20 Replies Latest reply on Aug 24, 2015 7:50 AM by Jeff_Coatsworth

    RH does not work over VPN


      I run RoboHelp on my work computer.


      When I access my work computer from home using the VPN, I have trouble with RoboHelp. I can open RoboHelp and the Starter screen displays, but when I try to open a project using File->Open Project, the application freezes. I end up having to use the task manager to "exit task" to force RoboHelp to quit. If I open RoboHelp and use the links under "Recent Projects " on the Start screen, RoboHelp will open the project but it does not let me do anything after that. The application again freezes and I have to "exit task" using task manager.


      Should RoboHelp work over a VPN? Is there anything I need to change about my VPN to get RoboHelp to work?

        • 1. Re: RH does not work over VPN

          I'm often using RoboHelp (first version 6, now version 9) via a VPN connection, and I never had any problems. I can't remember having applied any special settings to my VPN connection, but I'm just a "normal" user, no network wiz.

          • 2. Re: RH does not work over VPN
            Author care Helper

            I also work remotely logged into my pc using RH 8.0.2 with no problems.

            I would first make sure that you have everything in order on your local pc that is:


            • Work in a real folder on the C: drive NOT in My Documents
            • Do not work from a network drive


            If the above is ok does this make any difference?

            • 3. Re: RH does not work over VPN
              BG100 Newcomer

              I am working in a folder on the c:\ drive and not from a network drive. I thought that perhaps it was a port problem, but after doing some tests, I think that is not the case.


              What's strange is that if I open a project using File>Open, RoboHelp freezes right away. If I open a project using the "quick links" on the starter page, the project opens and I'm able to perform one or two edits before RoboHelp freezes. I don't know why it would freeze at two different points.

              • 4. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                RoboAsh Helper

                The symptom gives an impression that Project that you are opening on your Home machine is kept on a different machine over the network or you have multiple missing resources.

                If this is the case then that is known issue with RoboHelp that with fairly large project if you try working on it over network then RoboHelp tends to freez (all the operation over network with large project are slow which gives an impression that it freezes).


                So please keep a copy of RoboHelp Project on the local machine (including the resources)


                If this is not the case Please check the copy of the project on your local office machine and check if it opening up properly or not and if it does work smoothly then the Project did not got copied properly on your local PC/Laptop that you are working with and if that project is also not opening up properly the one of the solution could be that to close the RH project and delete the .cpd file and reopen.


                One more thing, if you have live links to large FM source or large Word Documents that are kept on another machine over in the network then it can also make your project very slow if your vpn connection is slow.


                Hope this helps


                • 5. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                  MeWrite Newcomer

                  I work almost exclusively via VPN.  I have noticed that my connection impacts RH and makes it look frozen when it's not.  For example, if I use my Satellite DSL it's so slow that opening the project may take up to 20 minutes.  If I use my air card it may take anywhere between 3-5 minutes.  In both cases, the task manager acts if RH is doing little to no work and in the case of Satellite even displays that it's frozen.


                  To this, I say find a better internet connection (i.e., faster) or make some breakfast and coffee .




                  • 6. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                    Jeff_Coatsworth Rockstar

                    I find that when I'm working from home my workflow is fine. I use a VPN to connect and then RDP into my desktop at the office. It's just like sitting at my desk.

                    • 7. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                      RoboAsh Helper

                      Hi Jeff,

                              The Problem is not with remote desktop, If you work on RoboHelp installed on a different machine over network and the project on which you are working is on the same machine (on which RoboHelp is installed) then its not a problem.

                               You will feel a delay only when you have installed RoboHelp on your Home machine and try working on a large RoboHelp project kept on another machine - this will tend to slow response in proportion to the slowness of the network, i.e. the slower the network the more freeze like experiance will be observed.

                        So I would suggest this will be a better practice to either keep a copy of Project on the machine on which RoboHelp is installed or work through RDP as Jeff suggests


                      Hope this helps


                      • 8. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                        luviola10 Newcomer

                        can you tell me what RDP is?

