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Signature Quoter version 4.0

A small ustility to have a quote updated each time you start this program. The quote is inserted in you e-mail signature.

Please feel free to use this information in your company or private as you see fit.

This is FREEWARE ...

Note: Delphi programmers - this program has been optimized for size! Checkout how it's done!

Read the Disclaimer!

Internet e-mail



SignatureQuoter is designed to change your signature file each time you start SignatureQuoter.
This version (4.0) is designed to handle the 3 common fileformats (Text, HTML and RTF) of Microsoft's Outlook (98 and up) in one execution.

Note: Microsoft's Outlook will start looking for it's signature files in
C:\Windows\Application Data\Microsoft\Signatures" !

Windows NT and 2000 use profiles, for example windows 2000:
C:\Documents and Settings\<username>\Application Data\Microsoft\Signatures".

It can be usefull for you to create dummy signatures first for the formats you wish to use, but it is not required.

Starting SignatureQuoter can be done in the Windows "Startup" menu (Win9x: "C:\WINDOWS\START MENU\PROGRAMS\STARTUP"-directory), via the Microsoft System Agent (Microsoft Plus!) or when ever you click the program or a shortcut to the program.

The signature is used, mostly, for signing E-Mail messages, but other purposes are possible too.


Installation is pretty basic for the more experienced users. Just for the beginning Windows user, a brief how-to.

1. Make a directory where you want to place the SignatureQuoter in,
for example '

2. Place the files in the newly made directory.
Copy the executable ('SignatureQuoter.exe'), the default part of the signature ('Basic.txt', 'Basic.rtf' and 'Basic.htm') and the quotes ('Quotes.txt') in this directory.

3. Make a shortcut of the program-file to some location,
for example to '
C:\WINDOWS\START MENU\PROGRAMS\STARTUP', so the program will be started, each time you boot Windows.

4. Open the properties of this shortcut,
This can be done by right-clicking the shortcut and selecting 'properties',the following dialog should show:

SignatureQuoter: properties

5. Set the proper paramters.
SignatureQuoter is designed to accept parameters, so you can use your own filenames. This also allows you to make more than one signature.

Just as an example we'll assume that our signature-file should be called 'SIGNATURE.TXT', our quotes (as included) we'll get from the 'QUOTES.TXT' and our basic signature ie. the template for the signatures (the part of the signature that won't change) will be 'BASIC.TXT'.

To make things easier, we'll asume that these files can be found in the 'C:\PROGRAM FILES\SIGNATUREQOUTER' director, which we just made for installing the program in.

In order to use these settings, we'll have to adjust our 'Target:' field, found in the properties window, like shown in the picture.

The contents of this field should read:
"C:\Program Files\SignatureQuoter\SignatureQuoter.exe" "Quotes.TXT" "Basic" "Signature"

The first parameter is the quotes-file.

If the file is found in a different path, then you should include the path aswell.

The second parameter is the basic-signature file and the third parameter is the result (signature) file.

Note the basic file for the formates text (BASIC.TXT), Richtext (BASIC.RTF) and HTML (BASIC.HTM) should have the same prefix. The suffix (TXT/RTF/HTM) will identify the proper files. Therefor you will need to make these in the appropriate formats.

6. Now you can click 'OK', to make the changes permanent.

7. Make a default signature template.
Now we have to make a default part of out signature, just for example I'll show you the one I'm currently using (basic.txt):

<!-- QUOTE HERE -->
E-Mail: webmaster@weethet.nl
Homepage: HTTP://www.weethet.nl

The line '<!-- QUOTE HERE -->' will be replaced by the quote.

Note that the ENTIRE line will be replaced ! Also note, that this file can be in HTML format aswell,... the tag I used is ignored by a HTML viewer/browser.

