Sandcastle May 2008 Release (Version 2.4.10520)

Rating:        Based on 41 ratings
Reviewed:  29 reviews
Downloads: 101260
Released: May 29, 2008
Updated: Jun 24, 2010 by DarrenParker
Dev status: Alpha Help Icon

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Source Code Sandcastle.msi
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Source Code
source code, 722K, uploaded Jul 2, 2008 - 10163 downloads

Release Notes

What's new in this version:
1. Sandcastle tools that will used for shipping Orcas SP1 RTM content.
2. Bug Fixes

Issues fixed in this version (Reported by Customers):
1. Sandcastle - scbuild is unable to handle dependencies in other directories
2. Sandcastle must properly escape VB keywords with square brackets
3. Sandcastle: <see> within <c> not shown
4. Sandcastle: A NullReferenceException threw by MRefBuilder.exe
5. Sandcastle: Add the FixScriptSharp transform to scbuild
6. Sandcastle: An Error of Transform (vs2005)
7. Sandcastle: Bug when doing a build that includes privates (/internal+) results in the non-nested class being ripped and the nested class being left
8. Sandcastle: BuildAssembler.exe raise an error when a root project node is included in the reflection.xml
9. Sandcastle: Change 2005 to 2008 in copyright info (prototype style)
10. Sandcastle: ChmBuilder /config switch
11. Sandcastle: chmbuilder drops a css file when handling <title />
12. Sandcastle: ChmBuilder.exe should create the Output Directory if it is not exist
13. Sandcastle: Conceptual Help: A better media art links
14. Sandcastle: Generic parameter is missed in Toc and Header Title of Generic Type
15. Sandcastle: inline seealso tag not working
16. Sandcastle: Js error raised when printing chm topics (prototype and vsorcas styles)
17. Sandcastle: make changes to build scripts to include environment variable ProgramFiles(x86) on 64 bits machine
18. Sandcastle: make changes to build scripts to include environment variable ProgramFiles(x86) on 64 bits machine
19. Sandcastle: MRefBuilder Generates Incorrect Member Signatures
20. Sandcastle: MRefBuilder ignores attributes on property getter/setter methods
21. Sandcastle: MRefBuilder namespace ripping feature bug
22. Sandcastle: need line break in C# Systax section (vs2005)
23. Sandcastle: Need to replace LowerCaseIdentifier method with CreateCamelCaseName
24. Sandcastle: Presentation issue list-tag as child of param-tag
25. Sandcastle: Presentation metadata transform bug - generates bogus type names
26. Sandcastle: Presentation Style Issues
27. Sandcastle: Public events are documented as protected in certain C++ classes
28. Sandcastle: Script# Presentation Style Issues
29. Sandcastle: seealso tags within an overloads tag not listed
30. Sandcastle: Support <inheritdoc/> tag
31. Sandcastle: The MSDN URLs generated by ResolveReferenceLinks2 are incorrect
32. Sandcastle: The root node is missing in manifest file