                        • 9. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                          Jeff_Coatsworth Rockstar

                          Remote Desktop - basically the "new" name for the bundled Windows Terminal Services client. You set your office machine to accept remote connections (authenticated of course), and then create an RDP connection on your home machine to "call" your office machine. When it connects, you login & it shows you your desktop as if you were sitting right there in the office. Remote printing and access to your home harddrive while on your office machine can also be configured.

                          • 10. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                            Tech Doc Girl Newcomer

                            I am having the same issue while working from home. When my laptop is connected to the network in the office, RoboHelp works fine. However, when I work from home and VPN, it moves at a glacial speeds. Any progress on this issue?

                            • 11. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                              Jeff_Coatsworth Rockstar

                              What’s to progress? This isn’t a RH issue; it’s a workflow/project location/connection speed issue.


                              From your post, I’m assuming you’ve got RH installed on your laptop – where’s your project located? Unless you’re running RH10, then having your project in a non-local location is asking for trouble. Is there any source-control thrown into this mix?

                              • 12. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                                Peter Grainge Ninja

                                Let's clarify a couple of points.


                                Is Rh installed on your laptop or are you accessing Rh remotely?


                                If on your laptop, does Rh work OK when you are not connected?


                                If you are accessing it remotely, are you accessing it on a desktop at the office or is it on a network drive?


                                See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips




                                • 13. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                                  Tech Doc Girl Newcomer

                                  RH is installed on my laptop, I am not remoting into a machine at the office. RH works fine when I am connected to the network at work. I spoke to my IT department about it and they think it is probably because we using SharePoint source control which is hosted so that is probably severely affecting the speed.

                                  • 14. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                                    Jeff_Coatsworth Rockstar

                                    Aha! There was some source control in the mix!

                                    • 15. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                                      Peter Grainge Ninja

                                      Are you using source control purely as a backup or do others work on the project? Perhaps you could check out the whole project when working at home and just copy that daily to an external USB drive for some protection?


                                      See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips




                                      • 16. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                                        Tech Doc Girl Newcomer

                                        I have three technical writers working on all our projects, which is why we use source control.

                                        • 17. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                                          Jeff_Coatsworth Rockstar

                                          Perfect reason, but you neglected to mention that in your post ;>)

                                          • 18. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                                            jjohnsonace Newcomer



                                            I have used RH for years and I like it a lot, but...it just does not work well if:


                                            1. You are going thru VPN and,

                                            2. You are using Source Control


                                            The strangest things will happen if you use RH under these circumstances.


                                            When I am working from home, I try to make that a day when I am perhaps making things like narrated videos and such...things that I will put into RH, as soon as I am back in the office!


                                            Sorry for the bad news. I've just never found a way around this.

                                            • 19. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                                              Tech Doc Girl Newcomer

                                              I'm resurrecting this original post in hopes that someone might be able to actually answer. At the end of this week, I am going to be working remotely full-time and I need this resolved ASAP. Let's review:

                                              • I have RoboHelp 10 installed on my work-provided laptop.
                                              • When working remotely, I VPN using Cisco Systems VPN client.
                                              • I open RoboHelp projects from my local and RH moves at a glacial speed.
                                              • Yes, we are using SharePoint source control, but this doesn't appear to be the issue, because if I create a brand new project on my local NOT connected to source control, RH is still painfully slow.
                                              • If I disconnect from VPN and create a new project on my local, everything works fine so it has to have something to do with VPN.

                                              Assuming I'm sh*t out of luck, does anyone have any other ideas on possible solutions? What if I had IT install RH on a machine in the office and I RDP to it? Can anyone think of possible issues with that? What other options do I have? HELP

                                              • 20. Re: RH does not work over VPN
                                                Jeff_Coatsworth Rockstar

                                                The latter scenario is what I use to work remotely. We use a SonicWall VPN client to connect first, then I RDP into my machine at the office – it has all the TCS software on it & access to network drives. Works like a charm!