Release Notes

FAR HTML - Release Notes

28-Dec-2019 - FAR HTML 5 is now Freeware

28-Dec-2019: FAR HTML 5 is now freeware.

For more info and free International licence codes see the Helpware Announcement

About FAR HTML 5

FAR Version 5 marks a significant step forward in the evolution of this popular software product. FAR 5 is now a Unicode application and supports MS Help 3 (Visual Studio 2010/2012 help, aka MS Help Viewer), and is now compatibility with both Windows 7, 8 & 10+. FAR 5 also contains a host of new features, improvements and bug fixes.

FAR (23-Jul-2019)

  • FAR 819 contains an updated NavScript.JS and WebHelp template files. The FAR.EXE version number updated only (no code changes)

    • Details - NavScript.JS 1.04 + WebHelp \extra\*.template files updated to fix a problem where a FAR webhelp project may open blank in Microsoft Edge Browser v44. This version of Edge breaks JavaScript calls to localStorage() and sessionStorage(). To fix this we had to wrap these functions in try-catch blocks. If the calls fail now they wont break the experience, however the persistence of settings when changing between tabs (TOC/Index/Search) wont work in Edge on local PC (as per normal if I remember correctly).

    • Files updated:

      • \extra\html_framework.template

      • \extra\html_hh_index.template

      • \extra\html_hh_toc.template

      • \extra\hw_library.js

      • \extra\NavScript.js

FAR (07-Jun-2018)

  • FAR 818 contains a minor update to file NavScript.JS which some users include in Uncompressed web Help. No other changes were made to FAR 818 install files (except to update the FAR.EXE version number).

    • Details - NavScript.JS 1.03 now encodes the URL used to link back to the navigation pane view. A user noticed that IE has a problem with unescaped URLs being used and some IE versions generate an XSS alert popup. The solution recommended at the moment is to encode the URL which we did in NavScript.JS 1.03. This change stops the IE alert box. It has no no effect on other browsers.

FAR (25-Jul-2017)

  • Far 817 Uncompressed Help (Web Help)

    • Fix new problem in Chrome browser where right pane could disappear when browser zoom is not 100%.
      File updated: extra/html_framework.template

FAR (09-Mar-2017)

  • Far 816 Uncompressed Help (Web Help)

    • Added "title" attribute to TOC text so long text can be read when clipped<a href="..." title="some text">some text</a>

FAR (23-Feb-2017)

  • Far 815 Uncompressed Help (Web Help)

    • Minor adjustment to EXE and \extras\tree.css.template - pixel adjustment to toc text

      • Tree folder text (those with no link) now lines up vertically with other linked text (previously a few pixels out - the non-link text had previously lined up with the hover box of the linked text).

FAR (06-Dec-2016)

  • Far 814 Uncompressed Help (Web Help)

    • Fix for MS Edge shows blank screen displaying local web help.

      • Executable unchanged.

      • files hw_library.js and html_framework.template ("extra" folder) updated - "sessionStorage" now "window.sessionStorage".

FAR (15-Oct-2016)

  • Far 813 Uncompressed Help (Web Help)

    • Fix: Content pane could disappear sometimes on IE8 browser. Fix added to file hw_library.js (thank Steve and team in Israel)

    • New: The "Frame" page now contains "Extra Header Code" text box.

    • Minor: The help page for uncompressed help had some unicode characters causing CHM (ANSI required) to display incorrectly.

FAR (12-May-2016)

  • Far 812 Uncompressed Help (Web Help)

    • Search Page of Uncompressed Help dialog: Added checkbox to completely hide/show the TOC filtering edit field on the generated WebHelp Contents (TOC) page. Also updated online and offline help.

FAR (11-Feb-2016)

  • Far 811 uncompressed Help (Web Help)

    • added optional meta tag to hh_start.htm

      • <link rel="icon" href="favicon.ico?v=2" type="image/x-icon" />

      • <meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=EmulateIE11"/>

    • Remove older stray code from hh_toc.htm "OnLoadCode();" causing script error.

  • Far 810 Uncompressed Help (Web Help)

    • Now produces HTML5 output and uses IFrames instead of FrameSets (which are not HTML5 compatible).
      Plus many tweaks and improvements to the JavaScript.

    • Older unused features removed - Java, HH ActiveX & Simple HTML output (since JavaScript is mainstream now)

    • Added Filter Entry above TOC.

    • Added Option to Search directly from TOC nav page. Check the box in the Search tab (FAR Uncompressed dialog) to enable.

    • Update FAR online help with new code and features: http://helpware.net/FAR/help/hh_start.htm

    • FAR now ships with NavScript.js -- Include this file in HTML topic files to make inter-frame communication (sync) work. See notes

    • Misc - Remove Microsoft Color Entities from color dropdowns (since only works in Microsoft browser).

  • FAR 810 - Hide the FAR Main Window during batch mode

    • If your batch file name ends in "-hide-.farrun" eg. "MyBatchFile-hide-.farrun"
      then we hide the main window as well as the Splash window.

FAR (07-Mar-2015)

  • Fix: HTML Help Project editor -- Open Dialog asks you to "Create file" every time you changed folders in Win 8.1

  • Fix: "Build JavaScript Search" out of memory exception. Now more efficient with memory use and can process many more files.

FAR (02-Mar-2015)

  • Fix: Multi monitor aware, save/restore window position fixed. On some PCs the Find and Replace Quiz dialog was lost.

FAR (08-Nov-2014)

Find and Replace Preview dialog

  • Fix: "match text" is now displayed in the center of the preview window. A previous fix broke this centering feature.

  • New: Preview window popup options menu now has a "WordWrap" option. Previously text Wordwrap was always on.

  • Fix: Rogue button left on preview dialog has been removed.

FAR (15-Aug-2014)

Uncompressed Help

  • Fix: Alternate TOC icon set dropdown now fills correctly from c:\program files (x86)\ install path.

  • Fix: Chrome browser in local zone silently crashed (inter-frame talk disabled because of Chrome security) causing Close/Sync/GetLink to fail. Updated several .\extra\*.* files. Now uses try-catch blocks. Close command and "Get Link" command now functions and uses the toc selection instead of the right frame url when security restrictions block interframe communication. Toc Sync command now shows in a browser security warning (which was not showing).


  • Updated: File > FAR File List Compare

    • Added Time to complete info at top of report + Matches column legend.

    • Inhibit Base folder does not exist msg -- Not appropriate for this task.

  • Fix: Moving from PC to PC FAR would trip over a search data path that no longer existed.

  • Fix: 'Runtime error 217' crash sometimes seen at startup. It was a problem creating temp folder.

  • Fix: Online help typos.

  • New: Notifications of Beta updates as well as normal update (see new checkbox in preferences)

  • New: F5 Refresh command (file lists) now updates the case of the file names in the list to match file names on disk.

    • FAR Main window - F5 Refresh command now checks all list display items for correct file size and file name case.

    • New: Added F5 Refresh to .HHP Editor ([FILES] and [MERGE FILES] file list pages) and HxF File list editor.

  • Fix: The file size in a file list may be exaggerated. This is now fixed and FAR will now always display the correct disk file size.

Find & Replace

  • Fix: Find and Replace Quiz dialog -- Find and replace was correct but the preview highlighting was sometimes out (visually showing wrong text to be replaced). This would happen if document had single CR or LF instead of CR+LF pair.


  • New: Use script command ClearFileList=n to inhibit the clearing of the FAR file list just as you can in the UI. When not used the default behaviour is to clear before filling.

Link checker

  • New: Report image links containing script as '** WARNING ** Dynamic script link - Unable to verify'.

  • New: Now validates links to images in <img src="..."> as well as topic files.

  • New: Option dialog now has checkbox to enable the checking of link and bookmark case.
    ie. Does the link case match the actual name of file in the CHM.

  • New: Now checks the case of bookmarks as well as topic and image links (if link check option enabled)

  • New: Link case checking now works in batch mode (see Batch help).

  • Link Checker -- Settings.INI contains a new setting CheckLinkCase=n in [main] section.

  • If you set CheckLinkCase=y then the FAR Link Checker will also check if the link case matches the case of the target file path in the .CHM file and report an Error with the other link errors.

FAR (21-Jan-2013)

Mostly a maintenance release:

  • MS Help 2 Editor

    • New: HxF Editor now has *.png files (as well as JPG and GIF)

    • New: Added new HV2 tag to tage editor <meta name="Microsoft.Help.DisplayVersion" content="SearchResultText" />

    • Fix: HxT files load incorrect hierarchy in some situations.

  • Fix: Fixed Windows file associations. If a 3rd party app has the association FAR would not create its own associations.

  • Fix: Unicode Command-line parameters fixed. Sometimes FAR far could not see the command-line on the latest Windows update.

    • This also fixed FAR install where FAR window should not show.

  • Update: Modified the INNO installer script so that Setup.exe can now run completely silently.


  • UpdateL Modified all FAR URLs to point to the new website at www.HelpwareGroup.com

FAR (12-Oct-2010)

FAR Japanese Translation file updated.

FAR (10-Oct-2010)

Various bug fixes and improvements.

Windows 8 Compatibility

  • Fix: File associations for Windows 8. Redesigned DdeExec association code.

  • Fix: Start up exceptions in Windows 8 and Windows 7 sp1.

  • Fix: Some folder read-only checks failed under Win 8 and Win 7 SP 1.

  • Fix: Windows 8 multi-Monitor support.

  • Fix: Large fonts display layout problems on some dialogs.

  • Fix: "File > Compare File List" now works under Windows 8. Was writing to the drive root which is not allowed any more.

  • Fix: Hex Dump windows now remembers column width (resize required by large fonts).

  • Fix: Zip file support.

File Access / System

  • New: FAR can now handle UNC \\server\ type file and directory paths.

  • New: Add experimental settings to Settings.ini (startup file) -- FontName= and FontSize=

  • New: settings.ini, SimpleFileSave=y flag can be set to bypass huge path length support.

  • Fix: Zip window context window commands had stopped working.

  • New: Application Icon in Metro Style.

  • Update: FAR Environment Check list. Added Help Viewer 2. Also now displays Windows version and language.


  • Change: Trial period is now 30 days. Try/Buy after 15 days. Timed nag screen after 30 days.

  • Change: FAR 5 no longer excepts FAR 4.x version license keys. We did this for 6 years but now upgrading is required.

  • Fix: Registration with 2 strings. Sometimes the OK button would not enable.


  • New: Hover tips for Copy dialog checkboxes (normal tips don't show for disabled controls).

  • New: Application Icon in Metro Style.

  • Various small bug fixes.


  • Update: Small updates for German language translation.

  • Fix: Non-English translation broke the HH Compile dialog.

HH Project Editor

  • New: If you update the external file it will ask you if you want to reload.

Uncompressed Help

  • New: TOC pane now has Next / Prev buttons. Also Up/Dn and Enter key now work on TOC pane.

  • Fix: Previously software would not allow you to select one background and assign to all 3 tabs.

  • Update: Update the fonts and font sizes to get more consistent text size between tabs.

  • New: Moved JavaScript navigation files code out of EXE and into template files in <far.exe>\extra\ folder.

  • New: Can now copy template files to local project folder <My Project BaseDir>\_FarExtra\
    When a file is found in this folder it is used in preference to <far.exe dir>\extra\
    A full list of templates and files used by Uncompressed help can be found in <far.exe>\extra\_readme.txt

  • New: TOC 'get link' gets the URL from the TOC selection (instead of right frame) if cross frame browsing is blocked.

  • Fix: Setup, selection of TOC style was not repainting correctly.

  • New: Method of selecting search items is now the same as the Index page. ie. Click a list item to display topic.

    • Arrow keys move selection without loading the page. Enter key to load the selected page.

  • Note the search result highlighting works in Mozilla (Chrome) but not on a local PC where cross frame talk is blocked due to security settings.

  • Update: Refactor TOC JavaScript code.

