Eyes determines you have already visited this page and it
has not changed, Window-Eyes will say "previous position found" and
your pointer will be on that line of the web page. However, if you
start arrowing through the web page (which you can do at any point
after Window-Eyes says "loading page") Window-Eyes will not adjust
the invisible pointer from that point on. So if you want to start
at the first line that is visible, you must wait for the message
"visible line found." If you want to wait for the previous
position, you must wait for the entire page to be loaded. Then
Window-Eyes will say "previous position found." If Window-Eyes
says "load done" but not "previous position found" then Window-Eyes
determined you have either never been to this site or the site has
changed since you last visited it.
b) Window-Eyes will no longer leave MSAA mode on for IE dialogs
such as the find or help about dialogs.
c) We cleaned up our presentation of links in MSAA mode.
Sometimes Window-Eyes would put in two links for the same thing and
other times it would merge redundant information in to one link for
graphical links so that you would get both the URL and the alt tag.
d) We fixed several OSM issues with IE 5.
e) We fixed problems that would cause Window-Eyes to go out of
MSAA mode on its own incorrectly when you went to certain web
f) We fixed problems where we would always think that the page was
being downloaded and remain in MSAA mode when IE would pop up a
dialog over the web page such as the dialogs telling you that you
needed to download a pluggin to view the page.
g) Window-Eyes should now read correctly when cursoring between
radio buttons in IE.
h) Window-Eyes now identifies the titles of frames in MSAA mode.
i) We have eliminated the "ascii 160" characters from MSAA mode
which should eliminate a lot of lines where Window-Eyes is silent
when you cursor to them.
j) Window-Eyes handles anchors much better in MSAA mode.
Previously we would duplicate anchor information and sometimes miss
the children of the anchor which would cause the MSAA buffer not to
have all of the information from the page.
k) We should do a better job of reading field names in IE 5 and
hopefully other applications.
l) Window-Eyes will now say "visited link" for links that you
previously visited. You can use alt-control-shift up and down
arrows to move between visited links in MSAA mode.
m) We fixed some stability problems that could cause things to go
in to the twilight zone if you tried accessing the MSAA buffer
while Window-Eyes was still loading data in to it.
n) The alt-home and alt-end keys for moving to the top and bottom
of a frame in MSAA mode now also work when you are on the beginning
and ending lines of the frame.
o) We now do a better job of trying to go back to where you were
on pages with frames.
p) We were not forcing punctuation to be on for the character,
prior character, and next character hotkeys in MSAA mode. This has
q) We no longer reload a web page when activation leaves and then
returns to Explorer.
r) Pressing Ctrl-Alt-Home will move your pointer to the previous
line visited for the current web page when it was last left. When
you come back to a web page Window-Eyes will start you at the last
position you were at if you wait for the entire page to load. If
at any time you wish to return to this previous position, simply
Following are changes in no particular order.
-) We made more stability improvements.
-) If you had Window-Eyes setup to load before startup and you were
using Windows 95 you could not use the clipboard in Windows
Explorer. This is actually a bug in the operating system and does
not exist in Windows 98. However, we have resolved the problem for
-) Cleaned up a problem with the help in Office 2000.
-) It is possible that some graphic labels that worked in 3.0 and
before will not work in 3.1. This is because we fixed a bug that
invalidates the way that we got some graphics in to the OSM.
-) We resolved problems that would cause Window-Eyes to use the
wrong set file when going in and out of menus while the WP 8 find
dialog was up.
-) We fixed a problem that would cause the voice to remain off if
you went in to the Window-Eyes control panel, turned the general
voice on, and then exited the control panel.
-) We made a change for Ruby. If you have a set file for a window
with the general voice off and a child of this window attempts to
load a new set file Window-Eyes will continue to use the parent set
file to keep the voice off.
-) We fixed a problem that prevented Window-Eyes from identifying
radio buttons and check boxes in MSAA controls if you had the
window type first box unchecked in the focused verbosity settings.
-) Window-Eyes now says "disabled" when you go to a MSAA control
that is disabled.
-) Window-Eyes should now work with the custom class that Install
Shield uses for a list view. Note that the graphics must be
labeled for the checked and unchecked states of items in this
control and we have included these labels in the graphic.gra file.
-) We fixed a blow up that could occur when exiting Window-Eyes.
-) We fixed a problem that prevented any cursor key defined at
index 31 in the list from working.
-) We fixed problems that could cause blow ups and instability when
you exited DOS boxes.
-) We now recognize tool tips from Visual Basic programs in the
auto speak tool tips function.
