Common Desktop Environment: Help System Author's and Programmer's Guide

Providing Help on Help

Help on help tells users how to use the Help System. Specifically, it describes such tasks as using hyperlinks, navigating topics, using the index, and printing help topics. Normally, help on help is supplied as an individual help volume named Help4Help.

The Help4Help volume and its source files are included in the Developer's Toolkit. You can use the default volume "as is," or modify it for your application's design.

For Application Help

If you are writing application-specific help, there are two ways to ensure that your application has help on help for its own help dialogs:

For Standalone Help

If you are writing standalone help, you are probably relying on the Helpview program already being installed and ready to use. If this is the case, you don't have to worry about help on help because Helpview accesses the standard Help4Help volume by default.

How Help on Help Is Found

Each application that uses the Help System (including Helpview) has a helpOnHelpVolume resource that identifies a help volume to be accessed for help on help topics. For Helpview, this resource is set as follows:

DtHelpview*helpOnHelpVolume:  Help4Help

If you provide your own help on help volume, be sure to give it a unique name so it doesn't conflict with another help on help volume that may be installed on the system.