m2g for Beginners

m2g is a utility that works hand-in-hand with Christoph Dalitz's abctab2ps to produce guitar tab from abc music files. abctab2ps and the program abc2ps on which it is based were written for people familiar with command-line interfaces. However, with the proliferation of personal computers over the last few years, such users are now the exception rather than the rule. In order to make M2G accessible to a wider audience, I've written these installation and operating instructions. My goal is to make them bullet-proof. If anything is unclear to you, please contact me. I'll help the best I can and I'll modify the instructions based on your input.

Minor but important point: Because of the way the program was written, not all legal Windows file names are recognized by m2g. The program states names must be of the form X.Y where X is no longer than 8 characters. This is a lie. The X portion can be longer, but please use only letters, numbers, and underscores. Do NOT use embedded spaces!!! The Y portion of the name should be no longer than 3 characters. "abc" is just fine. If the file name as typed contains no period, the extension .abc is assumed.

Windows causes some confusion over file names by failing to display the .Y portion of file names for many file types. I recall one occasion helping a user who had inadvertently, we discovered, been creating files with names of the form song.txt.txt! To display your files' full names, go to My Computer on the desktop. Then, from the View menu go to Options and click on "Show all files". Unclick "Hide MS-DOS file extensions for file types that are registered and click on Okay.

Please let me know if you encounter any roadblocks. Now that you're up and running, you can experiment with m2g's options. One will even let you transpose a tune to a different key automatically!


[Click here to return to the m2g main page.]

Copyright © 2001 Gerard E. Dallal