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Help, Environment, Options Dialog Box 

This topic has been updated for Visual Studio 2005 SP1.

This page of the Options dialog box lets you choose documentation sets and select whether to display topics internally in the integrated development environment (IDE) or externally in a separate window. To access this dialog box, on the Tools menu click Options. In the Environment folder, click Help. If this page does not appear in the list, select Show all settings in the Options dialog box.

Information on how to change the font size of Help topics or the colors that are used in the Help viewer can be found in the Microsoft Document Explorer documentation.


The dialog boxes and menu commands you see might differ from those described in Help depending on your active settings or edition. To change your settings, click Import and Export Settings on the Tools menu. For more information, see Visual Studio Settings.


The following table has been updated for Visual Studio 2005 SP1.


Changes made to these options do not take effect until the IDE is restarted.

Show Help using

Specifies how Help is displayed. Choose External Help Viewer to display topics in an external floating window. Choose Integrated Help Viewer to display Help topics in a Web browser window docked inside the IDE.

Search results per page

Specifies the number of topics that are displayed on a single search results page.

Show topic abstracts

Specifies whether an abstract for each topic is shown in search results.

Reuse topic window

When selected, specifies that Help topics display in the same window so that you can navigate among topics by using the Back and Forward buttons. When unselected, specifies that a new window is opened for each topic.

Highlight search terms

Specifies whether search strings are highlighted within search results topics for local Help.

Include partial matches in local search results

When selected, specifies that search results include topics that have any one of the words in the search string. Search results do not have to include all the words in the search string.

When unselected, specifies that search results include only topics that contain all the words in the search string.

Online topic language

Specifies the language in which to search and to display results, for online Help sources only.

The available languages depend on the Help source. For example, MSDN Online supports multiple languages, but some Codezone Community sites might not support any language other than English.


If you have never been connected to the Internet when Visual Studio was being used, only one option appears: <Download Languages>. Select this option and press DOWN ARROW to download a list of available languages. An Internet connection is required. For more information, see Help Sources: Local Help and Online Help.

Also show English topics

Specifies that if the search results include information in English, these results are also displayed.

See Also