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External Help

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  • #16
    Re: External Help

    I get the same result as Tom does.
    The first level help by using the Index exactly as it is works fine, but I can't figure out how to get a second level to work.

    I used HelpScribble to make the help file.

    Maybe someone at Alpha will need to help us.

    Alan

    Comment


    • #17
      Re: External Help

      When I actually create the index in HelpScribble, I created a little test help file with "test" as an index, and "test4" as a sub-item of the "test" index.

      I referenced "test" (without the quotes) in A5, and it pulled it up when I pressed F1.

      I referenced "test,test4" (without the quotes) in A5, and it pulled it up when I pressed F1.

      So it's probably a function of having the source code for the help file itself, and then you'll know the correct Topic to use.

      Alan

      Comment


      • #18
        Re: External Help

        Just a thought. If you are creating user help files do you need subtopics? I understand the reasoning behind them in the Alpha documentation.

        Not that it wouldn't be advantageous to know how to access them but is it necessary.
        There can be only one.

        Comment


        • #19
          Re: External Help

          Since I would be using the help file as part of the documentation and also for the user to be able to search, I will probably set up mine so that the main topic has the form description, and then each subtopic has the field description, something like that anyway. It looks like A5 will work with subtopics as long as you know the Index Topic that you enter.

          I think if you are creating your own help file, that this would work okay.

          Alan

          Comment


          • #20
            Re: External Help

            Alan,

            Great if you have got it to work can you share an example:

            ie a help file called Database.chm

            Help topic form1

            and field help for field1


            Bernie

            Comment


            • #21
              Re: External Help

              Hi Bernie,

              It seems that what you are asking for is just what I showed you earlier in the thumbnail.
              Regards
              Keith Hubert
              Alpha Guild Member
              London.
              KHDB Management Systems
              Skype = keith.hubert


              For your day-to-day Needs, you Need an Alpha Database!

              Comment


              • #22
                Re: External Help

                Keith,

                This is just the point, its easy to open first level help but its getting to second level help in a single screen that Alpha falls over.

                Go to any "Normal appilcation" hit F1 and most applications which have been professionaly written open a single help page with options to serach the main help application.

                Regards

                Bernie

                Comment


                • #23
                  Re: External Help

                  Bernie,
                  I guess I'm a little confused now also. I can get to the second level of help, but for me the second level will be information on a particular field on a particular form. That was what I was thinking you were wanting.

                  If you are wanting something else, if you can be specific like show me what you're looking for, I can try to help.

                  I think it could also be a function of how the help file is laid out, but I won't know that until I know what you're trying to do.

                  Alan

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Re: External Help

                    Hi Bernie,

                    Here are two screen shots from my Help file. Which I regard as a Book.

                    The file opens on each Chapter of the file when F1 or the help button on the form is pressed.

                    The corresponding Chapter/Page is then displayed. You can also see that each Chapter will display a number of pages of which each contains the text.

                    Yes you are correct there is no search facility in the Help file that Alpha creates for you.

                    I'm not sure how I can help you further, does this not do what you want?
                    Regards
                    Keith Hubert
                    Alpha Guild Member
                    London.
                    KHDB Management Systems
                    Skype = keith.hubert


                    For your day-to-day Needs, you Need an Alpha Database!

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Re: External Help

                      Keith,
                      I think Bernie is wanting to use an external help file that's created by HelpScribble, or something like that. He mentioned the one he's using.

                      This would allow searching, etc to occur because it could be either a .hlp or .chm file.

                      I think the main problem is that the help file needs to be laid out how you want to use it, and to some extent that's a matter of personal preference.

                      I will try to create and send up a little one that shows that going to the second level works okay in A5.

                      Alan

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Re: External Help

                        Hi Alan,

                        I must be loosing the plot, does what I have submitted not show "going to the second level"?

                        I realise there is plenty of other software out there to create Help files, but I just like to use as much as possible what is built into Alpha.

                        Search would be a very nice feature if it were there, but maybe that is something for the Wish List.
                        Regards
                        Keith Hubert
                        Alpha Guild Member
                        London.
                        KHDB Management Systems
                        Skype = keith.hubert


                        For your day-to-day Needs, you Need an Alpha Database!

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Re: External Help

                          I have created a simple one form database. If you go to the Customer ID field and press F1, you should get the help topic for Customer ID which is at level 1.

                          If you go to the Customer City or Customer Name fields and press F1, you should get the appropriate help, but these are level 2 help topics.

                          If you open the help file directly and go to Index, you can see the different levels. I did not create a table of contents.

                          You can also search on the help file, for example, search for Name and you will get info on the Customer Name field.

                          I created this with the trial version of HelpScribble, and have included the source code, so that anyone can look at it.

                          I highly recommend HelpScribble, though I am no expert at it at this point.

                          Bernie, does this help?

                          Alan

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Re: External Help

                            Keith,
                            For sure Alpha Five's help facility does a Level 2, and could work just fine, however if searching or maybe creating a user manual from the help, etc, is something that's needed, then there are other options also.

                            I'm sure that's why A5 supports other options.

                            HelpScribble is $99 I believe, and A5's is free, so it's a question of features vs cost.

                            Alan

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Re: External Help

                              Thanks finally someone seems to have done it

                              the option in Alpha five to include Help is OK but it lacks the capabilities of true help files such as Robohelp or Madcap or indeed HelpScribble.

                              If you want to offer a client a truly interactive help application you need the ability to use XML etc Alpha fives option is far too basic.

                              But comming back to the orginal point I keep making when the creators of Alpha five include options to link to external help why on the earth do they themsleves not include good standard help on how to do it.

                              If they are incapable of writing a quality help file there are many small companies who can do it for them at very reasonable cost.


                              Bernie

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Re: External Help

                                I think Alpha gave a pretty good explanation, "use the exact Topic", but examples always help me for sure. It's much easier when you can see pics or an actual example.

                                There are a lot of people here that will help when you have issues, so feel free to ask.

                                Alan

                                Comment

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