16 Replies Latest reply on Sep 14, 2006 1:34 PM by johnmccallum

    Required supporting files for distribution of .chm

    susan@work
      I am using X5 to generate a .chm. I know that there are required system files I must give to my developer inaddition to the .chm. What are they and where are they located? I
        • 1. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
          Level 2
          Hi susan@work,

          Actually the .chm file is all encompassing. That is if you are not using RoboHelp specific features, such as browse sequences, in which case you need to also send the HHActiveX.dll.

          John
          • 2. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
            Level 2
            Oh, I should add that for operating systems prior to Windows 2000 you might need to upgrade the end users' help components. If this is what you are thinking about let us know.
            • 3. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
              susan@work Level 1
              I have placed the .dll in the delivery directory but the developer still cannot view the topic pages. The help
              states:

              <snip>
              .HLP, .CNT
              If your project includes links to topics in a compiled WinHelp file (.HLP), you must distribute the .HLP file and the .CNT file (table of contents file) with your .CHM file. When you link to a WinHelp file, the .HLP and .CNT files are copied to your project folder. But you still must distribute the files with your .CHM file (they are not part of the compiled .CHM file).
              <snip>
              • 4. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                Level 2
                Those directions are specific to a compiled HTML Help file (.CHM) linking to an old WinHelp file (.HLP). So I am not clear whether you are linking to an old WinHelp file from your .chm file or not. Is it the link to the WinHelp the developer can't view or the entire .chm file?

                Has the developer tried to open the .chm from Windows Explorer or just from the application?

                If the .chm file cannot be opened on another machine by double clicking it, check to see that the help components exist for viewing the compiled HTML Help format. This has been built in to the operating system since Windows2000 but in previous versions the user might need to upgrade components. First Internet Explorer must be installed on that machine, then you can run hhupd.exe.

                If you want more detailed instructions, email me and I'll send you a diagram and the necessary files (except IE).

                John
                • 5. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                  susan@work Level 1
                  The developer cannot view the .chm on his machine. I cannot view it in the public directory, no one can view the pages. I CAN see it on my local working directory.

                  We both have IE installed.
                  Has the developer tried to open the .chm from Windows Explorer or just from the application? WE only

                  If the .chm file cannot be opened on another machine by double clicking it, check to see that the help components exist for viewing the compiled HTML Help format. What components are these?

                  • 6. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                    Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                    Hi Susan

                    In addition to John's fine advice regarding the HHActiveX.dll, you need to be aware that you can't simply ship it along with your .CHM and make sure it exists in the same folder. Another process has to occur to register the .DLL so Windows can find it and use it.

                    This, of course, has no influence either way on actually viewing the .CHM on another PC. I'll leave that for John to help you sort, as he seems to be doing a fine job.

                    Cheers... Rick
                    • 7. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                      Level 2
                      What happens when the developer tries to view it? Nothing opening or do you get a main frame with no visible content?

                      Don't worry about the help components unless the OS is Windows95/98 or NT. If so, then email me and I'll send you a flow chart showing the steps to take. It is a .gif image so I can't post it here.

                      John
                      • 8. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                        Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                        Hopefully John will pardon another observation here.

                        Where exactly is this .CHM when you are trying to view it? If it's on a common network share, this is often blocked as a security threat. You can read more by Clicking here.

                        (I inferred this may be the case by your statement: I cannot view it in the public directory. I know you said the developer can't view it on his machine, but if he is trying to view it on his machine while in the network location, it's going to exhibit just the behaviour you are describing.

                        Cheers all... Rick
                        • 9. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                          susan@work Level 1
                          I'm not convinced it's a registry or security issue. The following is received:
                          Action canceled
                          Internet Explorer was unable to link to the Web page you requested. The page might be temporarily unavailable.
                          --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                          Please try the following:
                          Click the Refresh button, or try again later.
                          If you have visited this page previously and you want to view what has been stored on your computer, click File, and then click Work Offline.
                          For information about offline browsing with Internet Explorer, click the Help menu, and then click Contents and Index.




                          Internet Explorer
                          • 10. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                            Level 2
                            Ah , the "action canceled" message. This is generated in Windows XP when you copy a .chm (rather than having it installed). Right click, select properties and there will be a message that it is blocked and you will be allowed to unblock it. Once and forever.

                            John
                            • 11. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                              Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                              Hi Susan

                              Unless I'm mistaken (and that's always a possibility for everyone) that's what you see if your .CHM is on a network and you access it that way. It looks normal in all other respects. But if you expand the TOC and click a page, you see the message you describe. This happens because the security settings are blocking the access. In a perfect world, a message would magically appear and advise that the .CHM is being accessed in an unsafe manner and giving you instructions on what to do next. Unfortunately, we don't live in a perfect world yet. ;)

                              I wasn't trying to hijack, derail or otherwise throw an unwanted wrinkle in the thread. It just dawned on me earlier that this situation (.CHM on a network) might be what is at play here)

                              Cheers... Rick
                              • 12. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                                susan@work Level 1
                                I do not receive the message. Nothing in the properties allowes me to unblock.

                                And Rick, no worries, more info is good:-)
                                • 13. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                                  Level 2
                                  Rick,

                                  You're always welcome to butt in any time. It was a good observation. I got confused by "cannot view the .chm" when she had written earlier "cannot view the topic pages" which should have had me thinking along the lines of a network/security issue.

                                  However, there is this new security issue where a local .chm cannot be opened until you OK it from the properties dialog. I just discovered it a few weeks ago. It usually generates an "Action canceled" message, whereas the network viewing generates a "Page cannot be displayed" message. So I think that may be the problem here.

                                  Isn't it marvelous that Microsoft works so hard to keep us all alert and on our toes by jiggling our very foundation occasionally?

                                  John
                                  • 14. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                                    Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                                    Good catch on that, John!

                                    Yes, I've been aware of the issue with downloaded .CHM content for some time now, as many of the .CHM files on my site have been reported to me as being "broken". I never realized there was actually different verbiage for this as opposed to the wonderful network security thing.

                                    I've been meaning to put up a page offering help for those that download my stuff, so when I finally stop doing those unimportant things like mowing the yard, landscaping and other endless "honeydo's" that happen between working gigs, I might just manage to get this updated!

                                    Thanks for the info! Rick
                                    • 15. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                                      susan@work Level 1
                                      I still cannot view my .chm tho...any other ideas?
                                      • 16. Re: Required supporting files for distribution of .chm
                                        Level 2
                                        OK. So I was confident but wrong - where do we go from here? You are sure you are not attempting to view over a network and the properties dialog does not have n "Unblock" button. And you are not using archaic versions of Windows...

                                        Could the problem be in the .chm itself? I think I heard that it was possible in X5 to not use relative paths. That would certainly cause problems if you moved it about. I don't have X5 available to check that out.

                                        Feel free to email me a copy of your .chm file (if it is less than 10MB - our firewall spits out large attachments) if you'd like me to take a look at it. You can look at the path it is trying to access by right clicking in the TOC and selecting "Jump to URL."

                                        BTW, I think I was wrong about the error messages differing. I think they may be the same in both cases (network or downloaded file) "Action canceled" may have to do with it opening the default topic, while "Page cannot be displayed" appears when a TOC item or the application tries to open a topic. I have just run into the errors in different scenarios. A little research showed me they also came from the same Microsoft security patch. I just found one much later.

                                        John