.NET Documentation Tool - DocMounter

DocMounter purpose

DocMounter is a free .NET documentation tool allowing you to build help files and XML documentation for .NET assemblies:

Free .NET documentation tool, DocMounter

This .NET documentation utility produces the following output:

  • An HxS help file in the MSHelp2 format that can be converted to MSHC for Microsoft Help Viewer (read more). Help solutions of this kind can contain both member topics and custom conceptual content.
  • A manual for the conceptual content as a single HTML that can be converted to a well-formatted printable PDF or a document of another format.
  • A standard Microsoft XML Documentation file for .NET assemblies used by Visual Studio for IntelliSense and in the Property Browser.

Originally DocMounter was created as a tool for our internal needs - to generate the whole set of documentation files for .NET controls like iGrid.NET. But eventually we decided to make this tool public and free to help other developers to build .NET documentation.

Reasons to create and main benefits

From the first versions of Visual Studio .NET, it has been possible to document .NET classes directly in code by writing content for standard documentation sections - such as summary, remarks, or parameter descriptions. But for us, developers, it was quite inconvenient to fully document our classes and create long remarks directly in code. The situation is even worse in the case when the documentation is created by a technical writer that cannot edit the source code files at the same time while the developer is working with them.

There are few open-source projects to build documentation, such as outdated NDoc and the SandCastle documentation compiler. But if you have ever tried to use them, you know how difficult to make them work and adjust for real-world needs.

You can also find commercial tools on the market allowing you to create help files for .NET products. But not all these tools can provide all features we need - for example, to create links to conceptual topics from reference topics. And what is important, those tools can be quite expensive.

Taking into account all this, we decided to create our own tool and named it "DocMounter". DocMounter became a tool to separate the documentation from the source code and even more. DocMounter also has a handy topic editor with the syntax highlighting and code outlining features, which are provided by the brilliant Code Editor component from AlterNET Software (formerly Quantum Whale).

Our utility is free and can generate help files, manuals and XML documentation files for .NET assemblies from one project. When we designed DocMounter, the simplicity of use was one of the key features of the product. As a result, now we have a tool you can use to generate help solutions and manuals with one mouse click!

Main features of DocMounter »