-) We now send numpad keys when we are supposed to when we simulate
keyboard input. Previously we would send extended keys all of the
time which prevented Ruby from seeing the numpad insert when we
-) We made OSM improvements that eliminate OSM corruption in Ruby.
These problems would show up if you scanned multiple pages and used
WE to read them you would get text left over from the previous
-) We improved the way that we handle activation when you pop up
Window-Eyes dialogs while you are in the WE control panel.
-) We now only speak field names for tab controls if you have
defined them with the label field name hotkey.
-) Window-Eyes now reads relative to the physical mouse correctly
when you have the WE cursor turned on.
-) MSAA combo boxes should now speak with the correct pitch and
they should also speak and spell correctly with speak summary.
-) We reduced a GPF in Outlook 98 that would occur when you closed
a HTML message when Word was set to be your mail editor. This
happens due to a bug in Outlook and we can't work around it
-) We fixed problems that would cause Window-Eyes to get in a weird
state when you clicked on its icon to pop it up.
-) We fixed a problem that prevented the dictionary contents list
box for all dictionaries not to have items in it until you tabbed
to the current dictionaries list box.
-) We now recognize the "pull down" description for most MSAA
menus. The exception we have found so far is Office 97 which
doesn't implement MSAA correctly.
-) Speak summary now honors verbosity settings for MSAA menus.
-) Window-Eyes should no longer say "list view" more than once per
focus. For example previously if a list view got focus Window-Eyes
would say "list view blah x of y" and then when you arrowed it
would say "list view" again before reading the item that you
arrowed to. We noticed this in ftp explorer Windows Explorer, and
-) We resolved the problem of Window-Eyes not always reading the
contents of the selected item in Eudora list boxes.
-) Window-Eyes should now recognize strings of spaces in Lotus
Notes and Word 2000.
-) Window-Eyes should be a little faster and more stable.
-) We fixed a problem that would cause Window-Eyes to say nothing
when moving by clip over a top level menu bar.
-) We have fully tested this version with Windows 98 Second Edition
and it is compatible with this operating system.
**** Changes from Window-Eyes 2.1 to 3.0
The following lists the major enhancements and bug fixes. This
should not be considered a comprehensive list of changes. Please
refer to the Window-Eyes 3.0 manual for a complete description of
Window-Eyes version 3.0.
General feature enhancements:
-) Window-Eyes 3.0 now comes on a CD. If you are using Windows 9x
and have a compatible sound card, the installation of Window-Eyes
will be voiced requiring no sighted assistance.
-) Full support for Windows 98
-) Set file selection option has been added to the file menu. This
allows you to restore any or all of the factory set files. See
-) Window-Eyes now persists when you log out and log back in as a
new user under Windows 9x. If you do log in as a different user,
Window-Eyes will remain allowing you to key in the new user
information. However, once you do this you will have to unload and
reload Window-Eyes if you want Window-Eyes to show up in the
-) Resolved incompatibilities with Lotus Notes 4.5 and 4.6.
-) Beginning of focus window plus/minus constant and End of focus
window plus/minus constant have been added to the float window
-) Several hotkeys have been added. These include:
* Save Set
* Numbers Toggle
* Signal Caret Position Toggle
* Word Mode Rotor
* Line Filter Status Rotor
* Format Alert Toggle
* Capitalization Alert Rotor
* Label Field Name
* Read Status Line which defaults to control-insert-s. Pressing
this hotkey will cause Window-Eyes to automatically locate and
read the status line of an application.
* Voice modification which includes the following four hotkeys:
1) Voice selection rotor hotkey which defaults to insert-right
arrow and rotors through screen, keyboard, mouse, and all
voices. This value isn't saved and it defaults to screen each
time Window-Eyes is started.
2) Voice parameter rotor hotkey which defaults to insert-left
arrow and rotors through rate, volume, tone, and pitch.
3) Voice up rotor hotkey which defaults to insert-up arrow.
This will increase the parameter selected with the voice
parameter hotkey for the voice selected by the voice selection
4) Voice down rotor hotkey which defaults to insert-down
arrow. This does the opposite of the voice up rotor.
-) Support for Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.01 has been added.
You must install the latest QFE (update) from Microsoft.
-) Support for Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.x has been added.
-) The MSAA application mode has been greatly enhanced. Better
support for Internet Explorer 3.x, 4.01, and 5.x. Other
applications which support the new HTML format are also supported.
See appendix F.
-) The ability to manually associate a field name to a control has
been added. See section 8.19.
-) The ability to manipulate the character, key label, and
exception dictionaries from within Window-Eyes has been added. See
section 16. Several new options allowing you to save these
dictionaries has been added to the file menu.
