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Problems Running a chm File in Rectangle

Questions about using NeoBook's scripting language

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Problems Running a chm File in Rectangle

Postby Horst Helfen » Tue Jun 06, 2006 3:59 am

Hello,

I have created an application where the main information displays in a chm file which runs in a rectangle in NeoBook.
The company I'm developing this application for now tells me that at some at their customers (and on one machine in their own IT-section) it doesn't run correctly. That means the application starts, draws the surrounding screen and the empty rectangle but no chm content appears inside. The OS are either Windows NT or Windows XP.

Did you ever hear of such and maybe have a hint what could cause this behaviour? I can't reproduce this in my environment and hence don't know where to start to fix the problem.

Thanks

Horst Helfen
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Postby Gaev » Tue Jun 06, 2006 4:44 am

Horst:

On these offending machines, you might try and see if your .chm file can be run natively ... without any errors/warnings popping up ... I don't know about the NT environment, but with XP SP2, MicroSoft has made the default security (especially for the local/LAN environemnts) a bit too strict ... any html (and .chm is compiled html) that deploys ActiveX components (and I am finding out how many things in IE are implemented by MS via ActiveX components) pops up warnings ... requiring user to respond (more than once) before the page can be viewed ... often, when the same stuff is run in some sort of embedded manner, instead of popup warnings, the ActiveX/XP process just refuses to service the requests.

Examples of security issues I have encountered are ...

- swf files I created on the same machine ... are considered suspect when I try and run them from my local disk using an html document I also created
- MicroSoft's (non W3C standard) extensions to style properties (like the ones that display text at 90 degree angle)

... If this is indeed the problem on the offending machines, I found this workaround on the Macromedia website that seems to "avoid asking the user to loosen his/her security settings" ... insert this (comment) as the VERY FIRST LINE in any HTML document source you use ...
Code: Select all
<!-- saved from url=(0013)about:internet -->
... seems to work for me in the above situations.
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Postby Horst Helfen » Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:26 am

Gaev,

the chm files run on those machines if the user starts them directly - but not in the rectangle where they should!

Horst Helfen
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Postby Gaev » Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:38 am

Horst:

OK, there goes that theory :(

Can you provide the exact command deployed in your pub i.e.

RunInRectangle "object name" "command" "parameters" "options" "subroutine" "variable"

... and the size of the Rectangle ?

Also, you might want to try and see if another .chm (with just a "Hello World" text in it can be viewed properly or not.
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Postby Horst Helfen » Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:56 am

Gaev,

MicroSoft has made the default security (especially for the local/LAN environemnts) a bit too strict ...


Concerning chm files, the security settings can prohibit running them across networks (intranet or internet), but locally they should run.

you might want to try and see if another .chm (with just a "Hello World" text in it can be viewed properly or not.


The problem is that on my Computer (and most of my customers) everything works, so it makes no sense to test with an other chm.

As I am in a remote office today I don't have the exact command used in my pub at hand. I will provide this tonight when I'm back home.
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Postby Gaev » Tue Jun 06, 2006 7:00 am

Horst:

I have not had any personal experience (security issues) with running .chm files ... however, with .swf files and .htm files that deploy ActiveX components ... the DEFAULT local/LANsettings that come with a new install are IMO restrictive ... I can make them less restrictive on my own machine ... but requiring all users of such applications to do so would not be "well accepted" ... hence the work around html comment.
The problem is that on my Computer (and most of my customers) everything works, so it makes no sense to test with an other chm.
... I meant "on the offending machines" ... if their owners are going to co-operate in the "trial and error type of investigation".
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Postby Neosoft Support » Tue Jun 06, 2006 10:56 am

I can't think of any reason why a chm file wouldn't work with the RunInRectangle action. It could have something to do with the method you're using to launch the file or maybe it has something to do with the speicific version of Micrososoft's help viewer.

