Help, *.CHM, etc

Josiah Carlson jcarlson at
Wed Jan 21 03:14:20 CET 2004

> A question for gui application programmers. . . 
> I 've got some GUI programs, written in Python/wxPython, and I've got
> a help button and a help menu item.  Also, I've got a compiled file
> made with the microsoft HTML workshop utility, lets call it
> c:\path\help.chm.  My question is how do you launch it from the GUI? 
> What logic do I put behind the "help" button, in other words.
> I thought it would be
> os.spawnv(os.P_DETACH, "c:\\path\\help.chm", [])

needs to be:

os.spawnv(os.P_DETACH, "c:\\path\\help.chm", ["c:\\path\\help.chm"])

> so I guess help.chm isn't executable itself, but is associated with
> some unknown executable.  I tried explorer.exe- at the dos cmd line it
> basically works to type

> os.spawnv(os.P_DETACH, 'explorer.exe', ["c:\\path\\help.chm"])

os.spawnv(os.P_DETACH, 'explorer.exe', ['explorer.exe', "c:\\path\\help.chm"])

> would be equivalent but it fails.  I have to believe someone out there
> in python community likes to include help.chm with their applications,
> nad there is a right way to do this.
> On another note, are there pure python based help viewers that people
> use instead?  The reason I ask is that would be more portable then the
> *.chm files are.  If there is such a beast I can't find it.

Personally, I would suggest:

It is documented to do exactly what you want it to do, open up the help
file with the microsoft help file viewer.

 - Josiah

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