13 Replies Latest reply on Dec 19, 2007 9:17 AM by tripwire45

    problems with merging

    Lonno7 Level 1
      Last month I requested help from this forum regarding merging projects in RoboHelp. The assistance I received was most helpful, but I have encountered additional problems. The situation in a nutshell:

      We have help topics going back a few years; in fact, they cover school years 2004-05, 2005-06, 2006-07 and 2007-08. As you can imagine, our Help project is getting quite large. So, my idea was to create a new project for the 2008-09 year and merge it into our existing project.

      I’ve created a “practice” project, in which I have a couple of “current” topics, and have merged a couple of projects into it. So far, only one problem has arisen. There are hyperlinks in a topic residing in one of the projects (referring to text on the same page as the hyperlinks) that seem to work just fine. However, in “Project B,” when I create hyperlinks (for one thing, I get the warning about links to external files – I click OK and go on), they don’t work at all. I get either a “cannot find this page” message or a blank screen.

      Is there a problem with merging projects into existing projects as I have described?

      Thanx for any help!
      Lon
        • 1. Re: problems with merging
          Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)
          Merged webhelp or merged CHMs?

          • 2. Re: problems with merging
            Lonno7 Level 1
            Hi, Peter!

            Thanks for responding. I'm not sure what the difference is, but I believe what I'm doing (or need to do) is to merge .chm files into an existing .chm file -- does that sound right?

            lr
            • 3. Re: problems with merging
              Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)
              If your output is CHMs, I'll leave it to someone else to guide you.

              • 4. problems with merging
                tripwire45
                Sounds like a problem I had awhile back (if I'm understanding you right) and finally got sorted. Here's the link to the relevant thread:

                Click here to read the thread

                Let me know if this works for you or not.

                -Trip
                • 5. Re: problems with merging
                  Lonno7 Level 1
                  Hi, Trip!

                  Thanks for the info -- it'll most likely come in handy later; however, now my problem is not so much topic-to-topic links, but links from the top of a page to a section farther down.

                  Lon
                  • 6. Re: problems with merging
                    ChristyGTWE Level 1
                    Are you using bookmarks as the topic links? You can use bookmarks to jump to other sub-topics within the same help topic (*.htm file).

                    ChristyG
                    • 7. Re: problems with merging
                      Lonno7 Level 1
                      "Are you using bookmarks as the topic links?"

                      Yep. Handy things, those bookmarks -- except, now they're not working.

                      Next?

                      lr
                      • 8. Re: problems with merging
                        tripwire45 Level 1
                        Hi Lon,

                        You say you're trying to create bookmarks and get an "external links" error message. Sorry, but I don't see how that is. I can't quite get a grasp of the situation based on your original post. Here's what I'm getting so far:

                        There are hyperlinks in a topic residing in one of the projects (referring to text on the same page as the hyperlinks) that seem to work just fine.

                        Ok, this part seems to say you have created bookmarks on a page in a subproject and they work.

                        However, in “Project B,” when I create hyperlinks (for one thing, I get the warning about links to external files – I click OK and go on), they don’t work at all. I get either a “cannot find this page” message or a blank screen.

                        Here's where I get lost. Are you *still* creating bookmarks to link to different parts of a single page? Is project B a subproject?. I think it would help if you restated this part of your original message and maybe gave us a "step-by-step" illustration of what you are doing and the results.

                        Sorry to be so thick.

                        Thanks.

                        -Trip
                        • 9. Re: problems with merging
                          Lonno7 Level 1
                          Hi, Trip (et al),

                          I had a niggling feeling that I wasn't clear enough, so, without going into too much extraneous detail:

                          I work in a financial aid office, and all our transactions are done online. Our software package has numerous forms to fill out (e.g., FAFSA, student address info, awarding info, verification info, etc.). So, I have to document all the help topics for these forms. These go back to 2004-05. As you can imagine, our RoboHelp file has grown to be quite immense. To alleviate the problems of further growth, I looked into creating the 2008-09 files as a separate project and merging them into the current RoboHelp.

                          However, I thought it best to set up a test “Help” package first. So, I created a project I called “MergeTest” and two other projects, “Academic Year 2004” and “Academic Year 2005” to merge into it.

                          So far, so good. Now for the problem: Our topic pages are created with a format that has a “Contents” listing at the top of each page, usually about four or five items that are hyperlinked to sub-sections farther down on the page. In one of the “merge” projects these work just fine; in the other, they don’t work at all, exhibiting the behaviors I described earlier (the warning about links to external files, page cannot be found, etc.).

                          I’m beginning to wonder if it’s worth the trouble; maybe we should excise a couple of the earlier years to some safe place to trim the current project and help make it more manageable that way?

                          Lon
                          :

                          • 10. problems with merging
                            Amebr-ke0mH4 Level 2
                            It sort of sounds like the contents links that aren't working have a hard-coded path in them that results in an invalid directory.

                            For example, if I copy links from one of my projects to another I'll get something like:

                            Project A link:
                            ../Excel/Test.htm

                            Project B link:
                            ../../HTML_Help/Excel/test.htm

                            Where the HTML_Help directory doesn't exist in project B (it's actually the name of the Project A root directory - I'm not sure why it gets copied across)

                            The directories will obviously vary depending on your setup.

                            Might be worth checking, anyway.
                            • 11. Re: problems with merging
                              tripwire45 Level 1
                              Hi Lon,

                              When you say you have “Contents” listing at the top of each page, are you talking about a browse sequence? Browse sequences are a way to provide a linear set of links that the user can access to click through different, related documents. I've never seen a browse sequence that allows you to click through different portions of an individual topic (though I will admit to being no expert).

                              Depending on how many of these "across-the-top" links you're talking about, maybe the best way to deal with them is to get rid of this feature and create bookmarks in the more conventional sense. Users will be able to click the hyperlinks you place at the top of the page of any topic to navigate to the portion of the topic they require such as:

                              How to fill out a financial aid application
                              How to submit a financial aid application
                              How to find out the status of your financial aid application.

                              ...and so on. Just a thought.

                              -Trip
                              • 12. Re: problems with merging
                                Lonno7 Level 1
                                Hi, Trip!

                                Thanks for continuing to offer assistance; I greatly appreciate it. I may have been unclear in the paragraph that states, "Our topic pages are created with a format that has a “Contents” listing at the top of each page, usually about four or five items that are hyperlinked to sub-sections farther down on the page."

                                I neglected to mention that I create bookmarks at each section in the topic, then go to the list at the top of the page and create hyperlinks to those sections. (I had to go to my trusty RoboHelp manual to read up on Browse Sequences to see if I had been creating them unintentionally; turns out, I never use that feature.)

                                Your turn
                                (with thanks)
                                Lon
                                • 13. Re: problems with merging
                                  tripwire45 Level 1
                                  Lon,

                                  Sorry about continuing to misunderstand. So from what I can gather, you are creating bookmarked links "the old fashioned way" or rather in the regular fashion that the rest of us do. Ok. Then I'd expect them to work before and after you merge projects since the bookmarks are contained on the same topic that's contained within the same project or subproject.

                                  Where does the "external links" error come in?

                                  Have you investigated Amebr's suggestion regarding hard coded links?

                                  -Trip