I assume that your code looks something like this:

Code: Select all
RunInRectangle "Rectangle6" "HH.exe" "[#34][PubDir]\sample.chm[#34]" "" "" "[AppId]"


If you can tell us what's different about the PCs that don't work (windows version, service pack, etc.), we can try to reproduce that configuration here.
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Postby Horst Helfen » Tue Jun 06, 2006 12:16 pm

My command is

RunInRectangle "window_chm1" "hh.exe" "[PubDir]BR-Praxis 2006.chm" "HideMenu+HideSizeBox" "" "[chm_id]"


Compared with your example I recognize that you have used additional double quotes ([#34]) around the file name. Maybe that does the trick?

I'll try changing that and ask my customer if it would run now.

Horst
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Postby Gaev » Tue Jun 06, 2006 1:01 pm

Horst:
RunInRectangle "window_chm1" "hh.exe" "[PubDir]BR-Praxis 2006.chm" "HideMenu+HideSizeBox" "" "[chm_id]"
.. just to be safe, you might also do a ...
Code: Select all
SetVar "[chmFileName]" "![#34][PubDir]BR-Praxis 2006.chm[#34]"
... first, and then use the variable in the RunInRectangle command.
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Postby Horst Helfen » Wed Jun 07, 2006 10:36 am

The cause of the missing run in rectangle gets more and more mysterious. Not only that the chm file which should run in the rectangle doesn't appear, but the background of the screen shines through and if the user moves the application that background stays in the rectangle and is moved with the application.

Look at the screenshot:
Image

The customer who sent me the screenshot has 4 identically equipped computers (hardware and software). On three of them the application runs without problems, the 4th one shows this strange behaviour.

How can that be?
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Postby Neosoft Support » Wed Jun 07, 2006 2:04 pm

The customer who sent me the screenshot has 4 identically equipped computers (hardware and software). On three of them the application runs without problems, the 4th one shows this strange behaviour.


They can't be completely identical, otherwise there would be no problem.

There has to be something different about the 4th computer - memory, Windows updates, registry settings, location of the chm file, etc.

Most likely it has something to do with the HTML help viewer. You might see if you can download and install the latest version of the HTML Help Installation and Update package (Hhupd.exe) from Microsoft. Maybe the computer that's not working is using an older version.

*UPDATE: Microsoft says: "Windows XP, 2000, ME, and 98 users should not run Hhupd.exe. Any urgent updates will be handled by means of service packs or Windows Update." So it appears that help must be updated through Windows Update.

Microsoft also has an FAQ about HTML help at:

http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/htmlhelp/html/hwHTMLHelpFrequentlyAskedQuestions.asp
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Postby Neosoft Support » Wed Jun 07, 2006 2:26 pm

If it's a bug in HH.exe, and they do exist, you might take a look at a program called KeyHH.exe. The author's description of the software:

"KeyHH is a program that augments HTML Help by providing a replacement for HH.EXE that allows you to make multiple calls which are displayed in a single window."

and web site:

http://www.keyworks.net/
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Postby Horst Helfen » Wed Jun 07, 2006 9:42 pm

I know the problems concerning HTML Help (CHM). But in my case the chm file runs without problems if you start it directly. The problem arises when it is called to run in rectangle in my NeoBook publication.
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Postby Neosoft Support » Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:14 am

The problem arises when it is called to run in rectangle in my NeoBook publication.


Windows applications are not designed to run inside a rectangle. NeoBook requires at least minimal cooperation of the application in order for it to work. Unfortunately, if the app won't cooperate, there is probably nothing NeoBook can do to force it to run inside a rectangle.

The only reason I can think of for hh.exe to work on one system and not another is that something is different about the version of hh.exe. Try looking at the properties of the hh.exe file in the Windows folder and see what the version number is. Do this for several PCs - ones that work and ones that don't. Do the same for hhctrl.ocx in the System32 folder. Knowing the version numbers may shed some light on the problem.
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