  • Fix: NavScript code insert. John K kindly points out that using \ slash instead of / when linking to
    NavScript.js (Uncompressed help) will cause online script to fail in FireFox. So now the NavScript inserter (FAR Adv Search) uses [../] instead of [..\]

Batch Mode

  • Fix: Batch command - MakeHHP. The output HHP file encoding was UNICODE but HTML Help requires ANSI file encoding.

  • New: Batch mode "brief reporting" now available via the keyword "brief" on the /L: switch (customer request).

  • New: Added new ini setting KeepFileDateTime=Yes for Find & Replace batch mode.

  • Fix Encoding for batch mode.

  • New: Batch mode can now "encode=" command.- Same as "Command > Set File Encoding" dialog.

  • New: Batch mode - Search command now has a "IncMatches=y" option to force matches to inc with each pass instead clearing/updating match count.

  • New: Batch mode - CopyTo and BackupTo commands now have a CopyTo_MatchesOnly & BackupTo_MatchesOnly to copy only items with matches > 0.


  • New: Adv Search 'Contains' and 'Not Contains' can now contain multiple parameters separated by either $OR$ or $AND$.

Rename Files - "Commands > Rename Files"

  • New: Added ability to increment file name.

MS Help 2

  • Tweak: Removed SDK check on HxConv GUI (H2 Utilities dialog).


  • Fix: .Merge files (Toc merge) now save their output as the same encoding type as the .Merge file. Previously a bug forced Unicode output.

FAR (20-Sept-2010)

Minor update.

Main File List:

  • New: "Command menu > Search File Names" -- A live filter for the list of file names.
    As you type in text the number of files in the FAR file list reduces to show only file names that contain the search text.

  • New: Ctrl+A now toggles selection. I.E. If all files are already selected then "Select All" performs a deselect all.

  • New: Press a key on the file list to select the first file matching that character. But now you can type ahead to find whole words in the file lists.

  • Fix: Deselecting 1000's of file items was very slow. But now instant.

  • Tweak: Optimized the loading of .FAR file list files. Now loads in < 1/5 the time .

  • New: Added "Ctrl+F" and "F3" shortcuts to perform "Find Next" in Adv Search & Search Preview dialog.

Windows Vista/Windows 7:

  • Fix: Windows 7 SP1 compatibility. Some ListView controls did not repaint when the window was resized.

  • Fix: Windows virtualization of protected folders is now switched off for FAR.EXE. There were problems reopening files that had been virtualized to another location.

Memory & File System:

  • Fix: Fix "Out of Memory" errors and crashes. We now set a special EXE header bit that allows access to memory above 2GB (Up to 4GB under Windows 64-bit, and up to 3GB under Windows 32-bit). Of course you need a PC with extra RAM installed to get the extra memory.

  • New: Added memory usage monitoring dialog (right-click status bar of main window).

  • New: Now supports Unix file paths > 260 chars (eg Working with files on a Unix server).

  • Fix: Handle a case where some server files do not have "delete" access but can be modified ok.

Help & Language:

  • New: Google Translated help. Help Menu "Use Web Help" makes all F1 Help come from the web where it can be Google Translated.
    Currently TOC\Index\Search are not translatable.

  • New: Simplified Chinese translation added [Thank you Lenny, Gnatix].

  • Tweak: Chm Help text-to-speech reader. Changed from MS Agent to MS SAPI (since Agent is no longer used by Microsoft).

  • New: More FAR dialogs translated - Japanese/German/Chinese.


  • Fix: String function now correctly expand paths containing say c:\xxx\..\xxx\name.ext

  • Tweak: FTP Copy dialog. If uploading only 1 file remembers the "selected" setting.

  • New: Saving file changes now copes better with odd server access permission. Setting SimpleFileSave=n in Settings.ini, forces file overwrite to use direct writes (emergency setting).

  • Fix: Installer crash. FAR Installer is now Unicode. Germany ANSI file filenames crashed Chinese install.

  • Fix: When SuperTip is showing and you pressed Esc you got an exception.

  • Fix: Batch job will work even if there are no HTML in the root folder.

Drop File Filter:

  • Fix: Drop Filter items can now contain spaces.

  • New: Drop Filter items can now contain a single * anywhere in the string. eg. Include "version *.tx?"

Uncompressed Help (Web Help):

  • New: Search result highlighting now works in any browser (previously just Internet Explorer).

  • Fix: Updated tree.js to fixes TOC Sync when there are Chinese / Japanese / Korean characters in the path.

  • Fix: Updated tree.js to fix TOC Sync for UNC paths \\server\

  • New: Build JavaScript Search, new option to break apart CJK strings (Chinese, Japanese, Korean). This allows easy search of Chinese pictograms but significantly increases the size of the search data file. Suggest instead you enable partial matching to match CJK chars.

  • New: Uncompressed Help now pops up a message if TOC Sync cannot work because of browser security settings.

MS Help:

  • Fix: FAR now copes with .HHP and .HxC project files containing files paths with Unix forward splashes (same as Help Workshop does).

  • Fix: Exception when H2Viewer window opens from the Registration dialog (H2Registration dialog is now closed when Help Viewer button is clicked).

Encoding dialog:

  • New: Option to encode without a BOM (for application that prefer no BOM file signature).

  • New: Added Auto-detect option to Encoding dialog. Useful if some files with no BOM.
    The algorithm to detect the encoding type is improved but should not be relied on (it's a good guess at best).

Set File Date/Time dialog:

  • New: "Commands > Set File Date/Time" can now Add, Subtract & Increment file list timestamps.

FAR (1-Oct-2010)

Minor update.

TOC Editor - MS Help Viewer 1.0 (VS 2010 help)

  • Fix: Help 3 Export. Fix problem where TOC sometimes exported flat instead of hierarchical.

  • New: Help 3 Toc Order field, now has a companion "Clear All" button, since some authors always set the TocOrder meta tag on all topics, resulting a lot of unwanted TocOrder settings after a Help 3 tag import.

TOC Editor - HTML Editors list

  • New: Removed "Set last used as default" menu command. Selecting a HTML editor now does this automatically.

  • New: New "Add Editor" menu item. You can now add your own HTML Editor to the list of HTML editors.


  • New: German and Japanese translation have started. Options menu allows you to choose a translation. A lot of work still to be done.


  • New: In the "Add Files" dialog & "Folder select" dialogs you can now paste in a directory path instead of clicking and drilling for a folder.

  • Fix: Adv Search - Remove annoying search definition upgrade for new installation.

  • Fix: Losing controls on Alt press. Common Tasks pane seems ok now and has no more flicker.

  • Fix: Expanding Common Tasks pane. Fix redraw problem with scrollbar hide\shows.

  • Fix: Remove annoying screen flicker problem introduced in 5.1

  • Fix: TOC and Index Editor can now load Doxygen formatted .hhk index files.

  • Fix: Fix the flicker problem with Progress bars under Vista and Win 7.

FAR (15-Jul-2010)

Various Minor Fixes

  • Fix: Fix Vista & Win7 repaint problem. IE. Press Alt key on a dialog and buttons disappear.

  • Fix: Color swatches not showing correctly in TOC Edit > Property page (side effect of new compiler).

  • Fix: Help 2 Editor - Now handles wild cards (eg. *.*) in the Help 2 HxF file list file.

  • Fix: FAR Registration dialog. Remembers last good registration.
    Previously if you enter > 1 reg code the first one found is used (which may not be the last entered).

  • Fix: Add Files dialog - Back button is more reliable.

  • Fix: Better detection of Unicode for files without a BOM file signature.

  • Fix: Main window status bar.. Increase width as was truncating text.

  • Fix: Adv Find and Replace - $A$ fields can now contain $#13$ $#10$ type character codes.

FAR (9-Mar-2010)

Unicode Support

Unicode support means that FAR HTML no longer runs on Windows 95/98/ME.

  • [V5] Native Unicode Support - FAR is now Unicode enabled and works natively with Unicode Japanese, Chinese, French, Italian, Spanish etc. text and file system without the need to run a foreign language version of Windows.

    • Work directly with Japanese input, text and files on a non-Japanese PC (as an example).

    • FAR 4.x had to convert Unicode files to ANSI to process them. This is no longer necessary with FAR 5.

    • MS Help 2.x and MS Help Viewer 1.0 are both Unicode applications so now fully supported by FAR 5.

    • FAR Web Help (Uncompressed help) now supports Unicode TOC, Index and Search. JavaScript Search is now much simpler.

    • Find and Replace now processes Unicode files natively.

    • FAR can still process ANSI files that do not match the current Windows code page. In most cases FAR will prompt you for the correct code page. In some dialogs FAR allows you to specify the code page prior to running the command.

    • ZIP files (Internal file names) now supports both the WinZip and XCEED Unicode formats.

    • Note: MS HTML Help 1.x remains an ANSI application (beyond our control).

    • Files must still be ANSI encoded and compiled under the correct Windows code page.

Microsoft Help Viewer 1.0 (VS 2010 help)

  • [V5] FAR now support the new help engine used by Visual Studio 2010 (MS Help Viewer 1.0).

  • [V5] mshcMigrate - This collection of VS 2010 Help authoring utilities is covered by your FAR v5 license.
    mshcMigrate will detect if there is a licensed version of FAR 5 installed and enable all features and disable expiration.

    • Migrate MS Help 2 projects and help files to .mshc and .cab help packages.

    • Create .msha Manifests (defines the books and packages to be installed).

    • Test your help using HelpLibManager.exe

    • Explore the MS Help Viewer data store.

    • Many other time saving features.

  • [V5] TOC Editor - The TOC and Index editor can now import MS Help Viewer meta tags (TOC, F1, Keywords) so you can visually edit in the traditional way.

  • [V5] Tag Editor - The Tag Editor allows you to quickly list and edit header tags, meta tags, help tags, across many files at once. Very handy for MS Help 2.x and MS Help Viewer 1.0.

New File Commands

  • [V5] Convert to XHTML - This command will convert all HTML files found in the FAR file list to XHTML.

    • Includes a test mode that reports XHTML syntax without modifying the files.

    • Specify XHTML 1.0 Transitional, XHTML 1.0 Strict, XHTML 1.1, or quirks mode format.

    • Especially useful when moving to MS Help Viewer 1.0.

    • Note: This does not replace a professional XHTML validation tool but it will do most of the work for you and catch and report the common syntax errors.

  • [V5] Line Break - This command converts ASCII files to either Windows (CRLF), MAC (CR) or Unicode (LF) line break format.

    • The command can also remove all line breaks, or add line breaks to HTML or XML tag files.

    • And report the number of lines and empty lines found in all your files.

  • [V5] .CAB files - Another format like PKZIP. Microsoft .CAB files can be signed and used in to encapsulate .mshc help files (VS 2010 Help).

  • [V5] Encoding Column - The FAR file list can now display an encoding column. Switch on/off via the View menu. Displays file Encoding type = ANSI, UTF-8, UTF-16 LE & BE. Normally off by default because it takes time to read the encoding of many files. A settings.ini file switch EncodingColumnExtSkip= allows you to specify which files are binary files and should be skipped when populating the Encoding column.

  • [V5] Drag & Drop From FAR - Can now drag and drop FAR file list items to Explorer or other programs.

    • If you drag onto an Explorer folder it will flat copy the file to the target folder.

    • Any Unicode file paths are converted to the short format eg. c:\Exam~1\filename.ext to be compatible with older ANSI applications.

  • [V5] Drag & Drop To FAR - Use Ctrl + Drag+Drop onto FAR main window to append to the file list (ignores "Options > Clear File List on Drop" setting) and does not check for duplicates so take care.

  • [V5] File Difference command - Added to FAR main file list context menu. Select 2 files, right+click and select File Difference. Setup the preferred file difference application in the Preferences window.

  • [V5] Edit > Group Selections - Selected file items are grouped together and moved to the top of the file list.

  • Improved ANSI Code Page Selection - When reading an foreign language ANSI file (that does not match the current Windows code page), a code page the selection dialog now displays the characters that are not supported by the current code page.

  • File > Reopen File List command - An easier way to quickly load a previously saved FAR file list.

