Help+Manual News

HelpXplain v1.5 Beta (Release Candidate)

HelpXplain v1.5 is coming! We have implemented custom HTML meta tags for easier social-media integration, added new arrange functions for objects and fixed a technical issue with audio files sometimes not playing on iOS Safari. Plus, the update supports 13 new languages for the DeepL translation tool, including Bulgarian,  Czech, Danish, Greek, Estonian, Finnish, Hungarian, Lithuanian, Latvian, Romanian, Slovak, Slovenian and Swedish.

You can download the release candidate of HelpXplain 1.5 from this link:

https://www.helpandmanual.com/download/helpxplain-setup-v150.exe

 

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Help+Manual 8.3.1 Maintenance Update

We are glad to announce the release of Help+Manual 8.3.1. To find out if this update is included in your maintenance plan, please start Help+Manual and click the “Updates” icon in the welcome screen.

Updates

 

Changes in v8.3.1

This update corrects several minor issues, most of them UI related.

  • PDF Export: in the manual designer, the Tables section had a “new page” break option only. All Table sections now support “new odd page” and “new even page” as well.
  • PDF Export: some Unicode characters were not recognized as “unprintable” (which means that these characters are automatically exported as glyphs). Depending on the font (e.g. Calibri), some characters from the upper Unicode range were exported as text though and ended up being displayed as question marks in the PDF.
  • Robohelp Import: Help+Manual now supports multiple Robohelp-TOCs and multiple keyword files.
  • XML Code: the LastEditedBy attribute in topic files was empty if the Windows user name was too long.
  • DeepL Translation Plugin: the <list> and <li> tags were defined as DeepL-non-splitting-tags. This may have caused translation errors with lists.
  • Workspaces: when opening a workspace with multiple projects, the projects no longer open with a fully expanded TOC, but are just expanded on project level. You can rearrange the order of multiple projects within a workspace by drag & drop and the Save All button (available on the quick-access toolbar at the top of the main window) now saves the workspace configuration as well, if it has changed.
  • Equations: if the font color for an equation was set to “auto”, it was converted to black (#000000). Now, the “auto” font color is preserved and picks up the font color of the current text style.
  • Insert Picture Gallery: if an image in the picture gallery was also included in the baggage list of the project, Help+Manual unnecessarily asked to add the search path every time.
  • Impict (.ipp) Images: we added a global option in the Program Options dialog to treat IPP images as transparent by default. This will re-render IPP images against a transparent background during the export and save them as transparent PNGs.
  • Publishing Tasks Editor: optical glitches fixed when scrolling through very long task lists, duplicate task names are now tested for and not permitted.
  • ePUB Export: the HTML page templates for ePUB received a “lang” attribute by default.
  • Webhelp full-text search: we fixed an XSS vulnerability in the “zoom_search.js” script. This vulnerability occurred when date range search was enabled. Which wasn’t an issue in Help+Manual directly, but was a potential issue when using the full version of the Zoom search engine with Help+Manual.
  • History foward/backward: this is the least obvious change but perhaps the best addition in this update – when using the back/next buttons to page through topics in your project you had just accessed, Help+Manual saves the text editor position with the history. In other words: when you go back to the topic you just came from, it remembers the vertical scroll position.

Download

Help+Manual 8.3.1 is available from our download page:

https://www.helpandmanual.com/downloads.html

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Premium Pack 4.1.0 Maintenance Update

We have just updated Premium Pack 4 to version 4.1.0. This update introduces a large number of both minor and major improvements. The most extensive change is an overhaul of the embedded and field level help system for both regular WebHelp and WordPress sites to support multiple WebHelp collections and WebHelp collections on remote servers.

How to get the Premium Pack update

You can download and install the updated version with the download link and personal installation password you received when you purchased. If you no longer have these details please contact support@ec-software.com and we will help you out. See the Premium Pack product page for more details on Premium Pack 4 and visit our online store to purchase if you do not yet have it.

Code certificate updated

The code signing certificate used for the Premium Pack installer and Toolbox utility has just been updated. Because of this you may see a dialog asking you to confirm that you want to trust the publisher before installing. This is normal with “fresh” certificates until they have re-established their trust level.

