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The MSDN™ Library Visual Studio™ 6.0 Readme includes updated information for the documentation provided with the Microsoft® Visual Studio development system for the Windows® operating system and the Internet. The information in this document is more up-to-date than the information in MSDN Library Help. Many of the issues outlined in this document will be corrected in upcoming releases.
For general installation issues for the Visual Studio 6.0 suite of products, including side-by-side product installation, see the Installation Notes readme (install.htm).
Contents — Click any of the items below
Important: This section contains vital information about installing the MSDN Library Visual Studio 6.0 release. Please read all items carefully before you begin your installation.
The MSDN Library Visual Studio 6.0 is the first Library release that uses the HTML Help viewer technology. For Viewer Help, click Help from the MSDN menu bar and then click MSDN Library Help.
You are not required to uninstall previous versions of the MSDN Library that use InfoViewer 5.0 technology. For example, the July 1998 MSDN Library and all earlier libraries will coexist with the MSDN Library Visual Studio 6.0. If you do wish to uninstall any library, always use the Add/Remove Programs option from the Control Panel or the Setup program from the CD of the MSDN Library you want to uninstall.
During Setup you will be asked to choose between Typical, Full, and Custom installation options. You are able to access all documentation and samples regardless of the option selected. The options provide the ability to move some or most files to your local drive in order to reduce dependency on CD access.
The Typical setup option allows you to run the MSDN Library from the CD. Setup will copy the minimum set of files to your local hard drive. These files include the MSDN Viewer system files, contents index files, and Help files that are used by the Visual Studio development products. You will see the entire Library table of contents. If you select items in the table of contents that have not been installed locally, you will be prompted to insert the MSDN Library CD.
The Full setup option allows you to run the MSDN Library almost exclusively from your local drive. Setup will copy all MSDN documentation and some sample files to your local hard drive. (Visual C++®, MSDN, and Visual Modeler samples are not copied to your local drive in a Full install.) Files copied also include the MSDN viewer system files, contents index files, and Help files that are used by the Visual Studio development products.
Custom installation allows you to specify local installation of a subset of the MSDN Library. The files you select will be copied to your local hard drive along with the files mentioned in the Typical Setup description. You will be able to access product documentation without having to access the MSDN Library CD for those files that you select to copy locally. In addition to any product or sample files you choose to copy locally, select the Full-Text Search Index to search your product's documentation without need to access the MSDN Library CD. You will see the entire Library table of contents. If you select items in the table of contents that have not been installed locally, you will be prompted to insert the MSDN Library CD.
You can set up MSDN on a network server by copying CD1 and CD2 to a common network directory.
In order for the MSDN Library to function properly, you need to have version 4.01 with Service Pack 1 or later of a released version of Microsoft Internet Explorer installed on your system. If you choose not to install the recommended version of Internet Explorer (Internet Explorer 4.01 with Service Pack 1), MSDN will work with reduced functionality. For more information, see Internet Explorer 3.02 limitations. Note that version 3.02 or later of Internet Explorer is required.
During Setup, the "Internet Explorer Version Check" message box may appear if you are installing MSDN independently of the recommended Visual Studio installation process. This interactive message will appear if you are using a version of Internet Explorer that is older than the version distributed with the Visual Studio 6.0 product. The message reads (in part), "Choose Yes to stop setup and install a later version of Internet Explorer. Choose No to continue with MSDN setup."
If you select Yes, MSDN Setup will halt and display a dialog box reading, "MSDN Setup was not completed successfully." You must click OK and manually install Internet Explorer. For your convenience, Internet Explorer 4.01 is included on the Visual Studio CD. Run ie4setup.exe to install. Or, you can connect to http://www.microsoft.com/ie/ to download the latest version. (Note: If you are using Windows NT 4.0, you may need to install NT Service Pack 3. Check http://www.microsoft.com/ie/ for more details.) If you have chosen to install a later version of Internet Explorer, you must then restart MSDN Setup and continue installation.
If you select No, MSDN Setup will continue with installation.
