RoboHelp 2017 - Favorites (in new Indigo layout)

Users can now save Favorites. When a topic is opened they can add the topic by clicking the icon with the plus sign. The other icon allows the user to see all their favorites and select from the list. UK authors can change the spelling in the LNG file.

So what happens when the help gets updated? Do the favorites survive or get trashed? Here's what I was told.

HTML5 Local Storage is used rather than cookies (except as below). The favorites are stored on the user's device. They will survive reboots and browser crashes and will only be deleted if the user decides to wipe the local cache. Author updates don’t influence the favorites cache.

Favorites work by saving the location of topics.

  • If the URL of the whole help changes, the HTML5 Local Storage will change within the browser and favorites will be lost.
  • Renaming topics (filenames) will break the link as the script relies on the topic filenames.
  • The method has no built in feature to check for deleted/moved/renamed topics. (It is almost impossible to check whether topics still exist in the background. The browser would pick that behaviour up as unwanted and may block the script. So renamed topics will have to be removed from the favorites list by the user.)

HTML5 is supported on:

  • Android devices using the default browser. (Chrome Lite)
  • iOS and MacOS devices using Apple Safari
  • Firefox 4+
  • Chrome 9+
  • IE 9+ (8 supports HTML5 but the responsive layouts will have other issues with 8). Note that Microsoft only support IE11 and above generally.

Cookies are used on lower versions or if the help is stored locally and IE is used to view.

 

Favorites are not included in the new Ocean layout.

The script that builds the Favorites functionality into these layouts is part of the RoboHelp Library that ships with RoboHelp 2017. Advanced users could customise other layouts but beware, I do mean advanced users with development skills.