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General Category => General Discussion => Topic started by: Marc Pons on May 05, 2015, 07:22:15 PM

Title: Win32.CHM converted from Win32.HLP
Post by: Marc Pons on May 05, 2015, 07:22:15 PM
Since windows vista , hlp files are not natively shown , but win32.hlp was very helpful.
So i decide to investigate on converting it to CHM.
I've found a good solution on the net,
the original job was done by Mike Lobanovsky from Oxygen Basic forum,
missing just Quickinfo links to get access to the DLL data , OS info ...
I've used it for a while and modified it to make the QuickInfo working.

the result  is here : (  it is from my DropBox public file

The CSED_FB is already able to use it if you select the win32.chm on the editor options.

Title: Re: Win32.CHM converted from Win32.HLP
Post by: Mike Lobanovsky on May 07, 2015, 03:22:24 PM
Hi Marc,

Thanks a lot for restoring this functionality in the new file. Win32.hlp conversion was in fact an arduous job due to the sheer file size and missing structured contents tree that had to be recreated manually.

Those who are interested in a practical workflow suitable for exceptionally large .HLP files can find the description in my response to you on the OxygenBasic forum (


Title: Re: Win32.CHM converted from Win32.HLP
Post by: Steve Hutchesson on May 08, 2015, 07:39:21 AM

Compliments, I have just downloaded the zip file and the CHM looks good.
Title: Re: Win32.CHM converted from Win32.HLP
Post by: Laurence Jackson on May 10, 2015, 08:45:08 PM
Thank you Marc and Mike. One small aspect of strange behavior I haven`t seen before: When I open it from the Firefox download box I get the contents and index lists but no text. When I open it from Explorer all is normal.
Title: Re: Win32.CHM converted from Win32.HLP
Post by: Mike Lobanovsky on May 16, 2015, 11:20:52 AM
Hi Laurence,

The original .HLP file, as well as a few later recompilations done by Marc and me, contained a lot of dead (unreachable) data in the form of Quick Info popups to the topics, such as e.g. legacy DirectX and OpenGL, that weren't in fact included originally in that particular help file.

The final .CHM version downloadable from this thread on the FBSL forum ( is substantially smaller in size due to such dead data having been removed. The file is equipped with contents, index and full text search panes that should be usable without any problems. The file also comes in a zip archive to eliminate the need to specifically unblock it once downloaded.

Hope this will resolve your issues and thanks for taking interest in this submission.
Title: Re: Win32.CHM converted from Win32.HLP
Post by: Mike Lobanovsky on November 27, 2016, 09:41:38 AM
Hello everybody,

Just in case someone might have missed Laurence Jackson's presentation of his own recompilation of Win32.hlp on the PowerBASIC Peer Support Forums, here is the link ( to where it can be downloaded directly from Laurence's site:


The new file preserves the original look and feel of its prototype, features non-scrollable topic headers, and re-creates genuine Quick Info popups. A few content formatting issues have also been addressed.

What however really puts it aside from all prior recompilation attempts including my own is its inherent context sensitivity. Your preferred compiler's custom help system, if any, can use ShellExecute('Win32.chm::/FunctionName.htm')-style calls to pop up immediate help on FunctionName() if that arbitrary WinAPI function is selected (or otherwise pointed to) in your source code within your compiler editor or IDE.

Be sure to explicitly unblock the .CHM file once downloaded for your Windows Defender to allow you to use it.

Thanks Laurence for making the fruit of your meticulous work available to public at large!