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Seeking help with VS2017 Help RRS feed

  • Question

  • I am migrating from VS2010 & VS20212 to VS2017 Community. Indeed, I downloaded VS2017 just two days ago.

    Today, in attempting to resolve a problem with a Listbox, I turned to VS2017 Help and found there is no 'there' there. That is, I found no documentation on controls, system functions, etc.

    Does Microsoft no longer provide that documentation, or must one download the documentation explicitly (I checked virtually every download option, even though 95% of my work is in C#) ?

    Thanks for your help.

    Thursday, February 1, 2018 1:29 AM

Answers

  • in the Good Old Days (for instance, VS2010), the first sub-item under the 'help' item is 'view help'. Clicking on that brings up Microsoft Help Viewer 1.1 and the index lists about 1.35 trillion entries.    No muss ... No fuss !

    Sadly, I do not see that subitem under VS2017's 'Help' item. 

    It would have been nice to find that VS2017 offers the same capability ... perhaps it does.

    Did you set the Help Preference to use the Help Viewer?

    Then Add Content from the Online Source. It will take some time for the
    first batch of content. Once populated you will be able to use the Help
    Viewer (2.3) to get help without having to use a browser.

    - Wayne

    • Marked as answer by Lincoln_MA Thursday, February 1, 2018 11:48 PM
    Thursday, February 1, 2018 9:32 AM

All replies

  • You can read the docs related to visual studio from Visual Studio Documentation

    Microsoft MVP, Full stack developer, Top contributor Stackoverflow ,@Angular Enthusiast profile for Sajeetharan at Stack Overflow, Q&A for professional and enthusiast programmers

    Thursday, February 1, 2018 1:43 AM
  • Obviously you did not make much effort. Obviously you know how the internet works so you are totally capable of doing a Google search at least. If you look at the second result then you would have a good answer to the question of whether Microsoft provides documentation.

    So if you don't get much help in the future then consider doing more yourself.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Thursday, February 1, 2018 2:39 AM
  • Gentlemen,

    Thank you for your comments.

    Sajeetharan, I followed your link to VS documentation a short time ago. I had visited that page earlier today, and this time, as before, didn't see anything that looked like "THIS IS IT!". But the fact is that it may very well be that it's there, but it's kinda late here and I was (am) in a hurry ta get outta here. I'll look again in the morning.

    Sam, thanks for the tip ... I've never heard of Google before. What's that ?  Gosh, you're good!

    Certainly I can find exactly what I'm looking for using Google but, ya know, in the Good Old Days (for instance, VS2010), the first sub-item under the 'help' item is 'view help'. Clicking on that brings up Microsoft Help Viewer 1.1 and the index lists about 1.35 trillion entries.    No muss ... No fuss !

    Sadly, I do not see that subitem under VS2017's 'Help' item. 

    VS2010 made life so easy ... one clicks on 'help', and one gets help. Immediate access. From Visual Studio.  Directly. No going to Google, or Bob's Jams, Jellies and Search company.

    It would have been nice to find that VS2017 offers the same capability ... perhaps it does. I'll know more tomorrow. 

    I don't think it is unreasonable for me to consider the possibility that somehow I screwed up the download, perhaps failing to select an option sometime during the download procedure.

    Thanks again, Gentlemen.   'preciate your help.


    • Edited by Lincoln_MA Thursday, February 1, 2018 5:15 AM
    Thursday, February 1, 2018 5:04 AM
  • Does Microsoft no longer provide that documentation


    VS2010 made life so easy ... one clicks on 'help', and one gets help. Immediate access. From Visual Studio.  Directly. No going to Google, or Bob's Jams, Jellies and Search company.

    So you do know where to look. I think people should be rewarded when they are nice but not when they exaggerate things. The original post exaggerated the truth. That should not be rewarded.

    Yes, I also experienced Visual Studio taking us to the documentation easily. There is much to complain about so it is especially frustrating for me when people exaggerate things and say things intended to shame.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Thursday, February 1, 2018 5:22 AM
  • in the Good Old Days (for instance, VS2010), the first sub-item under the 'help' item is 'view help'. Clicking on that brings up Microsoft Help Viewer 1.1 and the index lists about 1.35 trillion entries.    No muss ... No fuss !

    Sadly, I do not see that subitem under VS2017's 'Help' item. 

    It would have been nice to find that VS2017 offers the same capability ... perhaps it does.

    Did you set the Help Preference to use the Help Viewer?

    Then Add Content from the Online Source. It will take some time for the
    first batch of content. Once populated you will be able to use the Help
    Viewer (2.3) to get help without having to use a browser.

    - Wayne

    • Marked as answer by Lincoln_MA Thursday, February 1, 2018 11:48 PM
    Thursday, February 1, 2018 9:32 AM
  • Hello,

    My my experience it's best to search for help e.g. Google using key words to find help with anything pretty much related to question on C# or Visual Studio. Local documentation gets stale quickly which is why it's best to use online help.

    If you feel this is not for you contact Microsoft and tell them via the link in the top corner of Visual Studio.


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help and unmark them if they provide no help, this will help others who are looking for solutions to the same or similar problem. Contact via my Twitter (Karen Payne) or Facebook (Karen Payne) via my MSDN profile but will not answer coding question on either.
    VB Forums - moderator
    profile for Karen Payne on Stack Exchange, a network of free, community-driven Q&A sites

    Thursday, February 1, 2018 11:27 AM
    Moderator

  • VS2010 made life so easy ... one clicks on 'help', and one gets help. Immediate access. From Visual Studio.  Directly. No going to Google, or Bob's Jams, Jellies and Search company.