Web Help (Uncompressed Help)

  • [V5] TOC Editor - Import/Export To JavaScript TOC/Index - In the TOC Editor you can now import and export Web Help hh_Content.html and hh_Index.html type files. Useful if you lose your original source or want to maintain TOC/Index from single HTML source without regenerating.

  • [V5] 2 or 3 panes - With 3 panes you now have a top pane for a fixed site banner.

  • [V5] TOC Style - Bring your own TOC icons or use one of the pre configured sets.

  • [V5] TOC Transparent Background - JavaScript TOC can now have a transparent background.

  • [V5] Specify the test browser - Detects browsers you have installed and allows you to select the active test browser.

  • [V5] Unicode TOC and Index - Can now use Unicode .HxT/.HxK files for TOC and Index source instead of ANSI .Hhc/.Hhk files.

  • [V5] Search Database - Build JS Search command now uses Unicode for code and input & output format. Big improvement when creating foreign language search databases. Added code page list in case source HTML files are ANSI.

  • Index Single Click Select - JavaScript Index is now single click to open a page. Double-Click can still be used if you add UncompHelp_Index_DoubleClickToSelect=Y to the FAR settings.ini file.

Find & Replace

  • [V5] Unicode - All search code now pure Unicode.

  • New: Change Font - The search preview dialog now allows you to change the display front (helps with reading Far eastern text).

  • New: $R$ Command - $R$ advanced find and replace command has been expanded.

    • $R$[fullFilePath] - Same as before. Converts to relative path.

    • $R$[int:0] - Will be replaced by a number = current file directory depth (below the root folder).

    • $R$[str:..\] - If the current directory depth (of current file) is 0 (in root folder) then
      the result is '' (empty string), for depth=1 '..\', for depth=2 '..\..\', for depth=3 '..\..\..\' etc.

    • Command to insert NavScript.JS Web Help script (code to open nav panel that has been closed).

  • $DT$[now:%format%] Command - Insert command $DT$[now] has been expanded $DT$[now:%format%] so that current date/time can be formatted.

  • Adv Search DOS/Unix

    • Search: "Dos \ = Unix /" setting is now OFF by default and only works in Adv Search and Batch Search.

    • If you search for a slash and /=\ is ON, you will now get a warned popup so you know what to expect.

  • Adv Search Settings - Multiple files - Settings for the Advanced Find and Replace dialog can now be saved to multiple files. This helps those who need to manage large numbers of search definitions. Each file can contain up to 200 search definitions (the maximum number of definitions that FAR can hold in memory at one time). The files are .FarRun batch script files so this also helps those who create search script for batch jobs.


  • New: Windows 7 Support - In the Windows 7 taskbar the FAR Icon shows a jump list of recently opened FAR files. The FAR task bar icon also shows progress bar activity.

  • Explorer File Select - Commands that open Explorer now select the current file in Explorer.

  • H2 Viewer

    • Added TOC right click menu item "open in browser" to open in external IE browser.

    • F6 now moves focus between Browser and H2 Nav controls.

    • The Text-To-Speech engine used by FAR (both MS Agent & SAPI 4.x) are not support by Vista and Windows 7.
      These speech engines have been replaced by MS SAPI 5.x which is compatible with XP, Vista & Windows 7.

  • FAR File List

    • Remove start up file list loading message... "Want me to check xxx files exist?". We now always check and after 3 secs a modeless dialog allows you to cancel checking if you want.

    • When opening a .FAR file from Explorer, FAR no longer prompts "Load by file list or search". However File > Reopen command still allows you to choose.

    • File list now displays a file Attr column (file attributes). RSHA (ReadOnly, System, Hidden, Archive).

    • New (Main window): Added ability to auto-load and auto-save the file list at startup/shutdown. New menu check items...

      • "Options > Auto-Save File List at Shutdown"

      • "Options > Auto-Save File List at Startup"

  • Web Help (Uncompressed Help)

    • New: Generate TOC from file list
      - If you have files in the FAR file list with same base folder as Help project then Generate TOC/Index asks if you prefer to generate using the FAR files (like express Help). This was also added to the TOC Editor aswell.

    • Fix: Red background - Script for Search pane added a #FF0000 style for the listbox border. This looked red in FireFox. Now removed.

  • TOC Editor

    • New: TOC Editor H2 Target Field
      - FAR 5 uses .HxT and .HxK Unicode file format when imported. But MS Help 2 does not understand link Target (Frame) so there is now a Frame field for MS Help 2 mode. The new field does not affect MS Help 2 compiles.

    • Files page tab - Can now show files from the file system or the FAR file list (new). Also, added "Show Containing Folder" to file popup list.

    • TOC > Import from HTML File - Command to creates a TOC from <h1>, <h2>.. header tags in a HTML file and inserts them into the selected node.

  • HH Project Editor

    • Fixed: HH Workshop option 'Auto TOC=x' now ignored by FAR. Was causing compile to overwriting the users TOC file.

    • New: Window can now be resized.

  • Hex Viewer

    • Now displays Unicode UTF-16 text.

  • FTP Copy command

    • Browser opens at the specific folder. Previously initially opened at the root folder.

    • No longer displays [.] and [..] folders items returned by server.

    • Now displays a chmod UNIX command context menu and popup. Currently you can view the UNIX folder/file permissions but not set them.

    • FTP Copy remains ANSI as this is 3rd part code. However FTP Copy does not care if the file content is Binary, ANSI or Unicode. It does care however if the filenames contain Unicode characters (eg. Japanese file names on a non-Japanese PC).

  • Removed - Several old commands have been removed.

    • Removed: Strip HTML tag. This can easily be achieved using normal find and replace.

  • Other Bug Fixes

    • Fix: When reading/Writing Unicode files would sometimes add a trailing junk character to the file.

    • Fix bug where screen size/pos save/restore is a touch out.

    • Numerous other minor fixes.

  • Batch Mode

    • New: Batch script. A [default] section in a .farrun batch script file can now run the [default] section in other files.

FAR (Apr-27-2008)

FAR 4.3 is a recommended update for all users.

Main Window

  • No more Authoring / File Utilities mode - The FAR File List is now always visible. The page tabs are still there but now only change the toolbar. User can now display both toolbars at once with no tabs.

  • Fixed: Can now add drives items to the FAR File list. This was broken when we stopped ZIP file items from being added.

  • Fixed: Files size > 2 GB were display as a negative number.

Batch Mode

  • Fixed bug in Batch mode where uncompressed help would not build the specified section.

HTML Help Project Editor

  • Added warning when enabling .CHI file creation.

Batch Decompile

  • Now checks first if there are any CHMs or HxS in the file list before proceeding (before it processed all files then announced that no ITS files were found).

TOC Editor

  • Updated file tree.js -- Now the DHTML TOC exported by TOC Editor is compatible with all browsers.

  • Fix bug in DHTML JavaScript TOC generation. TOC item target was wrong in certain cases.

  • Toc/Index Editor - Fix problem with alignment of controls on the CHM page (bottom of list box not accessible).

  • TOC and Index Merge (.Merge) files - Used to automatically merge server TOC or Index files.
    - Now accessible via batch command - BatchMergeFile=
    - Can now be open .Merge files via the TOC/Index Editor (File > Open dialog)
    - Last beta required a Header and Footer. This version doesn't.

  • TOC and Index Merge (.Merge) files. For Index files the Merge command also finds all duplicate items (same tree level, label, link, type) and merges them together.

  • New 3rd party Editor support: NVu.exe free HTML Editor; MS Expression Web; MS Frontpage 2007;


  • Registration dialog now takes 2 or 3 license strings.

  • FAR now checks if a bad hhctrl.ocx was installed.

  • Filter .ht* was picking up xxx.htm.other so have made the default filters more specific (.htm .html)

  • Update: "Set File Encoding" command can now convert Unicode files that do not have a Unicode BOM signature.

  • Fix: "Set File Encoding" command had problem where Code Page selection was not always used.

  • Settings.ini, [MAIN]/DataDir= -- allows FAR settings to be stored with FAR.exe on a USB drive or memory stick.

  • Shutdown now saves the current FAR list to _LastFARList.FAR (if unsaved).

  • Deprecate "Command > Set Real Video Path" -- Now hidden by default but can be made visible
    using Settings.ini file.

  • Code Update: All paths read from the registry now go through Win API ExpandEnvironmentStrings() to
    convert strings like %SYSTEMROOT%\System32\hhctrl.ocx -->

  • The Invalid Code Page dialog (seen in non-Batch mode when working with Unicode and foreign language files) now allows you to select an appropriate code page via a simple list of country locales (similar to Vista).

Uncompressed Help

  • New: Add 'get link' link to the TOC pane. So you can get the absolute address of the current page.

  • Fix: Batch command "MakeUncompHelp=" sometimes prompt you to save the settings.

Batch Command

  • New: Batch commands to fill the file list. File= and FileScan= . These commands take a simple file spec and bypass the drop filter. eg. fileScan=c:\path\*.ht* will scan the c:\path folder (and sub-folders) for all files matching file spec *.ht*.

  • Batch mode script files: Replace= text can split replace text over several lines using \ leading char.

  • OpenFarList=mylist.far -- Can now load a file list from a help project by specifying a .HHP or .HxC file name.

  • New: ExportNav = file1, file2 -- Exports file1 to file2 (file types allowed: .hhc, .hhk, .toc, .hxt, .hxk).

  • Fixed: FAR Batch mode does not prompt for CodePage when reading Unicode files (containing foreign language chars). In the past Batch mode would simply fail and report that the Code Page was not appropriate.
    Now you can specify the Code Page within a batch job (via your .INI or .FARRun file)
    EG. CodePage=65001.

  • You can also specify the batch mode code page using the command line parameter /cp:n. eg. /cp:65001

Link Check

  • Fixed Linkcheck under Japanese windows. Had errors parsing multi-byte char strings.

  • Link check now correctly handles tags embedded in a comment. Last version it did not consider tags embedded in the comment string.

Find and Replace

  • Adv Search $A$ commands: Find substring #n. n can now be 0 which means find last occurrence.

  • Adv Search: Contains and Not Contains text can no longer match the start of the Start with text. This makes Contains and Not Contains more flexible -- See example here.

Copy Command

  • New: Copy File dialog now has a "Flat Copy" option (see popup menu). When checked all folder files are copied to a single folder.

  • New: The Copy File dialog now has a popup menu offering a way export your copy settings out to a .FarRun Batch script file. Also creates a file Master.FarRun file in the same folder so that you can run all .FarRun files created in that folder.

  • New: Added new Windows Explorer folder right-click menu item "Copy/Backup with FAR". This command recursively loads all folders files into FAR, using drop file filter "FAR Filter - Backup". Then displays the Copy Files dialog ready to copy/backup files to another location.

MS Help 2.x

  • Fixed reading MS Help 2 ItsStorage files under VS 8 (Help Utils window, Help Explorer window): FAR could only read H2 ITS files (.hxs) on PCs with VS 7.x (or PCs containing older versions of DExplorer), however PCs containing only DExplore for VS 8.x failed because of a changes MS made to the registration of COM DLL msitss55.dll.

  • Now display a message when trying to convert HH 1.x .CHM to MS Help 2 projects. VS 8.x no longer supports .CHM file conversion (.HHP conversion is still OK). This is because legally MS can't or wont release the documentation on the InfoTech Storage API.

Express Help dialog

  • New: Added build templates. You can now use a standard .HHP file to load settings from and so control output.

FAR (Jan-1-2007)

FAR 4.2 is a recommended update for all users. Various fixes and compatibility under Windows Vista.

Windows Vista

  • General Vista compatibility issues:

    • Default Report file was c:\ (an illegal folder for Vista). Now users recommended personal folder.

    • Data files now stored by default to recommended locations (eg. License .ID files now in c:\ProgramData\Helpware).

  • Display "Not Administrator Logon" warning for H2 Plug-in and writing to protected registry areas.

64 Bit Windows

  • HH Project Editor now allows you to test with 32 or 64 bit hh.exe viewer. See "Command" menu.
    eg. Your 32 bit ActiveX controls such as Flash wont work with a CHM opened using the 64 bit hh.exe.

