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  • Blog Post: VS 2010 SP1 Beta now available - including new client Help Viewer!

    Please check out my boss Jeff Braaten's blog regarding our new client help viewer now shipping with VS 2010 SP1 Beta. You can find some info there on installing the SP1 and how best to explore the new viewer experience if you've been using some other alternatives, like Helpware's H3Viewer. You can...
  • Blog Post: Help Viewer 1.1 Preview Video

    I’m excited to announce that we have just posted a preview video of Help Viewer 1.1 , which will be shipping with Visual Studio 2010 SP1. We have been hard at work over the last several months since Visual Studio 2010 was released. Over the beta period prior to release and since the release...
  • Blog Post: Help State of the Union (October 2010)

    Periodically, questions come to Microsoft via a variety of avenues regarding our current guidance on Help systems and formats. And they usually end up in the Help Guy’s inbox. :) What is Microsoft’s guidance regarding: WinHelp (.HLP files) HTML Help (.CHM files) Assistance...
  • Blog Post: Fixed Help SDK download now available

    Thanks for everyone who helped us identify the issue with our original download. We have rebuilt and tested the package and re-uploaded it to the SDK download page . Please redownload the package and you should be good to go. Thank you for your patience!
  • Blog Post: Help Viewer 1.0 SDK now available!

    It's been a long time coming, but we have finally released the Help Viewer 1.0 SDK. It can be downloaded here . Feedback is welcome!
  • Blog Post: Help-related resource pages

    Since starting this blog, I've had a few requests to post links to various software products and resource pages for Help related authoring tools and services. I think this is a great idea. My posting these is explicitly not any kind of Microsoft official endorsement, but just giving a shout out to a...
  • Blog Post: Re-post: Helixoft VSDocman adds support for VS 2010 Help

    (It appears during forum migration this post got deleted from my blog - so re-posting...) I'm glad to report today (originally posted 5/19/2010) of another Help Authoring Tool (HAT) vendor to add support for the MSHC format used by Visual Studio 2010. Here is a small blurb from Peter Macej of Helixoft...
  • Blog Post: Sandcastle with MSHC support has been released!

    I'm pleased to announce that we have posted a release of Sandcastle that now supports the MSHC Help file format used by Visual Studio 2010. The MSHC support was commissioned from ComponentOne , whom we thank for updating the code base to support this new Help format. We have additionally rolled in...
  • Blog Post: Updating multiple VS 2010 installations' Help content with a single download

    A question that we've begun to see come up from folk that have generally low-bandwidth is whether there is a way to download updates once for one machine and to then use that content for other machines as well. One customer puts it this way: "Also, while the updating feature is great, the downloads...
  • Blog Post: Clever workaround for getting dynamically inserted javascript or stylesheets to work in Help Viewer 1.0

    Working with our Visual Studio 2010 (and earlier!) partners, I'm frequently impressed with the ingenuity they demonstrate in just getting things to work. Even though Help systems these days are generally HTML based, there are often some gotchas that come up that are generally limitations due to an implementation...
  • Blog Post: Partner Content Discoverability Options in Visual Studio 2010, Part II: Shortcuts

    One of the side benefits of the F1 feature I wrote about the other day is that vendors can effectively create VS IDE Help menu and Start menu shortcuts to their own documentation that will always work, regardless of the end-user's online/offline preference. The VS 2010 Documentation shortcut looks...
  • Blog Post: Partner Content Discoverability Options in Visual Studio 2010, Part I: Context Sensitive Help (F1)

    If you haven't seen the announcement about the Visual Studio 2010 RC release - check out this page . The Visual Studio 2010 RC is immediately available to all comers. As we’ve been working our way towards RTM we’ve had lots of invaluable feedback from our partners and our Help Authoring Tool vendors...
  • Blog Post: Some updates

    I added a few more items to the Known Issues page. Also, a new page added: Calling Help Viewer 1.0 from VS add-in code . If you're developing add-ins for Visual Studio 2010 (or earlier actually), you may find this information handy. It describes the references necessary and basic steps for launching...
  • Blog Post: Calling Help Viewer 1.0 from Visual Studio add-in code

    The Visual Studio interface for launching Help using an F keyword (context sensitive help keyword) has not changed since 2002, but I had the hardest time finding some sample code for it recently *anywhere*. (See this page for some additional detail on what has changed in the IVsHelp interface in general...
  • Blog Post: Help Authoring Tool (HAT) support for Help Viewer 1.0

    As we've been ramping up the new the Help Viewer and its associated Help file format (MSHC), we've also been working closely with a few vendors to ensure that we have a good Help Authoring Tool (HAT) story for Visual Studio 2010. We have been working principally with the vendors that have historically...
  • Blog Post: What are we trying to accomplish with code signing content?

    Help file content and web content have historically been significant attack vectors that hackers and viruses have utilized quite a bit over the last decade. We’ve seen significant issues with .CHM security issues since HTML Help 1.x was released. HTML based attacks in general are huge - we had a hack...
  • Blog Post: Working with signed .cab files

    There's been a fair amount of discussion both in private emails and on the MSHelp3 Yahoo! group about the pros and cons of requiring signed .cab files for silent installs with the new Help system. As anyone who's been using Vista and Windows 7 knows, security is a pretty big deal these days despite...
  • Blog Post: Known Issues

    There are a handful of "known issues" with Help Viewer 1.0 that we will be shipping with at VS 2010 RTM. I will be maintaining a list of these issues and any updates via a page off the Links page.
  • Blog Post: Known Issues with Help Viewer 1.0

    · No ‘.’s allowed in .mshc/.cab file names; i.e. abc.mshc = good, abc.123.mshc = bad · No character entities allowed in content – workaround is to use Unicode values; i.e. © = bad, © = good · HelpContentSetup.msha – only this filename is supported; i.e. MyProduct.msha will not...
  • Blog Post: Which IVsHelp Interfaces are supported in Visual Studio 2010?

    Please see my page posted here . As I publish new pages, they will all be easily accessed via the Links link in the left-hand navigation pane.
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