14 Replies Latest reply on Mar 20, 2008 1:32 PM by AdamXT2

    Project Generation Crashes

    AdamXT2 Level 1
      I'm pretty much convinced that RH 7 HTML (WinXP) is unstable when generating projects in general. When it crashes it always happens at the 3/4 mark of the "updating" part of the generation process.

      Now that I'm using conditional tags I am suffering constant, repeatable crashes. My work has come to a halt. I am apalled at how flaky RH 7 has been for us here. I'm the office guinea pig and I'd love to give the "go-ahead" for the rest of my team to upgrade, but I can't at this point.

      Does anybody have any advice? I asked this last week specifically about conditional tags within frames, but maybe that was too specific. Now I'm just wondering: when your project begins to crash like crazy, what do you recommend (after deep-breathing exercises, another coffee, restoring the backup, and a cathartic "venting" email sent to this forum)?

      Any and all advice is much appreciated!

      Cheers,
      Adam.
        • 1. Re: Project Generation Crashes
          AdamXT2 Level 1
          The best that Adobe tech support could recommend was to rebuild the project by erasing the .cpd and .xpj files.

          After having done this and putting all my single source settings back in, things worked fine for awhile...but once again the project has started crashing unpredictably on generation.

          Planning on upgrading a RH 5 project to RH 7 and adding conditional build tags to it? My recommendation is "don't." Though I admit that the "snippets" in RH 7 are working for me (so far!)

          My other recommendation is to back up your project CONSTANTLY.
          • 2. Re: Project Generation Crashes
            Moonlion2 Level 1
            quote:

            Originally posted by: AdamXT2
            I'm pretty much convinced that RH 7 HTML (WinXP) is unstable when generating projects in general.
            [...]
            I am apalled at how flaky RH 7 has been for us here. I'm the office guinea pig and I'd love to give the "go-ahead" for the rest of my team to upgrade, but I can't at this point.

            Yup, I agree on all points. My misfortune is that I'm stuck with RH and am not in an evaluation mode. Alas.

            I, too, cannot generate with conditional tags because it crashes 100% of the time when I try. I'd also like to be able to delete topics and delete folders. As it is, I've moved everything into a folder called Delete Me. Perhaps one day someone will figure out how to delete them but I've pretty much given up.

            I've tried deleting the CPD file and, oh, I can't think of the other, but anyhoo I tried deleting them and the result was when I opened the project I had to click yes or no for a dialog box for each and every topic and image in the entire project, each dialog box accompanied by a shrill beep that I couldn't silence. Since there are a -zillion- topics and images I'd have to manually click Yes for and hear that shrill each time, so much so that it would have been disruptive to my office mates, I gave up and went back to the previous files (I even tried plugging in earphones to the computer to just silence the audio output but that didn't work either--crazy, eh?).

            If you have a solution that doesn't involve deleting those two magic files, or of a way for me to open the project without having to manually click Yes for each and every topic and image in the entire project, I'm all ears.
            • 3. Re: Project Generation Crashes
              Moonlion2 Level 1
              And it would be just cracking if I could use the HTML editor.
              • 4. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)
                Moonlion

                How big is your whole project zipped up?

                • 5. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                  AdamXT2 Level 1
                  Moonlion, I feel your pain.

                  Conditional build tags and single-sourcing are just are too hot to handle; I've given up and gone back to our old (messy) method of branching the help. This is sad because RH's single-sourcing features would make our work SO MUCH EASIER. And they're part of the reason we upgraded. I dread exploring the FrameMaker/RoboHelp integration.

                  I can vouch for RH's snippets and variables (very nice!), but these crashes are NASTY.
                  • 6. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                    lmarden Level 2
                    this is so weird to read - I use several conditional tags to create multiple flavors of both webhelp and compiled help projects, and if they have crashed in the past, it wasn't due to tags.
                    my projects are quite large - one is almost a GB of content - and tags just don't cause a problem.

                    I wonder what the difference is?
                    • 7. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                      Moonlion2 Level 1
                      quote:

                      Originally posted by: Peter GraingeHow big is your whole project zipped up?
                      It's moot because I can't send it out to anyone...

