RoboHelp 8 - Master Pages

What are Master Pages?

If you have used RoboHelp before, they were previously known as Templates. It is not just a change of name as new options have been added but because the main functionality has been in RoboHelp for a long time, I am treating Master Pages as a changed feature.

You can use Master Pages to create new topics and you can apply them to existing topics, albeit with a difference in how things work. More about that later.

Think of them as a default starter for a topic.

What can you put in a Master Page?

  • Copyright information
  • Corporate logos
  • Legal notices
  • Headers and footers
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Mini TOCs
  • Default body content

You can also attach a style sheet (CSS) to the template.

How do I create a Master Page?

Start by clicking File > New > Master page.

Either use the Design Editor to create the page or paste content from an existing topic.

You can now:

  • Create a new topic and select the required Master Page when the new topic dialog is displayed.
  • Attach the Master Page to an existing topic.

What do I need to know about Master Pages?

You will work much more easily with Master Pages if you keep the following in mind:

Creating new topics versus attaching to an existing topic

When you link a master page to an existing topic, anything that is in the body section of the master page will not appear in the body of the topic. That stands to reason as it would replace the existing content, the fact that you are attaching the master page to an existing topic means you want to use the content that was there and would not want it replaced.

Headers and footers

If your users print the topic, the header and footer will be included. However, if you generate printed documentation, the header and footer will not be included.

A lot of people would like to see that included as an option. If you are one of them, create a feature request on Adobe's website.

The more people who request a feature, the more likely it is to be actioned. Click here.

Breadcrumbs and Mini TOCs

These are inserted using placeholders. By using more than one master page, you can have some pages with, for example, the breadcrumbs top left and others with the breadcrumbs top right.

The placeholders can inserted in the header, the footer or the body of the master page.