Ewriter file sizes?

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rconn
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Ewriter file sizes?

Unread post by rconn » Mon Mar 30, 2020 9:16 pm

Using H&M 8 and PP 4.02

I've been experimenting with the Ewriter format. I have a help file that compiles to a 5.5Mb CHM file. In Ewriter format it's 23Mb (27Mb with the viewer embedded).

Why is the Ewriter format 4x larger? It's hard to justify doubling the size of my installer just for a switch from CHM to Ewriter.

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Tim Green
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Re: Ewriter file sizes?

Unread post by Tim Green » Tue Mar 31, 2020 8:11 am

Note that PP 4.0.3 is now available with an important fix for the eWriter skins (slow rendering of the TOC on opening). If you have lost your download and installation credentials please contact support AT ec-software.com (replace the AT with @) for a copy.

You shouldn't be embedding the viewer at all any more, that is now bad practice that bloats your file size unnecessarily and also makes it difficult to distribute updates since they are then EXE files that need to be signed and are often blocked on download or mailing. If you are using eWriter for software documentation you need to create your eWriter files with your own extension and include the new standalone viewer in your installation procedure. Then you won't have these issues. See here for details:

https://www.helpandmanual.com/help/hm_p ... _help.html
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Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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rconn
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Re: Ewriter file sizes?

Unread post by rconn » Tue Mar 31, 2020 2:48 pm

Hi Tim:

Even when I don't embed the viewer, the *.ewriter file is still 4x larger than the *.chm file. Is that expected?

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Re: Ewriter file sizes?

Unread post by Tim Green » Wed Apr 01, 2020 8:22 am

rconn wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 2:48 pm
Even when I don't embed the viewer, the *.ewriter file is still 4x larger than the *.chm file. Is that expected?
That is definitely not normal. With standard skins the size should be almost identical. With Premium Pack V3 skins the eWriter version will be slightly larger because of additional overheads, but only slightly. For example, in a quick test the standard skin version of the CHM was 2.5MB and the eWriter version was around 2.56MB, and the V3 skin eWriter version was about 2.9MB.

Check the graphic conversion options in Configuration > Publishing Options > WebHelp > HTML Export Options, which are used for eWriter. Compare them with the same settings in the > HTML Help > HTML Export Options for CHM. You will probably find the difference there.
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rconn
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Re: Ewriter file sizes?

Unread post by rconn » Thu Apr 02, 2020 3:10 am

Hi Tim:

No luck - I changed the options to match the CHM with only a minor change in the .ewriter file size. Tried modifying all of the options on that page individually; still ended up with an .ewriter 4x the size of the CHM. Tried modifying all of the other options I could find, still ended up with the big .ewriter file. Tried it with a 3.47 skin, same thing.

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Re: Ewriter file sizes?

Unread post by Tim Green » Thu Apr 02, 2020 8:38 am

No luck - I changed the options to match the CHM with only a minor change in the .ewriter file size.
That's a little odd. Does your project contain any embedded images? You can locate them by running a full report and then searching for the word "embedded" in it.
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rconn
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Re: Ewriter file sizes?

Unread post by rconn » Sun Apr 05, 2020 2:18 pm

Hi Tim:

I do have a lot of images in the file, but none of them show as "embedded" in the full report. They're listed under "Pictures" in the topics; i.e.:

------------------------------------------------------

Windows Topic
Class: (Default)
Keywords: Language
Minimize to Tray
Options
Pop-up Font
Server Completion
Single Instance
Take Command Windows Configuration
Transparency
Refers to: CONFIGDLG
Command_Input
SHRALIAS
PATH
FILECOMPLETION
FILECOMPCUST
FILECOMP
Pictures: Options_Windows_v25.png
Word count: 566 words, 59 paragraphs, 2948/3485 characters/with spaces

Text: If you are not familiar with the purpose or use of the Windows configuration dialog, review the main configuration dialogs topic before continuing. Take Command Window Si I
--------------------------------------------------

I tried with a somewhat cut-down version as well (about half the size of the full help) that didn't include a lot of the images or the one merged project. That version has the same issue (2.8Mb CHM, 15.6Mb .ewriter).

rconn
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Re: Ewriter file sizes?

Unread post by rconn » Sun Apr 05, 2020 2:32 pm

Hi Tim:

I tried the "Get Me Started" example, and it generates a 2.3Mb CHM and 2.8Mb EWriter. I checked that it was using the same settings as in my own help file.

One possible factor - my help file was originally generated several H&M versions ago, and has gone through several H&M updates / conversions.

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Re: Ewriter file sizes?

Unread post by Tim Green » Mon Apr 06, 2020 8:24 am

This is strange and we'd like to have a look at it. Please send a download link for th zipped version of a cut down demo version of your project that can reproduce the issue to support AT ec-software.com (replace the AT with @). Since it's a file size issue we also need the images being used in the project.
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Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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