Creating a Link
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What is a Link?

A Link is also known as a jump or a hyperlink. It is usually some text that is underlined and blue and when you pass your mouse over it your mouse pointer changes to a hand and when you click it performs some action like displaying another page.

Creating a simple Link

Let's say you have two Topics in your Project, "Welcome" and "Second Topic":

  1. In the "Second Topic" type in some text like "Link to the Welcome page".
  2. Now highlight the word "Welcome" and either press F4 or click on the toolbar icon.
  3. If you want to create a link to a Topic, simply find the Topic you want to link to and double-click it. The same for a Popup link, click on the Popup tab, and double-click the Popup to link to. In this case click on the "Welcome" Topic and at the Top of the screen you will see the "Link to the Following" field is now pointing to the Topic.
  4. Click [OK] and your link is created.

That's it, you have your first link. If you now compile your project you will be able to click on it in WinHelp and HtmlHelp.

The different Kinds of Links

Highlight some more text and press F4 to display the Edit Link screen. At the top you can see the "Type of Link" field. If you drop the arrow down you can choose between the following types:-


An Internet link. Please type in the full url, i.e.


This is a WinHelp only feature. You can insert any Macros you wish to.


Popups are small definition type windows that display limited amounts of text.


Topics are standard help pages.

Link to the Following...

The caption of this field will change depending on what kind of link you are creating. For example, if you are creatng a Topic link it will say "Link to the Following Topic". If you are creating an Internet link, simply type in the URL in this field, and ensure the "Link Type" is "Internet". This field contains the link destination. For a Topic and a Popup it is the Context String, which is a unique address that is visible from the Properties tab for each page.

Recently Used Links

This drop down list contains a history of the most recent links you have created. It can be very useful if you are creating the same link repeatedly for different topics. Simply click on the drop down arrow and click on a link to select it.

At the top right of the "Edit Link" screen you can see the text you are linking from. Below it is where you either type in your link, or in the case of Topics and Popups, you can click the ellipsis button to select the page you want to link to. If the ellipsis button does not appear then ensure the correct link type is selected then click in the "Link..." field.

Finding a Topic or Popup

Simply type in some text in the "Find" field and Fast-Help will begin searching for that Title.

Contents View

This shows the same view that you have in the "Help Text" tab allowing you to easily navigate to the Topic you want to link to.

Navigation View

This lists all the Topics that are in the Contents, but sorted by Title and not in a hierarchical structure. The Context String and HelpID for each Topic and Heading is also listed. You can click on the heading of any column to sort by that column.


This is a list of all the Popups in your Project. You can click on the column headers to sort on that column. Each Popup shows the Title, Context String and HelpID.

Advanced Options

If you click on the Advanced tab you will see some extra options as described below:-


If a Topic has bookmarks then you can also jump to one of these. First link to the Topic page, this will fill the Bookmark list, then click the bookmark you want to link to and click [OK].

Link to another Help File
Just type the name of the Help File, it can be either a WinHelp or a HtmlHelp file.

Use the drop down arrow to select one of the existing windows. If your current link type is "Internet", you will see the option "Display URL in a New Window". If this is checked, then clicking on this link in the compiled help file will display it in your default browser. If this option is un-checked then the link will display within your HtmlHelp window.

If you are designing a specialized system that uses frames then you can use this field to reference the frame. Fast-Help does not provide inherent support for frames.

Html Popup Width
If you are using Html Popups, which you can choose from "HtmlHelp Compiler Options", then you can specify the width for each link. The default is 400.

Click [OK] to add your link.

Note: Bookmarks are referred to as Mid-Topic Jumps in WinHelp.

See also:

Link to another CHM file