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VS 2010 Help Debugging

posted Jun 23, 2010, 5:58 PM by Robert Chandler
In a past post I mention how to enable Help Viewer Messages for help debugging.
Here's how to enable help debugging in VS 2010.

In this snippet of a VS Help Integrators Yahoo Group post, Paul O'Rear [MSFT] mentions a way to switch Help debugging on in Visual Studio 2010.

You can see what data (including F1 keyword and any other metadata) is being passed to the Help system by adding the following key to your registry:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\10.0\Dynamic Help
"Display Debug Output in Retail"="YES"

This will result in a menu item under Help in the Visual Studio IDE - "Debug Help Context". Select that and it will open a "Debug Help Context" pane in the IDE. If you then select anything in the IDE and press F1 - you will see what is being passed to the Help system.

Screen Shots

Add registry item

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\10.0\Dynamic Help
"Display Debug Output in Retail"="YES"


After a restart VS 2010 now has a new Help menu item. 


Click "Debug Help Context" to show the window.

The content is dynamic. Here you can see that as soon as I select "WebServices" or click it, the help context has changed and the Debug window immediately shows the Help context info.






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