14 Replies Latest reply on Jul 30, 2007 11:38 AM by Philip Tory

    Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)

    Philip Tory Level 1
      I have built a WebHelp guide of 130 topics. When I first start to view it, all is well. I stepped through several topics in the Browse sequence, all OK. I used the Search box and found a few topics. Selected OK. Then select the Index tab, then Contents tab, and then the problems start. ALL the larger images fail to appear. The white space is there on the screen, but no pics, and these are a mix of GIFs, animated GIFs and PNGs. Most of the smaller images (say, smaller than about 150 x 250 px) appear OK.
      (I am viewing these in IE7, running under Windows XP with all latest updates; fast Pentium 4 + 1.5Gb RAM, hot 256Mb graphics card).
      If I right-click on a missing image, and select Properties, it shows the filename, but the file size reports "-1bytes".
      On one occasion, I noted that the progress bar at the bottom of the IE7 screen was stuck trying to load images, and some of the skin graphics ewre missing too.
      If I close the WebHelp and load it again, everything works OK. Until I repeat this sequence.
      Has anybody got any ideas? This problem happened on another computer, so it's not just this one.
        • 1. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
          MergeThis Level 4
          I remember forum discussions about RH balking when you Paste, rather than Insert, graphics.

          I also remember forum discussions (some very recent) about RH choking on PNG graphics. (From the Using images in your topics topic in the RH help: "Note: If you are generating WebHelp Pro or WebHelp output, use .GIF or .JPG image files (.BMP files do not display properly in certain browsers).")

          Good luck,
          • 2. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
            Philip Tory Level 1
            Thanks Leon.

            All my previous WebHelp projects have used PNG files a lot - and yes, they were imported, not pasted. This is something new... And it's a failure of ALL large images to appear, whether they are GIFs, animated GIFs or PNGs.
            • 3. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
              Brian.Mccaffery Level 1
              Hello Authorgraphic,

              As Leon says, Robohelp definitely does not appreciate images that are cut and pasted rather than using the insert image icon on the tool bar.

              Also, do any of the PNG images come from Visio. This is a known problem. If so, to get round this, open the PNG images in a drawing package (Paintshop Pro, or equivalent) then save the images again as PNG if that is what you need. The way Visio layers the images is a problem in RH.

              Hope this helps,

              • 4. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                Philip Tory Level 1
                Hmmm... I tried a rebuild without the Search Input Field in Toolbar, and now it works: I cannot get it to fail again. But! It has failed before without this feature added. I still need to get to the bottom of it.
                • 5. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                  Philip Tory Level 1
                  Hi Brian M,
                  Yes, I've heard of these issues before.
                  - I don't have Visio.
                  - I use Paint Shop Pro 7 for all my graphics.
                  - All images are inserted properly; the only time I paste is if it's already inserted into another topic and I want to copy an image from one topic to another. Is that still a problem?
                  • 6. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                    MergeThis Level 4
                    Yes, I believe so, Philip. Pasting is not recommended whether the graphic has already been inserted elsewhere or not.

                    Good luck,
                    • 7. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                      HKabaker Level 2
                      I think the RH database keeps lists of images and their topics. It knows where they are from the Insert Image command. Maybe you're short-circuiting that process when you paste.

                      I was wondering -- the htm source code includes dimensions for each graphic. Where would RH pick up the numbers when you paste?

                      Another complicating factor might arise if you are sizing images in RH, rather than in a graphics editor before putting it into the topic -- whether you're using the RH command or pasting..

                      Does this speak to your problem in the other thread, too?

                      • 8. Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                        Philip Tory Level 1
                        Hi Leon and Harvey,
                        Thank you for your observations and thoughts.

                        1. Copying images: Investigation. Open a topic in RH and click on an image in the WYSIWYG tab. Now switch to TrueCode view. You can see highlighted the exact code that it will copy. Example:
                        <img src="actions1.gif"
                        style="border: none;
                        width: 319px;
                        height: 204px;
                        float: none;
                        border-style: none;
                        border-style: none;"
                        --- (The code should be indented as in TrueCode view, but this forum page does not support tabs or multiple spaces).

                        So, clicking on an image in WYSIWYG correctly picks up the filename reference, aspect ratio, exact size, borders etc.
                        - Copy and paste this text to NotePad, so you can refer back to it in a moment.

                        - Now return to WYSIWYG, click on the image and use Ctrl_C copy.
                        - Switch to another topic and Ctrl_V paste the image somewhere convenient.
                        - Click on the image, and look at the TrueCode page.
                        The code has copied across exactly as on the original topic - compare with the code in NotePad.
                        Now save the topic (you can delete the image later).