    It would have been nice to find that VS2017 offers the same capability ... perhaps it does. I'll know more tomorrow. 

    I don't think it is unreasonable for me to consider the possibility that somehow I screwed up the download, perhaps failing to select an option sometime during the download procedure.

    Thanks again, Gentlemen.   'preciate your help.


    In version 2005 there was a lot of critique because the help function was done mad. It needed at least itself 3 help levels. 

    Everybody told that using Google gave quicker results than F1 (help). 

    I guess that Microsoft decided to put more effort in MSDN documentation than in F1. 

    And using your style of replying.

    You are allowed not to agree with that. Maybe a business opportunity for you to make a better product. Maybe you do that than also with a free version and a forum, so we can use the same friendly words as you use. 




    Thanks Cor



    • Edited by Cor Ligthert Thursday, February 1, 2018 11:41 AM
    Thursday, February 1, 2018 11:41 AM

  • And Again, a sincere Thank You to those who chose to respond.

    Wayne, You 'nailed it', bro' !     
    Your diagnosis was right on target and your fix was very nearly so.
    Indeed it was so close that even this Old Fool could not help but stumble across the VS2017-specific fix.

    Your reference to setting the 'Help Preference' to "Launch in Help Viewer" was right on
    the money. I had not, Sir.

    Apparently, VS2017 is the first version to require that documentation be downloaded explicitly
    (see https://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/37786.visual-studio-2017-getting-started-with-help-viewer.aspx)
    As mentioned in the original post (and again in my response to Sajeetharan and Sam), I HAD screwed up the original download!

    Karen, Thank you so much for your response. Indeed, I do occasionally resort to Google
    to "fill in the gaps" of my understanding of a C# programming topic, but my first choice is to check with Microsoft's documentation. It has been my experience that the "Help" function does, on occasion, come up a bit short, but for the most part it's exemplary (sometimes going so far as to blow my socks off with far more information than this old man can handle)

    And, it pretty much seems to me that to use Google, one must know what one is searching for. 
    In this particular case, I did not remember the words "Help Viewer" (if I had, this thread probably would never have started).
    But once Wayne got me started, I knew just what to Google, and got just what I needed.

    Old men need a lotta hand-holding, and it's Visual Studio Documentation that holds my hand each time I reach for the coding pad.

    Cor, Thank you for your comment. I do use both VS Help and Google, but VS Help is my first choice.

    and now, although it's completely irrelevant to this thread, I'd like to take a moment to reach out to any other Old Folks that may be out there:    I mourn the passing of Xerox Corporation, now a division of Fujifilm, as I recall.

    Why Xerox ?   Well way back when, I fell in love with the SDS / XDS Sigma series machines. I remain wedded to those machines to this day.   Oh, there were dalliances with the DataGeneral Nova/Eclipse, and "The 11", and of course, everyone's favorite, the VAX,  but it was the Sigma-series machines with which I chased satellites thru the sky and explored the murky floor of the Strait of Juan De Fuca.  And i just realized while typing this, that the facility at which I did the oceanographic work was Autex, in Wellesley, MA.  Autex became a Xerox subsidiary. 
    (http://www.auburn.edu/tann/ati/kay-bio.html).

    XDS Sigma series (sigh).

    Any SDS / XDS / VAX fans out there (or am I the last of the breed) ?

    Friday, February 2, 2018 12:40 AM
  • Wayne, You 'nailed it', bro' !     
    Your diagnosis was right on target and your fix was very nearly so.
    Indeed it was so close that even this Old Fool could not help but stumble across the VS2017-specific fix.

    Your reference to setting the 'Help Preference' to "Launch in Help Viewer" was right on
    the money. I had not, Sir.

    I would have mentioned that if it was not for the unnecessary opinions in the original post.

    Apparently, VS2017 is the first version to require that documentation be downloaded explicitly
    (see https://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/37786.visual-studio-2017-getting-started-with-help-viewer.aspx)
    As mentioned in the original post (and again in my response to Sajeetharan and Sam), I HAD screwed up the original download!

    Actually, no. Microsoft actually provided source code for a help viewer many years ago, I forget when. The option to download the documentation is quite old.

    Well way back when, I fell in love with the SDS / XDS Sigma series machines. I remain wedded to those machines to this day.   Oh, there were dalliances with the DataGeneral Nova/Eclipse, and "The 11", and of course, everyone's favorite, the VAX,  but it was the Sigma-series machines with which I chased satellites thru the sky and explored the murky floor of the Strait of Juan De Fuca.

    XDS Sigma series (sigh).

    Any SDS / XDS / VAX fans out there (or am I the last of the breed) ?

    I have heard of PDP-11 and VAX but I have never used any except possibly briefly. My first 20 years were with IBM 360 and 370 architecture computers except I first learned programming using an IBM 1620 Data Processing System at about the time the PDP-11 was born.

    I do still have the 2 beta versions of the MSDN on CD-ROM. The MSDN existed on CD-ROM (as said in Microsoft Developer Network - Wikipedia) before it was available online. So an offline viewer has existed from the beginning.



    Sam Hobbs
    SimpleSamples.Info

    Friday, February 2, 2018 9:26 PM