-) Stability has been greatly increased.
-) Responsiveness has been greatly improved.
-) The blank lines option on the screen menu has a new option (read
to end off) which will cause Window-Eyes to say "blank" for blank
lines accept when you are using the read-to-end feature.
-) You can now type in multiple letters in the hotkeys dialog to
quickly go to a hotkey.
-) The redraw hotkey now initializes the synthesizer as well as
redrawing the screen.
-) Full support for Microsoft SAPI 3.0 and 4.0. In supporting
SAPI, the dedicated FlexTalk driver has been replaced with a
generic SAPI option. If you are using a SAPI synthesizer you
should select SAPI during the install and tab to the SAPI engine
list box to select the engine you wish to use.
-) GPF dialogs and the control/alt/delete dialog will now be
voiced. Note that you will not have any hotkeys or reviewing
capability while you are in these dialogs. This feature only works
in Windows 9x and doesn't work with software or SSIL synthesizers.
-) The rate, pitch, tone, and volume dialogs now use scroll bars
that give immediate feedback on the changes you make in these
dialogs. Previously you had to key in a value in an edit box.
-) A check box in the capture pointer dialog has been added which
allows you to save system pointers locally with an application
rather than saving them globally. This is useful for applications
such as Internet Explorer that use system pointers for different
than normal purposes. IE uses the "app starting" pointer to
indicate that a web page is being loaded. Now you can cause
Window-Eyes to say "loading web page" for IE and "app starting" for
all other applications. This check box is disabled for local
-) A combo edit box has replaced the previous standard edit box in
the find dialog. This allows you to cursor through the last 10
entries that you searched for. These entries are per session and
they are not saved when you restart Window-Eyes.
-) The voice on/off option for the screen, keyboard, and mouse
menus has been added to the global menu.
-) Window-Eyes now only reads all of the information in a list
view if that list view is setup for detail view. Previously
Window-Eyes also read this information if the list view was setup
in list mode.
-) Improved performance in list views and multi-selection list
boxes. This is especially noticeable with large lists toward the
bottom of the list when using speak summary or when selecting
-) Window-Eyes now says "top" and "bottom" instead of "top index"
and "bottom index."
-) Window-Eyes no longer says "selected" for selected items in
multi-selection list boxes and list views. It will say
"unselected" if an item isn't selected.
-) Window-Eyes no longer says "0 of 0" for list boxes rather it
just says "no selected item."
-) We removed the word "index" from the current index feature so
instead of saying "index x of y" Window-Eyes now just says "x of
General bug fixes:
-) The FlexTalk control panel and WordPerfect address book now
-) Window-Eyes no longer acts strange when winamp is running.
-) Window-Eyes now reads the graphics for the status of messages
in Eudora 4.x list boxes.
-) Window-Eyes does a better job of reading field names in IE 4.x
-) Resolved incompatibilities with Excel 97.
-) The problem where Window-Eyes was unable to route the mouse to
some track bars such as the ones in the advanced settings for a
port in device manager has been resolved.
-) Window-Eyes would GPF if you had a graphic larger than 32 K
which could happen in 32-bit true color with the default maximum
graphic size or if you increased the value above the default of
100. This has been corrected.
-) Read-to-end should work much better. It shouldn't abort early.
-) Window-Eyes will no longer say "unknown" in list views when you
arrow around in cases where speak summary reads correctly.
-) Window-Eyes does a better job of recognizing field names from
programs created by Visual Basic.
-) Window-Eyes does a better job of knowing the window name which
should help when associating set files.
-) Window-Eyes now works correctly if you swap the meaning of the
mouse buttons. The hotkeys always perform their intended function
so if you have the mouse buttons swapped Pressing the right button
hotkey will issue a left click which performs the function of the
right button and the left button hotkey will send a right click
which performs the function of the left button.
-) Fixed a case where Window-Eyes could hang in an infinite loop
when trying to determine the number of radio buttons in a group.
This was seen to happen at the end of many installs using
InstallShield when it put up the screen with radio buttons allowing
you to restart Windows now or later.
-) Corrected a problem that prevented the control or alt
interruptability setting from working in Microsoft Word and
probably other MS Office programs as well.
-) Solved some cases where speak windows didn't work in edit boxes
even when the allow speak windows in edit boxes feature was turned
-) Fixed a GPF that could occur if your date was set later than
the year 2037.
-) Fixed a problem that could cause the left caret and mouse, top
caret and mouse, right caret and mouse, and bottom caret and mouse
hotkeys to read beyond the position of the mouse or caret.