                        Next, select the Project tab, bottom left. Look in the Images folder and find the image you just copied. Double-click to open the Image Properties, and select the "Used In" tab. You can see the image correctly registered in the two topics.

                        Conclusion: Copying and pasting images takes the exact code from one topic and pastes it into another; so I do not understand why there should be a problem; these are only HTML web pages, after all - unless there's a bug in the RH background database interfacing?

                        2. Resizing images: Although it is possible to drag the corner of an image to resize it, I teach people not to do this, as the image quality suffers badly, and it renders the image unreadable sometimes. I resize in Paint Shop Pro if I must; but prefer to take a cropped area of a real-scale screenshot if I can.

                        The RH Help Guide claims that RH supports PNG; and why not? It's just an HTML web page. Something is deeply wrong somewhere if this is happening... The mystery remains: is it just a PNG problem?
                        • 9. Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                          Philip Tory Level 1
                          FURTHER INFO
                          I've just done some tests on the WebHelp output..
                          1. Select different topics in the ToC - no problem. All images are OK.
                          2. Now select Search tool and search for a word. This brings up a list of about 14 topics.
                          3. Now select topics in the Search list. After a few topics (as few as 3 or 4), ALL THE LARGER IMAGES DISAPPEAR. Switch back to the ToC and select topics - IMAGES sTILL MISSING, whether GIF, PNG, animated GIFs etc. To restore the images, I have to close IE7 completely and re-load the WebHelp Guide.
                          NOTE: If I have another tab open in IE7 and just close the tab with the webHelp in, when I re-load the WebHelp, the images are still missing. If I try to open any internet web page in the other tab, all images are missing unless they are Flash; same problem, image properties show as "-1 bytes".

                          THIS SOUNDS LIKE AN IE7 ISSUE, triggered by using the Search tool
                          So, what does the search do that unhinges everything?

                          Again, H-E-E-E-L-P!!!
                          • 10. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                            Amebr-ke0mH4 Level 2
                            Could it be the problem with the IE Cache? It sort of sounds like it. there is a setting in IE (Tools | Internet Options | Advanced) which empties Temporary Internet Files when closing IE, so maybe that is why it is fine once you close and reopen IE.

                            Here is the FAR page about the problem and its effect in chm files:

                            Here is an MS page about image display issues:

                            Hope this helps
                            • 11. Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                              Philip Tory Level 1
                              Hello Amebr,

                              Thanks for your thoughts.

                              The cache is already set to clear automatically ('Empty temporary internet files folder when browser is closed'). The thing is,
                              I have never seen this problem before, and I have produced dozens of WebHelp guides for various clients;
                              I cannot get this problem with other webhelp guides; only with this one.
                              I had a careful look through the web pages you sent me - thanks - but cannot see anything there that would apply. Everything works fine until I use the Search facility, and then I have to click a few topics before it goes wrong.

                              The Helpware group site is useful for HTML Help (CHM files) - thanks - but I rarely use these, and this problem is in WebHelp mode.
                              There must be a solution to this somewhere!
                              • 12. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                                Brian.Mccaffery Level 1

                                You say that you automatically clear the Temp folder, but you will also need to clear down the cookies and the history.

                                Another thing that can cause problems is any changes to the sever security, ie Firwall update etc. If this is the case, once you have cleared the cookies, try accessing the help by using the address bar, in other words- not through shortcuts etc.

                                Hope this helps,

                                • 13. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                                  MergeThis Level 4
                                  Sorry, but when I talked about pasting graphics, I meant pasting from outside RH (Copy in PHP, SnagIt, Paint, etc.), not from within (Select an RH graphic), as you very correctly proved is not an issue. I should have been more accurate.

                                  Good luck,
                                  • 14. Re: Missing Images in WebHelp (RH6)
                                    Philip Tory Level 1
                                    Dear All,
                                    I got somewhat exasperated with the Help project problems, so I converted over 200 PNG images to GIF. Discovery! There were one or two 'bad format' PNGs detected in the conversion process, so I truly suspect bad PNGs. I changed all the refs in the project from .png to .gif, and rebuilt it. All working perfectly. Cannot get it to go wrong.

                                    I have used thousands of PNG images over the years, and never had problems with missing images. I can only conclude it was a few damaged image files that caused the difficulty.

                                    But, to test a few other problems (like crashing when I change topics) I'll stick to GIF for the rest of this job anyway, and see how it goes.
                                    Thanks all for your help