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HelpSmith Giveaway
$199
EXPIRED

Giveaway of the day — HelpSmith

The Help Authoring Tool.
$199 EXPIRED
User rating: 278 (58%) 201 (42%) 122 comments

HelpSmith was available as a giveaway on February 7, 2008!

Today Giveaway of the Day
$17.95
free today
Earth 3D screensaver shows what the planet looks like from space

HelpSmith is an innovative help authoring tool allowing you to easily create CHM HTML Help files and Printed Manuals. The HelpSmith's ultimate toolkit with its visual approach takes the process of writing technical documentation for your software to a new quality level.

The powerful WYSIWYG ("What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get") text processor, support for Unicode, advanced approach to working with graphics, live spell checking, and many other useful features make HelpSmith the complete help authoring solution.

System Requirements:

Windows 2000/XP/2003/Vista; Penium II or higher processor; 128 MB RAM; 10 MB free disk space

Publisher:

HelpSmith.com

Homepage:

http://www.helpsmith.com/

File Size:

2.54 MB

Price:

$199

Comments on HelpSmith

122 comments
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#122

I am using this program only some hours. Program is usefull for editors who are not all working hours generating .chm files.
Maybe there are not includes som tricks, but for my purpose ist 100%.
Simply and efective sparing your time.

Reply   |   Comment by Bruno  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#121

hi,
the one on SourceForget is very old. you have to take the program from:
www.vizacc.com

optionally, you can register on forum, for beta updates.

thank you.

Reply   |   Comment by vizacc  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#120

I thank you for your offer to the worldwide community for Helpmaker. I am a believer in GOTD, and found their offer to be one of high value, since I maintain computers for all family members. Creating a "help file" complete with links makes my job easy. I found your entry at SourceForge and did a side-by-side comparison. I am not educated enough at the time to make any judgements, but I stand in awe at the talent and dedication it took for you to build such an excellent program.

Reply   |   Comment by Oldphart  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#119

When the offer is over, I would like to thank all of you again for so many comments and wishes on our HelpSmith product. Based on your messages, our team is already in the process of improving HelpSmith and making it more accessible to you. For those of you whose message requires a reply, I will response as soon as possible.

Please check our web site and the HelpSmith team's blog at http://blog.helpsmith.com for the latest news and releases.

Eugene Ivanov, http://www.HelpSmith.com

Reply   |   Comment by Eugene Ivanov  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#118

HelpSmith installed fine, I got the activation code after registration, entered this into the application as instructed and restarted HelpSmith as it said to do. After that it failed to load up. Killed the process, tried again, same result. Tried a few times but it still refused to load up. Uninstalled it. Won't bother with this bag of @~*&$ again.

Reply   |   Comment by carrot munching hippie  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#117

@116 Vizacc

Thanks your for your entry.

I see version 7.3 (Feb 9, 2007) is a major update and a complete rewrite.

Reply   |   Comment by ~ Robert ~  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#116

hi,
I'm the author of the Vizacc software:

1) HelpMaker does free PDF + WinHelp + WebHelp + RTF. This is offered at completely no charge. (The PDF don't have any watermarks too)

HelpMaker 8.0 does WikiHelp, which allows edits on site and compile to WinHelp/PDF as well.

2) HelpMaker also do Unicode/ Chinese, with DBCS. We have people using Korean, Japanese, Russian (with Ukrainian). We have true 100% unicode support, where you can enter Unicode anywhere.

If you have an issue with foreign languages, please use our bug-tracker to bug us.

3) Our web-based forum has more than 8,000 messages. Our bug-tracker, test-case, translations are public and you can see what is going on. There is nothing hidden.

4) HelpMaker offers a CHM-Register utility at no charge, which allows you to "register" your CHM file on network. You can also re-distribute this with your program at no-charge.

5) We also offer free Paint (alternative), ButtonMaker, ImageMaker, and many more tools at no charge.

6) There is no copy protection on HelpMaker, it is free as in "free beer".

