HelpNDoc’s stunning user interface has been carefully designed to be as clean and easy to use as possible. It presents the minimum needed to be as fast and effective as possible in writing and producing help files, user manuals and eBooks; Yet it provides advanced features for power users such as the ability to move, resize and place panels wherever you like. Let’s see how this can be achieved in this article.

Show, hide and resize panels

To maximize screen space when they are not relevant to the current task, it is possible to toggle the visibility of panels and resize them.

Show, Hide and Resize panels

In HelpNDoc, each panel has a pin in its title bar: when pinned, panels are fully visible. When unpinned, they automatically hide themselves when they are not focused.
As an example, the “Table of contents” panel is fully visible by default. Clicking its pin button hides it as soon as it looses focus. Hovering over its title will temporarily show it, while clicking again on the pin button makes it fully visible.
Note: The CTRL + F2 to CTRL + F7 keyboard shortcuts can be used to quickly focus panels in HelpNDoc.

Additionally, panels can be resized by clicking and dragging any of their edges. This applies to docked and un-docked panels.

Moving panels: un-dock them

By default, HelpNDoc panels are docked to the main window. It is possible to make them float elsewhere on the screen or on a second monitor.

Undock and Resize panels

By clicking and holding the title bar of panels, it is possible to let them float anywhere on the screen. They are still fully functional but are now independent of HelpNDoc’s main window. This makes it perfect for multi-monitor setups.

Docking panels to HelpNDoc’s main window or other panels

Panels can be re-attached (docked) to the main window, or other panels using the same process: just make sure to drop them on the desired docking icon.

Dock and Tab panels

Panels are moved by clicking and holding their title bar. When they hover over HelpNDoc’s main window, docking icons will appear, showing where the panel can be docked. Make sure that you drop the panel on the icon where it should be placed to dock it:

  • Position icons: place the panel to the top, left, bottom or right of the hovered area
  • Tab icon: place the panel as a tab in the hovered area

When something goes wrong: reset!

If you feel that your customization frenzy has gone too far and panels are all over the place, don’t worry: they can be reset to their original position.

Reset forms and panels

The simplest way to reset HelpNDoc’s user interface (including panels sizes and positions), is to use the reset option:

  • From HelpNDoc’s File menu, click Options
  • At the bottom of the HelpNDoc Options dialog, click the Reset button
  • Click Reset Forms, Panels and Toolbars
  • Restart HelpNDoc

If you somehow have problems resetting settings from the user interface, you can launch HelpNDoc with the -reset command line option to reset all its settings as follows:

  • Use the WINDOWS + R keyboard shortcut to open the Run panel
  • Indicate HelpNDoc’s installation path with the -reset option. Usually it is C:\Program Files (x86)\IBE Software\HelpNDoc 6\hnd6.exe -reset or C:\Program Files\IBE Software\HelpNDoc 6\hnd6.exe -reset
  • Restart HelpNDoc normally from now on

Note: for older HelpNDoc 5 versions, the command line is C:\Program Files (x86)\IBE Software\HelpNDoc 5\hnd5.exe /reset or C:\Program Files\IBE Software\HelpNDoc 5\hnd5.exe /reset.

Thanks to HelpNDoc’s flexible user interface, technical writers can customize their working area to focus on what is the most important: writing the most meaningful content. Download your free copy now to test it for yourself.

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