Remote and multiple domains in embedded & field-level help and WordPress:

It is now possible to use embedded and field-level help from multiple WebHelp documentation systems on the same web page. In addition to this you can also embed WebHelp hosted on other web servers, not only on the same server as the HTML pages on which you are embedding and displaying the help. These new features are supported both in regular WebHelp and in the WordPress plugin.

See the updated Embedded and Field-Level Help chapter for full details.

V3 and V4 WebHelp Skins

  • Print Topic functionality: Improvement of topic printing in local no web server mode, both with the hamburger menu function and directly via the browser’s own print function.
  • Printing only first page: In some browsers only the first page of multi-page topics would be printed.
  • Print breadcrumbs: There is now an option to include the breadcrumb trail above the topic title when the user prints topics.
  • Inline toggle icons: Inline text toggles with icons are now also supported in these skins.
  • TOC autohide in mobile mode: When the TOC is folded over the topic content on mobile devices it now automatically slides out of view when a topic is selected. This new option is configurable.
  • Buttons as popup links: These are now supported.
  • Magazine skins: Calling context IDs via the URL didn’t work in the magazine skins because of a small internal error.
  • Magazine skins: TOC width was sometimes too narrow when opening/closing.
  • Flexible skins: The icon for page header open/close in the divider between the TOC and topic panes was hidden on the first load when the help was embedded.
  • Modern Standard skins:
    These skins have been generally overhauled and tidied up for better appearance and easier editing.

    • Maximum width setting: These skins now also have a HELP_MAXWIDTH setting for limiting the width of the help window in large browser windows.
    • iPad and iPhone behavior: The TOC pane could be narrower than the tabs above it on first access on some iPhone and iPad devices.
    • Swipe to change TOC pane width: Did not work on older iPad Mini devices.
    • General layout: A large number of minor tweaks and improvements to the layout in these skins.

V3 eWriter Skins

  • Title bar display in eViewer: You can now configure the title bar display in eViewer in the same way as in WebHelp. Options: Current topic title, current project name, current project name and current topic title.
    Print breadcrumbs: There is now an option to include the breadcrumb trail above the topic title when the user prints topics.
  • Inline toggle icons: Inline text toggles with icons are now also supported in these skins.
  • Buttons as popup links: These are now supported.

Toolbox Utility

  • Variables without names and unregistered baggage files: Toolbox now checks for the existence of variables without names and unregistered files in the baggage section and can correct this. (This can sometimes happen when the XML of your project file is generated programmatically or edited manually.)
  • Baggage files incorrectly shown as edited: Sometimes baggage file listings would be highlighted red as edited when this was not the case.
  • RTF build option removed: This option is no longer relevant in Help+Manual 7 and 8, which now generate Word DOCX by default.
  • Context and Edit menu updating: Sometimes the right-click context menu and Edit menu for Baggage files would not update correctly after adding a Baggage file to the current skin or project.
  • Baggage file handling: General handling of Baggage files improved, including better distinction of the differences between the processing of Baggage files in projects and skins when writing back to the project.

Help update

  • The Premium Pack help has been updated and extended with more detailed information for version 4.

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Help+Manual 8.3 Released – Improved Asian Font Handling

We are glad to announce the release of Help+Manual 8.3. If you are using version 8 already, this update is included in your maintenance plan. Just download the setup and run it to update your current installation.

Changes and Additions in v8.3

Asian Font Names

This update significantly improves handling of Asian fonts. If you do not translate your documentation into Asian languages, you might never notice. Asian fonts have dual font names in Windows: their native name and an English equivalent. For instance, your Windows may support the font Microsoft YaHei, which is known to be a Chinese font. On a Chinese Windows, however, there is no Microsoft YaHei anywhere, you have 微软雅黑 instead, which means the same, just in Chinese. As long as the project stays on an English computer (or Chinese, for that matter), everything is fine. Problems may arise when the project is being edited on one PC and published on another, because despite it’s the very same font, the name strings don’t match. Read the rest of this entry »

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eWriter Viewer for Delphi

Delphi / RAD Studio

This is an implementation of the eWriter help format as a replacement for HTML Help (.chm) files in Delphi applications.

