19 Replies Latest reply: Jan 24, 2013 5:41 AM by dennetti RSS

    CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10

    dennetti

      All topics preview OK, but when the CHM file is compiled, the CSS file does not get applied. The CSS is specfied using master pages. A large number of HHC3004: Warning messages are displayed in the Outview View when the CHM file is compiled. The project has recently been upgraded from RoboHelp 5.

       

      Some further info: when compiling the CHM file, it appears that this process finishes prematurely as the Outview View shows half of a HHC3004 warning message!

       

      I think the root cause of the problem is that this is a large project, with over 2000 topics, and it has become corrupt in some way. As this is a major problem, I'd really appreciate some advice....

        • 1. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
          Peter Grainge CommunityMVP

          I've had over 4000 files in a project so I wouldn't worry about the number itself. However, any project can get to the point where the CPD file gets corrupted. Start by deleting that and reopening the project.

           

          In Tools > Options you can tell Rh to always clear the cache (CPD) when it opens.

           


          See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

           

           

          @petergrainge

          • 2. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
            dennetti Community Member

            Thanks very much for your reply. I have tried renaming this file but unfortunately this did not resolve the problem. I have also fixed all broken links in the project following the advice of a forum member who found that this resolved the problem they had with the HHC3004 warning message.

             

            This project is configured in the same way as many other working projects, in terms of the location of the project, file names, etc. It does contain several merged projects, however - perhaps these could be the cause of the problem? Also, could you suggest how I could check that the baggage files are functioning correctly? I do not have experience of troubleshooting issues with baggage files, and wondered if these could be the cause of the problem. Basically, I'm out of ideas and find it frustrating that Robohelp has given me just a single error which does not appear to make any sense, given the sysmtoms of this problem.

            • 3. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
              Peter Grainge CommunityMVP

              I'm not a user of CHMs so others with more knowledge there might be able to suggest something more. Meantime...

               

              You have now thrown in baggage files and merged help.

               

              One way to see if baggage files are being loaded is to reverse engineer the CHM and see if the baggage files are there. How is on my site. I believe FAR from Helpware also enables you to examine the content of a CHM. However, I am not seeing a link between baggage files and this problem.

               

              Does this problem occur when you view the CHMs in the merge individually or only when you open the parent project?

               

              Are you talking about parent and a number of child projects or many parents with their own children?

               


              See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

               

               

              @petergrainge

              • 4. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                dennetti Community Member

                This problem only occurs when the CHM file for the parent project is opened. The child projects do not appear to have this problem - the CHM files for these projects are all OK. They can also be browsed from within the CHM file for the parent project without any problem (although I have not tested every one of them). The problem only appears to affecting topics in the parent project.

                 

                I am referring to a parent project, with a number of child projects.

                • 5. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                  RoboColum(n) MeganK

                  Can you check that all the projects (including the parent) have exactly the same setup and file versions.

                  • 6. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                    Peter Grainge CommunityMVP

                    And while you are checking, put a copy of the parent in a folder on its own. Does the CSS work then?

                     


                    See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                     

                     

                    @petergrainge

                    • 7. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                      dennetti Community Member

                      Hi, thanks both of you for your helpful advice -  we are certainly heading in  the right direction now.

                      I copied the project to a new location and renamed the folder which my CHM files are generated in. I then compiled the CHM for just the parent project and it created the CHM perfectly. Before doing this, I generated new CHM files for all the child projects, but this did not resolve the problem, even though they have all been created in the same version of RoboHelp Not sure what the next step should be - perhaps I should create the merged projects again, in the parent project?

                      • 8. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                        RoboColum(n) MeganK

                        I wonder whether the issue is your merged CHM's being copied into the project folder. Can you check something. If you look in the project folder for your parent CHM, are there other CHMs from the child projects there? If so, delete them and recompile. It would be worth doing the same on the child projects as well.

                         

                        The way that merged CHMs work means that when a project that contains references to another CHM is compiled and that other CHM is in the project directory, it uses that CHM file. The problem is, this may not be the most up to date as it is copied into the project directory at the point the reference was added. If the actual project the CHM comes from is amended, the copied CHM remains blistfully unaware of the change.

                         

                        By ensuring the project directories are clear of all this clutter, the inter project references remain. Also as long as all the CHMs are placed in the same location, all appears well.

                        • 9. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                          dennetti Community Member

                          Hi, all the child CHM files were located in the project folder. I tried removing them, and then recompiling the CHM for the parent project, but this did not fix the problem. The child CHMs were not added to this folder when the parent project was recompiled.

