7 Replies Latest reply on May 2, 2008 1:21 PM by Peter Grainge

    Custom Help in CHM files

      I am trying to find info on a "Custom Help" feature in CHM files that
      allow customers to add notes and/or whole procedures to the Help

      I just saw this in a old CHM file that probably has not been updated
      in 3 - 4 years. Where I work, our customers have custom Help that
      they've been adding to year-after-year that needs to be kept as this
      has a lot of very valuable information for them. The problem is that
      none of the writers on staff, including myself, know about custom Help
      systems, how they are setup, or anything else.

      Anyone have any good info on this that they can share?

      How is this functionality added to the Help? How should this be
      properly maintained? Etc?

        • 1. Re: Custom Help in CHM files
          Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional
          Welcome to the forum.

          If you are looking for something that the Administrator could set up, see Customisation on my site.

          • 2. Re: Custom Help in CHM files
            karafie Level 1
            Thanks for the response.

            I read through the info on customizing, and I'd have to say that this text from your site is most likely what I'm talking about:

            It was expected that the next version of RoboHelp after X5 would offer the ability for users to add comments that they and other users can see immediately or after moderation. However, this was only likely to be available if the help was created using WebHelp Pro which requires a RoboEngine licence on each server where the help is installed. A single server licence is approximately £500 plus VAT.

            I saw the customization feature. It was a CHM file. However, the user selected a button called "Customize Help" and then typed any wanted text into a MS Word file. Once they were complete, they selected "FTP" and then the new text was saved. It seems there are actually 2 separate CHM files, but they display in a dual pane in the Help system for each topic.

            Does this ring a bell at all? I'd never seen it before and am wondering if this is an old feature in Robo that I never knew.

            • 3. Re: Custom Help in CHM files
              Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional
              I have seen something similar to what you describe but I don't have any information. If I can unearth anything, I will let you know.

              I don't believe CHMs have ever had this feature in RoboHelp, or any other HAT. Such solutions as we may have seen will almost certainly be home brewed.

              • 4. Re: Custom Help in CHM files
                RoboColum(n) Level 5
                This sounds like a custom button in the CHM linked to a Word file. How the comments were FTPed back is though? Maybe some macro. I'd also expect the dual pane display of the help files would be something handled inside the application.
                • 5. Re: Custom Help in CHM files
                  Fly Molo
                  My guess is that the button is an HTML shortcut that opens an HTML file in Word (likely a standard throughout the office where this Help is delivered).

                  That HTML file could be displayed in an iframe from inside an a CHM topic. That's what it sounds like to me, but still a guess.
                  • 6. Re: Custom Help in CHM files
                    karafie Level 1
                    Thanks for the responses.

                    An update if anyone is interested -

                    From pulling the CHM file apart, I found a javascript in there that added this functionality. Definitely a home grown solution. Now that I know the programmer that worked on this, I need to track him down and ask him some more detailed questions on this.

                    The long term goal is to figure out how to add this same type of functionality to WebHelp. (Would also LOVE a way to pull the custom Help files from the CHMs into the new WebHelp.)

                    • 7. Re: Custom Help in CHM files
                      Peter Grainge Adobe Community Professional
                      Sit tight. Part of AIR help that Adobe have in beta. There's something about AIR help on my site.