EWriter eBooks are the modern alternative to the obsolete CHM format for local application help. They offer full support for context-sensitive help and file links. They combine the benefits of CHM and WebHelp and eliminate the disadvantages of both. Read the rest of this entry »

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eWriter Viewer Update

We have updated the eWriter viewer application to version 2.5.0. The eWriter output format is supported by Help+Manual as well as HelpXplain.

Version 2.5 of the viewer does not have any functional changes, but fixes a problem with a Windows 10 system-wide option, that is rarely active but could be active on your end user’s computers. This option is in Region Settings and is called

Beta: Use Unicode UTF-8 for worldwide languages support

If this option was activate on a Windows 10 computer, the eWriter viewer did not work correctly. Content was incorrectly formatted and images were mostly missing. Viewer version 2.5 fixes this problem.

The update is available for download from our website (link after the picture) and soon in the Windows 10 store. Read the rest of this entry »

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Black Friday Offer: 30% Off for all New Purchases and Upgrades

Cyber Monday Promotion

We are pleased to announce our Black Friday and Cyber Monday offers for this year: 30% discount on any of our products between Friday November 27th and Monday November 30th.

This promotion applies to:

 

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HelpXplain 1.4 Released

As part of our commitment to continuous improvement, we’ve released an updated version of HelpXplain. If your maintenance plan for HelpXplain includes the release date (Oct 29, 2020), this is a free update. The quickest way to find out, is to start HelpXplain and click Help > Check for Update.

HelpXplain 1.4

Version 1.4 comes with 2 new features important for social media sharing. It introduces a setting for custom meta tags. Some users have requested we should add additional social media meta tags (such as a Facebook App_Id). The new meta option enables this and a lot more.

HelpXplain Custom Meta Tags

The second new feature is in the Publish dialog: an option to mask the viewport of the Xplain. When an Xplain is embedded in another HTML page, the host page normally restricts the viewport so that the view matches the aspect ratio of the Xplain.

Social media sharing, however, often include direct backlinks to the Xplain HTML page directly. In this case, the Xplain runs in a new window or tab of the browser and the window size hardly ever reflects the aspect ratio of the presentation. As a result, some of the slides might become prematurely visible. The mask viewport option blacks out the browser window area which does not belong to the viewport.

HelpXplain mask Viewport

The difference between masked and unmasked viewport explained:

 

Other changes and bug fixes in version 1.4:

  • The Publish dialog has an option to specify the maximum image size. If you use a lot of high-resolution images, reducing the size will significantly reduce the loading time of the Xplain on the web.
  • HTML Editor: some glitches fixed, right-click menu implemented, shapes and callouts with text now automatically introduce a left and right margin.
  • Recent files list: extended right-click menu has “Clear all” option
  • Save translation file in .xliff format: the save function did not test for source-language compatibility, this has been added.
  • Slide option “Stop Autoplay” did not work, if the slide contained an exit animation.
  • Improvements in Powerpoint import
  • Preview for skin customization: optical glitches fixed

 

Download

This update is included in your maintenance plan! Please download the update and install it over your existing version.

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Help+Manual 8.2.1 Maintenance Update

We are glad to announce the release of Help+Manual 8.2.1. If you are using version 8 already, this update is included in your maintenance plan. Just download the setup and run it to update your current installation.

Changes and Additions in v8.2.1

WEBP Image Format

Help+Manual natively supports the WEBP image format. You can use WEBP as regular images or toggle images. When creating Webhelp, WEBP images are exported native. For all other output formats, Help+Manual converts WEBP to 32-bit PNG images, to ensure compatibility. Please be aware that WEBP images are yet not supported by all web browsers. If you use the WEBP format, these pictures might not be visible in Webhelp in older browsers. Read the rest of this entry »

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Help+Manual 8.2.0 Released

We are glad to announce the release of Help+Manual 8.2. If you are using version 8 already, this is update is included in your maintenance plan. Just download the setup and run it to update your current installation.

This update focuses on DeepL machine translation, PDF output and proxy servers for floating licenses. Read the rest of this entry »

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