This offer sounds too good to be true, I won't be surprised this post will be deleted :)

Have fun.

Reply   |   Comment by vizacc  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#115

Hi Eugene
I was successful in activating the s/w on my desktop & laptop.
I've been trying to activate it on my husband laptop for the past 2hrs without success.
After activating/run, when I click on Help/Get free licence, NOTHING happens.
I have tried sooo many times!!
I don't understand it, since for the other 2PCs the whole thing was super easy and only took 2 minutes to do.
What could be wrong?
Thank you

Reply   |   Comment by LeKanaw  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#114

Many people have registration problems with this software.
GAotD does a great job and I'm sure Eugene has good intentions aswell. Some people who were lucky enough to get the software registered seem to be happy.
But Eugene, you must agree that that many registrationproblems are a killer and a big waste of time.
Better make a new release that can be registered by everyone. Now it's a bit like a lottery. If you rerelease I'm sure GAotD will give you a new chance. In the mean time (since #82) I'm not amused at all

Reply   |   Comment by Funkster  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#113

You must install the program on the machine on which you registered.
It's hardware related key.So no use trying it on another standalone PC.

Reply   |   Comment by ~ Robert ~  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#112

Re:106

Hey, did it in the nick of time - the end of the 24-hour period is just minutes away. I had previously used just one computer to send for the key, and re-used the key for the second computer.

So now un-installed HelpSmith and sent a request for a key actually using the U205 (the second computer), and the key (a different one) came by e-mail and the prog installed perfectly. Had no idea that the key used might be tied to the computer that it was to be installed on.

Live and learn.

Good luck, and thanks.

Reply   |   Comment by Jim  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#111

Actually I'd say this is a bit of a poorly structured offer.

They aren't likely email mining, or at least not beyond just the occasional offer etc. What it is is lead mining, getting it out and hoping it turns into some sales.

But a large percentage of who might use it from here aren't likely to write enough help files to justify a $200 purchase. That's fine if you're doing this every day, or even once a week. For those who might use it a few times a year for some minor thing that still makes a few bucks, it's stupid.

Reply   |   Comment by Alan  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#110

Worked perfectly on one laptop, can't register to save my life on the other one. REALLY FRUSTRATING... I know from my professional life that this is a good piece of software and would be glad to have it for my own use here at home.

Same trouble as everyone else... license key played with every which way, pasted carefully, won't start after that. :-(

Reply   |   Comment by JuliaZ  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#109

I'm having a problem registering it myself. If I install it, it runs fine, but of course it wants to be registered. As long as I don't register it, I can start it and stop and without problem. However, as soon as I put my reg code in, it says to exit and restart it and then it won't start any more. I use a task manager-like program called Process Explorer and I can see that the program starts up and immediately exits.

As another test, I have Virtual PC (from Microsoft) with images of Win98 and WinXP. If I install it (and register it) in Win98, it works fine. Stays registered and I can start it and stop it without any problems. However, if I do it in my virtual Win XP, I get the same problem as my 'real' Win XP installation: Works fine as long as I don't register it, but won't start anymore after I register it.

In case you are wondering, my Virtual PC version of WinXP is a pure vanilla OS that I use for testing things (as is my virtual Win98).

Any thoughts about what's happening for me? I'd hate to have to keep starting up my Win98 virtual machine just to use a nice program like this.... :-(

Reply   |   Comment by FDWojo  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#108

Re: Comments #45 & #46:
Is the "HTML Help Workshop" linked to at Helpsmiths' Downloads page compatible with BOTH Windows XP and Vista?
I'm installing Helpsmith on both my XP and my Vista computers, but, before I also install the needed "HTML Help Workshop" I wanted to know if IT is also compatible with Vista!

Reply   |   Comment by Beaks  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#107

@42 Eugene:

Eugene,

On my second laptop, a Toshiba U205 with XP Pro, exactly the same thing happens to me as #89 AbbydonKrafts. After the program comes on for the first time and I enter the registration key, I shut off the program and try to restart HelpSmith. What happens: Hourglass comes on for a second and shuts off and no program starts.