Reviews for this release

OK so the documentation isnt so good however, if you use this product in conjunction with the Sandcastle Help File Builder GUI; then everything is a breeze. Its nice that MS has shared one of its core internal products with the community (yes this is the same software that MS uses to compile its API documetnation). Some better documentation would be a bonus!
by modao on Apr 11, 2010 at 12:10 PM
Good, but it´s poor documented. I´m using with docproject, with integrate with VS2008. Anyhow, this is the way guys. Keep going . Good job.
by eschuch on Apr 8, 2010 at 4:56 PM
One you get the tool working it does a great job but the documentation is minimal. Is the irony of a documentation tool with no documentation lost on everyone but me?
by AdeMiller on Mar 15, 2010 at 12:42 PM
does not seem to work at all. i guess i will try to build it from source next. of course, it could be "user error..." i need to use only the native shell commands, no gui or powershell. so my constraints may limit my results.
by RobH_tes on Mar 11, 2010 at 10:43 PM
very useful
by cnhzlt on Feb 25, 2010 at 6:53 AM
I found out that if you are trying to determine how to use SandCastle, download DocProject too. It utilizes SandCastle and provides a user interface and a Visual Studio Project type template. Sandcastle alone does not. You then Add a new project (DocProject) to your solution and can generate .HXS (using help compiler 2.0) or .CHM (using help 1.1). HTH, Nikos
by NYannios on Jan 2, 2010 at 3:14 PM
It might be good, but does not work with 2008 to say mothing about 2010. Gui even does not start,
by elbertlev on Dec 3, 2009 at 11:27 PM
Immediately uninstalled after install. If it's not obvious how to use this, you've lost me as a user.
by rgerard on Dec 1, 2009 at 9:47 PM
5 stars for the product, excellent job! 2 stars for documentation and average user oriented tools.
by RomanKuzmin on Nov 18, 2009 at 6:18 PM
No documentation about using Sandcastle here nor in the installed files. Somewhat good introduction to Sandcastle is in DocProject for Sandcastle but it would be nice to see something about this project here.
by izsak on Nov 17, 2009 at 10:05 AM
EPIC FAIL -- How do you use this? Where is the documentation? Why isn't the documentation for this tool built using the tool (dogfooding)?
by AdrenalineWerks on Nov 12, 2009 at 4:24 PM
This tool is a must for .Net developers along with a companion product such as DocProject for easier Visual Studio integration. Documentation should be forward-push, not a task relegated to the end of the project when maybe there will be some spare time (but probably not). Instead, create documentation while you code, then let Sandcastle and DocProject do the heavy lifting.
by NameOfTheDragon on Aug 24, 2009 at 4:14 PM
It's really a good idea and an excellent product. I would like to introduce it to my friends :)
by awachen on Jul 31, 2009 at 12:58 PM
Sandcastle is an excellent tool that I use on a regular basis to generate help documentation. To set it you need help file builder at
by TATWORTH on Jul 27, 2009 at 3:55 PM
This is a great product. Of course, being command line-based you need to have some technical skills to use it properly (for example using MSBuild in Visual Studio). I can't wait for it to be fully integrated to the development environment (hopefully it will happen, eventually).
by SDolha on Jul 7, 2009 at 5:33 PM
Although the product does a good job, documentation on how to use it is lacking.
by mgbrown on Jul 6, 2009 at 2:46 PM
This is the 2nd time I've tried sandcastle. Obviously I am missing something. The learning curve required for this is ludicrous! It should be as simple as: here is the code with comments, generate me the documentation. Where is the quick start on how to do that???
by cmroanirgo on Jun 23, 2009 at 1:06 AM
Could not get it to work, and no documentation.
by babairo on Jun 19, 2009 at 5:25 PM
Works fine for me
by markhor on Apr 9, 2009 at 8:48 AM
Excellent feature set and good documentation. Integration to VS major plus. Make sure you get the essential GUI. Only drawback: reeeeaaaaally slow... Brand new quad-core w/ RAID-0 disk setup still crawls, can't see why since CPU usage and disk access is low.
by i96danma on Apr 3, 2009 at 1:36 PM
Really useful, very handy. Get the Sandcaste HelpFile Builder, too.
by Cheeso on Apr 1, 2009 at 11:55 PM
It's one of Microsoft's really useful products.
by gerald_jk on Mar 6, 2009 at 12:40 PM
Please do something about the memory (ab)use of BuildAssembler. For my 70k-Lines-Project it uses 750Mb of mem on a recent 4GB-machine and is terrible slow due to thrashing. The docu-build (using the sandcastle help file builder) needs 12 minutes - the rest of the build-process needs ca.30 sec (including building the install set.)
by Gulli8 on Mar 4, 2009 at 9:20 PM
Just works and does something incredibly useful since the raw XML output of the compiler doesn't help much. I do recommend using Sandcastle Help File Builder though. And to danpeay: Don't give a documentation compiler one star because it doesn't edit chm files (just to be clear: it's not supposed to).
by dcdietrich on Feb 15, 2009 at 12:03 PM
This project is very useful. We've used it to create documentation for several projects in Patterns & Practices, such as Composite Application Library (Prism) and Web Client Software Factory. There is still some room for improvement in flexibility and styles. Keep up the good work.
by juliandominguez on Feb 11, 2009 at 12:50 PM
The rampup is steep, so get SandCastle Help File Builder. This is a very promising framework. Once integrated in VS via SHFB it will become a defacto standard.
by dblock on Dec 15, 2008 at 11:41 AM
I just want to change a few things in a chm file. I can't figured out how this will help me.
by danpeay on Oct 31, 2008 at 9:19 PM
This is insanely complex for what's needed, converting XML into HTML.
by Grauenwolf on Oct 15, 2008 at 5:45 AM
Good stuff but you really need to merge the changes from the Sandcastle Styles project into the main Sandcastle release to fix the bugs and add the new features from it.
by Slartibartfast on Aug 29, 2008 at 5:44 AM