If you are using Internet Explorer 3.02 on Windows 95, you must have DCOM 95 or a later version of DCOM installed on your machine for MSDN to work. DCOM 98 is installed as part of the normal setup of Visual Studio.
MSDN Library Visual Studio 6.0 installation will not work properly using Windows Terminal Server. After installation of MSDN, if you select Start, Microsoft Developer Network, MSDN Library – Visual Studio 6.0, you will then receive an error that the msdn*.col file could not be found.Workaround
You can get MSDN to work properly by moving the hhcolreg.dat file from the Windows\Help directory to the specific user profile Help directory. The user profile directory can be found in the Windows\Profiles directory.
You may encounter the following message at the completion of MSDN installation: "MSDN Setup is going to set the preferred developer shell's F1 Help Collection to the 'MSDN Library - Visual Studio 6.0' collection you are installing. Do you want MSDN Setup to do this?" If you select Yes, F1 Help from Microsoft developer products will be routed to the newly installed MSDN Library. If you select No, F1 Help from Microsoft developer products will route to the previous default collection.
For more information regarding changing collections, see the topic Collections — Changing preferred collection.
To remove MSDN Library from your machine, run Add/Remove Programs from the Control Panel, select MSDN Library Visual Studio 6.0, and click Add/Remove. Select the Remove All button.
MSDN Library Visual Studio 6.0 is the help and documentation set for all the Visual Studio products. During Visual Studio installation, the MSDN Library Visual Studio 6.0 is set as the preferred document collection for F1 help and general documentation help. If an additional developer documentation collection is installed, you may wish to designate that collection as the preferred collection for F1 help and general documentation help. The preferred collection can be changed in the Visual J++™/Visual InterDev™ Integrated Development Environment (IDE) or in Visual C++ through Tools, Options, Help System.
You should always close the MSDN window before changing the preferred Visual Studio document collection. If you change the preferred collection while MSDN is open, your change is not saved.
Contents are not displayed in the right pane of the MSDN Viewer
If you are using Internet Explorer 3.02 and Content Advisor is enabled, unrated content, such as the content included in MSDN, will not display. To view MSDN contents, click View, Options, click the Security tab, and then click Disable Ratings. . . .
Note: Changing Internet Options for MSDN also changes Internet Options for Internet Explorer.
Selected text will not print
Printing selected text from an MSDN page is not supported by Internet Explorer 3.02.
Text is not highlighted after a full-text search
Highlighting of results from a full-text search is not supported by Internet Explorer 3.02.
Sample code sometimes does not cut and paste properly
Line breaks and formatting information may not copy correctly when you copy and paste sample code from the MSDN Library Visual Studio documentation to your code editor. To work around this issue, do one of the following:
Text links appear broken and links present security warnings
If security settings are set to disable ActiveX® controls and scripting, some MSDN links will not work. To change your security settings, click View, Internet Options, click the Security tab, and then select the proper zone (Intranet Zone would be appropriate for most users). Then set the security level at a less secure level to allow links to work.
Note: Changing Internet Options for MSDN also changes Internet Options for Internet Explorer.
If two keywords differ only by case and one or more of the keywords contains index subentries, then index subentries for both keywords will be listed under the keyword sorted last in the index.
For example, these keywords are authored as follows:
key concepts of
They will be displayed in the MSDN index as:
key concepts of
Because Data Binding was sorted in the index after data binding, Data Binding contains the index subentries for both keywords.
For some topics, especially those found in Visual Basic® documentation, the Locate button does not work, even though it appears active.
Some topics within the MSDN Library are purposely authored as "hidden" from the table of contents. These topics disable navigation arrows. You will need to navigate to a next or previous topic by clicking on a new topic in the table of contents.
MSDN does not recommend printing multiple book nodes. Choosing to print a node with a large amount of content can require a large amount of system memory and take quite a bit of time to print. If your machine does not have the necessary memory, you may receive an out-of-system–memory message.
If you attempt to print a node in the table of contents that contains other nodes that have HTML "frame"-based content, the following message will be displayed: "The selected topics must be printed individually." You will need to select a book or page at a lower level in order to print the desired topic.
