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Help

To provide documentation for a custom operator, you can overload the OP_Operator::getHDKHelp() method, which copies the help document text into an outgoing argument and returns true to indicate that the help has been provided. The help you provide this way is usually hard-coded, but your operator could read it from a text file, for example.

bool
OP_MyNodeOperator::getHDKHelp(UT_String &str) const
{
str.harden("This is some help for OP_MyNodeOperator\n");
return true;
}

Alternatively, you can also create a separate operator_name.txt file to specify the help of your operator. For instance, in the SOP_Star.C sample, its operator name is hdk_star and so its corresponding help file is named hdk_star.txt. This file should then be installed somewhere in the HOUDINI_PATH/help search path. This is typically at

  • $HOME/houdiniX.Y/help/nodes/OPTYPE

but on Mac it can be

  • $HOME/Library/Preferences/houdini/X.Y/help/nodes/OPTYPE

where X.Y is the Houdini major and minor version numbers respectively and OPTYPE is the operator context in lowercase such as sop. If you are unsure of the help organization, please check in your Houdini installation directory $HFS/houdini/help.

If you have a central HTML server at your facility, you can utilize OP_Operator::getOpHelpURL() that copies an HTTP address to the outgoing argument and returns true to indicate that the URL should be used. This allows you to specify a web page as a help document for your operator.

bool
OP_MyNodeOperator::getOpHelpURL(UT_String &str)
{
str.harden("http://some_url/address");
return true;
}

For more information on how to setup a central HTML server, please consult the regular documentation under under Contents > Houdini X > How to use the help > Using Houdini with an external help server.

The format of the help text is same as the help text format for HDAs. It is described in the regular documentation under Contents > Houdini X > How to use the help > Writing help in wiki format. As noted in the regular documentation, a .png file representing the icon of the node can also be provided in the same location as where the help .txt file resides.

See Also
Support Files