  • Note: No other effort has been made with 64 bit compatibility. We will address issues as they are reported.

FAR Uncompressed Help

  • Now generates additional file hh_goto.htm. This fixes problems with frames and loading topics using hh_start.htm command-line parameters. See hh_goto.

  • Export to TOC now preserves individual tree node targets. Before it forced them all to "right" for correct frame operation.

  • When generating JS or HTML uncompressed help all .HHC Merged TOC include statements will be automatically expanded (perform a TOC import), but only if the Merge Include file path is in the form "::path\file.hhc" -- ie. a relative path to a hhc file that starts with 2x colons.

MS Help 2

  • H2Viewer now correctly locates Document Explore 2005.

  • Collection Wizard - now allows you to specify multiple targets for H2Reg plug-in script.

  • Collection Wizard - Default plug-in is now ms.vsipcc+ for VS 2005.

  • Fix H2 help links. Now links to VS 8.0 online SDK content at the MSDN web site.

TOC & Index Editor

  • New: "TOC > Import File Content" allows you to import items from other files.

  • Toc Editor, Drag and Drop fix - Under Vista when dragging more than one items, items could be unrepentantly reordered.


  • FAR now supports multiple Monitors when saving and restoring window position.

  • Removed krm.dll (build in purchase option for KAGI). DLL was too unstable. Purchase is now always done from web site.

  • Fix: Problems with double byte languages (Japanese in particular) and FAR Uncompressed help.

  • Some double byte chars were being interpreted incorrectly as single byte chars.

FAR (April-12-2006)

Batch Decompile

  • [V4] New: "Authoring > Batch Decompile" - Command will extract the content out of all Help files found in the FAR file list. For automated multiple file decompile. Supports HH 1.x and Help 2.x compiled help files.

CHM Link Checker

  • New: Now verifies http, https and ftp links if you have a Internet connection.

  • Fix: .HHC and .HHK file links now checked (as documentation states).

  • Fix: We encode § as &&sect; -- but MS CHM compiler encodes § as &sect; -- we now are going the MS way and link checker now handles filenames containing § char.

TOC Editor

  • Fix: If the TOC item URL contained escaped chars (eg. &amp;) then Preview/Edit/LinkCheck would report file not found. Now OK.

  • Fix: Keyboard control for moving tree node items repaired.

  • Fix: TOC Auto generate - In include bookmark mode it was not converting &nbsp; to a space char so was not identifying empty bookmark strings correctly.

  • Fix: Exporting to .HHK Index to JS and HTML format. Some complex Indexes export strangely. A folder with single popup item is now correctly compressed to a single Index item.

Uncompressed Help

  • Fix: Redirect template file now uses window.location.replace() instead of window.location.href= which fixes a problem with the back button.

  • Fix: "Build JavaScript Search" now correctly parses Double Byte language files such as Chinese and Japanese.

  • Fix: Right frame file name needed to be entered with Unix slashes to work. FAR now always writes a Unix path and does not rely on what is in the dialog field.

  • Faster: Uncompressed help: If the Index contains several thousand items then typing text in the entry field is very very slow as each change is searched for in the list. This JS code (embedded in FAR.exe and exported to hh_index.htm) has now been optimized for speed. On our 3.4 GHz test machine 7000 items saw no delays.

  • Fix and document "JS TOC Background color" setting on the first page. If no TOC color was previously chosen this was ignored.

  • Fix: JS redirect code fix - Firefox did not like document.all as a way to detect JS compatible browser.
    Fix: Search.js code fix - off by one error caused the first word not to highlight.
    Fix: Search filename edit field is now remembered correctly.
    New Cbx: "Redirect to Frames if opening single TOC, Index or Search file, (for JS and HTML only)"

  • New: FrameSet files (and redirect file) can now accept parameters using bookmarks to set the frame files.
    EG. hh_start#books.htm+hh_search.htm -
    More info.

  • Started extracting raw HTML source from FAR.EXE. FrameSet and Redirect html files now live in the \Extras folder.


  • New: Adv Search - added time stamp commands $DT$[format], $DT$[now], $D-$, $D-$[now] (date only).


  • New: Can now store large complex masks in separate files - @file:path, @fileCRLF:path.

  • New: Can now scrap parts of the file list files. We use it collate parts of report files into a single .CSV file.

Batch Mode

  • New: Batch command MakeUncompHelp='.' is now allowed (ie. '.' for current directory)

  • New batch commands:
    - MakeHxT= -- generate MS Help 2 TOC using FAR file list.
    - MakeHxK= -- generate MS help 2 Index using FAR file list.
    - JSSearch= -- generate JavaScript Search file using FAR file list (Build JS Search dialog).
    - MakeUncompHelp= -- generate Uncompressed Help files (Make Uncompressed Help dialog).

  • New: Batch commands MakeHHC, MakeHHK -- These commands can now create MS Help 2 .hxt and .hxk files if you supply filenames with .hxt and hxk file extensions.

  • Fix: MakeHHP - now adds all list files to the .HHP [FILES] list. Was adding only HTML type files.

Help Authoring

  • H2: Added ms.vsipcc+ to export choices. MS recommend plug into this instead of ms.vscc+ for VS 2005.

  • HH: Improved: HH 1.x Compilation - Better environment checks:
    - Detects and reports HHA.DLL (MS HH 1.x Compiler) crashes.
    - Detects and reports if 3rd parties have installed older versions of HHA.DLL.


  • Fix: Windows Vista. FAR HTML Help tools now work under Vista build 5270 (Dec CTP).

  • Fix: Window paint bug fixed. If the Windows task bar is docked top or left then some FAR windows did not paint properly.

  • Fix: Drag and drop used to add content of Zip files into the FAR file list. This no longer happens.

  • Fix: Skip itss.dll check if Windows 5.2 or greater - win64 systems use witss.dll. Kills annoying popup.

  • Fix: Help Wizard - Import from main file list gave access error.

  • Fix: Main window displayed StrRO instead of [ReadOnly] in the title bar of the TOC + Index editor.

FAR (May-05-2005)

Please see "FAR Version 4 Info" for upgrade information.

Items marked as [V4] require a Version 4 license. Other items will work using a Version 3 license.

Uncompressed Help

  • [V4] New: FAR Uncompressed help now generates pure JavaScript TOC and Index controls. No ActiveX or server side code is required. This is a must-have given Microsoft's decision to block all HTML Help ActiveX (hhctrl.ocx) controls from working on the web.

  • [V4] New: FAR now includes a pure JavaScript Search Engine. This very portable search engine can deliver fast search services to any web site on a CD, DVD, Internet, Intranet or even a USB thumb drive. In fact anywhere a JavaScript enabled browser can go. You generate the search UI using the Uncompressed Help dialog or the new "Authoring > Build JavaScript Search dialog", This new dialog is used to generate the "searchdata.js" search database file and to test the search engine. No ActiveX or server side code is required. You have complete control over what goes into the search engine data file and what the search UI layout looks like.
    The FAR JS Search code has not been obfuscated in any way and we encourage you to make changes to it. Remember that the code is copyright and owned by us. Please respect it as you would any 3rd party executable.

  • New: Frame page settings "Frame Divider width", "Frame Divider Color".

  • New: Command to insert free Google search code into your search pane to provide search for your particular domain.

  • Minor change: Can now have just Index or just search. Before Contents Navigation tab was always required.

HTML Help 1.x

  • [V4] New: File > Compare ITS file. FAR can now compare a web (directory structure) with the contents of a .CHM of .HxS file. This identifies files that are not compiled into the ITS file. Very useful when cleaning up source file folders of unused files.

  • Fix: FAR now does better job of preserving .HHP file project file sections
    In some situations (Wizards and Save As) some of this information was lost.

MS Help 2.x

  • [V4] New: The MS Help 2 Project editor now has a new "Collection Wizard" to help you create your collection level files. Creating collection level glue files is now very easy. It also outputs H2Reg file registration script, and allows you to quickly test your collection and provides you with a shipping list.

  • [V4] New: There is a new "XML Markup" page tab in the MS H2 Utilities window. This allows you to quickly find/add/remove/replace XML data island markup across thousands of files very quickly.

  • Added new H2Reg section [Merge_Namespace] into MS H2 Export / MS H2 Import dialogs.

  • Fix: Wizard dialog - path error when loading existing project with empty HxF File list.

  • Fix: FAR H2 Viewer could not always find DExplore.exe because the path in the registry became wrapped in quotes for VS 7.1.

  • Fix: FAR H2 Viewer Search Highlighting is fixed.

  • Updated: FAR H2 Viewer Text-To-Speech supports more features. More voices. Browser Stop will now also stop the speech.

  • FAR is ms.vscc.2005 ready (code was often hardwired to ms.vscc or ms.vscc.2003 collections). Now more future proof.

HH Utilities Window

  • [V4] New: FAR version 3 could show you file differences between 2 ITS (.chm/.HxS) help files down to the internal file boundary level. FAR version 4 allows you to hook up 3rd party file difference program so you can see differences down to the character level.
    Version 4 also has new compare file options: Ignore Case / Ignore CR LF chars / Ignore Multi-spaces / DOS "\" = Unix "/".
    Also added a Refresh command to reload files once comparison options were changed.

  • New: Can now Compare 2 Help files via MS Explorer context menu. So you can compare 2 CHMs by right-clicking them in Explorer.

TOC/Index Editor

  • [V4] New TOC/Index File menu commands "Export to DHTML TOC" and "Import DHTML TOC". This allows you to export and import NDoc 3.x DHTML style TOCs. FAR generates the same DHTML code used by NDoc 3.x. Effectively you can edit NDoc DHTML TOC files.

  • Rewrite of the TOC control multi-select and drag & drop code. Works much more smoothly.

  • New: "Allow Redirection" button added to Preview page toolbar. This allows you to catch files before they automatically redirect you to another file.

  • Fix: Preview page now loads HTML topics containing Frames and IFrames correctly and displays the correct URL etc.
    EG. RoboHelp HTML has hidden a IFrame so the URL would often incorrectly say "About:Blank".

  • New: Added "Options > Test in Preview Page", This allowing you to test TOC/Index files in the FAR Preview page instead of in Internet Explorer window and thus bypass the annoying Windows XP SP2 security warnings.

  • New: TOC Meta file - If editing Fred.HHC (or Fred.HHK) you can add a Meta file Fred.HHC.ini (or Fred.HHK.ini) containing an alternative location to preview your files from. This helps a few customers who like to parse their HTML source to another location. INI file Example: [main]
    PreviewDir=G:\Help OR PreviewDir=http://helpware.net/FAR/help/

  • Toc/Index/HHC/HxC editors now display "[ReadOnly]" in title bar if current file is read-only. They also prompt the user when saving over a read-only file. So now more version control friendly.

  • FAR does a better job at automatically generating TOC structure by examining the HTML header levels and bookmarks. These settings are still situated in the Preferences dialog.

  • New: Preferences > HTML Help tab options allows you to skip folders when generating a TOC or Index files.

  • HHK Index Editor - Now warns you if you save a .HHK index file containing undefined (empty) links. We found that these empty links can really screw up the final compiled Index (MS bug not ours).

Far File list (main window)

  • [V4] New: "File > FAR File List". Now you can save a .FAR file list and later use that file list to report on what has changed in your directory structure. We use this to keep snapshots of special folders and drives we need to monitor for changes.

  • [V4] New: "Commands > FTP Copy Files". Now you can add files to FAR, sort by date then upload selected files to your FTP server directly from within FAR. Also available as Batch command for unattended upload.

  • [V4] New: Added "Command > Delete Selected Files". You can now delete files in the FAR file list directly from hard Disk (not just from the FAR file list). This command although a little dangerous has saved us a lot of time. File list files must be selected first and you will always be prompted before deleting.

  • New: New drop file Filter popup menu provides fast access to file filters from the status bar and Filter panel. Also filter panels now displays the name of the current drop file filter.

  • New: Option to show Relative or Full directory path. Relative path take up much less room in the file list. Ctrl+C copies the relative path of the selected files if in relative path display mode.

