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Designing Help Windows

The most important part of a help file is the information in it — the words and pictures that the help file contains. But packaging is also important. The way you present words and pictures can play a significant role in making your help file more usable. When designing your help file for distribution with a program, you may want to create or customize the windows you use to display your topics.

When designing help windows, keep these options in mind:

  • You can change the type of window in which a topic appears. For example, your home page or an image map might appear in a secondary window while your information topics appear in the Help Viewer.
  • You can create different windows for different topic types. For example, help for a dialog box might appear in an embedded window while your information topics appear in the Help Viewer.
  • You can change the appearance of a window. For example, you can change a window's size and position, background colors, title bar, buttons, and other options.
  • You can create your own frameset to display topics.
  • You can ship multiple help files, each with its own set of window definitions.

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Build date: 4/14/2012

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