                          • 10. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                            RoboColum(n) MeganK

                            I think deleting the CHMs from the parent project directory is only half the story. Have you CHMs in the child project directories also? If so, delete those as well and recompile each child before recompiling the parent.

                            • 11. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                              dennetti Community Member

                              hi. there are no CHMs in the child project directories.

                              • 12. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                                RoboColum(n) MeganK

                                OK. Let us take stock here. You have recreated the parent CHM on its own in a new directory successfully and the CSS was applied. You then recreated the child CHMs and added these to the same directory and now the CSS isn't applied. Try recompiling each child to a new directory, check that the CSS is applied, delete the CHM references from the parent project's TOC, add them all back from the new locations and recompile the parent.

                                 

                                If this doesn't work I reserve the right to go home and sulk

                                • 13. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                                  Jeff_Coatsworth CommunityMVP

                                  @Colum - this just reconfirms my desire not to work with CHMs or merged projects </grin

                                  • 14. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                                    RoboColum(n) MeganK

                                    LOL Jeff. There are a lot better than JavaHelp which is what I inherited here many moons ago. The problem with CHMs is that Microsoft never intended them to be merged or do anything fancy. Awkward people like us just like a challenge

                                    • 15. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                                      dennetti Community Member

                                      I appreciate your help, but unfortunately I still have the same problem after following your suggestion. When I added a single child project, I recieved the same error. I noticed that the option to delete the baggage files for the child projects is greyed out - could this be significant? As we did not have any issues with this functionality in RH5, it is surprising that we have such a problem in RH10. Could you suggest what else I could try please?

                                      Thanks

                                      • 16. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                                        dennetti Community Member

                                        Change of plan: I have been asked to remove all merged projects from the master project, and as long as the master project compiles, this is OK. I still have the same problem after removing the merged projects. I will try to remove the baggage files by deleting them from the rhbag.apj file. Can you suggest anything else to try please?

                                        • 17. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                                          dennetti Community Member

                                          Update: I have removed all references to the merged projects, but I still get the HHC3004: Warning messages and the CHM will not compile correctly. I made a copy of the project, but now have the same problem with the copy as well - I noticed this problem yesterday as well. I would really appreciate a suggestion of how I can get to the root of this problem - perhaps I could supply you with a copy of the project?

                                          Thanks very much

                                          • 18. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                                            johndaigle CommunityMVP

                                            Hi, Dinnetti

                                             

                                            There are quite a few results mentioning HHC3004 on this forum as well as via Google. Apparently this occurs with many different help authoring tools which are all dependent on the Microsoft Help Compiler which Adobe licenses from MS because it is their proprietary format.

                                            I am pointing to the threads that seem to hold the best clues. You can see if these contain your answer.

                                            The most interesting one is from longtime help expert, Dana Worley, a Microsoft MVP who says this:

                                            "Check to make sure the directory path does not include a "dot" in it, and particularly some

                                            form of .h (for instance, c:\my.help.dir).


                                            This particular scenario is a known issue that will cause the HTML Help compiler to return

                                            error HHC3004"

                                             

                                            So, from what I can tell, that non alphanumeric character issue seems to be the common culprit among those who experience the problem and a good place to start.

                                            Here are the relevant links I found.

                                            http://forums.adobe.com/thread/680087

                                             

                                            http://geekswithblogs.net/mapfel/archive/2009/03/11/130017.aspx

                                             

                                            http://forums.adobe.com/thread/551443

                                             

                                            Also, because you are converting from the ancient RoboHelp X5, this might be worth noting. The encoding in modern versions of RH use UTF 8 and I wonder if something did not get "converted" in the upgrade of your project. (Just guessing here.)

                                            Let us know how you make out.

                                            john

                                            John Daigle

                                            Adobe Certified RoboHelp and Captivate Instructor

                                            Evergreen, Colorado

                                            www.showmethedemo.com

                                            @hypertexas

                                            • 19. Re: CSS not applied when compiling HTML help - RoboHelp 10
                                              dennetti Community Member

                                              Thanks very much for this. Dare I say it...the problem appears to have been resolved after removing the merged projects, compiling with a different TOC and index, and then compiling with the original TOC and index and outputting to the desktop, rather than the new folder on the C: drive. Seems random, but this appears to have got things working again, albeit without the merged projects. I really hope this is a lasting solution - I'll keep my fingers crossed. Thanks again to all who contributed.

                                              dennetti