24 Replies Latest reply on Aug 3, 2010 9:11 AM by jthomas666

    Merged Help - Im Lost.

    Nick@Tag Level 2

      RH8 HTML

       

      Hi all,

      Reasons have come up to create a merged version of 2 seperate help guides that we create.

      So, I have read through peters instructions on his site, and the instructions that adobe give in their help guide and I'm lost. I'm obviously not doing something, but I dont know what, and I dont know how.

       

      This is what I've done.

      I have 2 projects. A and B. Which are the 2 that I have to merge.

       

      I have created a 3rd project C which I want the other 2 to be merged into.

       

      So in my project C TOC I have a single topic (from project C), and have used the Merge New Project button to add the A and B projects.

      My TOC shows the first topic from project C, and the 2 merged projects, by way of the funny looking icon.

       

      I generate and I just get the contents of project C.

       

      How do I specify project A and B are child projects, and that C is a parent project?

      I looked around, on here also, and couldn't find how I'm supposed to specify this on each project.

       

      Also, will projects A and B still be fully independant when generated outside of the merged project. essentially we are going to operate 3 manual, A, B, and C(which is A+B)

       

      Thanks very much, hope someone can point me in the right direction.

       

      Nick

        • 1. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
          Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

          How is detailed on my site. When people have had problems in the past it is usually because they wade straight into trying to merge their existing projects. What you need to do is download the sample projects where I have set things up so that you can learn by example. Once you have got your mind around that, then play with your own projects.

           

          You are going about it the right way, creating a parent for the two children you already have. You don't specify anywhere that one project is a parent and the others are children. The parent knows it is a parent because you have put the placeholders in the TOC.

           

          The two children remain projects in their own right.

           


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          • 2. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
            Nick@Tag Level 2

            thanks Peter, I managed to get it sorted.

             

            but im having 1 problem. Im using the re-direct, which works great across all browsers, chrome, FF, IE, and Safari. EXCEPT

             

            Forcing the TOC to sync is not working. I edited whthost.js and added the code as you said in step 8 on your site, however this just makes the TOC take a veeery long time to load, and then it functions as it did before - with no syncing. None of the topics have been syncing at all and they are all set to sync automatically. (I just tried this on a Mac, and with Safari the TOC syncd everytime, but FF on the Mac it did not) every windows machine I've tried it on hasn't worked)

             

            i've looked over your sample projects and they do NOT have the same problem. I cant figure out why, comparing the 2 side by side the output options/settings. everything seems to be the same.

            All publishing options have compliance/mark of the web etc etc un-ticked.

             

             

            Any help much appreciated!

             

            Nick

            • 3. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
              Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

              So auto sync is on in all three projects and it works in the two child projects when they are run standalone?

               


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              • 4. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                Nick@Tag Level 2

                I just recreated the merge again in a new folder structure and did it all again. Same problem.

                 

                The merge works, but the TOC in the parent wont sync. I should mention that the TOC I'm using for the child projects have different TOCs than their usual default. Though I changed this and nothing was different, except that the TOC in the parent upodated as expected.

                 

                I can access each child project individually in the mergedoutput folder and the TOCs sync, but when I open the parent project, the TOC does not sync.

                 

                I tried with the code fix to whthost.js in just the parent file, and across all 3. Still the same.

                 

                I'm not really sure whats broken it.

                 

                Nick.

                • 5. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                  Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

                  What TOC in the parent? Using my method the parent TOC comprises only the reference to the child projects. The parent does not have any topics to go in a TOC.

                   


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                  • 6. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                    Nick@Tag Level 2

                    Mine is set up the same way. The parent TOC only contains the 2 merge links to the 2 child projects. nothing else.

                     

                    What I'm trying to say is that these child TOCs viewed individually in each child project sync fine, however when they are merged in the parent, they do not sync.

                    • 7. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                      Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

                      I think the next step has to be creating three new projects with nothing from your real projects. If that fails too, I will take a look but not sure what the issue could be.

                       


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                      • 8. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                        Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

                        Earlier you said

                        My TOC shows the first topic from project C, and the 2 merged projects, by way of the funny looking icon.

                        Later you said that was sorted.

                         

                        What topic is your redirect pointing to when both A and B are required?

                         

                        What is your plan for when the project containing that topic is not part of the merge?

                         


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                        • 9. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                          Nick@Tag Level 2

                          I created a set of test projects, parent and child, and the sync worked fine. Even when I applied my own custom skin, CSS, and layout settings.

                           

                          and now I re-created the parent for the real help, and re-did the merges.but still nothing.

                           

                          There must be something weird in my project causing it.....but F knows what it is, or where to start looking.

                           

                          I can't post the projects, too sensitive, and very large. over 250MB total.

                           

                          My re-direct link is pointing to index.htm of project A. and it works, as it has worked in the other test projects ive done. That topic will always be present in the output as it is a splash screen only and is always required.

                          • 10. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                            Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

                            I guess it could just be the time taken to load doing it.

                             


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                            • 11. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                              Nick@Tag Level 2

                              1 of the projects is 'big' 1000 topics-ish, BUT when viewing just that project the toc sync quickly and perfectly. (250mb is including all generated content, didnt realise that til after I said)

                               

                              because its working on safari on a mac, its making think its a browser issue, but then when I see the test projects working properly, I dont.

