Enable display of older help files in Windows 7 and Vista

Ever since Windows 3.1, Microsoft has included the Windows Help program (WinHlp32.exe) with new releases. Starting with Windows Vista, Microsoft doesn’t bundle the Windows Help program used to view .HLP files meant for older Windows programs with the OS. Apparently, Microsoft made this decision because the program hasn’t had a major update for many years, and it did not meet their standards for new Microsoft programs. But for customers who still rely on 32 bit .HLP files, Microsoft offers this as a separate download.*

Download links :

  • Windows 7
  • Windows Vista

After installing the program, Windows should be able to correctly display .HLP files.

Note: Sometimes, due to an error in the macro commands, a lock is activated on the application. To unlock it, navigate to ‘HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\WinHelp’ and create a new DWORDValue. Enter the name as ‘AllowProgrammaticMacros’ and set the value to 1. The application will be unlocked.

  • You need to undergo genuine Microsoft validation to download the files.