Using subsets to narrow a full-text search
For information about how to create subsets, see MSDN Library Help (select Help and click MSDN Library Help from the MSDN menu). That document does not contain the following information about how to use subsets to narrow a full-text search:
Topic Not Found page does not include subsets
When using subsets, if you attempt to follow a link from one topic that points to a target topic outside the currently active subset, you may see the "Topic Not Found" page. This page does not tell you that the reason the topic was not found is that it exists outside the current subset. Select the Entire Contents subset in order to access that topic.
Stop list is ignored
When you use subsets, full-text searches do not exclude words on the MSDN stop list.
Search previous results does not work
When you use subsets, the full-text search "Search previous results" feature currently does not work.
Defined subsets deleted
In some cases, closing and rapidly opening the MSDN Library could result in the loss of some user-defined information, including recently created user-defined subsets. To avoid this information loss, allow the MSDN Library close process to complete before restarting the MSDN Library.
After a Typical installation, if you conduct a document search without CD2 in the drive and then click the Cancel button, you will get a "No Topics Found" message. If you make a subsequent search during the same session, the "No Topics Found" message is immediately displayed instead of a prompt to insert CD2.
Insert CD2 when requested, click OK, and the search will behave as expected. You can also clear the session by quitting and restarting the MSDN Library.
In several languages, primarily those with bi-directional script, the search results display may contain extraneous or incorrectly ordered characters. This may occur in a search containing wildcards, special characters, or punctuation marks. Search results will work properly; only the display of the results is affected.
Because of the volatile nature of the Web, some Uniform Resource Locators (URLs) that connected to Web sites at the time of publication may no longer connect. MSDN is always working to keep URLs current. If you would like to report a problem link, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with a description of where the problem link is located.
Some phone numbers provided in MSDN Library documentation may not be correct. MSDN is always working to keep phone numbers up-to-date.
MSDN document files are compiled HTML files that have a .CHM file extension. The CHI, CHW, and CHQ files are index files created to enhance index, keyword, and full-text search performance with the MSDN Viewer.
The .COL file defines the table of contents of a defined document set, which consists of a number of CHM files.
HTML tag information has moved and is not included in the keyword index and cannot be accessed through F1 lookup. If you need information on HTML tags, click the Contents tab in the navigation pane of the MSDN Library to open the table of contents. You can find the reference for HTML Elements inside the Platform SDK folder:
|» Platform SDK|
|» Internet/Intranet/Extranet Services|
|» Dynamic HTML|
|» DHTML References|
|» HTML References|
|» HTML Elements|
The contents of the MSDN Library will continue to evolve. We have provided product documentation and a substantial portion of the current MSDN Library.
The Microsoft Developer Network team does not edit most of the product documentation, specifications, and articles included in the MSDN Library. You may encounter documentation errors, references to page numbers, and formatting problems. We will communicate any errors you report to the appropriate product documentation groups. You can email problems to us at email@example.com.
The MSDN Library is included on two CDs. Documentation, samples, and Setup files have been placed on the CDs to maximize content space and to minimize CD swapping. CD 1 contains Setup and sample files and CD 2 contains document files. Three document files are located on CD 1: Two files, dsmsdn.chm and dshelp.chm, are installed locally in any MSDN installation; the third file, vcsample.chm, is used to link samples on Disc 1.
Samples are located on CD 1 and are uncompressed. Samples are available for all Visual Studio products within their respective directories. Some samples are available through document links and others are referenced through Visual Studio product documentation on the MSDN Library.
A word stop list has been used to reduce the size of the keyword index and increase search performance. The following words are included on the MSDN Library stop word list: a, am, an, and, are, as, at, be, been, being, but, by, can, could, did, do, does, doing, done, for, from, had, has, have, he, here, how, I, in, is, it, its, may, not, of, on, or, saw, see, seen, she, so, that, the, them, then, there, these, they, this, those, to, too, very, was, we, when, where, which, with, you.
If you enter a search query using a word on the stop list exclusively, an error is returned: "The syntax of the search query is incorrect."