8. Make your first signature - Test Drive ...
To make the first signature file, click the Windows 'Start'-button, 'Programs', 'Startup', "Shortcut to SignatureQuoter.exe". Signature Quoter qill now generate the first signature. A result, for examples, could be:

When they asked George Washington for his ID, he just took out a quarter. -Wright
E-Mail: webmaster@weethet.nl
Homepage: HTTP://www.weethet.nl

9. Go to your e-mail program (in this example we'll be using Microsoft Outlook Express, which is a part of the Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.0) and tell it where to find the signature file. In outlook this is done like shown:

SignatureQuoter: mail settings

Select 'Tools', 'Stationary'

Click on the 'Signature'-button

SignatureQuoter: activate signatures

Now click on the radio-button 'File', click on the button 'Browse...' and go to the 'C:\PROGRAM FILES\SIGNATUREQUOTER' directory and select 'Signature.TXT'. Now you can 'OK' all open windows,...

Yyou're set now... Outlook will automaticall add your signature to your e-mail.

Optional you could check the 'Don't add signature to Replies and Forwards'.

In Outlook 98 (2000 and better) a similar options is to be found in "Tools" - "Options".

Note: Microsoft's Outlook will start looking for it's signature files in
C:\Windows\Application Data\Microsoft\Signatures


Usage is pretty much shown in the 'Installation' chapter. Some additional notes on the program are:

  • The 'Basic.HTM' file may contain HTML, however when you're putting pictures in the HTML-file, then you'd have to make sure these can be found by your e-mail software.
    I usually copy the HTML-file and the images to one directory and change all the image tags to a relative path, for example 'X:\BLABLA\IMAGES\PHOTO.GIF' whould be changed to 'PHOTO.GIF'.

  • Make sure that the tag ('<!-- QUOTE HERE -->') is placed on a single line, additional text should be on the next line, because the entire line will be replaced.

  • When switching from ASCII to HTML, you'll have to keep in mind that HTML does not see a carriage return. Replace these by <BR> or something similar.
    When you're using a defiirent suffix for the result file (ie. HTM instead of TXT) you should be aware that, if your e-mail program is capable of reading HTML, the carriage return is not interpreted the way you expect it from ASCII !

  • HTML offers more features than ASCII, thus making it possible to use bold, italic, images, colors, background, etc. Since the carriage return is ignored in HTML, you can put the quote between text.

  • Be aware that not everyone can read HTML when receiving your mail ! (Outlook and Netscape can interpret HTML in a mail message)

  • The 'QUOTES.TXT' is pretty easy to build yourself, each quote has to be on a single line. SignatureQuoter interprets each line as being a quote. The length of the line doesn't seem to matter much.

  • When the template file doen't have a tag ('<!-- QUOTE HERE -->'), the signature will be added at the end of the text. Using RTF and HTML this might not result in a good signature!

  • Common problem when generating BASIC.RTF using Microsoft Word is that when you put the <!-- QUOTE HERE --> tag on a new line - Word will not put it actually on a newline. Add an additional carriage return before the quote-tag, this will not appear in the signature.


Version Notes
First tryout, converted my Unix-C version to Borland Delphi.
The result worked only with ASCII files, adding the quote at the end of the signature, a leftover form the Unix version.
This version uses TStrings to save system resources. The program would stay in the system-tray, however this did cost quite some extra system resources.
The program now runs just once, and did not remain in memory.
Added support for HTML.
Executable reduced in size considerable. The older version were around 230Kb in size. This version truned out to be 54Kb, again saving load-time and system-resources. This also shows you how to make relative small apps using Borland Delphi.
Made my first 'readme'-file.
Added support parameters, so you can use your own filenames and use it for whatever you'd like to use.
This way you can use the same program for multiple signaturefiles, for example one HTML and one ASCII. Unfortunally I haven't seen any e-mail software supporting more than one signature.
Adapted the readme-file for this version from scratch.
Bug fix when executing multiple shortcuts in Start-menu
MS Outlook version. All formats (TXT, RTF and HTM) are handled in one execution.



SignatureQuoter is FREEWARE, however donations are welcome, but a nice postcard from your town, or just an e-mail message, or a copy of something you created would be nice aswell,...

For those of you who spread software, please ask me first before you're start spreading. I've had some bad experiences in the past with some of you ! Basic rule here is that if you're spreading this on a CD-Rom, that you'll have to offer me a CD-Rom either free or with a nice rebate.

Commercial companies and people who build or sell shareware must pay a fee of $5 per copy used. They charge me, so I'll charge them.

Copyright Hans Luyten ...



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