Packet Engine is the most advanced (and the only available) Packet Program for windows that can use almost any tnc, modem and Soundcards. Packet Engine can work also as packet driver for your windows packet program. It is a platform for developing packet applications.
How to use Packet Engine
Packet Engine runs as a standalone program and can handle simultaneously 100 different tncs and 100 different packet applications. When your program starts connects with packet engine and then you can exchange data. The data exchange format is simple and straight and the communication is done with frames. Always you receive a complete frame with its header (which identifies what kind of frame is) and data. The biggest problem I faced, the first time, was the way to establish communication between Packet Engine and the application program. My first approach was using the DDEML (Dynamic Data Exchange Manager) and so far the only supported interface. Later I wrote a helper dll to be used by Visual Basic programmers since Visual Basic hasn't full DDEML support. The brand new Interface now uses Winsock TCPIP. The benefits are many. First of all we use a worldwide standard interface and second this interface allow networking connections. In other words your application can access Packet Engine from different computers.
What Programming language to Use
You can use any programming language that generates 32bit windows code. Visual Basic or C++, Delphi etc. Most of these languages can inherit from you the difficult windows programming interface (Create windows, process messages etc).
What Interface to Use
Try to use the new Winsock TCPIP interface. From now on I will enhance only this interface. Supports more commands and is more flexible.
How to Start
I give source code examples (in C++) to see what happens and how to build and interpret the frames.
You can always ask me to help you and check your code.
How easy is it ?
It is quite easy and in any way far easier than using the serial port to control an external tnc. It is simpler than TNC2 and WA8DED Host mode interface. And even more is faster.
Your program is totally independent from AGW Packet Engine. You can disturb your program any way you like. Freeware, Shareware or as commercial application. Since AGW Packet Engine is self standing application its license agreement is not applied to your program. However the end user must respect the AGW Packet Engine License agreement. You can also distribute AGW Packet Engine with your program.