Determining the context ID with HTML5 Side Navigation skin

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Determining the context ID with HTML5 Side Navigation skin

Postby Paul Griffiths on Thu Mar 18, 2021 11:36 am

I have a problem and it's one of my own making.

I inherited a Help system for an application where there was no agreed methodology for generating context-sensitive help IDs. The developers just assigned an ID to each screen of the application. To be fair, it's not completely arbitrary. Administration screens have IDs starting with admin_, document production screens start with documentproduction_, and so on. But there's no algorithm to it.

This didn't matter (or rather, it did matter but it wasn't a problem) while we were still using an HTML5 TriPane skin. When I came across a new screen I could just hit the Help button - the Help displayed the default topic but the cshid= in the URL told me what the ID should be. Easy.

We've now switched to HTML5 Side Nav. When the default topic opens, the URL is just the URL of the default topic.

Son of a biscuit.

As I say it's my own fault. I should have addressed this issue ages ago. I guess I'll have to go back to the devs and reverse-engineer some kind of protocol.

Unless anyone can suggest an alternative?

TIA
Paul Griffiths
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Re: Determining the context ID with HTML5 Side Navigation sk

Postby Psider on Thu Mar 18, 2021 6:56 pm

For one product I used to use Spy++ to get the ids for (most but not all) screens. The developer showed me what I had to click and the specific thing I needed to look at. I'm afraid I can't tell you what those steps are now though. But maybe your developers can help with that.

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/visual ... ew=vs-2019


(This would be for Windows applications only, I think. and potentially only for certain coding languages? I don't know enough to be sure. At least it's a place to start your investigation.)
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Re: Determining the context ID with HTML5 Side Navigation sk

Postby Dave Lee on Fri Mar 19, 2021 2:08 am

I had the same problem and use the Link Redirect Trace extension for Chrome.
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/deta ... rce=chrome

It shows you the full history of redirects from the original URL that contains the CSHID, to the page you end up on.

LRT.png
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Dave Lee
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Re: Determining the context ID with HTML5 Side Navigation sk

Postby Paul Griffiths on Fri Mar 19, 2021 3:57 am

Honestly Dave I think MadCap should be paying you a retainer.

I'll check this extension out. Thanks.
Paul Griffiths
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Posts: 255
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2007 2:25 am
Location: Nottingham, UK


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