The New Help 3

Oct 22, 2009 at 4:08 AM
Edited Oct 22, 2009 at 4:08 AM

Hello All,
Anyone used the new Help 3 we have been waiting for? What is your impression?
My impression - Oh! my God, MS finally did JavaDoc!

I love it though, no no, not that I am going to use it, but it will stop and end those
"I want to integrate my help into VS.NET help" developers, and keep it lean.

Interesting they did not WPFied this one.

Non-resizable left-pane? sounds like new design pattern from MS labs, just a step back on
my large workplace monitors.
Hmmm, I rightly rejected my boss's offer of 26 inches monitor. Now, I know why? :)

A little humble appeal to the Sandcastle Team, please make the styles/transforms for the new
Help 3 view as VS2010, so that the current VS2005 will stay, since there is a huge difference.

Best regards,

Oct 27, 2009 at 1:01 AM

Hi Paul,

We're just now in the process of testing out the conversion process from 2.x to 1.0 (lol - they're really going to mess people up) to be able to use our help in VS2010. I just posted a discussion on the SHFB site since we're encountering an error with <nobr> tags coming from the VS2005 style that are not valid in XHTML. Have you seen this or run across this? I'm hoping that there is a way to tweak a stylesheet while we wait for the VS2010 style from the Sandcastle Team.


Oct 27, 2009 at 4:49 PM
Edited Oct 27, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Hello Katy,
The nonstandard <nobr> tag is used in many places in the Sandcastle, but all are in the


so you can modify this file. Help 1.x does not require XHTML so if you are not creating webhelp,
do not need to worry about it.
The following page gives more information on the <nobr> tag, so you might find something useful there...

If the aim is to migrate to Help 3.x, then you will have to be XHTML compliant. However, if you are not
using customized style/transform then most likely the next Sandcastle will handle it automatically.

Best regards,

Oct 27, 2009 at 4:58 PM

Thanks Paul,

Yes, sorry I was unclear - we are in fact moving to Help 3.x (which unfortunately MS seems to be now calling MS Help Viewer 1.0 (?)). Thank you for pointing me to the htmlBody.xsl, that was exactly the file I was looking for. Hopefully, though, the next release of Sandcastle will be out soon with XHTML-compliant styles.

Thanks much!


Oct 27, 2009 at 6:15 PM

>>Katy: Yes, sorry I was unclear - we are in fact moving to Help 3.x
It is the new confusion we may  have to sort out many times in this forum. 
Well, I make life easy for myself, the version is 3, so it is MS Help 3.x, its viever is called
Microsoft Help Viewer, similar to the Help 2.x viewer called Microsoft Document Explorer.

There is no viewer anyway (at least not in this current release), it is just a lite web server (likely ASP.NET),
so that the search, and those runat="server" marked tags like the MrefMemberlistFilter, CodeSnippet
to work locally.

Best regards,

Nov 4, 2009 at 3:33 PM


You might check out the following site by Help MVP Rob Chandler.  He's made a tool available that takes Help2 content into MS Help Viewer 1.0 content.  He also has a section listing issues that he and I have encountered in trying to integrate content into MS Help Viewer 1.0.