  • New: File list now displays associated program icons next to each file name.

  • New: File list now has a Date Modified column (same as Explorer). So can now sort list by date.
    There is also a new "Edit > Refresh F5" command to update File date and File size info displayed.

  • Sorting Match and Replace columns now moves you quickly to the top item (if current selected item is != a match). Makes moving changes to the top of the list and viewing them much faster.

  • Fix: XP Explorer search results can contain a list of files from inside ZIP files. These files if dropped onto FAR would cause the calculation of the base folder to fail. FAR now ignores files inside ZIP files (we wish XP Explorer would!).

  • New: File list right-click popup menu now includes commands to: Show "File Properties", "Open with FAR", "Open with..." (same as Explorer context command) and "Open Container Folder". Also added "File Properties" to the main File menu.

  • Minor change: FAR no longer adds the file list of a .HHP file to the FAR file list automatically when opening a .hhp project. This is still available by setting LoadFileListOnHelpProjOpen=YES in the Settings.ini file (default is now =No).

  • Most file commands (eg. Copy / Set File Date / Set file Encoding etc) now sets the Match column to indicate what happened during the file operation. Thus you can now sort the match column to see exactly what files were affected during a file operation.

  • Global File Filter default - Added .png files. This can be modified in Preferences dialog anyway.

  • "File > Save" has a new checkbox "Save extra Info" to include file size/date/replace/match column info when saving to .FAR file. Date is stores stored as UTC (2x 32 bit DWords) (ie. GMT) so that the .FAR is portable across time zones.

  • Fix: FAR now uses UTC (2x 32 bit DWords) time when handling file dates. The 64bit date provides greater accuracy and FAR now displays exactly the same date and time as displayed by windows.

Find and Replace

  • New: FAR Search supports wild char * (already supports ?) which matches any string of chars. Use ^* to find an actual * char. eg. Find "<xml*>" will match "<xml whatever>"

  • Several new search commands:
    - $L$[filename] include contents of a file command.
    - $X+$, $X-$, $X*$, $X?$, $X@$ MS Help 2 XML data Islands matching commands.
    - $O-$, $O1$, $O2$ original match string commands.

FAR Batch Mode

  • Batch mode is much improved. Supports relative paths where possible.

  • Added CopyTo, BackupTo, FtpCopyTo commands.

Other Changes

  • [V4] New: FAR can now save settings to an INI file on disk (as well to the registry as before). This is handy if FAR travels with you between computers via a portable hard drive. Saving settings to registry is still slightly faster on slower machines.

  • New: Unicode files - Now prompts user to pick a valid codepage when converting Unicode<->ANSI fails.
    Also "Commands > Set File Encoding" can now specify an ANSI Code Page to use. So no longer dependant on the current Windows code page being set correctly when setting the file encoding.

  • New: Icon button in Title Bar of all Modeless window allows fast access the Ctrl+F12 "Go To Windows" dialog.

  • Copy dialog now remembers the path for a particular base folder.

  • Reports: Improvements to reporting from file list. A few new options.
    - A file called abc.xml can have an associated meta file abc.xml.meta to supply extra info such as title and meta info.
    - Added reporting tag %fHtmlMeta:xxx% -- grabs yyy from <meta name="xxx" content="yyy"> from a HTML or Meta file.
    - Added reporting %dirseg:n% -- displays a directory path segment. eg. %dirseg:1% displays "utils" of c:\utils\a\file.htm

  • Setting.ini (read-only file read once when FAR loads) contains ability to switch on and off several exotic settings. We also ship settings(default).ini for reference since we never overwrites a users Settings.ini file.

  • Many other minor fixes and improvements.

FAR (Sept-16-2003)

  • Fixed a shutdown exception error effecting some WinXP and 2003 users.

  • If Theme related shutdown problems persist you can force FAR to ignore its 3rd party Theme code by adding a dummy file "FAR.NoThemes" to the same folder as FAR.EXE.

  • Added some new Advanced Search commands for a customer:

    • * $L+$ -- Makes tag and tag attributes lowercase. ($L$ does just the tag)

    • * $L*$ -- Makes the complete match string lowercase.

    • * $F.$ -- Represents the File name with no path or ext. ($F$ represents just the file name)

    • * $F*$ -- Represents the full path and File name.

FAR (Sept-5-2003)

  • Minor update for MS Help 2 authors only.

  • Fixed a fault where the H2 Viewer window caused access violations on some PCs.

FAR (Aug-31-2003)

Summary of Major Changes:

  • Copy Files Command:
    Added: Smart Copy and Backup Mode allows you to backup incrementally to a single destination folder. Files unchanged are not copied, while destination files are backed up to filename[0001].ext, filename[0002].ext etc. before being overwritten.

  • TOC Generation:
    When generating TOC you can scan for all bookmarks (as before) but now FAR will also find the associated <h1> <h2> etc header level and generate TOC structure for the Bookmark items. This only works if there is good Header structure in the HTML file. (See Pref dialog).

  • Make Uncompressed help dialog -- More options. Now has a range of custom tab images.

Find & Replace:

  • Advanced Find & Replace - $A$ Sub Strings dialog
    - The delete text split into Start / End for greater control.
    - Can now specify "User Original String as Substring" setting.

  • Fix: Replace $A$ substrings: replace would strip double spaces and CR LFs from Substring.

  • Fix: Find and Replace was prompting for invalid $R$ even if Replace text was not specified.

  • To find a ? char you can prefix it with ^ char. So ? is wild while Find: ^? finds a real ?.

  • Added $T$ command to set the doc title - EG. set the Title to the first matching text found in a document.

HTML Help 1.x

  • Add Hebrew & Arabic languages to the HH Project editor language list, and language list now remembers obscure entries.

  • When generating TOC (HH Proj Editor & Uncomp Help) keep a backup copy of the old file as (filename~).

  • Fine tune Compiler window - Added find next error command button.

MS Help 2.x:

  • All links to VSHIK documentation now adapts to ms.vscc and ms.vshik.2003, whichever is installed.

  • Tweak H2 Import:
    - Open, Save menu options
    - Now saves all plug-in info. Can now make exact copies of collections.
    - Fix: Was not always expanding ..\..\xxx type paths correctly.
    - Import dialog launches the open dialog automatically if the selected Collection's folder contains a H2Reg script.
    - Code is now exactly the same as used by H2Reg.exe.

  • Utilities window
    - Added h2reg import options to main menu
    - Added Filters column to the NS/Collection list.

  • Registration dialog
    - Can now edit and remove filters from within this dialog.
    - Can now import Title, Plug-in and Filter from a h2reg cmd script file.
    - Can now multi-select titles list items (effects edit and remove cmds).
    - Plug-in page
    * now display a tree view showing nested plug-ins.
    * No longer double prompts on remove plug-in.
    * Can now remove nested plug-ins.

  • Before performing Auto-Register now asks "unregister first?" as this gives cleanest registration BUT wipes all titles etc attached to the namespace.

  • H2 Viewer
    - We loaded the Home Page on File Open - Now opens Default page (Home page if no default set).
    - Sync button now handles paths containing %20 (spaces).
    - Remove any FAR temporary NS created on viewer close.
    - Fix: Sometimes home page world not appear on loading a Namespace.
    - Optimized filter changes - now a tad faster.
    - Filter Editor now displays filter definitions with empty query strings. I was previously blocking these for simplicity.

File Utilities:

  • Can now hide the single folder drop dialog (See preferences dialog to re-enable).

  • Main form - File list columns positions are now remembered.

  • Fix for Japanese Windows - Find and Replace
    * Disable auto-complete feature on input fields for DBCS MS Windows
    * Now matches strings correctly when "Ignore Case" checked.

  • Fix: We now always sort folders using a trailing slash. This gives a better folder column sort.

  • Fix: Set attribute command - can now cancel out of long loop of setting file attribs.

  • Fix: Copy file - No longer locks up the application while it copies many files.


  • Add "Open Containing Folder" command to Main window popup menu + Batch Compile popup menu.

  • In the Uncompress window show a checkbox on the button type tabs.

  • Fix: Fix problem with batch mode. If no /B or /BB batch switches it was still appending to _batchlog.txt

  • TOC editor - Now warns when a child item is added to Merge (include) item.

  • Fix code function that was did not always extract the Title from a HTML doc.

  • Fix problem with Find and Replace - Was writing a test file every time it saved a file to disk. Test file was also missing the target folder completely and writing to the root folder. Now writes without test and reports any write errors. Faster and more reliable.

  • Fix: Express help: Now Prompts when overwriting TOC and Index files. Also now preserves hhc/hhk/hhc filename case. Thanks Don.

  • Fix: TOC Editor- When "Encode All Special Label Chars" is enabled only the first few chars in the line would be encoded. EG. ááááááááá --> &Agrave;&Agrave;ááááááá

  • Update: Find Files Date dialog - Now sets the match field on the selected FAR list files as well.

  • Report dialog - When inserting a new code string the cursor is now moved after the new code (was before).

  • Fix: Zipping to root of drive was causing a error.

  • Fix: Batch mode now shows progress dialog when scanning for files.

  • Make Uncompressed help dialog no longer writes "codebase=" code line into ActiveX code. Nobody wants MS HH download dialog and no need in this situation.

  • Fix: HH TOC Editor - Can now load malformed TOCs Includes those mangled by 3rd party applications.

  • TOC Editor: "Export to HTML" now works for all TOC/Index files.

  • New: Reports: %inc:offset% - Example: %inc:2000% will increment numbering as %inc% did except with a number offset of 2000.

  • New: Reports: A specifier made up of all uppercase letters will force the output to all uppercase. Example: %FPATH% produces C:\WINDOWS\FILE.DLL not C:\Windows\File.dll.

  • Fix Exception on FAR shutdown if non-admin logon.

  • Registered WebZip users now never see nag screen on Startup, Zip, Unzip, Express HH, H2 Viewer.

  • FAR now finds HHW.EXE more precisely.

  • Update KeyWorks HH 1.x compiler Help.

  • Fix Batch compile - Total error count was not being reset to zero at the start of batch compile.

  • New: Hex Dump dialog - Now shows raw byte data in Hexadecimal, Decimal and Octal.

FAR (July-20-2002)

3.3.2 is a special download from the Spidersoft.com site.

Registered WebZip users never see a FAR unregistered nag screen

on FAR Startup, Zip, Unzip, Express HH, H2 Viewer.

FAR (July-18-2002)

3.3.1 is a minor maintenance release. Next release will probably be when MS Help 2 is released in 2003.

H2 Viewer

  • Fix: Now displays filters of child (plug-in) collections.

H2 Utilities window

  • Change: Default double-click action on NS list item is to open registration window. Was open viewer.

  • Fix: Remove annoying popups that occur when clicking on list items with missing collection files.

  • Update: Registration window - Add/Edit Title dialog - width is now resizable and auto-opens the HxS Open dialog.


  • Update: Fix up special $M$ search command - Works a little better now. Wrote some more help. A work in progress.

  • New: View > Find Duplicates > Find Suspect Filenames - Finds filenames in the list containing bad chars like spc,%,#.

  • Fix: Make Report Toolbar button just a drop down (not split button) because of some weird windows XP things with sizing.

  • Fix: TOC Editor - Preview page - Make sure RoboHTML.EXE, HHW.EXE, FrontPG.EXE, Word.exe are always in the list of HTML Editors (if installed on the PC). In the past it was sometimes hard find their location.

  • Fix: The general Folder Picker dialog now comes up much faster. Same with the Add Files dialog.

FAR (July-9-2002)

Summary of Major Changes:

  • New: All HH and H2 compile windows can now access MS HH Compiler Error help.

  • (Many thanks to Cheri and Ralph at Keyworks.net for making HH 1.x error info available)

  • New: Batch Compile window. Compiles several help projects as a batch run and directs all output to a single log file. Can also drag and drop project files onto this window.

  • New: H2 Project Editor: HxC Collection-level editing - Can now create a list of H2 projects that can be registered and compiled as a batch job.

  • New: HxS files can now be explored just the same as CHMs. HH Utilities window/Help Explorer window - can now view the internal file structure of MS Help 2 compiled files.

  • Fix: Can now safely drop files onto FAR even if the Authoring page is selected.

File Utilities.

  • New: View > Invert Selection - This command inverts the file selection.

  • New: View > Find Duplicates - Will find duplicate files in your help web.

  • New: Command > Set File Date & Time - Can now set the Create Date as well as the Modify Date.

  • Update: Can now cancel most long processes including file validation, sorting and zipping.

  • Update: Advanced Find and Replace - Increase max defn count 50 -> 200.

  • Fix: Searching large binary files was very hard to cancel.

  • Fix: If you closed the main window, you now get prompted if there are unsaved changes in any of the FAR TOC or project Editors.

  • Fix: Exporting to HTML TOC and Index - Now save paths with Unix slashes to be compatible with Netscape. Before you had to do this manually but FAR now forces Unix slashes for you.

Find and Replace.

  • Find & Replace Quiz dialog - Added Popup Options menu.
    - Current filename easier to see and copy.
    - Move "Show Low ASCII" check box to the popup menu.
    - New options - Open file, Open as Text.
    Note: If you modify the current file via an external program you will now get an option to save/not save/reload when it is time for FAR to update (save) the current file to disk.

  • Advanced Search dialog
    - New setting: Can now specify "Not Containing" text as well as "Containing" text. Makes it easier to tune/restrict the search.
    - Also added "Not Containing" option to the Define Substring dialog.

TOC/Index Editor.

  • Fix: Preview Page > Edit - Could not edit filenames containing spaces (fixed bug introduced in 3.2).

  • New: Request for a "Reset" button next to the Icon Select drop down - Reverts to default icon.

  • MS Help 2:H2 Register Plug-in - We now touch the parent HxC file date so that the H2 API reacts and remerges the collections files when next viewed.

  • H2 Utilities - HxConv Page can now pipe DOS output to a text box (good if the DOS box flashes by too quickly).

  • H2 Utilities - Hx Merge Utility Page now provides a HxM file editor.

  • H2 Utilities - New menu command "H2Reg Export". Create registration script that can be used by the H2Reg utility program. See H2Reg Home Page: http://helpware.net/mshelp2/h2reg.htm

  • Preferences dialog > MS Help2 page - Option "Write All" is now available for both the Collection and Project level file save (so now 2 checkboxes instead of 1).

  • New: H2 Utilities - NS Page. New controls and links give easier access to local collection files and info.

  • H2 Utilities - Register window.
    - Can now unplug a child collection that is missing from disk or unregistered.
    - Remove auto-complete style from the Namespace entry field - more trouble than it was worth.
    - Add buttons to the Title page (Nicer than right click menu).

  • H2 Viewer
    - Fix Index: Was updating on the List change event instead of the Click event.
    Still have problem with Control Arrow keys not working.
    - Open dialog - Keep selected item in view when resizing.

  • New: Can now examine the contents of a H2 compiled HxS files using the HH Utilities or Help File Explorer windows.

  • New: Can now compare 2 HxS files using the HH Utilities window (just as you could with 2 CHM files).

  • Removed demo h2 plugin project. Now on web at http://helpware.net/mshelp2/h2tutorial.htm

HH Utilities window.

  • Load last option added to Files menu

  • LinkCheck options are now in a dialog that is displayed when link checking is started.

  • LinkCheck options - Can now enter a path to the source files. The HTML report now links to the source files.

  • Add Verdana Style to the HTML report DOC

  • Added Tool bar buttons to the window.

  • Now supports MS Help 2 HxS files (but no link checking for HxS files yet).

General changes.

  • When listing HTML files also list *.ASP file

  • (requested change).

  • FAR Batch Mode
    - Log file now defaults to same folder as Batch command INI file, or Windows Temp folder if folder is readonly.
    - Can now stop log from showing at the end of run - See /L:,2 switch.
    - Fix: Was prompting user to validate file list Y/N during batch mode.

  • Many other small fixes and improvements.

FAR 3.2.0 (April-11-2002)

Summary of Major Changes:

  • Compatible with new MS Help 2 Beta (VSHIK) release.

  • Fix bug in TOC/Index Editor introduced in 3.1 that screws Japanese TOCs. Section of code is now double-byte friendly.

  • Improvements to File commands.

MS Help 2.x Beta support

  • Update to be compatible with new VSHIK release.

  • H2 Utilites > H2 Register dialog: New Plug-in and Filters pages.

  • Utilities dialog: New page to support HxMerge.exe.

  • Fix error in writing collection level HxT & HxK file headers.

  • <!DOCTYPE HelpTOC> and <!DOCTYPE HelpIndex> was omitted.
    Example file added: \Helpware\FAR\extra\TestPlugIn.zip, Contains an example collection you can register and plug into MS.VSCC. See the readme.txt file for instructions (a work in progress).

  • Update Hx Icon graphics. Now compatible with latest Beta.

  • Added green links to H2 dialogs - link directly to VSHIK help.

  • Update Explorer file associations for H2 files. .chm, .hhp -- "Convert to H2 with FAR", .HxS -- "Decompile with FAR"

  • H2 Project window - Validates Nav page fields on exit. Less chance of problems.

  • Fix: HxConv.exe file params are now wrapped in quotes so it works with paths containing spaces.

  • FAR H2 Viewer:

    • Show Open dialog on opening viewer window, and pre-selects last Namespace.

    • Use first TOC URL as Home/Default page, if not defined in the Collection (same as VS.NET DExplore).

    • Added Next & Prev buttons to Go Menu & Toolbar to quickly browse the TOC.

    • Put Sync command into Go Menu.

    • Added Text-To-Speech command (uses MS Agent)

    • File menu command to open current Namespace in VS.NET help viewer (DExplore.exe).

    • Change some hot keys which were clashing with the Browser control.

  • Remove FAR's folder limitation on H2 Stop Word file.

  • H2 Utilities > H2 Register > Add H2 Help Title dialog: New fields so you can specify the media locations.

TOC/Index Editor

  • Fix: Ctrl+F2 keypress was slipping through to main window (bug introduced in 3.1).

  • Fix: Fix for Europeans stuffed TOC and Index files under Japanese/Chinese windows (bug introduced in 3.1). Section of code is now double-byte friendly.

  • New: Add checkbox to HxT and HxK Properties page. You can now manually switch to/from a collection level file (which simply means omit or add the DTD header declaration. Note: Collection level (uncompressed) files don't have a DTD file reference.

  • Edit button (Preview page) now has dropdown with icons so you can choose an editor.

  • Icon dropdown list (Hx? files) now shows 0 based numbers, same as in the .Hx? file.

  • Must now always enter the editor via the file open dialog like other windows.

File Commands - Update

  • Copy Files: Option to preserve file attributes. Can now copy just selected files. Now get overwrite popup if a destination file already exists. Optionally opens the destination folder when copy completes.

  • Set File Date/Time: Can now work on selected files. General tidy up of code and dialog.

  • Set File Encoding: New dialog to set the file encoding (ANSI, Unicode, UTF-8) just the same as NotePad SaveAs does (win2k/xp), except FAR can do many files at a time. Also FAR now display the encoding of the selected file in the status bar.

  • Set File Attributes: New dialog allows you to set the "Readonly, Hidden, SystemFile, Archive" file attributes.

  • Zip File List: Save dialog now has a check box [x]"Zip only selected files".

  • Find Files dated: Added Time entry fields. Now both the After Date/Time and the Before Date/Time settings are optional. Resultant matching files are now selected in the main file list (ready for copy, zip, reporting etc).

  • Fix: Bug found in Zip. In some situations no files would be zipped.


  • UI looks nicer under Windows XP. Command in View menu can toggle XP theme painting on and off.

  • New: Simple Hex Dump window - Right-click a file list item and select "View as Hex Dump".

  • Various optimizations, bug fixes and tidy ups.

  • Fix: Help Express dialog - If invalid Home page and user canceled then would GPF.

  • New: Option "Check Bookmarks" - in past version it always validated bookmarks.

  • Main windows remember past path better.

FAR 3.1.0 (Mar-03-2002)

Summary of Major Improvements:

  • HH Utilities window - Can now access Workshops "HTML Help ActiveX Control" code Wizard.

  • Improved MS Help 2 support - H2 Viewer window. Added Filter support.

  • Split the main window User Interface into File Utilities and Authoring commands (can disable in Preferences).

  • Fixed ZIP support (broken in V3.0).

User Interface Change.

  • Main window now contains 2 pages, one for File Utilities and one for Authoring. File Utilities are hidden in Authoring mode. Use "View > Show File Utilities" to flip between pages. Or show the page Tabs, "View > Mode Tabs", to change pages.

  • Preference Dialog - "Can Hide File Utilities" check box, can be unchecked to hide the new 2 page interface.

MS Help 2.x.

  • H2 Help Viewer window:

    • Now available from the main command menu.

    • Added Nav tabs.

    • Added Favorites.

    • Added a Filter Edit dialog.

    • Full-text search: Cancel dialog lets you cancel a lengthy search.

  • The MSDN H2 Viewer (DExplore) is automatically added to the default viewers list (Preferences dialog) if found.

  • H2 Project Editor window:

    • Now has a H2 Viewer dropdown so you can quickly change h2 viewer for a project. Used to have to change the global in prefs.

    • Added basic Attributes support.

  • Note: Attributes files (HxA) only seem work if added to the collection level project file like MS do.

    • Fix a bug in the HxC (project file) file format, where HxA (attrib files), HxV (virtual topic file) info was being saved in the wrong order causing H2 compiles to fail. Now saves in order defined in HxC DTD file.

  • H2 Utilities window: Remove Compile command - Leaves Decompile more prominent. Compile is best done in the project window.

  • Express Help dialog - When creating a new H2 project file, you now get prompted for the file type ANSI, Unicode, UTF-8 Unicode (as done in the Wizard and H2 Project Editor.

MS HTML Help 1.x.

  • Fix: Logic error in HTML Help Advanced editor. Window Type Field: Default navigation field was not restored after a save. Now ok.

  • Fix: HH Project editor would sometimes show an access violation on File create or load. This was because Window Type pages are sometimes hidden and FAR would try and select the last page used.

  • Fix: CHM Explorer - can now right-click hh.dat file in Explorer and view in FAR.

  • The Add Web files command (Project Editor and Wizard) - Can now select the folder to scan for web files (but only if the project folder contains sub directories).

  • HH 1.x Utils window

    • Now remembers last page

    • New: Now has HH ActiveX Script Wizard (same as in Workshop)

    • Can now close the current CHM

    • Added menu hints

    • Option (checkbox) to automatically load the last CHM file.

Find & Replace.

  • New: Find String (or Advanced Find: Start with/End with/Contains text) can now contain "?" chars to match any character. So "file?.htm" will match text "file1.htm", "filev.htm" but not "file.htm". When trying to match spaces you may need to switch "Ignore Spaces" off.

TOC/Index Editor.

  • Fix: TOC/Index editor was destroying some labels containing Umlauts when saving. This area is much improved. FAR now Escapes/UnEscapes labels correctly so now you see real text not escape codes in the TOC editor. Chars «¨¬§©ª/–—… should not be Escaped as HH TOC pane wont display them encoded. So we leave these as they are.

  • New: You can stop FAR TOC Editor from encoding certain special characters and umlauts by declaring them in settings.ini (stored in the far.exe run folder).

  • Fix: Preview Page - Sync command. Now strips off Bookmarks before

  • looking for a TOC node to sync to.

  • TOC/Index Editor (MS H2) - Now preserve .DTD header line in .Hx? files. EG. If you load a .HxT file with no .DTD reference then none will be saved.

  • Fix: If you load a TOC/Index file while validate Links is enabled the file now loads and all bad links nodes are expanded into view. Before they would remain hidden in unexpanded tree nodes.

  • Fix: HHK Index Editing - Now preserves redundant double Name info

    <LI> <OBJECT type="text/sitemap">
    <param name="Name" value="www1">
    <param name="Name" value="www1">
    <param name="Local" value="www1.htm">

Past version would strip out the double name on load, and always saved double name on save. Now it preserves the info in case the user is using Information Types (unlikely as broken technology). On HHK file load, if duplicates are found and you will be ask whether you want to strip out this redundant information (Normalize index). There is also a menu item "TOC > Special > Auto-Normalize HHK Files" - Enable this to auto normalize on file load (same as past). Uncheck to be prompted whenever file load finds HHK redundant duplicate information. ** Most people can ignore this fix - You will just see your file size decrease slightly -- good for huge HHK files. **

Batch Mode.

  • New: Batch Mode command - LinkCheckChm=

  • You can now check the links of one or more CHM files in FAR batch mode.

  • Added more support for Link Check commands in batch mode.

  • Batch jobs - Default directory is now the current folder.
    EG. Performing FAR.EXE /L:mylog.txt /BB:jobs.ini
    from folder d:\batchjobs will look for log and jobs.ini in that folder.
    EG. Performing FAR.EXE /L:mylog.txt /BB:d:\xxx\jobs.ini

will use folder d:\xxx for the log file folder.

In the past full paths were always required.


  • Fix: File Add dialog - Clear List check box was broken (only Clear List in main menu worked).

  • Fix: Fixed Zip support. FAR 3.0 shipped 2 XCEED zip dlls - xcdzip321.dll and xcdunz321.dll. This should be renamed to xcdzip32.dll and xcdunz32.dll. The component vendor shipped us *321.dll by accident. Fixed in FAR 3.0.10 and greater.

  • New: Make Compressed Help window -- Can now add a close button, edit button colors, browse GIF files as well as JPG.

  • Tidy colors for WinXP. Update colors slightly for non-XP.

  • Fix some control placements under large fonts.

  • Fix: Access Violation - when H2 Viewer + Toc editor both up and you shutdown.

  • New: File Drop filter dialog now contains a master Filter On/Off Checkbox. Faster to toggle Filtering on/off.

FAR 3.0.2 (Oct-25-2001)

A third party component included in FAR 3.0 broke FAR under NT4. FAR 3.0.2 is now stable & tested under NT4 SP6.

  • Fix: Toc/Index Editor - "Validate" toolbar button had stopped working.

  • Fix: Toc/Index Editor - "Open as text" in File page had stopped working.

  • Fix: Toc/Index Editor - was prompting "reload file?" when loading a new file via Explorer.

  • Fix: Open CHM - Now sets current directory = CHM folder so that merged CHMs work.

  • Fix: HH Project Editor - clear drop downs before refilling.

  • Fix: Project Editors - Change page hot keys (Shift+Up, Shift+Dn) to Shift+Ctrl+.. to avoid list select clash.

  • New: All editors - Reload toolbar button now has drop down list like their main menu.

  • New: Toc/Index Editor - The sort feature can now do Numeric sorts and custom Locale sorting.

FAR 3.0.0 (Oct-04-2001)

New Features for V3.0.

Issues with V3.0

  • The current H2 SDK Preview build 2.0.9064.0 has many bugs.

  • H2 SDK causes serious problems if registering collections with Namespaces or FileIDs containing spaces.

  • Expect to see a few problems with the H2 part of FAR 3.0. As soon as the official Beta is release we will release a new version of FAR to match.

Fixed - Drop Filter

  • If you dropped files from a Explorer Search window, which may contain a mixed group of files from different folder, then FAR was getting the Base folder incorrect. This would stuff commands like copy and zip. Now ok.

  • If you dropped files directly from say a _vti folder. FAR would not filter these files (filter enabled). Now ok.

New Features

  • MS Help 2 Project Editor.

  • MS Help 2 Viewer. Test H2 collections with built-in viewer.

  • Command-line option to open a collection "FAR.EXE ms-help://namespace"

  • MS Help 2 Utilities dialog (Register, decompile, convert HH 1.x projects)

  • MS Help 2 support added to Express Help, Wizard windows and TOC & Index editor.

  • FAR Search and MS Help 2 features now supports Unicode.

  • Reports Dialog - Can now report on selected files.

  • Go To window - Quick access to all FAR windows (Ctrl+F12)

  • Express Help window now follows on to either the Help Wizard or the Advanced Project Editor window.

  • Uncompressed Help feature is now a separate window.

Other Changes Include...

  • Fix: HH Project window can now find HHW.EXE (workshop) reliably.

  • New: Explorer context menu commands - "Open with FAR" now supports HxC, HxT, HxK, HxS

  • Fix: Check web for updates. This background thread starved the application of CPU time.

  • Fix: Explorer context menu - "Open With..." (WinME/2K/XP) menu item were blank.

  • Optimized: CHM Explorer window CHM load time. Large files load faster.

  • Optimized: Toc/Index Editor - File Load is faster.

  • HHP Project Editor - New file list. Can now Sort file list by Dir/Ext/Name/Size.

  • When a project file is loaded, all files are validated. Now a cancel dialog appears after x seconds so you can cancel the validation loop.

  • Can now cancel the generate TOC process.

  • Fixed: Find and Replace was actually ignoring files with no file extension. Closely related was a message reporting drive was readonly when if was ok.

  • New: Adv Find and Replace - new tab - Move Link/file command added. Help updated.

  • New: Adv Find and Replace - new command $L$ can convert all HTML tags to lowercase. Useful when moving to from HTML --> XHTML or XML.

  • New: Convert between H2.x and HH 1.x TOC/Index files by using "File > SaveAs". Unlike H2 SDK, FAR attempts to map Icon Indexes during conversion. Save dialog supports ANSI, Unicode save options.

  • Fixed: TOC Editor -When deleting thousands of items it was very slow. Now fast.

  • New: Batch commands DIR= and DIRScan= can be set to "." which means the directory of the INI file.

  • Many other minor fixes...

FAR 2.8.1 (Feb-07-2001)

Minor update:

  • FAR.EXE is now compressed with a latter version of UPX exe compressor.
    Older versions were being seen incorrectly by some virus protection programs as a virus. FAR does not have a virus. If the error bothers you then uninstall your current FAR and install 2.8.1.

FAR 2.8.0 (Feb-03-2001)


  • Fix - Win2K intermittent startup errors.

  • Fix - All dialogs now work under Windows Large Fonts

  • New - FAR now takes command line parameters "/O filename" so you can make single instance shortcuts to FAR from other programs and edit HHC, HHK and CHM files.

  • EG. HomeSite would be a FAR command line "/O %CURRENT%"

  • New - FAR main windows are now modeless so you can easily swap

  • between say the HHP editor and TOC editor with out closing windows first.

  • Fix - Restoring a window that was previously maximized sometimes failed.

  • Fix - FAR now considers .ASP a HTML file (for those doing uncompress help on the web).

  • Fix - Explorer context menus under Windows 2000 & ME now work better.

  • Also under Win 2000 & ME you can now make FAR the default program for

  • .hhc, .hhk, .hhp files (or not). Default is not.

  • Batch mode - All advanced search options are now available under batch mode.

  • Fix - Registry settings - Import from file. Was loading file settings but not displaying them on screen. When FAR closed it would save its settings and overwrite some new settings. Now fixed.

  • Status bar now displays info on selection count and files size

Toc/Index Editor

  • Fix - TOC items can now contain ><& type chars. Strings are now escaped.

  • Fix - Validate links command checks HHK items correctly. Links to other KeyWords are validated.

  • Fix - Ctrl+Drag was used to Copy items but Ctrl+Click is already used multi-select. So now Shift+Drag is used.

  • Hot keys to move TOC items is now back to original Ctrl+Alt+Arrows keys.

FAR 2.7.0 (Oct-21-2000)


  • New - Preferences dialog: Can now Export / Import user settings to older type INI file.

  • New - You can now edit the Replace text in the Prompt dialog which appears during Find and Replace.

  • Fix - "Add Web Files" command uses the Global drop filter temporarily, however the drop filter was not always restored correctly afterwards.

  • Using UPX EXE compressor reduced FAR.EXE file size from 2,247K to 680K. No degradation in load speed or performance. This is a must have free utility.

  • When you do multiple drops onto FAR it no longer checks for duplicates. Too slow when dealing with 1000's of files. User beware.

HHP Editing/Compiling

  • Compiler now warns if target CHM is RO before compiling. To help version control systems.

  • Fix - A quoted string containing a comer EG. "some title, some more" was being broken into two parts causing problems.

Advanced Find and Replace Dialog

  • Window now sizable.

  • Added online help for the dialog.

  • Move the advanced options into a Tabbed notebook.

  • New - $R$[filename] command. Add Script or CSS file statement to multiple-files in multiple-folders and FAR will insert the correct relative path into each file.

  • New - $O$ command. FAR will replace this by original match string.

TOC / Index Editor

  • New - Can now set several TOC icons at once using the Icon dropdown and tree control multi-select.

  • New - Drag mode allows both Link only & Link and label drops (now 4 tree insert modes)

  • New - Edit menu with keyboard commands: Cut (move), Copy and Paste.

  • New - Normalize Index. Reduce Popup folders with single popup items to a single Index entry.

  • New - Can now abort Sort since >1,000 items or more can be slow.

  • Fix - Access violation when drag and drop mode=Link Only and target is not a valid node.

  • Fix - Access violation when click edit in preview page when page is not available.

  • Fix - Normalization of TOC items would lose a branch if orphan contained children.

  • Drag files onto Tree control now results in focus change to tree for keyboard users.

  • Several new keyboard shortcuts including:

    • F11 to shift focus between Tree and main control on the Tabbed notebook control.

    • Ctrl+F11 to shift focus between Tree and Tabbed notebook control.

    • Alt+Ctrl+ F11 to insert selected items from the current file list into the tree control.

    • F12 to detach/reattach preview page.

    • Ctrl+1, Ctrl+2, Ctrl+3, Ctrl+4 anywhere to select a drag & drop mode.

    • F6, F7, F8 - Sets Index entry type without moving focus.

    • Ctrl+X, Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V (cut, copy, paste) shortcuts for tree control items.

  • HHK edit - now has separate popup item and popup list items checkbox.

  • General improvements for the HHK editor.

FAR 2.6.0 (Sept-3-2000)


  • New installer adds 250K to the download size but improves the installation and de-installation experience. Default install folder is now \program files\helpware\far.

  • Fix - Explorer context menus no longer depend on workshop being previously installed. Workshop is still required to compile hhp files.

  • Fix - When adding Web files to the FAR list, the memory and visible list were sometimes out of sync.

  • Main window file list will no longer accept duplicate files added to it.

  • Faster, better sorting of FAR file list.

  • Zip, Chm, Chw, Its file context menus now available in Explorer.

  • Now creates context menus and file associations only once on installation.

  • Add option in preferences to Add/Remove file associations.
    Zip and folder context menus can now be removed from Explorer.

  • Add option in preferences to disable auto web check for new FAR version.

Find and Replace

  • Fix - If user cancels search, then as before we discard the changes made to the current file in memory. Now we also roll back the on screen counters to correctly show that the actual replacements that were written to disk.

  • New - Now has logging option. See Preferences dialog and status bar.

  • Statusbar - Can see Filter and Log info - Hint shows current settings - click to open relevant settings dialog.

Command line batch mode

  • Fix - Batch search is now independent from UI "Search All" checkbox settings.

  • Fix - Batch command "Dir" was doing same as "DirScan".

Examine CHM - New window

  • Explorer - Chm file right-click context menu. "Examine with FAR".

  • Chm Link Checker

    • Now part of Examine Chm dialog

    • Now knows about "mailto:" links.

    • Now also validates any Context Mappings stored in the Chm.

  • Features:

    • List files in Chm.

    • Compare 2 Chms (byte by byte compare of all files).

    • Extract selected files from a Chm.

    • Test Windows, Context and Topic API calls.

    • Compress Chw files. EG. MSDN 60MB Chw compresses down to 5MB.

    • Delete items from CHM (make ITS files with no HH binary files)

FAR 2.5.1 (July-7-2000)

  • New - Dialog controls now display foreign character fonts correctly on Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Greek, Turkish, Vietnamese, Hebew, Thai and Russian (Cyrillic) Windows.

  • Fix main File List - Now reports actual replacements as well as search matches found. Also fixed Matches column sorting.

  • Open file list dialog - option to load list explicitly or search moved into open dialog. Save file list dialog now contains option to save selected items only.

  • New Reporting specifier - Can now report <title> text in HTML file.

  • TOC Editor changes

    • New - TOC Editor - The Preview page now has Edit button. Opens default HTML editor.

    • Fix - When removing all children from a node it was not automatically reverting to a non-folder icon.

    • Can now multi-select for TOC Delete and Drag & Drop

    • Fix TOC hotkeys that did not work sometimes

    • Editor now remembers drop mode

    • TOC drag & drop pause over folder will now auto open but not close

    • Several Find and replace bugs fixed.

    • Added extra key shortcuts

  • Express HHelp

    • No longer creates Next/Prev toolbar buttons as these don't work if filenames have spaces and TOC icons cannot be edited with a binary TOC.

    • Now has Title edit field.

  • Preferences dialog

    • New option allows multiple installs of FAR to save settings in different registry locations

    • Now contains the HTML TOC creation settings eg. Include bookmarks.

    • The hardwired filter used when searching for web files can now be edited.

  • Adv search - "new" button now makes a copy of the current search definition.

  • Link checker - Now checks all hyper-links it can find in a chm file. This includes bookmarks and links to files in other CHMs.

  • MSDOS Batch mode

    • Fixed problem with current folder. Info sections were not being found.

    • Add new Batch command - OpenFarList=, OpenFarSrch=. They do the same as File >Open command.

FAR (April-15-2000)

TOC Editor - Validate TOC Links

  • Now validates Umlauts and HTML codes correctly.

    • Example: "æ" character will match HTML codes "&aelig;" and "&#230;" and visa-versa.

  • Validate now has a progress bar and cancel button.

Searching through hundreds of CHM files can take time.

TOC Editor - Find Dialog

  • New Find and Replace options - Append text and Prefix with text.


  • HH Compile -No longer displays Broken links info at end of compile since

  • HHA.DLL compiler appears to report incorrect information.

  • Update online help

  • Minor fixes

FAR (April-04-2000) - BETA

TOC Editor Changes

  • Validate links now looks right inside CHMs to validate filenames.

  • Link#Bookmarks also validated.

  • Can now load HHK Index files (since both HHK and HHC are site map format).

  • Window remembers its window size + Splitter position

  • New TOC commands - See TOC > Special menu

  • TOC Editor Preview - added Sync button - Sync TOC to browser page

  • Keep clicking to step though multiple matches in the TOC

  • New TOC editor Tab - "CHM file". List contents of CHM and drag items onto TOC

  • TOC Preview window changes

    • Can now preview topics links chm::topic

    • Can now be detached as a separate window to preview files in other TOC editor tabs.

Find and Replace changes

  • Adv Search - Now easier to define sub-strings $A$, $B$ etc as start & end search text are now strings (were chars).

  • Find and Replace - Restore Read Only attribute if previously set

  • Do not modify date time stamp if no replacement is done.

  • Can now search All or Selected files. Checkbox in the search panel or Adv Search dialog.

Other Changes

  • Scan for files dialog progress dialog works better - better feedback & better cancel.

  • New FAR command - Set File data & time

  • Win2000 friendly - no longer creates files in FAR folder

  • Fix - HH Wizard now handles very big project files.

  • New - CHM Link Checker / Decompile dialog

  • Searches files in a CHM with chm::topic#bmark type links and validates them.

  • Marcel requested <Meta name="FarImageNumber" value="12">
    to be read from HTML file header for auto create TOC.

  • Reorganize menus.

FAR (Mar-03-2000)

  • Fix - Could not save .hhp files > 64K (limitation with INI files). Now saves files of any size.

  • Fixed - Introduced a harmless bug last version where the HTML Help Wizard opened twice in a row. Oops!

FAR (Feb-28-2000)

Minor update to address a problem with the new Advanced HH Editor:

  • Fix - Advanced HTML Help Editor. When adding a window type to a project that does not already have a window type you get an error "Error 4294967295 is not a valid integer" due to a couple of uninitialized settings. Now fixed.

  • Adv HH Editor -- Added more language selections to the language drop down.

  • Adv HH Editor -- If no window types defined then hide window type pages.

  • TOC and HHP editors now have Reload file history lists.

FAR (Feb-2000)

Minor additions and fixes to HTML Help utilities:

  • TOC Editor additions

    • New - Editor now has preview page tab to view the HTML Topics - Requires IE4/5.

    • New - Can now Alpha Sort groups of TOC items and optionally all sub groups.

  • FAR HTML Help Compiler

    • Fix - HH Compiler bug- Some rubbish was being compiled into CHMs - fix was to do a change directory to the project folder before compiling.

    • New - Added popup menu options - "Select All" and "Copy to Clipboard".

  • Fix - Explorer context menus bugs fixed. Some command line options were not compatible with Windows shell DDE - Had to disable .hhp, .hhc and .far command line options.

  • Remove - "View log after compile" checkbox since the new compiler window displays the log.

  • HH Project Editor

    • Now performs more parameter checks before compiling.

    • Files and Merge Files pages now have buttons to access popup options.

  • Added further support for WebZip (http://www.spidersoft.com).

FAR 2.3.2 (Jan-2000)

  • Fix: TOC Editor - Link browse dialog set the field but the new value was lost once you clicked another tree item link.

  • Fix: Right click on Explorer folder "Open with FAR" fixed.

  • New: TOC editor - duplicate a node or branch by holding ctrl key down while you drag and drop folders.

  • New: Option to add background image to navigation frame for an uncompressed site.

  • New: HTML Index for uncompressed site creation.

  • New: Advanced Search options: 2 new $A$, $B$, $C$ options. "Replace delete text with" and "Include these 2 search chars".

  • Create TOC dialog - Now has dropdown selection list for home page.

  • New: Commands menu - Override the limit MS imposed limit of only 2 simultaneous Internet connections for Internet Explorer and WinInet applications.

  • New: HTML Help Express - Select a folder and click compile for extra simple HTML Help.

  • New: HTML Help Project Editor - Workshop replacement window fixes several bugs in Workshop and makes available several HH settings not normally seen in MS Workshop.

  • Example: Browse buttons, MSDN Menu, Text Size.

  • Old HTML Help Create dialog remains - Now called HTML Help Wizard.

  • Better Checks for low system resources.

  • FAR 2.3 now support the WebZip application (http://www.spidersoft.com)

  • TOC Editor - FAR files page, Refresh button can create a file list from hard disk.

  • Main window - "File > Add Web Files" Quickly search and add files to FAR list.

  • Copy To command - now allows you to select a folder.

  • Find and Replace

    • Confirmation window now stays up. It hides only when search moves to the next file or the user cancels.

    • Remove Find Quiz Syntax highlighting because of Limited speed.

  • Also added Line number.

    • File list now scrolls as list updates.

  • FAR no longer cripples after the 60 day trial period. Instead you get an annoying 10 sec count down.

FAR 2.2.2 (23-Nov-1999)

  • Fix: When creating a TOC file, search for Title tags deeper into file.
    If no Title tags found in a document then use first H1, H2 or H3 tag text.

  • Fix: TOC editor - Right-click menu - Open commands work correctly on directory change now.

  • Automatic creation of an HHK index file from a HHC file - Now a tighter Index file with no duplicates.

  • TOC editor - can now delete a tree node without deleting child nodes

  • TOC editor - now deletes temporary files created in test mode.

  • Fix: Opening hhc, toc files using Windows Shell (Explorer) now works if folder has spaces

FAR 2.2.1 (245-Oct-1999) - Now Available

  • New - Can now Open and Save FAR file lists (.far files)

  • New - Can now save Drop File Filter Sets

  • Main window Title bar now displays base folder path

  • Main window remembers its size and pos

  • Fixed - The Zip file view was displaying some unwanted artifacts.

Special Note: FAR 2.2 is no longer a free give away. Download and install FAR 2.2 to a separate folder. That way you can continue to use your old free copy of FAR if you wish to. Of course we hope you will upgrade and register. See the FAR home page for more information.

FAR 2.1.7 (12-Oct-1999)

Minor update. Documentation only.

FAR 2.1.6 (15-Aug-1999)

Finally found a spare moment to update FAR.

Many thanks to all who sent in bug reports and wish lists.

TOC Editor

  • New - Validate links command

  • New - Option to drag and drop link information only

  • New - Remove Set button from TOC editor

  • New - File pick list dialog for link fields

  • Fix - Can now create folders if TOC tree empty

  • Fix - Test mode no longer shows file not found errors

  • Fix - Test and Open now displays HTML via shell so now single session.

  • Fix - TOC editor now preserves image list type globals. Was erasing them on save.
    <param name="ImageList" value="icons.bmp">
    <param name="Image Width" value="16">
    <param name="Color Mask" value="0xff00ff">

  • Other minor fixes and cosmetic changes


  • New - Can now right click Explorer Folders (Open with FAR)

  • New - Can now right click .hhc files in Explorer Folders (Compile with FAR)

  • Simply passes file to hhc.exe compiler and displays the log file. Avoid HHW lockups.

  • New - Updated toolbar for main window

  • New - 2 new batch mode commands for George

  • MakeHHC=xxx.hhc -- Auto generates a XXX.HHC file

  • MakeHHK=xxx.hhc -- Auto generates a XXX.HHC file

  • Fix - FAR now displays correctly under large fonts display mode

  • Fix - Find and Replace now finds Umlauts (E.G. äç) in non-case sensitive mode.

  • FAR no longer ships with uncompressed version of help for netscape users

FAR 2.1.4

  • Very minor cosmetic fix. The Environment Check dialog reported incorrectly
    that you needed to update HTML Help even though it clearly displayed
    that you were up-to-date.

FAR 2.1.3

Note: No changes to Find and Replace - only to HTML Help functionality.

  • New - FAR WYSIWYG table of contents (TOC) editor.

  • Replaces HH Workshop TOC Editor.
    Include file (merge) items handled correctly.

  • Drag and drop entire branches.

  • Move and Delete entire branches.

  • Instant Test button.

  • Shows unused web files and allows drag and drop onto the TOC.

  • Explorer files view with drag and drop onto the TOC.

  • Can open .hhc and .toc files directly from Explorer.
    Right click the explorer file and select "Open with FAR".

  • Move between .hhc and .toc format without losing information.

  • Drop .hhc and .toc files onto the TOC editor from explorer.

  • Edit .hhc and .toc files in a text editor and FAR TOC Editor will detect the change and ask you if you want to reload.

  • New - "File > Export File List" now programmable. Create personalized reports to .TXT or .BAT files using the FAR file list. Toolbar button also added.

  • Fix - FAR was checking for disk read-write access via writing a temp file in the drive root folder. Now checks the base folder where files were dropped from.

  • Fix - Various Optimizations - processes very large numbers of files even quicker.

  • New - FAR now excepts HHP, HHK & HHC files as command line parameters.
    Can now right click .HHP, .HHC and .TOC files in Explorer and select "Open with FAR".
    There is now a file association between .TOC files and the FAR application.

  • New -If IE4/5 installed and an internet connection found, then FAR auto-checks for updates on the web. Can be disabled in preferences.

  • FAR .toc files are no longer required. When creating a new TOC from the file list a temp .toc file is created then converted to a .hhc file. You can still work in FAR .toc format from the new FAR TOC Editor. Click the last icon in the Editor toolbar to open a .hhc in .toc format.

  • Remove FAR tray icon - not a useful feature.

  • FAR now has single instance support via dde and shell. Example: When opening FAR via a .hhc, .hhp or .toc file you only get one instance of FAR in memory.

  • When loading a .hhp file, if an invalid file is found in [files] list, FAR will ask if it can remove it.

  • Move TOC icon search and replace from the Create HH Window to the Edit TOC window.

  • Added file uninstall.bat - used to remove FAR registry changes.