3 Replies Latest reply on Feb 15, 2011 1:30 PM by johndaigle

    Importing Legacy Context-Sensitive Help


      Our company had a WinHelp project with legacy content and an associated context-sensitive help file. The content was such a mess that I decided to discard WinHelp and create a new Web Help project. Now, I want to know if it is possible to import the old context-sensitive help into the new WebHelp project.  The developers are very concerned that the new WebHelp project (without the context-sensitive help) will reduce the functionality of our software application. It would be great if I could import the old context-sensitive help and maintain the IDs. I have successfully imported the map files, but I cannot seem to open and edit the context-sensitive help topics. As you may have guessed, I know nothing about creating or managing context-sensitive help.

      Any and all suggestions are welcome!

        • 1. Re: Importing Legacy Context-Sensitive Help
          Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional

          Maybe Calling WebHelp on my site would help you and your developers.


          See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips



          • 2. Re: Importing Legacy Context-Sensitive Help
            mr_canoe_head Level 1



            Thanks for the tip and the link.


            Unfortunately, the issue is not simply understanding the “plumbing” of context-sensitive help. I think I have a good understanding of how to get it working. The issue is how to import an existing context-sensitive help file from an old WinHelp project. If I understand correctly, I can import the WinHelp project in its entirety, and then extract the context-sensitive topics to my new WebHelp project (I think). If you or other forum members can provide suggestions for importing this context-sensitive file, it would be very helpful.

            Thanks again for your input.

            • 3. Re: Importing Legacy Context-Sensitive Help
              johndaigle Level 4

              You should be able to, "import the WinHelp project in its entirety and then extract the context-sensitive topics to my new WebHelp project," as you put it. What's hanging me up is understanding exactly what you mean by "associated context-sensitive help file." Are you referring to a source or output file?


              One could be referring to the map header file (.h, .hm, .hh, etc.) It sounds like you are familiar with that and have already imported that into your project (though I'm not sure where you found it.) Part of the plumbing as you call it. :-)


              You might describe to us the method you used to import the WinHelp project. Did you import the compiled HLP or the project .HPJ with associated RTF files? Are you using RoboHelp for Word or RoboHelp HTML?


              A side trip down memory lane:
              With WinHelp, you could assign map ids/#s to designated topics within an overall help project in the usual way. But there was another less-used alternative called What's This? Help. I wonder if that was used to create the legacy help file?


              What's This? Help was a separate type of CSH that was invoked when the user clicked on a "?" icon in a dialog box. These projects were created using RoboHelp's What's This Help Composer and used a separate program to create an RTF "on the fly" from a database to create the ultimate .HLP file. What I don't know is how this may be treated in an import/conversion scenario going from WinHelp to WebHelp.


              Just grasping here, but maybe this is why you cannot see the CSH topics after you import them?


              The What's This? Help composer still ships with RoboHelp and you can find it along this path:

              C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe RoboHelp 9\RoboHTML\WhatsThs (That path may vary slightly depending on your OS.)


              In that folder, you will find a .chm file called whatsths.chm. This is the help file that explains how to use the Composer. You may find clues to your issues there.


              Of course, this may turn out to be a wild goose chase. But I thought you might like to know about this since yours is a legacy project and memories fade on how these things were done in the past.



              John Daigle
              Adobe Certified RoboHelp and Captivate Instructor
              Evergreen, Colorado