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Help file formats - MSHA files v CHM files

Recently I was tasked with producing a help file from a C#/WPF/Crystal Reports application using Sandcastle. I have previously blogged about the problems in doing that and the change that is going into the next version of Sandcastle that allows the vagaries of Crystal (this missing BusinessObjects.Licensing.KeycodeDecoder) to be handled.

At http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/devdocs/thread/0b110502-f5bb-4c56-96a5-4347a2a7a68a/, I describe how I tried each of the formats. Two of the formats could not be built and the error messages were not exactly helpful as to the cause. These two formats turned out to be obsolete. The MSHA format worked but was not suitable for a standalone application, so that left me with the older CHM format. I therefore asked on that thread "will the HTML Help 1 (CHM) format continue to be supported for the foreseeable future?".

Rob Chandler, MVP in help systems, gave a very helpful answer, to the effect that there is not yet a replacement for the CHM format.

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