I have even then shut down ZoneAlarm and AVG anti-virus, and gone to the actual .exe in the C: program folder and double-clicked that - still exactly the same thing. If you have some tracing program that I can run to figure out what is happening, I'll be glad to run it. Maybe this will also happen to some more people.

Well, at least I have it running on one computer (my other laptop) but it would be nice to get it on both laptops - since I am not very good at backing up drives and also when I go back to China, I'll be taking the small one (the U205) with me.

So, if I can help with figuring out what is going on, I'll be glad to try.

Good luck.

Reply   |   Comment by Jim  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#106

To Eugene at helpsmith: I have had the same problem as #89 on two XP Pro computers. I had to uninstall on both, because there was no way to get the program to run, after activating.

Reply   |   Comment by Rich  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#105

@89, @95: Same thing happened to me. Installed on office PC, got key and registered. At home did same, reused the key. Both WinXP-SP2. Task Manager shows it running for a second then quitting. Since registration (both requesting a key and entering it) are done through the program, and the program will not run, there is no way to retry - or is there?
I deleted key HKCU~SOFTWARE~HelpSmith from the registry; now the program will start, and again shows 'EVALUATION VERSION 30 DAYS LEFT'.
I re-entered the key obtained after installing on the other PC, then exited. HelpSmith again refuses to restart. I believe the registration key must be tied to the computer that requested it. Will delete HKCU~SOFTWARE~HelpSmith again, request a new key and try it here. I just know it will work.

Reply   |   Comment by Richard Blake  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#104

Eugene -- #42
Thanks for developing this very useful software. Is there anyway that I can convert the CHM file into an Adobe Acrobat file? Can you build in a cnversion utility into your software in the future? What software do ou recommend to accomplish the conversion at present?

Reply   |   Comment by Juan de la Cruz  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#103

register includes the machine hash, has to be regged from the install machine!!

just copy and paste with line breaks!

3 computers, 3 perfect registrations- but *must* be launched by the program on the computer it's installed on to run. adds machine id to php url.

http://www.dodgeit.com/
http://www.guerrillamail.com/
http://sneakemail.com/
will break traces...

Reply   |   Comment by goodgotd  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#102

I noticed a short post earlier, and they were right. All having trouble with an "invalid registration code", make Internet Explorer your default browser long enough to register the program. I did that and it worked. for some reason the registration code would not be accepted by the program while netscape was my default browser.

Reply   |   Comment by Tarzan Hedgepeth  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#101

Thank you for offering this on GOTD so I could try it. It looks like it'll be great for some people, and it's really very nice to be able to try it out like this. This app is nice if you don't already have your docs in html, but I coudn't find a way to get there from here. I want right click to compile and decompile chms, and also need to be able to drag and drop the htm/html.

I took it off my machine already. I have one called FAR that isn't as expensive, and it lets me right-click on a folder and turn the whole set of htm files into a chm. I hope you'll look at adding these features!

Reply   |   Comment by dk stoneman  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#100

Vista Home Premium. Same problem as others with Vista have reported. I tried the /passive fix, but it didn't help. No joy.

Reply   |   Comment by Tim  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#99

ok after a snack I tried it; it worked however I removed the 'space' from the end of the given key :)

Reply   |   Comment by mad_tony  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#98

Eugene: That worked. It would be helpful if it said something instead of just not appearing. I didn't catch the machine ID part on the registration URL the first time I did it.

Reply   |   Comment by AbbydonKrafts  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#97

from the sound of this; unlikely to run on my system I have a few hours left to make my mind up to try or not.

Reply   |   Comment by mad_tony  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#96

> Some alternative to donating our email addresses
> and personal names to a foriegn comercial entity

You don't have to worry about the fact that you are providing your email address and full name. These data are only used to generate the license key and send it to you. Also, we will need to know, for example, if you are entitled for free upgrades as a GAOTD user, and so on. In any case, according to our privacy policy, your personal information will not be used in any illegal purposes. Thanks for your understanding.

