So, I was doing some work for a client, creating some custom subassemblies, and I created a document that I wanted to include as a help file. When working in Subassembly Composer, on the Packet Settings tab, there is an option to include a help file.

Add Help File

Add Help File

When you select the ellipsis (that’s the button with the three periods…) you can browse for the file and it shows you the allowable file types.

Available File Types

Available File Types

As you can see, you can choose .htm, .html, .pdf, .doc, .docx, and .txt. Just a tip,

NONE OF THESE WORK!!!!!!!!

That’s right, want to add a .pdf as a help file, nope not gonna happen. To be honest, the html options sorta work but not like what you would expect. If you choose a .pdf file, when you right click on your subassembly on your tool palette and choose, “help”, you’ll get a blank Civil 3D help screen.

Blank Help

Blank Help

So, what do you do? Well, don’t use any of those file types. Instead, use a .chm file (Microsoft Compiled HTML Help). This one works like a charm. Right click on the subassembly, and you get exactly what you would expect! If you’ve never before created a .chm file, it’s really not that hard, there are tutorials online that will walk you through it. Make sure you have a .htm file for your subassembly and compile it into the .chm through HTML Help Workshop (it’s a free Microsoft program).

Adding a help file to your subassembly in Subassembly Composer:

Quickly creating a .chm help file:

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