                      • 8. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                        AdamXT2 Level 1
                        Imarden, I've been wondering this as well, because I'm sure that these tags work for many (if not most) people.

                        The differences might be:

                        * My probject was converted from RH 5.
                        * I'm using variables.
                        * I'm using snippets.
                        * I'm creating two flavours of HTML help, using the single-source pod to change the variables, build conditions, and window (so the product name also changes in the help's titlebar).

                        The thing is, I have tried isolating all of those aspects (except the RH 5 origin) and the crashing seemed unrelated to any of them. I'd apply a build tag to a piece of text, compile, it would be fine...I'd apply a build tag to an identical piece of text elsewhere, compile, and it would crash every time I compiled. I'd remove that build tag from the text and it would compile again. I'd reapply it...and the compilation would work!

                        I was unable to find any pattern. The most annoying sort of bug.
                        • 9. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                          lmarden Level 2
                          curiouser and curiouser...

                          I converted from v5.02 to v7 as well. Tried to use the interim v6 but it was too painful. Kept crashing and the repairs were very agressive with my data. So I reverted back to 5.02 and waited till v7. Before I upgraded, I rebuilt my cpd file in v5 and the conversion was easy and painless.

                          I'm using variables and snippets too - LOVE THEM.

                          Also creating two versions of the HTML Help SS, one for my internal audience and one for our clients. Each uses different build tags and build condition statements, they also share some in common.

                          Nothing seems to stand out as a place to start digging.

                          By any chance, did you come up through v6?
                          • 10. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                            Moonlion2 Level 1
                            quote:

                            Originally posted by: lmardenI rebuilt my cpd file
                            Ooh, how did you do that? Is it something I can do in 7?

                            • 11. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                              lmarden Level 2
                              You already did that, according to a previous post - you just rename it or delete it then double-click on the <project>.xpj file to let RH rebuild the cpd file. I always make a backup of my project before I do this, by the way.
                              • 12. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                                lmarden Level 2
                                just re-read the thread - should mention that I only use the RH WYSIWYG Editor, for all content development. I may copy / paste in text from other sources, but I don't use any other HTML Editor in any way to develop topics for RH. Never have.
                                • 13. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                                  AdamXT2 Level 1
                                  Imarden,

                                  Hmmm, if I go this route again I will try rebuilding the cpd file in v5, maybe that's the ticket. As it is this project is so far along -- hundreds of variables and snippets added -- that I can't restart it or send it back to v5 without missing my deadline.

                                  We didn't go through v6 at all...we were tempted into v7 due to the Technical Communications Suite offer. We'd like to gradually move into DITA, which I imagine will make conditional build tags moot in RH.

                                  Are you using different Windows when you compile your HTML projects??

                                  ("Love" just about sums up my feelings for snippets as well! There's lots of room for improvement, but they're still saving me plenty of time. Variables are sort of helpful, but would really come into their own if SS worked for me).
                                  • 14. Re: Project Generation Crashes
                                    AdamXT2 Level 1
                                    I MIGHT have found the glitch that was causing this problem, but I won't know for sure until I have more time to experiment.

                                    When I went back to an earlier version of the project (before I added conditional build tags) and continued working on it, I didn't notice any generation crashes...until I'd finished all my work. I tried to generate the project and it crashed, every time, exactly like it did before.

                                    Eventually I noticed that a broken link that I thought I'd previously repaired had cropped up again...this was a link to a deleted topic.

                                    Sometimes, RoboHelp gets confused when you delete or rename topics...it usually works, and when it doesn't you can often fix the problem by restoring the topic and then deleting it again, but this one kept reappearing.

                                    Looking in the referenced topic's HTML I found the reference to the deleted topic, and removed that reference manually.

                                    Voila...the project generated properly.

                                    Therefore, one of three things is happening:

                                    * The recurring broken link was causing somewhat unpredictable crashing during project generation, regardless of conditional build tags.

                                    * Both conditional build tags AND the broken link caused crashes.

                                    * The crashes are due to something else entirely; I've just gotten lucky by deleting that broken link, and the horror will never end.