Can tie F1 Key to Webhelp?

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cindynotbrady
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Can tie F1 Key to Webhelp?

Unread post by cindynotbrady » Fri Feb 14, 2020 5:42 pm

In the past, we have always used CHM files with our downloaded exe applications. When users press the F1 key on their keyboard, help pops up in the form of a CHM. I noticed even with the latest version of Help+Manual that H+M does the same.

However, we would like to transition to using Webhelp, and when users press F1, it would open in a Browser with the help for that screen (context sensitive). The help would be housed on an internal server here, where we would need to figure out how to get all our users access. The devops people here seemed to think it wouldn't be too hard.

The only problem is, the programmer I'm working with has never done that before. I went out to the list of developer tutorials, but I didn't see one where it explains how to link the F1 key to a website housed on an internal server.

Could you help direct me where that might be? I know it can be done, but I don't know how.

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Re: Can tie F1 Key to Webhelp?

Unread post by Tim Green » Sat Feb 15, 2020 7:13 am

Hi Cindy,

Basically, your developer needs to do exactly the same thing they would do when opening a normal web page, because that is what WebHelp is. In most programming languages this involves a function/method called ShellExecute() or something similar, that calls the default browser and simultaneously feeds it the URL of the WebHelp for opening the topic you want to access.

Note that this will only work for WebHelp that is really on the Web, i.e. on a web server accessible via an http URL.

If you are looking to implement locally installed documentation on Windows machines, then instead of WebHelp you need to look at eWriter, which is WebHelp in a single file with its own standalone viewer. The signed viewer is now included with Help+Manual 8 and also available for download, and you can include it with your installation and also re-name and re-sign it with your own certificate if you wish.
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Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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cindynotbrady
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Re: Can tie F1 Key to Webhelp?

Unread post by cindynotbrady » Sat Feb 15, 2020 2:02 pm

Thanks, Tim! Does eWriter have HTML5 capabilities? I'd really like to implement a few of HelpXplain tutorials, and if I want the full functionality, it looks like I need to publish using the Publish to HTML Slideshow. I'd prefer not to go the gif route...unless you know better or could help me understand something I'm missing.

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Re: Can tie F1 Key to Webhelp?

Unread post by Tim Green » Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:44 am

cindynotbrady wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 2:02 pm
Does eWriter have HTML5 capabilities? I'd really like to implement a few of HelpXplain tutorials, and if I want the full functionality, it looks like I need to publish using the Publish to HTML Slideshow.
You can absolutely use this in eWriter. Also, you don't need to publish the Xplain to do this. Instead, just link the .xplain project file into your Help+Manual topic page in Help+Manual, using the Media tool's HelpXplain option. Then you can also go on editing the Xplain. When you publish your HM project it will then also publish the current version of the Xplain on the fly and bind it into your output. 8)
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Re: Can tie F1 Key to Webhelp?

Unread post by cindynotbrady » Mon Feb 17, 2020 1:35 pm

Great! So does that mean I can also use HelpXplain tutorials in CHM?

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Re: Can tie F1 Key to Webhelp?

Unread post by Tim Green » Mon Feb 17, 2020 3:29 pm

cindynotbrady wrote:
Mon Feb 17, 2020 1:35 pm
Great! So does that mean I can also use HelpXplain tutorials in CHM?
Absolutely. We took great care to make them compatible with CHM as well. There is just one thing you need to know: If you are using an older CHM skin, your skin needs to be "elevated" to use the current HTML and JavaScript rendering engine in CHM. There are two ways to solve this problem:

1) Use one of the CHM skins included with Help+Manual 8
These all have the necessary elevation and will not cause this issue.

2) Edit the setting in your CHM skin to elevate it to the current version:

1. Open your .hmskin file in Help+Manual and in the Project Explorer on the left, navigate down to Configuration > HTML Page Templates > Default

2. Locate this line of code at the top of the template:

Code: Select all

<IF_HTML><meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=edge" /></IF_HTML><IF_CHM>
   <meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=8" /></IF_CHM>
It may look slightly different in your skin or may not be there at all. You need to delete both lines and replace them with just this single line, without any <IF_ tags around it:

Code: Select all

<meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=edge" />
If the lines are not there at all, just enter this line directly after one of the other <meta... tags towards the top of the template code. This elevates the HTML rendering engine in the ancient CHM system to the maximum possible so that things like Xplains and the current version of jQuery will work correctly.

That will fix the problem.
Regards,
Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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Re: Can tie F1 Key to Webhelp?

Unread post by cindynotbrady » Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:10 am

You are a blessing to us all! :D Thanks so much for these great tips!

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Re: Can tie F1 Key to Webhelp?

Unread post by Tim Green » Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:40 am

Hey Cindy,

You're very welcome! 8)
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Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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