MathGroup Archive 1996

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Binary files under MS Windows

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg4181] Binary files under MS Windows
  • From: John Bunda <bunda at>
  • Date: Tue, 11 Jun 1996 00:53:51 -0400
  • Organization: Centaur Technology, Inc.
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

Ok, so I've already found out that Mathlink can't handle
IEEE 80-bit floats on Intel (due to a bug that Wolfram 
won't fix).

So I hacked up a crude way of transferring data using
the BinaryFile package in Utilities.   Unfortunately,
on DOS/Windows, this isn't a real binary file interface,
because the OpenFile[] builtin function that gets called 
doesn't actually open the file as binary.  
So, if the binary data in the file contains a byte that 
just happens to equal the DOS eof character (hex 1a, 
decimal 26 - please, please, don't get me started on Microsoft 
toy OSes), the read returns EOF instead of the number.

Does anyone know of a workaround that will allow me to
actually read binary files on the Windows platform?
Thanks in advance.  By the way, if I can get this to
work, I will post my enhanced version of the binary
files package that supports little-endian/long doubles.



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