Webhelp and builds

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Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tansy » Tue Jan 22, 2019 9:54 am

When I create a webhelp output and then deploy it on a webserver, the contents displays only the topics of the appropriate build. However, when I search for keywords contained in other builds (not supposed to appear in this output), the topics from those builds are shown in the search results. How do I fix it?
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Re: Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tim Green » Tue Jan 22, 2019 10:43 am

Hi Tansy,

There are several possible causes for this:

Cause 1: Not deleting old files in your output folder

The main cause of this is not deleting the old files from your output folder before publishing. When you use WebHelp the search index is generated by scanning the HTML files in your output folder, because the search needs to work on the HTML files. When you delete or exclude topics in your project any old HTML files generated from previous publish operations in your output folder are not automatically deleted. If you don't flush the files from this folder it will also contain the old copy of the deleted topic(s) the last time you published, and they will then also be included in the search index.

The quickest way to achieve this is to select the option to delete all the files in the output folder in the Publish dialog. Alternatively you can just choose a different empty folder.

You should also regularly flush the files in the WebHelp folder on your web server when you update your project. Old topic files there won't show up in the search function in Help & Manual because the index has been updated (if you flushed your local output folder), but they will continue to show up in Google and other search engines if the files still exist on the server.

Similarly, when you are generating CHM files you should normally leave the Publish dialog option to delete temporary files on. Only turn it off for analysis purposes when you want to examine the CHM source files generated for some special reason.

Cause 2: Excluding files from the TOC but not from the output

Another possible cause is that you have excluded output files from the TOC but not from your WebHelp output. For example, if only exclude a chapter by applying build options to only that chapter topic, then all the TOC entries of the topics in that chapter will be excluded (because there is nowhere to put them in the TOC any more), but the topic files won't be excluded. You need to select ALL the topics in the chapter and apply the same build options to ALL of them to exclude the topic files as well.

Cause 3: Links to excluded files in non-excluded files

Finally, if the topics that are not excluded contain links to topics that are excluded, it is possible that Help+Manual will include these topics in the background to prevent the links from being dead. How this is handled is defined in settings in View > Program Options > Compile. The best way to handle this is to apply the same build options to the links as to the topics they link to. You can find topics containing the links by right-clicking on the TOC entry for the topic you want to exclude and selecting "Find Referrers". See this topic in the help for full instructions on handling this:

https://helpandmanual.com/help/index.ht ... dlinks.htm
Regards,
Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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Re: Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tansy » Tue Jan 22, 2019 2:31 pm

Thank you Tim, I am trying this now.
Two more questions about webhelp:

1. How do I fill the keyword index? Is there a way to do it automatically? Is there a way to remove the keyword index from the skin?

2. How can I change the company logo and link that it leads to in a skin that comes with Help&Manual? I want to do it in the skin called "Webhelp, iFrames Responsive, White-Grey", but I haven't figured out how to change it at all.
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Re: Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tim Green » Tue Jan 22, 2019 2:45 pm

Tansy wrote:1. How do I fill the keyword index? Is there a way to do it automatically?

The keyword index cannot be automated because that would create a bad index -- only the author can decide which words need to be in the index and which topics they need to link to. See This chapter in the help to learn how to do this:

https://helpandmanual.com/help/index.ht ... ywords.htm

There are several tools to help you create a good index, but basically you just need to add index keywords for each topic in the Topic Options tab to the left of the main editor window.

Is there a way to remove the keyword index from the skin?

Yes, just open the skin in Help+Manual (a skin can be opened like a normal project) and in the Project Explorer navigate down to Configuration > Publishing Options > WebHelp > Navigation. There you can turn both the keyword index and the full text search off if you wish. After editing a skin you need to save the edited copy to your project folder (or anywhere else you can access it easily) and remember to select the edited version when you publish.


. How can I change the company logo and link that it leads to in a skin that comes with Help&Manual? I want to do it in the skin called "Webhelp, iFrames Responsive, White-Grey", but I haven't figured out how to change it at all.


  1. Create a copy of your logo called company-logo.png. Then open the skin in Help+Manual and navigate down to Project Files > Baggage Files. Then select Add File in the Project tab and add your version of the logo, overwriting the stored versions.
  2. Then navigate to Configuration > Common Properties > Text Variables and enter the URL for your company logo link in the COMPANY-LOGO-LINK variable. Don't forget to include the http:// or https:// prefix.
Regards,
Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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Re: Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tansy » Wed Jan 23, 2019 7:27 am

Hi Tim,
Thanks for your help, it all worked with the skin.

Back to my first question, '

You can find topics containing the links by right-clicking on the TOC entry for the topic you want to exclude and selecting "Find Referrers".


After I publish the project, the Compiler messages shows the following message:

"The following topics are referenced by other topics, but not included in this build"

Do I get it right that this is the exhaustive list of topics containing links to topics not included in the build? So I don't have to use the "Find Referrers" option for each separate TOC entry but go through this list instead?
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Re: Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tim Green » Wed Jan 23, 2019 7:31 am

Tansy wrote:Do I get it right that this is the exhaustive list of topics containing links to topics not included in the build? So I don't have to use the "Find Referrers" option for each separate TOC entry but go through this list instead?

