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Building Help Files--Help

Hi,

I've a number of problems with building help files and am looking for two
pieces of advice:

(i) I'm using Microsoft Help Compiler Version 3.10.445. It was bundled with my
TPW 1.5. This is a Windows 3.1 compiler. Is there anything better out there
that will use the same RTF formatting used by the Microsoft product and still
work with Windows 3.1? Should I try to purchase it through Borland?

(ii) I've run into an intractable "Error 5059: Not enough memory to build help
file." As far as I can tell I've got 18+ Mbytes RAM available when I'm
running this program. I've got my PIF file set up with 640 Kb required and
desired memory requirements, EMS memory 16384 required -1 desired. It runs out
of memory in DOS as well. I've had this problem in the past and have done
various things to "tweak" the uncompiled files but at this point I've run out
of ideas except for deleting information in the files (getting rid of bitmaps
works).

Any ideas or directions to turn would be most appreciated.

MicroDude
/---------------------------------------------------------\
|                                                         |
|         /            /              /           /       |
|         \            \              \           \       |
|    [:<]==[  -->  [:)]=[-  -->  [:)]==[  +  [:)]==[      |
|         /            /              /           /       |
|         \            \              \           \       |
|                                                         |
|    Stephen T. Abedon, Ph.D.                             |
|                                                         |
|    address: 1'   MicroDu...@OSU.edu                     |
|             2'   SAbe...@Magnus.acs.Ohio-State.edu      |
|             3'   297 Bromfield                          |
|                  1680 University Dr.                    |
|                  Mansfield, OH 44906                    |
|    phone:        (419) 755-4343                         |
|    fax:          (419) 755-4327                         |
|                                                         |
|   "With millions of species, each one with an almost    |
|    unimaginably complex history and genetic makeup,     |
|    we would have a source of intellectual and           |
|    aesthetic enjoyment for generations to come."        |
|                                                         |
|                     E. O. Wilson                        |
|                                                         |
\---------------------------------------------------------/

 

Re:Building Help Files--Help


For your second question :
Generally speaking, u can try these :

1. Use the protected mode version of Help compiler, HCP.EXE. To create
compiled Help files compatible with the Windows Help Viewer thatcomes as
standard equipment with Windows 3.1 or higher, including Windows NT. U
have a choice of 2 help compilers HC31.EXE and HCP.EXE. HC31.EXE is the
faster of the 2 compilers, but has limited capacity,( it might not
complete a job b'cos it runs out of memory.) HCP.EXE is a little slower
than HC31.EXE, but has a large capacity.

2. Convert embedded graphics into Help graphic references.( i don't know
if u are already doing that ).

One pratical concern facing a developer of a Windows Help system is the
Help file size. Consider a bittmapped image which appears in say, 10
different topics in the Help system. If u were to paste the image( say it
is ten thousand bytes in size ) into each of the topics in your Help
file, the Help file would grow in size by one hundred thousand bytes!

Windows Help introduces the notion of placing a graphic image 'by
reference'. Which is to say, the graphic image is stored only once in the
compiled Help file.

Each topic which displays the image contains not a paste version of the
graphic, but instead, an 18 character text reference( or code ) which
describes what image is to be displayed and how.

For instance, u might save a screen capture of your File New dialog box
under the name FILENEW.BMP, and refer to that image in various places in
your help documents by typing the following codes into the text of a
Help topic :

{bmc FILENEW.BMP}

The above command is an example of placing a graphic file by reference.
Specifically, the 3 letter bmc code stands for 'bitmap as character',
which means, display the given image as if it were a character, appearing
and flowing with the text that surronds it.

In order to place a graphic by reference, u'll need to 'include' the
graphics file in your Help project, that is in the [Bitmaps] section of
your Help Project file.

Hope this help, regards.
--

Steven Yong
kwy...@pop.jaring.my

Matt 18:12
" What do you think? If any man has a hundred sheep and one of them goes
astray, will he be not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go and
seek
the one that has gone astray? "

Re:Building Help Files--Help


Quote
sabe...@magnus.acs.ohio-state.edu (Steven Abedon) wrote:
>Hi,

>I've a number of problems with building help files and am looking for two
>pieces of advice:

>(i) I'm using Microsoft Help Compiler Version 3.10.445. It was bundled with my
>TPW 1.5. This is a Windows 3.1 compiler. Is there anything better out there
>that will use the same RTF formatting used by the Microsoft product and still
>work with Windows 3.1? Should I try to purchase it through Borland?

Get HCP.EXE from Microsoft's ftp site
The latest Windows 3.1 version is 3.10.505
HCP runs in protected mode instead of real mode and will handle larger
help files.

==
Bob Small

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