Component Help Installer

   
Release: 3.0.0
Date: 10 May 2010
O/S: Any Windows NT based OS

Mothballed

Development of Component Help Installer is frozen.

This program works with Delphi versions 3 to 7 to help in installing OpenHelp compatible WinHelp files. Since WinHelp is no longer supported by Windows, and since Delphi 7 is now an old compiler, it has been decided not to develop CHI any further.

If you want to take over development, please do so. The source code of v3, along with a dump of a Subversion repository containing the code, is available from the Download tab.

There is no support available for CHI. Please do not report any bugs.

Overview

Component Help Installer (CHI) installs Delphi-compatible help files into Delphi's OpenHelp system in such a way that the help files are integrated with Delphi. Context sensitive help for components, classes and routines installed by CHI is accessible from the Delphi code editor, form editor and property inspector. CHI works with Delphi versions 3 to 7.

CHI comes in two flavours:

  1. A stand-alone Windows application (CHI.exe). This detects which versions of Delphi are installed on the system and allows any available version to be chosen from the main interface.
  2. A command line application (CHInst.exe) is provided mainly to enable installation of help files from batch files. The program can also be called from install programs. It provides all the functionality of the GUI based application through a command line interface. The CHI help file provides an example of using the command line application.

When used with Delphi 6 and 7 CHI will merge any .als a-keyword files found in the same directory as the help file into Delphi's master .als file. This feature works only with Delphi 6 and 7, since .als files are not supported in earlier versions of Delphi.

WinHelp and Windows Vista and later
The WinHelp program required to display help for Delphi 3-7 is not included with Windows Vista and later OSs by default but must be downloaded and installed separately. See Microsoft Knowledge Base article KB917607 for details.

How it works

If you are interested in what goes on behind the scenes in CHI the please see my article "How to integrate help files into the Delphi 3-7 IDE".

Download

All downloads are hosted on GoogleDrive.

You can download a zip file containing the executable program as chi-exe.zip. This zip file includes a standard Windows installer which should be extracted from the zip file and run. The installer needs administrator privileges to run and will ask permission on Windows Vista and later.

The source code is also available in two forms:

  1. The source code of the final version of CHI is available as chi-src.zip. To use the source you should create a new folder to hold it and then unzip the file, preserving the directory structure.
  2. A dump of a Subversion repository that stores the source code of CHI going back to v2.2.1 along with all changes up to and including release 3.0.0. This is aimed at anyone wanting to take over development of the program. The dump is provide in a zip file: chi-svndump.zip.

    To use the repository first extract chi-svndump from the zip file, then import it into a clean Subversion repository. See the Subversion documentation for details of how to do this.

    The repository contains branches off the tags branch that contain the exact source of releases 2.2.1 and 3.0.0. The trunk branch contains the current development tree, which as supplied is the same as the v3.0.0 tags branch. You should use trunk to make any changes. The tags branches should be left unchanged. Snapshots of any new releases should be added there.

These files can no longer be downloaded from DelphiDabbler.com. You must get them from Google Drive.

Some DelphiDabbler library projects are required to build CHI from source. They are:

Download link Description
Version Information Component
Source code for the version information component. This component must be installed into the Delphi IDE
This link leads to a page on SourceForge. There will be more than one version available. Please download the latest.
System Information Unit
Source code for the system information unit. This may be installed in a package or linked directly into the program.
This link leads to a page on SourceForge. There will be more than one version available. Please download the latest.
Message Dialogue Components
Source code for the message dialogue components. The components must be installed into the Delphi IDE
This link leads to a page on SourceForge. There will be more than one version available. Please download the latest.
Drop Files Components
Source code for the drop files components. The components must be installed in the Dephi IDE.
This link leads to a page on SourceForge. There will be more than one version available. Please download the latest.
Shell Folders Unit
Source code for the shell folders unit. This unit contains a component that must be be installed in the Dephi IDE.
This link leads to a page on SourceForge. There will be more than one version available. Please download the latest.
About Box Component
Source code for the about box component. This component must be installed into the Delphi IDE.
This link leads to a page on SourceForge. There will be more than one version available. Please download the latest.

License

CHI is open source.

Most of the source code is released under the Mozilla Public License v1.1, a copy of which is included in the source code downloads.

The executable version of CHI has its own license. This can be viewed on GoogleDrive.

Change Log

A change log is provided in the file Docs/ChangeLog.txt that is included in the source code download.