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Re: st: One help file for two program

From   John Antonakis <>
Subject   Re: st: One help file for two program
Date   Fri, 22 Mar 2013 20:40:38 +0100

OK. Thus, it does not appear possible for us (outside of Stata) to have two programs point to the same help file.

At least

.h program_name

does the trick.

Thanks everyone, Austin, Daniel, and Ken.



John Antonakis
Professor of Organizational Behavior
Director, Ph.D. Program in Management

Faculty of Business and Economics
University of Lausanne
Internef #618
CH-1015 Lausanne-Dorigny
Tel ++41 (0)21 692-3438
Fax ++41 (0)21 692-3305

Associate Editor
The Leadership Quarterly

On 22.03.2013 20:28, wrote:
Daniel Klein <> is correct:

you can point to another help file simply saving the one line

.h john

(note the dot is not followed by a space) in the file johni.sthlp. If
you then type

h johni

the help file for -john- (john.sthlp) will pop up.
This is how users add aliases for help files.  It is better than
having several differently named files with identical content.
Using ".h" you can avoid editing several files every time you
want to make a change.

Long ago, Stata used .h to create all of it's help aliases -- and
the method still works and is available to you.  However, now the
official Stata help files determine aliases from alias .maint
files.  We did this because of the large number of aliases that
we were wanting for the help system.

The help alias files have names like xhelp_alias.maint, and
there is one for each letter.  If curious, you can

     . viewsource xhelp_alias.maint

to see the alias file for the letter x, or

     . viewsource bhelp_alias.maint

to see the alias file for the letter b.  The files have two columns,
the second column is the name of the help file to show when help is
requested for the item in the first column.

Ken Higbee
StataCorp     1-800-STATAPC

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