H e l p m a s t e r


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Help Tables
This guide contains a set of notes on how to make tables in the Windows Help RTF format, as well as a number of sample tables (full RTF source included), without using DLLs or OLE. It's aimed at those who already have some experience with the WinHelp compiler and documentation and who want to produce WinHelp RTF from a script or a database programming language.
Don't expect wonders: WinHelp tables are nowhere as rich on features as HTML tables or MS Word tables but it doesn't mean they're useless.
In overview, pros and cons of WinHelp tables are:
  • easy to create from a script
  • useful to control the placement of text and graphics, e.g. to force or prevent wrap-around or overlap, but the TWIP unit cannot be relied on for exact measurements
  • rows don't wrap automatically - users must scroll a wide table into view while reading, although in screen-based documents columns can be made proportional making the table adjust automatically to the current window width
  • do not formally support merging (spanning) of rows/columns or tables inside tables but similar effects can be produced
  • do not support background color or shading but in some cases embedded graphics can be used to work around this limitation
Freeware by Morten Elling