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Accessing a MSDN collection through the network with visual studio .NET

Posted on 2002-04-04
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Last Modified: 2013-12-23
Hello experts,

I have installed the MSDN help collection on a windows 2000 server machine. Now I want to be able to access it's contents from other computers in the local area network, which have visual studio (either 6.0 or .NET) installed on them, mostly NT4 workstations. I also want the F1 (and all other help related commands in visual studio) to activate this library.

How can this be done? Thanks.
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Question by:managair
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Expert Comment

by:Hyper8
ID: 6921825
On the server share the CD drive or the DVD volume. Then map a drive to it from the workstations. Then on the workstations navigate to the msdn and do a minimal install to the workstation. Now, whenever you hit search in VB or whatever you are using it will bring it up from the server.
Mapping the drive is optional I believe.

Hope this helps.

   Hyper8
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jbunting earned 200 total points
ID: 6932264
You'll need to install two versions of the MSDN library if you want to integrate it with both 6.0 and .NET.  The January 2002 edition is designed for .NET.  You'll need the October 2001 edition for VS 6.0 and earlier.  See the readme file on the January disc for more info.

Best way is to install to a shared network drive.  It requires a lot of disk space, but it will be a lot faster than sharing a CD drive.

For the earlier MSDN editions you can run Netcopy.exe to copy the discs to the network drive you want to put it on.  With January onward you can do

msiexec /a <path to msdn.msi (located in the root of CD 1)> TARGETDIR=”<path to network share>”
 
Once you have it on the server, have the clients install MSDN from the appropriate shared directory.
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Author Comment

by:managair
ID: 6934071
jbunting,

i'd rather install only one collection, but this depends: can i activate the older collection from a .NET environment?
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Expert Comment

by:jbunting
ID: 6934170
I'm not positive (haven't tried it), but I don't think you can use the older one.  They changed the HTML Help as of the January disc and the files & formats are different.  I just installed the help that came with VS.Net for the time being since I'm still mainly working with 6.0.
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