HLP file icon

HLP File Extension

Windows Help Format
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What is HLP file?

HLP (Windows Help File) is a Windows help file that contains information regarding programs and their usage. Help files are used as documentation for user on how to use Windows and system programs. Help files can be generated using Microsoft Help Workshop and viewed with Microsoft Help Viewer. Help files are not compatible across different versions of Windows operating system, especially those of the older versions of Windows.

Help system

Windows help system is comprised of multiple RTF files that offer basic text formatting and font colors, supports images and hyperlinks. RTF files do not support animations or any interactive elements. HLP format had its debut along with Windows 3.0 released in 1990.


Programs which support HLP file extension

The following list contains programs grouped by 3 operating systems that support HLP files. Files with HLP suffix can be copied to any mobile device or system platform, but it may not be possible to open them properly on target system.

Updated: 02/20/2024

How to open file with HLP extension?

There can be multiple causes why you have problems with opening HLP files on given system. Fortunately, most common problems with HLP files can be solved without in-depth IT knowledge, and most importantly, in a matter of minutes. The following is a list of guidelines that will help you identify and solve file-related problems.

Step 1. Get the Adobe RoboHelp

Install software to open HLP file The main and most frequent cause precluding users form opening HLP files is that no program that can handle HLP files is installed on user’s system. This issue can be addressed by downloading and installing Adobe RoboHelp or different compatible program, such as Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Help, Help Explorer Viewer. Above you will find a complete listing of programs that support HLP files, classified according to system platforms for which they are available. One of the most risk-free method of downloading software is using links provided by official distributors. Visit Adobe RoboHelp website and download the installer.

Step 2. Update Adobe RoboHelp to the latest version

Update software that support file extension HLPYou still cannot access HLP files although Adobe RoboHelp is installed on your system? Make sure that the software is up to date. Sometimes software developers introduce new formats in place of that already supports along with newer versions of their applications. If you have an older version of Adobe RoboHelp installed, it may not support HLP format. The most recent version of Adobe RoboHelp is backward compatible and can handle file formats supported by older versions of the software.

Step 3. Set the default application to open HLP files to Adobe RoboHelp

After installing Adobe RoboHelp (the most recent version) make sure that it is set as the default application to open HLP files. The method is quite simple and varies little across operating systems.

Associate software with HLP file on Windows

Change the default application in Windows

  • Clicking the HLP with right mouse button will bring a menu from which you should select the Open with option
  • Next, select the Choose another app option and then using More apps open the list of available applications
  • To finalize the process, select Look for another app on this PC entry and using the file explorer select the Adobe RoboHelp installation folder. Confirm by checking Always use this app to open HLP files box and clicking OK button.
Associate software with HLP file on Mac

Change the default application in Mac OS

  • Right-click the HLP file and select Information
  • Proceed to the Open with section. If its closed, click the title to access available options
  • From the list choose the appropriate program and confirm by clicking Change for all....
  • Finally, a This change will be applied to all files with HLP extension message should pop-up. Click Continue button in order to confirm your choice.

Step 4. Check the HLP for errors

You closely followed the steps listed in points 1-3, but the problem is still present? You should check whether the file is a proper HLP file. Problems with opening the file may arise due to various reasons.

Check HLP file for viruses
1. The HLP may be infected with malware – make sure to scan it with an antivirus tool.

Should it happed that the HLP is infected with a virus, this may be that cause that prevents you from accessing it. Immediately scan the file using an antivirus tool or scan the whole system to ensure the whole system is safe. If the scanner detected that the HLP file is unsafe, proceed as instructed by the antivirus program to neutralize the threat.

2. Check whether the file is corrupted or damaged

If you obtained the problematic HLP file from a third party, ask them to supply you with another copy. It is possible that the file has not been properly copied to a data storage and is incomplete and therefore cannot be opened. It could happen the the download process of file with HLP extension was interrupted and the file data is defective. Download the file again from the same source.

3. Check if the user that you are logged as has administrative privileges.

Some files require elevated access rights to open them. Switch to an account that has required privileges and try opening the Windows Help Format file again.

4. Verify that your device fulfills the requirements to be able to open Adobe RoboHelp

If the systems has insufficient resources to open HLP files, try closing all currently running applications and try again.

5. Ensure that you have the latest drivers and system updates and patches installed

Up-to-date system and drivers not only makes your computer more secure, but also may solve problems with Windows Help Format file. It is possible that one of the available system or driver updates may solve the problems with HLP files affecting older versions of given software.

Conversion of a HLP file

File Conversions from HLP extension to a different format
File conversions from other format to HLP file
Do you want to help?

If you have additional information about the HLP file, we will be grateful if you share it with our users. To do this, use the form here and send us your information on HLP file.

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