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WinHelp was the original online Help system for Microsoft Windows. Originally introduced with Windows 3.0, WinHelp was substantially enhanced with the release of Windows 95. All versions of Microsoft Windows continue to support online Help in WinHelp format, but Microsoft discontinued further development of WinHelp in 1997.
To create WinHelp, authors create topic files in RTF format, typically using Microsoft Word or a Help authoring tool, and these topic files, together with a few project files, are compiled using Microsoft's WinHelp compiler. The compiler produces an HLP file and, optionally, a CNT file, which are distributed to users of the Help system.
In order to view a WinHelp system, users must have a computer that runs Microsoft Windows. The WinHelp viewer is included as a part of Windows 95, 98, ME, NT, 2000, and XP so anyone with a Windows PC already has everything needed to to use WinHelp.
WinHelp 4 Bug List - Bugs? In WinHelp? Nah ... couldn't be. Here's the most complete list we know of, downloadable from Shadow Mountain thanks to Don Lammers.
Software Interphase - This site hosts a WinHelp Repository and an HTML Help repository, each gathering a collection of shareware and freeware tools available for download.
Jack Deland's Wired World - We don't know how to describe Jack DeLand's Wired World. You'll just have to experience it for yourself.
The best books on WinHelp are, unfortunately, mostly out of print. These are the titles we recommend.
- Developing Online Help for Windows 95 by Scott Boggan, David Farkas, and Joe Welinske, International Thomson Computer Press, ISBN: 1850322112.
- Designing Windows 95 Help by Mary Deaton and Cheryl Lockett Zubak, Que, ISBN: 0789703629.
- Building Windows 95 Help by Nancy Hickman, M&T Books, ISBN: 1558514775.
HATT - The Help Authoring Tools and Technologies group is a moderated discussion list for topics related to Help authoring and online information design and development. The HATT group was formed when the old WINHLP-L discussion list was closed. Discussion topics include help technologies like WinHelp, HTML Help, JavaHelp, WebHelp, and WinHelp 2000, authoring tools from various vendors, and issues related to design, development, and deployment of online Help systems. You can participate in the group through its Web interface or subscribe and receive messages by e-mail. David Knopf is a moderator of the HATT list, which has more than 2,000 subscribers worldwide.