7 Replies Latest reply on Sep 17, 2007 11:33 PM by naks26

    Using a different window layout for startup?

    naks26
      Hi guys

      I'm new to RoboHelp 6, and I;m trying to do the following: I would like my help to load a small popup IE window in which the user can then select whether to use offline help or online help.

      I've created my own custom window (named Startup), but I can't seem to find any options where I can get a topic (the default one) to load up in the Startup window instead of the Main window.

      Any help would be much appreciated , thanks :)
        • 1. Re: Using a different window layout for startup?
          RoboColum(n) Level 5
          Hi naks26 and welcome to the RH community. Is your default topic also in the TOC. If it is, you can right click on the topic in the TOC, select Properties, click on the Advanced tab and select the "Startup" window there.
          • 2. Re: Using a different window layout for startup?
            naks26 Level 1
            Thanks Colum, I've tried that approach, but when I click on the Advanced tab, the only option I have is to choose a Frame. I still cannot choose the window itself that I created under Windows!?
            • 3. Re: Using a different window layout for startup?
              Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
              Hi all

              I'm a bit confused here. First off, this is the WebHelp forum category. So I'm assuming we are talking about WebHelp output here, no? Annnnnd if we are talking about WebHelp, are we not running it from a web server? So here's my dilemma. If you are running WebHelp and running it from a web server, why are you worried about an "offline" setup? It would seem to me that if the user didn't have internet access, they would never reach the point where the popup window would present itself.

              I suppose I'm comparing this to my internet provider (cable company) where they placed the connectivity troubleshooting guide on the internet space you can't reach. See the dilemma?

              Additionally, it sounds as if you are defining windows in that special "Windows" pseudo folder in the project explorer pane of RoboHelp. In the WebHelp/FlashHelp world, those are only used when using the WebHelp API and calling from web pages or applications.

              Cheers all... Rick
              • 4. Re: Using a different window layout for startup?
                Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                Hi again all

                Unless it was somehow deprecated in all the changing of the RoboHelp guard, there used to be something built into RoboHelp itself whereby your developer could accomplish this by filtering calls through a special DLL. This was known as "Airplane help". Basically, the help call was issued and if an internet connection existed the WebHelp appeared. If not, it was supposed to automatically switch to a locally installed .CHM file.

                Now if your only concern is to offer a .CHM file that may be used if the person isn't connected, you could accomplish this by simply compiling the .CHM and making it available via a link from your WebHelp. I used to do this when I was in the corporate world. I had a WebHelp system used on a company intranet. Our Field Services staff used it. But they also traveled to customer sites. Thus they needed essentially the same information on their laptops. So I just created a .CHM file and placed it inside my WebHelp system. Then they could download it and use it when traveling.

                Just a thought... Rick
                • 5. Using a different window layout for startup?
                  naks26 Level 1
                  Hi guys

                  To clarify -I'm using RoboHelp 6 HTML to generate webhelp files. What I want to do is to produce all the help in html format. This help will be bundled with the software and users will need IE or Firefox on their PC's to be able to use the help.

                  BUT - I also want to maintain the help on the company webserver, so that I may update it continuously. Hence why I want to give the users the option to either use their local help or access the online one. You see, not all of the users will have internet access, hence the choice at startup.
                  • 6. Re: Using a different window layout for startup?
                    Roger N Level 2
                    naks26, et. al.:

                    It's doable; and here's an easy way to go about it: The application help first tests to see if there is an online connection; if so, it pops up the dialog box, and offers a choice of local or online Webhelp.

                    How to test for an online connection? Simple. The local help starts with a value where: online ="no". Create a .js file, and keep it on the server with the help, with the value of online = 'yes'. Your local help checks to see if it can get the online value from the server when it reads the reference to the .js file. If it can't see the server, online stays "no".

                    The beauty of it, is that if your html page can't find the .js file (because you aren't online) it will not throw an error, or 404 Page not found message. The online value remains "no", and no dialog box is displayed.
                    • 7. Re: Using a different window layout for startup?
                      naks26 Level 1
                      Thanks Roger. It's still a bit greek to me at this stage, but I will pass it on to the techies :)