documenting a TLB file

Subject: documenting a TLB file
From: "Colleen Strahs" <colleen -dot- strahs -at- divine -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 8 Jul 2002 17:58:03 -0400

Hello Tech Writers:

I am about to begin documenting a type library. It's a TLB file that our
programmers have generated, to be used to create custom ActiveX objects
that work with our product. Customers may write their ActiveX objects in
Visual Basic or Delphi.

I'm an experienced API tech writer but I have dealt exclusively with
Java until now. I would like to create an online reference for the API
contained in the file, similar to Javadoc output. My understanding from
my developers is that the TLB file is created automatically. I don't
have access to a source file, like I do with our Java APIs. And there is
apparently no way to embed code comments (ala Javadoc) into the TLB
file, which is binary. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

An online search located one tool (Document! X: that seems to do
pretty much what I want. But alas, we have literally no money to buy
tools right now. I do have a copy of doxygen, but I'm not sure if it
will do what I want. If I don't have specific source files that I can
enter comments in, should I just write up my documentation in a text
file and process it through doxygen?

What about facilitating context-sensitive help from within the IDE? Does
anyone do that? How? (such that when you select a method and hit F1, you
get help about the method)

Am I missing something big here? Note that this API is fairly small.
Doing the API reference by hand won't kill me, but I was trying to find
a way to neatly generate some kind of standard output, automate the
cross-references, facilitate maintenance, etc.

--Colleen Strahs

(PS-- I'm on digest; please CC: me on your reply)

Save $600: Create great-looking Help files and software demos with
RoboHelp Deluxe. Get RoboHelp and RoboDemo - our new demo software - for one
low price. OR Save $100 on RoboHelp Office in June with our mail-in rebate.
Go to

Your monthly sponsorship message here reaches more than
5000 technical writers, providing 2,500,000+ monthly impressions.
Contact Eric (ejray -at- raycomm -dot- com) for details and availability.

You are currently subscribed to techwr-l as: archive -at- raycomm -dot- com
To unsubscribe send a blank email to leave-techwr-l-obscured -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Send administrative questions to ejray -at- raycomm -dot- com -dot- Visit for more resources and info.

Previous by Author: RE: Jobs in Japan (was Re: Osaka-ben)
Next by Author: marketing rates for articles
Previous by Thread: RE: Anyone know of a quick way to change path info for all the links in a doc?
Next by Thread: RE: documenting a TLB file

What this post helpful? Share it with friends and colleagues:

Sponsored Ads