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Just in case there's some confusion, WebHelp Pro and RoboEngine are not required elements for moving to a .NET application and its accompanying help. Plain, old WebHelp on a plain, old server is sufficient.
WebHelp Pro and RoboEngine, as the RH Help says, "gathers and stores usage data, hosts and serves the structured content, and hosts natural language search." The second item can be done on any server, and the first and third might not be as important to your organization as originally thought, given the high overhead involved (who's going to maintain the server, who's going to analyze the usage data, who's going to implement changes based on the data, etc.?)
When you say "All docs are deleted and reimported when they are updated," I'm thinking: why even use RH at all? You could simply use only Word, and then use Acrobat Professional to provide all PDFs and create a master index (Adobe calls it a Catalog).
I know this is an RH forum, and I don't usually suggest not using RH, but I just get a sense that your organization is using a chain saw to perform micro-surgery. Unless I've misread your post, which is entirely possible...
Thanks, Leon, your reply was thorough and sincere, and we appreciate it. It looks like my note wasn't clear - words are slippery! And perhaps describing our project clouded the answer.
We DO use RH, have for years, and will do so for some time. We are skilled RH authors, and know various ways to use it. Previously we worked within RH as a normal Help author project, but found that due to our many docs and document sources, and way too few writers, we like using RH for a while this way. For us, it continues to be a great product in spite of its gotchas, an easy way to manage our docs, and a familiar way to present Help in our application.
RoboEngine is not in question. We've studied the impact of it, and are preparing the various teams to implement it.
Our narrow focus on the moment is the impact of .net. It may be small, but we don't know that. We're concerned that we'll find out the hard way that we don't know the minimal tasks needed. Is it as easy as installing the RH.Net software and providing the WebHelp to development as we normally do?
I've seen at least one Help author exult in the possible ability to do cool Help designs with .Net. That would be fun, and we can look into it later, but for now in our situation, what's the minimal task list?
...what RH.Net software?
You do RH, the developers do .Net, and nobody does RH.Net. The only impact will be if the developers can't put in the proper .Net calls to your RH WebHelp. It seems like most outfits are simply calling matching URLs (window name StartMainTab goes looking for a file named StartMainTab.htm, etc., after finding the start page, usually index.htm).
You, then, simply provide the WebHelp as you normally do. (If you're providing merged WebHelp output, you'll need to devise a simple ASCII file with your developers--we call ours formpath.txt--to identify which project folder contains each of the topics matching app windows.)
Oh, for Pete's sake! I get it. What threw me was an incorrect assumption.
We have RoboHelp Office Pro for .NET installed. The software doesn't identify NET anywhere, and its Help file brings up only three minor finds on a Search for "net". A forum user mentioned .NET info being in the RH Help file, so I was looking for an overview topic. Seeing none, I assumed an upgrade installation needed to be done, and that there would be unknown delivery requirements.
Leon, you're a saint. You've clarified the thing, and it falls into place.Thanks for wading thru the fog.