                               

                              each child project, on its own, from the mergeProjects folder inside the parent, syncs the TOC perfectly.

                               

                              but it seems the parent is where problem occurs.

                               

                               

                              Are there any problems with multiple indexes, custom webhelp skins, etc or does the parent project just dictate all settings?

                              • 12. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

                                My largest merge is about 12000 topics with 4000 plus in each of two projects. Still syncs in IE and FF.

                                 


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                                • 13. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                  Nick@Tag Level 2

                                  Still no joy again.

                                  I've come up with a slight work around for now.

                                  The main child project, contains 99% of all links the move throughout that guide, the 2nd child does not contain many at all. So for the mean time, child project A, has now become the parent with a single child.

                                  using that, the TOC for the parent syncs fine, and it works, however the child project still does not. though we can get away with that for now.

                                   

                                  Still very confused as to why the TOCs wont sync when they are children. gah.

                                   

                                  Nick

                                  • 14. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                    ermphd Level 1

                                    Hi Nick,

                                     

                                    Hmmm. I too was a bit lost when I looked at Peter's notes. Then I read the manual section and came to the following conclusion.


                                    Peter's method with an "empty" parent seems most appropriate when you are merging project with no obviouis "parent". For example a project where a number of developers are building sections.

                                     

                                    If you have a real parent with a lot of topics, the approach in the RH manual seems more straightforward to me.

                                     

                                    We have not yet rolled out the merged project to the server, so all I have to report to you are local test results, but the Adobe Parent-Child mege process worked for me the first time with  no problems.

                                     

                                    If my suggestion makes sense in terms of the layout of your projects, give it a shot. I experience always tells me to try the KISS method first, lol.

                                     

                                    Ciao

                                    Ed

                                    • 15. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                      Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

                                      As long as you don't want parent / child or child / parent links, the Adobe method is fine. I believe that is stated in my topics. Point is my way allows such links and in a way they are created more easily, that's all.

                                       

                                      If there is any part of the instructions that anyone is struggling with, let me know. This issue is not related to the method as Nick has established it works on my site and in another merge he has set up.

                                       

                                      I'm always happy to update the article to help.

                                       


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                                      • 16. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                        Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

                                        Nick

                                         

                                        Test parent / child and child / parent links before you go too far with this method.

                                         

                                        I understand you cannot release the project but without it there is not much I can do. Your call.

                                         


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                                        • 17. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                          Nick@Tag Level 2

                                          I think what I've done with the parent being the main project and a single child will do for now, at least the main project (parent) TOC syncs. That child project contains almost no links within it so the syncing isnt a major issue, and those projects do not have links to each other. They are merely in the same project so everythings in one place while our devs sort out a second hosting option with better security.

                                           

                                          Thanks for the help Peter.

                                          • 18. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                            jthomas666

                                            Question:  I'm using your method to merge ~10 projects.  Setting up the merged ToC went easily enough, but is there a similar process for merging the index?  I'm not seeing anything that appears to relate to that.

                                             

                                            Thanks,

                                            • 19. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                              Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

                                              Nothing to be done for the index or search. Setting up the TOC is what tells RH to merge everything else.

                                               


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                                              • 20. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                                jthomas666 Level 1

                                                Thanks

                                                 

                                                One last question:

                                                 

                                                Let's say each one of my merged projects has a Toc looking like this:

                                                 

                                                Topic1

                                                Topic2

                                                Topic3

                                                Topic4

                                                Etc.

                                                 

                                                I've got 10 projects, so that merged ToC is going to be unwieldy.  I can manually edit the ToC so that it's more like this:

                                                 

                                                Project1

                                                     Topic1

                                                     Topic2

                                                Project2

                                                     Etc.

                                                 

                                                Which will result in a more manageable TOC.  But will manually editing the ToC in that manner mess with the linked ToC generation?  I know that if you edit a linked topic, you have to decide if you want to "delink" that topic or have the changes overwritten.

                                                 

                                                 

                                                Thanks again.

                                                • 21. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                                  Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional (Moderator)

                                                  In each project create one book that hold all that projects books and topics.

                                                   

                                                  In the merged output you will see

                                                   

                                                  Parent Book

                                                  Child One

                                                  Child Two

                                                   

                                                  Opening each will then reveal the TOC from that project.

                                                   

                                                  Is that what you want?

                                                   


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                                                  • 22. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                                    Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                                    Hi there

                                                     

                                                    I believe this is why you see so many projects that simply begin with a Book in the TOC. That way as the smaller projects are merged, they are each automatically sorted because they are in books.

                                                     

                                                    Cheers... Rick

                                                     

                                                     

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                                                    • 23. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                                      jthomas666 Level 1

                                                      That's what I want--it works fine, but will that manual break the linked ToC?

                                                       

                                                      I don't think it would, but I've stopped assuming anything wrt RH. 

                                                      • 24. Re: Merged Help - Im Lost.
                                                        jthomas666 Level 1

                                                        Yep.  I've got to edit my Frame ToCs to include that top level book, and all should be well.  If I edit the ToCs in RH, the changes get overwritten when I update.

                                                         

                                                        Thanks to all!