Archive of "endangered software"

On this page you find useful software which seems to have disappeared
from the Internet after the original authors closed down their homepage.
Those are usually small but very useful programs that I like and use myself.


picocom -- a small rs232 serial terminal for linux

Picocom is an easy to use serial terminal for linux. It is much easier to use and understand than minicom. It is ideal for simple tests or configuration tasks that involve a RS232 connection or an emulated RS232 connection over USB. The avrusb500 programmer can e.g configured via serial interface. picocom is ideal for that:

picocom -l -f x -b 115200 /dev/ttyUSB0

To exit picocom you type: C-a C-x

picocom was written by Nick Patavalis and used be available from Recently that site became unavailable. A local copy is available here:

download picocom-1.4.tar.gz, 41295 bytes

Good news, Jul 2009: The software is no longer endangered. Nick put it on Google []


ssync -- a minimalistic but fast filesystem sync/mirror tool

Ssync is a minimalistic filesystem synchronization utility. Its primary goals are reliability, correctness, and speed in syncing extremely large filesystems over fast, local connections.

Ssync works well on large filesystems and can handle filesystem objects with unusual and non-ASCII characters in their names while correctly preserving all symbolic and hard links and all mode bits.

Its a great tool to backup files to an external USB drive or a second disk in the same computer. You can run it as a deamon in the background but the easiest is to use it like this:

ssync -F -v 0 -f /some/source/directory -t /some/destination/directory

The tool is written by Michael W. Shaffer but it is now off the net. It used to be available from

Here is a local copy of this great software:
download ssync-2.3.tar.gz, 44989 bytes

Version 2.3 was written in 2002-11-06 but it still compiles and runs with no problems on Linux and Mac.


pump -- a small and easy to use dhcp client

pump appeared first in the redhat linux distribution. Its advantage over dhcpcd is that it is only one one file. You just run "pump -i eth0" and the interface is configured using dhcp.

Here is a local copy:
download pump-0.8.24-patched-2009.tar.gz, 89042 bytes
download pump_0.8.24.tar.gz, 79790 bytes
download pump-0.8.14.tar.gz, 38905 bytes

Pump is also still avilable on debian:


udhcpc -- a small dhcp client

udhcpc is also very lean and small. It consists of two things the udhcpc binary and a script in /usr/share/udhcpc/default.script

udhcpc is part of busybox.

You can run udhcpc such that it just configures the interface and then quits (no daemon): udhcpc -i wlan0 -q
This is the best way to use a dhcp client especially in small home networks. You don't have to worry about duplicated address assignment just because you are not running a dhcp client daemon. All dhcp server do either a ping or send out an arp request before they handout a new address. In other words as long as you use that IP address it will not be assigned to anybody else.

Here is a local copy:
download udhcp_0.9.8cvs20050303-linux.tar.gz, 50851 bytes, the package contains also code for a dhcp server. The client is called udhcpc

Here is my /usr/share/udhcpc/default.script:
default.script (unix text file)


HTML tidy for linux

HTML tidy is the most useful program if you do web design. It is a command line utility to check the syntax of html pages. Most of the time you would use it like this:
tidy -e TheWebpage.html
This will just print errors and warings about the html code. You can then edit the file and correct them.

Tidy is maintained at the problem is however that they do no longer provide source code tar-balls. So here is a tar file for linux. Just unpack it and compile it.

download tidy-20051026-forLinux.tar.gz (1032 kbytes)

palm tree

Blender treemaker (L System) for linux

This is the treemaker L-System originally written by Armagan ( adapted for use under linux. The package includes installation instructions and documentaion. See the included README for details.

Treemaker is a python script for the 3D progam Blender ( to generate trees.

download treemaker-0.2.tar.gz (636k)
Previous versions:
download treemaker-0.1.tar.bz2 (600k)


rlpr -- send postscript files to a remote unix network printer

rlpr sends a postscript file directly to a remote unix printing system without the need to run a local print spool or define anything in /etc/printcap It is very useful when you are "on the road" and temporary connected to a network with unix printers. Most network printers from HP or Xerox will inter-work directly with rlpr. Example:

rlpr -Hphaser6250 -Plp

Alternatively you can specify printhost (-H) and printer (-P) also via the environment variables RLPR_PRINTHOST and PRINTER.

rlpr was written by Peter Memishian and used to be available at .

272200 Aug 5 22:09 rlpr-2.06.tar.gz download rlpr-2.06.tar.gz (272200 bytes)


xerox phaser 6250 -- patch for: jam at registration roller paper at fuser

This is a firmware patch for the popular xerox phaser 6250. The printer is still being sold (not from xerox directly but dealers still have stock as of 2013). Xerox has however removed a vital patch for a paper jam. This special case of a paper jam is the result of a design flow. You can find more details here: jam at registration roller paper at fuser firmware patch.


xerox phaser 6250 -- ppd file for phaser 6250

postscript printer definition file, ppd, for phaser 6250 (right-click and save as xr_p6250.ppd).

© Guido Socher, email: