Help menu search field

In the absence of any suitable alternative I’m writing my own help display window that I can call from any Xojo app.
The basic functionality works fine, was easier to do than I thought. However, is there a way of getting access to the search field
that seems to appear whenever you define a menu column as Help? It’s there so I thought I should make use of it.


@John Allen — I don’t know if Apple has modernized their help system (though I don’t think so) but I’m afraid that the use of the help search field is tied to using the Apple Help format. Google “authoring Apple Help” for more info.

Ok thanks for that.


As Stphane says, you should use an Apple Help Book (basically HTML in a certain structure).

However on the flip side, developing for Apple help has become a frustrating experience in the recent years; it likes to cache pages (in an undisclosed location) so when you think you’ve fixed a typo or something it never shows up.

Apple also used to recommend the use of Apple Script to provide automation from pages (i.e. Click to open Preferences window), but again in recent years their security drive has also made this a frustrating experience.

To the point where, this year I got so fed up, that like you I rolled my own Help viewer, and apart from not having a search function (yet) it solves the two issues I was facing. I’ll come back and add a search function later this year.

If you plan to have a multi platform compatibility for the help system, it seems also that making your own help system is the best approach.

@Sam Rowlands — I feel you, Sam! If only there was some real advantages to using Apple Help, like speed at least, but no. It is slow and inefficient. Anyway, not worth my time.