Help is set up to follow the modules' context.
In the Help Viewer you find a drop-down list box at the top left, where you can select another module or context.
When a user opens Help from within Writer, the user will see the Writer Help. The same is true for the other modules, Calc, Draw, Impress, Base, Basic, and Math.
By selecting another entry from the list box, the user can switch to another module's main help page.
Every context has its own set of index entries and find/search inventory. So, when you are inside the Writer help, you cannot search for a Calc function.
However, many Help topics apply to all of the modules, or to at least two of the modules. The respective Help pages and index entries are part of a 'shared' Help module, which is available for all contexts.
The Application Help source files use custom tags called 'switches' to display different help texts with respect to the current context. A typical part of the source can look like the following example.
<switch select="appl"> <case select="IMPRESS"> <bookmark xml-lang="en-US" branch="hid/HID_FILESAVE_DOPLAY" id="bm_id3145324" localize="false"/> <paragraph role="heading" id="hd_id3149984">Play</paragraph> <paragraph role="paragraph" id="par_id3147289"><ahelp hid=".">Plays the selected sound file. Click again to stop playing the sound file.</ahelp></paragraph> </case> </switch>
In this edited example from the help source for the file open dialog, a part of the text is shown only when the current context is "IMPRESS". Only in this case it can happen that the 'Open' button is called 'Play', and this gets another Help ID and the corresponding extended help text.
List of switches
Switches for operating system:
WIN UNIX MAC
Switches for application:
CALC CHART DRAW IMPRESS MATH WRITER BASIC