Yes, that's correct. If you want to do it that way it will give you a full list of the affected topics. If you have an excessive number it will truncate the list, but then it will display a message telling you that it is not showing the complete list because of the "extraordinarily large number..." 8)
Regards,
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Re: Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tansy » Wed Jan 23, 2019 11:19 am

Tim, thank you, I seem to be getting a hang of it. A few more questions though:

1. I need the title to contain conditional text, so that I can have different titles for different builds - for example, BUILD1 User's guide and BUILD2 User's guide. Is it at all possible? In the PDF layout, I use text variables for the purpose.

2. Can I perform 'whole word only' search in the webhelp? For instance, now when I am loooking for voice, the search gives me all occurrences of ''invoice'' and 'other words that contain the string 'voice''.

3. Is it possible to use different TOC headers for different builds? For example, one and the same chapter must appear with HEADING1 in Build 1 and HEADING2 in Build 2. I created a TOC link for Build 2 that links to a chapter in Build 1, and gave them different TOC headers (this works OK for the PDF layout). But I can't make different chapter headers - and the webhelp apparently uses the chapter headers rather than TOC headers.

5. How can I change the background color of the header in a skin? I want to change it from grey to white (the area I circled in the screenshot).

2019-01-23_13-42-41.png
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Tansy
 
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Re: Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tim Green » Wed Jan 23, 2019 2:13 pm

Hi Tansy,

Tansy wrote:1. I need the title to contain conditional text, so that I can have different titles for different builds - for example, BUILD1 User's guide and BUILD2 User's guide. Is it at all possible? In the PDF layout, I use text variables for the purpose.

You can't put conditional text in the title definition in Configuration > Common Properties > Title and Copyright. However, you CAN insert a variable there. For example, if you define a variable called MYTITLE in your project in Configuration > Common Properties > Text Variables, you can type in <%MYTITLE%> in the Title: field in the Title and Copyright section. Then you can change it not with build options but by using the Publishing Task Manager. This allows you to define publishing jobs called "actions", in which you can redefine variables for individual jobs, among other things. You can group multiple jobs together in a task and then execute them all at the same time.,

2. Can I perform 'whole word only' search in the webhelp? For instance, now when I am loooking for voice, the search gives me all occurrences of ''invoice'' and 'other words that contain the string 'voice''.

Enclosing the search argument in double quotes gives you whole word search.

3. Is it possible to use different TOC headers for different builds? For example, one and the same chapter must appear with HEADING1 in Build 1 and HEADING2 in Build 2. I created a TOC link for Build 2 that links to a chapter in Build 1, and gave them different TOC headers (this works OK for the PDF layout). But I can't make different chapter headers - and the webhelp apparently uses the chapter headers rather than TOC headers.

The easiest way around this problem is to use multiple TOCs. Create a different TOC for each purpose, then you can have different heading texts for each topic. You can create a copy of the original TOC to do this, which speeds it up a lot.

IMPORTANT: Study the documentation linked above carefully before using multiple TOCs, particularly the part about the special status of the main/first TOC. That is very important!

5. How can I change the background color of the header in a skin? I want to change it from grey to white (the area I circled in the screenshot).

FIrst NEVER try to change that setting (Layout) shown in your screenshot in a skin. If you do that you will delete the custom code in the skin and make it unusable. The only time you can even see that selection in a pre-designed skin is in a V3 skin in the Premium Pack, where the Layout portion is not used at all (and the setting should also never be changed). In all other skins, if you can see that setting option the skin has already been made unusable.

How you change the header background color depends on the skin you are using, so you need to provide that information.
Regards,
Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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Re: Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tansy » Wed Jan 23, 2019 2:50 pm

Thank you Tim!

I am using the skin called "Webhelp, iFrames Responsive, White-Grey" (though I saved it under a different name and added the company logo. It still seems quite usable.
Tansy
 
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Re: Webhelp and builds

Unread postby Tim Green » Wed Jan 23, 2019 3:07 pm

Hi Tansy,

Tansy wrote:I am using the skin called "Webhelp, iFrames Responsive, White-Grey" (though I saved it under a different name and added the company logo. It still seems quite usable.

Make sure that you are really editing the .hmskin and not your project file. It's OK if you see that in the project file. However, if you are using that skin and can see what you show in your screenshot in the Layout section of the .hmskin file it means you have used the "Reset Template" button on that section, clicking through the warning that all the custom code in that section will be deleted. The skin will "work" but it has actually been destroyed as a custom skin and is now no longer usable, because all the custom code tying it together and creating the correct layout and the skin functions has been deleted. You must start again with a fresh copy of the original.

Once you have a fresh, undamaged copy of the skin you can change the color by opening the .hmskin file in Help+Manual and going to Configuration > Common Properties > Text Variables. The header background color is defined in the SKIN-HEADER-COLOR variable. Just change the color there to the color you want to use.
Regards,
Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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