Reply   |   Comment by Eugene Ivanov  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#95

@89: Can you please try to register again from your home computer.

Reply   |   Comment by Eugene Ivanov  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#94

Tried every way imaginable to register it, including pasting in notepad first and removing the "invisible" characters from the end. Unformatted wordwrap, pasted it exactly as received. It will not register for me at all ("The registration key you entered is invalid"). I guess I will continue to make my Visual Basic help files in a help file creator I programmed myself. A recommendation to the developers to prevent frustrated customers who won't be able to register the software (not much will kill a budding product faster): I have been developing software (freeware and shareware) for many years, and either develop a shorter registration number (the only legitimate, possible reason I can see for having one so long, is the anticipation of billions of users...literally, or anti-piracy concerns which can be handled a much better way), or if you insist on such a long registration number for "security" purposes, distribute a pre-made *.reg file to add to the registry, and do a one time activation check to prevent redundant *.reg uses on different machines. At any rate, it is obvious that a freeware version of this software for personal use only, could have a much shorter registration number, which actually could be identical for all users, or simply change the code slightly so the free version needs no registration, unless of course you are harvesting e-mails (which I am SURE is not the case). That would ensure no problems. thanks for all your hard work GAOTD, this is no reflection on your team at all.

Reply   |   Comment by Tarzan Hedgepeth  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#93

For those that want a freeware version, try HelpMaker™

Reply   |   Comment by Tony  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#92

From Readme.txt:3) Fill in the Registration form (requires your full name and e-mail address)
4) Check up your email for the license code from HelpSmith.com


Some alternative to donating our email addresses and personal names to a foriegn comercial entity has to be available for activating GAOTD offerings, if not then the price of activation is too high regardless of the program on offer.

Reply   |   Comment by TK  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#91

If you have an Inbox e-mail account (www.inbox.com), don't use it to activate the program. Activation code won't be sent to this account.

Reply   |   Comment by jmv  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#90

How to register (works for me):

Don't selectively copy the key...but rather copy EVERYTHING, including the dashes from the beginning to the dashes at the end, and paste that in, then restart the program.

Reply   |   Comment by faery  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#89

I was able to install and register at work (for internal use, obviously), but here at home, it won't restart after I entered the key. I click the icon and the hourglass cursor blinks up for a second, but that's it. It simply refuses to come up.

I uninstalled it and tried again. It let me enter the key, but when I tried to restart it, the same thing happened. Any ideas why it's simply not doing anything? Both computers are fairly modern XP Pro machines.

I did give this one a thumbs up because it is a spectacular offer, and the potential to use it for internal work instruction manuals is good enough for me.

Reply   |   Comment by AbbydonKrafts  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#88

@80 Jim

Quite right..
Your students could print the pdf file. :-)

Reply   |   Comment by ~ Robert ~  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#87

Printing from a Help File
Once you have the compiled Help File printing is chapter by chapter or chapter including sub-chapters. Pagebreaks just happen in the printed result or you have to have a real good eye to assume where there might be a pagebreak (Perhaps somebody knows a fix for that).

Now if the Author wishes that someone can just print the whole thing and waste the tree, then I recommend adding one superior level to the tree. You can then just print to printer or pdf from level on and include all lower levels.

Pura vida, AlexSJ

Reply   |   Comment by AlexSJ  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#86

@85 >> Dennis P.

Tnx trying to help me. I just tried out your suggestion. Still no dice. Thanks anyway. Still open for suggestions....

Reply   |   Comment by Funkster  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#85

Hi Funkster,

My e-mail contains the registration code containing 6 lines between the begin and end lines.
I copied all 6 lines (do NOT include the last SPACE character) - I did not remove the newlines - that is I did NOT make it a continuos string.
Perhaps the last SPACE on the 6th line is what is giving you trouble?

Sincerely,
Dennis P

Reply   |   Comment by Dennis P  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#84

#72 BuBBy is the moderator/administrator/commenter who collaborates with/for GOTD, and who by being negative on offered software only too often shows us 1. GOTD tries to play it fair, 2. shows us GOTD does not test it's offers overly well...

Reply   |   Comment by Moizelle  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#83

Looks really promising and easy.
I think I'll play around with it and if it is that easy to use I might recommend my employer to buy some licenses.

Thanx GAOTD!

Reply   |   Comment by Dennis P  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#82

Dear Eugene Ivanov,

I've downloaded three times a registrationcode and none of them work
I do remove the trailing parts with '--- KEY BEGIN KEY ---' and '--- KEY END KEY ---'and I make it one continuous string (even if there were no instructions to do so. I tried it with trailing parts and not as one string and all combinations). Nope no code is accepted by the program. I don't like the fun in this !!
What can I do? Ofcourse I like free software, but for me no possibility to enjoy it!?

Could you please give me a clue?

Reply   |   Comment by Funkster  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#81

to # 76

I have got it !!!
Had to reset IE to default browser, got my key immediately and registered.
Thank you for this very useful program GAOTD and HelpSmith
graylox

Reply   |   Comment by graylox  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#80

@69: Eugene, thank you kindly - following your directions I printed out the HelpSmith help file. Enough empty space to make a tree-hugger weep uncontrollably. But as an instruction-writer, that will be my job to fix, I guess.

At this point, though, the author would still seem to be the only one who could, normally, print. Can I hope that someone might be able to suggest how to let the customer or student do the printing (without them installing HelpSmith). Wait - if I install Acrobat, can't I send this output to Acrobat and then just include the resulting pdf file? Then the student could just print from Acrobat?

Reply   |   Comment by Jim  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#79

An OK program to play around with fer a few minutes.

Reply   |   Comment by haybub  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#78

> Some time ago I recognized, that it’s no longer
> possible, to get online out of the “Help” or “About” menu.
> @76

I can only suppose that your firewall software blocks HelpSmith when you are trying to get online from the Help menu. If so, please check the settings for rules, etc.

Reply   |   Comment by Eugene Ivanov  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#77

Thank you so much for this program ... The download and setup took less than 1 minute; also, read/easily understood registration process; received company email in about 20 seconds and completed the process-no issues on my Windows XP. The program looks very interesting and will start by using as a notes base for my classes.

Thanks! Great to see BuBBY, again, and the program Project Manager taking part of this offer's forum ... nswers to questions so quickly!

Reply   |   Comment by Kim  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#76

Some time ago I recognized, that it's no longer possible, to get online out of the "Help" or "About" menu.
Never cared about it - but NOW !
Can't register HelpSmith. Pleeeease, somebody out there to hear my cry and can help ?
graylox :((

Reply   |   Comment by graylox  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#75

Seems like a pretty useful tool to the right person but not for me. Thanks anyways GAOTD, keep up the fine work.

Reply   |   Comment by Glen  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#74

Wonderful download! Thank you so much, GOTD and HelpSmith. :D

BTW, if you hadn't noticed, at the bottom of the regkey e-mail is a 30% discount (with coupon code link) for those who want to upgrade to the commercial version, which brings it down to only about $140. A very generous offer, methinks.

Installed on Vista Home Premium and registered with no problem. Can only get it to run directly from the .exe file rather than a shortcut (even as admin), but I'll study this thread in more detail to see if there's a solution, or eventually figure it out for myself. Offhand, does anyone know how to get rid of the splash screen?

Meanwhile, I'm excited about all the possibilities this program offers. For example, I have a lot of legacy software with .hlp files that I'd like to recreate in HelpSmith. I also have other (strictly personal) writing and tutorial projects that will benefit from HelpSmith's versatility.

Reply   |   Comment by Annie  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#73

who's bubby?

Reply   |   Comment by Psychotic  –  8 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
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